The truth is what it is. This is a science. Airplanes have gone through SIGNIFICANT changes in the last 20 years, but, aerodynamics have not. We can play with placement of the wings on the body, but the teardrop shape of the wings don’t change. No one has built a plane that looks like you’re pushing an open umbrella! It wouldn’t work. All science is the same. BJJ is no different. Although we make constant improvements, they are changes that the untrained eye may not even see. I have changed a lot of things from the way I learned them. But most people would be hard pressed to notice them if we held them up side by side. There’s a delicate balance. Find the improvements, without straying from the scientific essence of the art.Read More
See, the problem is that there’s training, and then, there’s testing. And they aren’t the same. Testing, is when the outcome is important. Self defense, tournaments, etc., but on the mat in the gym, that’s training. That’s where you want weaknesses, and holes in your game exposed. That’s where you try moves that you’re not good at yet and pay the price. And that’s awesome. Every time you get beat, you have the chance to improve something. You have the chance for your Jiu-Jitsu to grow! That should be exciting. Awesome, in fact.Read More
Long before the media craze, BJJ was involved in MMA. Back then it was called Vale Tudo (anything goes). No protective equipment, no weight classes. There were very limited rules, no eye gouging, no biting, and that’s about it! In this realm (when I first started fighting), BJJ reigned supreme. People were amazed at the unprecedented superiority of BJJ. As far back the late 19th century, the root arts of BJJ were untouchable in the world of real fighting.Read More
I want the person that is almost sure they can’t. There’s just this faint glimmer of “maybe” buried in there. I want the not athletic. The not strong. The people who aren’t sure if they “can” but can’t stop daydreaming about it!Read More
I was watching a group of our students spar the other day, and could just tell……. Nobody was working on anything. Sure they were sparring (a tad too hard), and they were certainly trying to “win”. But, after a few rounds, I called everyone in, and said “What’s your point, in this training session?”.
Anyone that knows me, knows my character IS my identity. Every fiber of my being was shaped in this place. How I see the world. Who I am inside. My character. My honor. My loyalty. All made on the training floor.Read More
In jiu-jitsu people often look at various training partners as weights. That guy is like trying to lift 100 pounds, she is like trying to lift 200 pounds, Jay is like trying to lift infinity pounds, and so on. When I say 'lifting' in terms of jiu-jitsu, I am not necessarily talking about "winning", but rather being able to do something against a particular training partner, achieve some goal (i.e., sweep, pass, submit, or maybe just not allow the training partner to advance past a certain point on the ladder). Let's say passing the guard of a particular training partner is like lifting 200 pounds, but you can only lift 100 pounds. You get better, and eventually you can lift those 200 pounds (i.e., pass their guard). The problem comes because people tend to lock a training partner into a particular weight; that a particular training partner is always like lifting X pounds. Why's that a problem? Let's continue with this scenario to highlight why.
I often see newer people staring on their knees. There two primary reasons not to do this; higher risk of injury, and it's not a realistic fighting scenario. As to the second reason, here's an article from Josh Barnett on that topic:Read More
If I had to pick one Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu question that I’ve been asked more than any other it would have to be some version of “How do I escape the armbar”. You could replace armbar with any finish of your choice. My answer is always the same, “Don’t get caught in one”. While it sounds like I’m either making a joke or drastically oversimplifying it is completely true. One of the hardest things to get people to truly understand in BJJ is that they will be alot better in the long run if they put in the time learning how to avoid ending up in a position where a finish is likely.Read More
Those who know me know that my attendance at the gym is not spectacular. Those who don’t know me, you don’t know me because my attendance at the gym is not spectacular. Over the past 6 years that I’ve been a student at The Academy (six years?!?), my attendance has been spotty at best. Even early on before the wife, house, and child, I trained 3 maybe 4 times a week. But as life’s responsibilities added up and I moved further north, my training time took even more of a beating. I still managed to earn my purple belt, and then I bailed. I was in a major training “valley” (see Jay’s post on peaks and valleys) and instead of reassessing my training and goals, I pulled the chute and left the gym for a year. I’ve been back for a few months now and I am paying the price for my time off. Leaving for a year was a bad choice, but this post isn’t about that. It’s about coming back and some of the things I’ve been doing to try to accelerate my return from the world of suck. Grappling is a perishable skill after all.Read More
However........... Muay Thai (or any striking art) only works if the other guy AGREES TO COOPERATE with you. The second that guy says "screw this" and tackles you.... No more Muay Thai. Watch a Boxing or Thai Boxing match, and you'll see that the main function of the ref is to "break" the fighters and MAKE them go back to striking. If you have ANY desire to defend against an attacker who REFUSES to cooperate....... You need BJJ. If you can't grapple, you can't survive in the real world.Read More