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среда, 31 марта 2010 г.

Train Hard and Be Persistent

Hard training and being persistent is important to grow in jiu jitsu. You cannot train 20 hours in one week and then not train for two weeks. You have to train regularly and focus on technique.

I believe time and time again that the guy with the better technique will always defeat the strong and bigger guy unless the weight difference is more than 15 pounds. 15 pounds does not make a big difference and even at 30 pounds, you can still defeat your opponents if your skills are substantially higher.

Focus on all the positions and my personal view is to grow from submission defense and into to getting skilled at winning a good position. Only once you can escape every submission of your opponent should you focus on winning good positions such as the side mount and the mount.

Once you can do this easily, then I believe you should focus on submitting your opponent yourself. This is the way Saulo suggests to progress. You can't just attack all the time but you should also be focused on having a good submission defense.

I think it is better to lose some of the positions but escape every submission then winning a bunch of positions and then get submitted several times in a row.

It takes many years to master bjj and you should not think about the time but the development. Focus on who you are fighting in training and practice with different people at your academy, people of different skill level, size and also style.

At my academy I think there are two major styles at work. Those that started from BJJ or from Judo, focus on playing the guard, on sweeps and passing the guard and on the mount.

Others however are very focused on leg locks and winning by submission without valuing the positions they achieve.

Both of these styles I believe I have to get used to and learn how to fight. I have to be able to escape any leg lock attempt they make and then pass their guard. Before trying any submission.

I try to be as relaxed as possible during sparring in my Academy. It does not make sense using strength as many say but I also try to be calm. I think about what submission my opponent is trying to do. As soon as he tries to secure the guillotine choke, I already have my chin down and my shoulder up to make sure he does not get it.

It does not make sense to use so much energy if you can wait, assess the situation, look for an opening in the opponents game and then take advantage of it at the precise moment when he makes the mistake.

I believe this is the essence of jiu jitsu. The youtube match between Bruno Bastos and Lagarto Rodriguez I think best illustrates my point. Rodriguez is calm, looking for the mistake and not spending energy trying to do some fancy techniques.




British Open

Looks like the British Open held brought to all of us by the triple BJJ World Champion and ADCC 2009 Absolute Champion Braulio Estima in Birmingham.

Fightworks podcast discusses this one but in general I think the tournament shows that the sport is growing rapidly and I am sure in the coming years they may need to hold a three day or even four day event to get through all the matches.

Check out the results here: http://www.bjjbritishopen.com/results.html

понедельник, 29 марта 2010 г.

Strikeforce Challengers 7 - Andre Galvao vs Luke Stewar

Andre Galvao fighting at Strikeforce Challengers 7 and securing a narrow split decision victory of Luke Stewart, tough Ralph Gracie BJJ black belt himself. Still, I expected more from Andre in this fight.

Check out the videos below:






четверг, 25 марта 2010 г.

Strikeforce Heavy Artillery May 15


Tickets on sale now for one of the most exciting MMA events in may featurying some of the best heavyweights in MMA outside of the UFC today including Alistair Overeem, Brett Rogers, Antonio Silva and Andrei the Pitbull Arlovski.

Roger Gracie is also making his Strikeforce debut on the card against Kevin "The Monster" Randelman which should also be an exciting and fun fight to watch.

среда, 24 марта 2010 г.

Weight Training Exercises for the Shoulders

There are many opinions on this subject. There a high level jiu jitsu players who do fine without spectacular strength and weight training. Good examples are Roger Gracie, Marcelo Garcia and Demian Maia. I am not saying they don't train conditioning but their exercises clearly are less strength oriented than you would expect.

On the other hand there are fighters that are extremely strong as well as technical. Jeff Monson is an obvious example and Pablo Popovitch (ADCC Champion 2009) is an awesome sight, but there are also guys like Xande Ribeiro and Ronaldo Jacare Souza, who you do not immediately notice how strong they are, but they are incredibly strong as well.

