This was my 3rd time to Copenhagen. I came 4 years ago for training at CSA with a friend, then again a year or two later for the Copenhagen open.
I had done the tourist thing before, so this weekend was all about training with fellow jiu jitsu women from all over Europe, and even the world!
I had booked myself in to a pretty neat hostel in the centre of Copenhagen called Urban House. Its such a great way to keep the costs down when you travel, especially going to a city like Copenhagen where it’s not the cheapest of places.
The first training session was on the Friday evening and was an introduction for everyone. We lined up in belt order and introduced ourselves one by one. Of course I forgot everyone’s names instantly.
The black belts who organized the event are Shanti Abelha and Ida Hanssen. The guest instructor and 5 times world champion was Luanna Alzaguir. Just being in the presence of these three influential women was special.
Ida showed the first technique of the evening, passing the guard and knee slicing. Passing is one of my favourite things to do in jiu jitsu. It’s not that pretty, but it’s fun as there are so many ways in which to do it.
We did some specific training and fed those on the mat who had to sweep or submit and the top person had to pass. Then we did some rolling in groups of three for 2 minutes per round. I got to roll with Rose from Amsterdam who is also a featherweight purple belt, and Lydia from Australia, now living in Sweden who was probably round the featherweight mark and a blue belt. We had some great rolls and was so much fun.
Saturday morning’s session was nice and early. We did No Gi with Luanna. My partner was Andresa, a brown belt from Brazil, but now living in Germany. We drilled the back take techniques and thankfully I got someone to record them to remind me after the camp of how everything goes.
We had a break, and Shanti took the next session. It was all about side control and taking control from there. An Americana and a beautiful armbar (with an added elbow to the ribs thrown in for good measure) were the techniques we drilled. I partnered with Rose again which I was glad of as she was pushing me along as much as I was pushing her to train well.
Luanna took the third session of the day and I partnered with Lydia again. We drilled a sequence of different techniques from the De La Riva hook. I loved this so much as it gave you options. If your partner didn’t do one thing, you could do something else. Having options in jiu jitsu makes it fun, and I can totally implement these techniques in to my game.
The day wrapped up and we all met later at a healthy buffet restaurant in the centre of Copenhagen. I was lucky as it was just a short walk for me from my hostel. Everyone looked s different out of their training clothes, just regular people.
I made the most of the buffet and filled myself up. The food was so good. Then I walked back to the hostel in the drizzling rain.
Our final day of the camp started at 10am with Luanna teaching the Purple, Brown and Black belt students, and Ida and Shanti taught the white and blue belts. Any blue belts who felt they wanted to learn more advanced techniques came to Luanna’s group. I partnered up with a Swedish girl called Maria. The techniques were and extension of what we learnt the previous day, but so much more advanced. I loved it!
We had a break and finished off the final class drilling the techniques that we learnt from the weekend. I partnered with Rose again, and then it was time to spar. I had an awesome spar with Rose who is the same weight as me, so perfect for my kind of training. She is a competitor too and so technical. It was a great round. My next round was with a tiny black belt from Sweden who was awesome to spar with. Light and technical and I made sure not to use my weight. She was 10kg lighter than me, so I know how the middle weight girls feel when they roll with me! I sparred with Luanna herself and we had an awesome roll. I passed her guard, but there is no doubt that she 100% let me. She gave me a lovely compliment at the end of the roll to say that I was surprisingly good and was a great roll. That made my day!
I then sparred with a couple of white belts and a blue belt, but also a heavier purple belt. She did some crazy move that heel hooked me. I panicked and thought that I would be out of my next competition, but the pain subsided over a minute or two, but was completely gone in a couple of days.
We finished sparring and sat down to listen to Shanti, Ida and Luanna tell some stories and answer our questions. Then we tapped hands and the camp was over.
It was by far the best training camp that I have been on, well kind of, they have each had their plus points, but I felt that at this camp, it has really helped my training by learning a lot that I can really use in my game. I loved every minute and met some great ladies.
If you’re thinking about going to a camp, make this one part of your choice as I would highly recommend it. It's so much fun!!