One of the most important areas of your body to exercise for BJJ I believe are the shoulders. As I have founded out through painful experience, during training you apply a lot of force on your shoulders and if the muscles are not strong enough to withstand this wearing effect, you end up with a variety of injuries over time. Weight training for the shoulders helps prevent this and below I add a youtube video with some exercises that I believe could be beneficial for these purposes.



Apart from these I do also recommend the resistance bands. There is a variety of exercises that you can select from here and I recommend it. There are many more exercises that you can do to strength both your arms and shoulders with these that you could not do with simple weights. Many wrestlers also train with these and you can even see Alexander Karelin the great Greco Roman Wrestling Champion using these for training.

2010 Pan Ams Jiu Jitsu Live Stream Trailer

Live stream for all is going to be great. Sign up for this and take a look at the trailer below. Thanks to www.Budovideos.com

понедельник, 22 марта 2010 г.

Sambo Super Cup in Moscow 24-27 March 2010

For those interested, the Sambo Super Cup will be held in Moscow this year on the 24-27 March 2010. The event will be held in memory of Kharlampiev and is one of the biggest international sambo tournaments in the world. With over 300 athletes and 30 national teams present, this event will include some of the strongest athletes in the world competing in both Sport Sambo and Combat Sambo.

More information if you follow this link: http://www.sambo.ru/events/worldcup/harlampiev_moskow/

Time table:

24 March : Introductions, judge seminar and weigh-ins

25 March:

10.00-15.00 : Preliminary fights
Mens: 52, 62, 74, 90, +100 kg
Womens: 48, 56, 64, 72, +80 kg

15.00-16.00: weigh-ins

18.30 - finals

26 March:

10.00
Preliminary fights
Mens (sport sambo): 57, 68, 82, 100 kg
Mens (combat sambo): 68, 74, 90 kg
Womens: 52, 60, 68, 80 kg

18.00 Finals and Awards

Generally looks like 25-26 March are the days you want to go to this. Address is Варшавское шоссе, д.118, кор.1. (Varshavskoe shosse, building 118)

Whether Fedor Emelianenko is participating? I doubt it but it is possible. I heard in his latest interview he was talking about this.

For the calendar on future sambo events check out http://www.sambo.com/index-en.html



пятница, 19 марта 2010 г.

Dream 13 and UFC Live this Weekend

Some more MMA for those that love the sport. We have two good events that feature some of the top grapplers in the world including Josh Barnett, Vladimir Matyushenko, Gabriel Gonzaga.

The highlights for me on both cards are going to be of course Junior Dos Santos vs Gabriel Gonzaga and Josh Barnett vs Mighty Mo and while the second fight has a predictable outcome, Junior Dos Santos could have his hands full with Gonzaga who will certainly put JDS's ground game to the test, that has not yet been really tested to date. Nevertheless JDS is one of the most exciting prospects in the UFC Heavyweight Division today.

Stay in touch for more.

Fedor vs Hidehiko Yoshida

This is the latest rumor about Fedor Emelianenko competing in Japan on New Years Eve. Fedor is named the likely opponent for Yoshida who is preparing for the last MMA fight of his career.

Yoshida is a well known Pride veteran and one of the most popular fighters in Japan. Since winning the 1992 Olympic medal in Judo, he participated successfully in MMA with wins against Maurice Smith, Royce Gracie and many others.

An exciting match for the Japanese fans who are always keen to see a matchup between the famous sambo champion and the judo champion. Certainly an exciting clash of styles. To make the fight even more exciting for the fans they should both wear the gi I think.

вторник, 16 марта 2010 г.

Shinya Aoki Phenomenon

Shinya Aoki is a grappling phenomenon in mixed martial arts. He is the first guy to carry out the Gogoplata submission successfully in an MMA competition. He is credited by Eddie Bravo it be the only MMA star to be able to successfully use the "Rubber Guard". He is the Dream Lightweight Champion but relies almost entirely on his judo/wrestling/bjj in order to overcome his opponents rather than focusing on being a well-rounded fighter like his UFC counterpart are (Anderson Silva/GSP/BJ Penn/Machida).

Aoki is a blackbelt both in Judo and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and a top level guy in both. He has won many smaller tournaments both in Judo and grappling but clearly had a harder time competing at the top level in ADCC. Clearly his style relies on his size and of course grappling with Roger Gracie showed how extreme the size difference was. (Roger Gracie easily overcame and submitted Aoki in the ADCC Absolute category)





His most recent performance has been in Dynamite!! on New Years eve and the performance he delivered against the lightweight Sengoku champion is more than impressive. Check out the video below.





This technique (hammer lock) I really learn't myself in Judo a few years back and have used it ever since with moderate success. I have always used it as a technique when you are passing the guard. It creates an element of surprise for most bjj and judo players as they are normally not used to defending against this move. Once you have secured the hand under the back, it is very difficult to get out unless you power through it and convince the guy on top that it is not worthwhile to keep the hold any longer. If you do manage to get this move and secure the hand and the guy fails to defend, it can be quite useful for control in my opinion and Shinya really seems to have taken it to another level. Great performance.

Now he is set to fight in Strikeforce in April against his long time rival Gilbert Melendez who has recently taken the Strikeforce Lightweight title from Josh Thomson. It will no doubt be once again a battle of "well-rounded fighter" vs "grappling freak" and no one can really say what will happen. This fight has been long overdue and the winner is surely the #1-#2 fighter in the world today. (and of course should take on BJ Penn)

If Shinya Aoki wins, he together with Kazushi Sakuraba go into the hall of fame of skilled grapplers making it in MMA without much striking game along with the likes of Royce Gracie. Amazing! All I can say.




понедельник, 15 марта 2010 г.

Eddie Bravo - a different perspective

This article really gives you a different perspective of Eddie Bravo, recognized as an innovator of brazilian jiu jitsu. His books are well-known and many bjj fans are buying them with the hope of improving their bjj and mma.

The famous match with Royler is well publicized but the guy is also really strange. He does give some negatives to the sport that I don't think he should. Draculino is right about that. Guys that have such high profile and that should develop the sport, can't afford to have associated with things like illegal drugs. These things have nothing to do with jiu jitsu.





Check out this article, it really describes the who 10th Planet phenomenon at what it is all about.

Of course, you have to give him credit. The guy beat the best jiu jitsu player of the 90s. Eventually he was going to lose of course and the triangle is such a universal technique that can catch anyone.

The fact that the guy never fought in MMA but claims to develop jiu jitsu for MMA is not right though. You have MMA legends like Sakuraba, Nogueira and many others who should have more to say on the subject. How can one develop an MMA oriented jiu jitsu system having never fought in the cage?

Braulio Estima vs Rick Hawn


Braulio Estima, last year's under 88kg and Absolute ADCC Champion is set to meet Rick Hawn at Shine Fights III sometime this year, most likely in April or May.

This is a fight that few keen grapplers will want to miss when the ADCC and BJJ World Champion will meet one of the most exciting MMA prospects in Rick Hawn who himself has a background in Olympic Judo.

Rick Hawn is far more experienced in MMA, having already three MMA wins and no losses under his belt, finishing all his opponents by TKO despite the grappling background. His next opponent in Braulio Estima will surely prove a vastly tougher match and if Estima is allowed to take advantage of his incredible submission skills, this should be a short affair.

Many submission grapplers and BJJ fighters have entered the MMA arena recently but with mixed success. On the one hand there is Demian Maia and Jacare Souza who have shown that they are also willing to learn the striking game in order to compete at the elite level. They have used their incredible submission skills to get great MMA records and are fighting now top fighters in the world. Anderson Silva will face Demian Maia at UFC112 while Ronaldo Jacare is to fight for the Middleweight belt at Strikeforce against either Dan Henderson or Jake Shields. Roger Gracie, Andre Galvao and Xande Ribeiro are also exciting prospects but they have not fought at the top yet.

There are however many cases when Judo and jiu jitsu fighters have failed to make a name for themselves in MMA. Everyone remembers how Marcelo Garcia struggled in his debut despite securing a rear naked choke early on in the first round. Fabio Gurgel lost in UFC 11 likewise, Saulo Ribeiro struggled and really even Royler had a hard time in his own weight division which you would expect he would dominate.

There are of course naturals like Shinya Aoki on the other hand who managed great success without much striking prowess, relying instead on incredible Judo and BJJ. Set to debut this April in Strikeforce, the phenomenon seems to defy the logic that all-rounded fighter skills are crucial to success in the sport.

Too many other factors come in to play in MMA that are not important in grappling. One of these is the ability to take a punch. Something that can't be taught and plays no part in BJJ, Judo or grappling matches becomes very important. The old saying goes that "if you punch a bjj blackbelt once, he becomes a brown belt, punch him twice, he becomes a purple belt...". Antonio Rodrigo Minotauro proved this saying during his amazing career in mixed martial arts. This is something that we see over and over again whether it is Sakuraba losing to Melvin Manhoef or Renato Sobral getting KOed by the talented striker Gegard Mousasi.

Some people are not giving Braulio a chance and this is a very tough first fight for him but you can never discount one of the best grapplers in the world today.



суббота, 13 марта 2010 г.

Pan American Championships Live!


Budovideos are doing a great job this year. After a great success in streaming live the ADCC 2009 and the no-gi Worlds, now we are going to have the chance to see the Pan Ams live over the internet, an event that is going to be a great success with the talent out there looking to compete.

Stay tuned. Some more news is coming soon. Check here

Online BJJ Training Websites

Nothing will ever replace mat time but in order to maximize your brazilian jiu jitsu development and learning you can use all kinds of materials. DVDs, Books, youtube and other videos. There are so many kinds of materials out there. One item I have not discussed so far that is available out there is of course online bjj training. There are quite a few professional looking sites out there under big bjj names out there and here I list a few that I have managed to find recently.


For all Gracie Barra BJJ players and all BJJ players, this is the new website by Vinicius Draculino, Pan-American BJJ Champion, MMA fighter and a legend in the bjj world. His new site launched recently is a model for all teacher and students developing their bjj skills and helps to spread the knowledge of jiu jitsu across the world wherever you are. 

If you are a fan of Draculino, I recommend his latest DVD set with some of the core techniques where he goes through attacks, defense and counters. Here is the link.

Too often the DVD instructionals show a technique but don't give the defense and counter side of this technique. I have seen it too much especially as a complete beginner when I am shown how to do a triangle and armbar many times but not how to defend well against these common attacks and this is something that every beginner should know I believe. (and can learn in class but also should have a chance to review on video)


Although perhaps not as accomplished as some of the counterparts, Marcello Monteiro is a BJJ master with a very effective De la Riva style who has produced a very good quality online training facility providing material for all bjj students and competitors. 

If you don't wish to sign up for lessons write away, you can of course consider buying one of his DVD sets. One thing I have noticed, it is very useful to look through the syllabus he has which helps you understand perhaps some of the areas where techniques are a bit more fuzzy and spend a bit more time practicing those.


JJ Machado is one of the famous five Machado brothers. He is a 6th degree BJJ black belt and holds too many titles too count. He is perhaps one of the best jiu jitsu player and grappler of the 80s and 90s. 

Whichever you choose, the benefit will for sure be enourmous. Revising, visualising daily details of each technique you wish to practice on the day I believe will generate guaranteed success and propel the development. It is best to mix the techniques in training and sparring and I believe this is the best formula.


пятница, 12 марта 2010 г.

Roger Gracie to debut in Strikeforce in May

Roger Gracie, perhaps the greatest brazilian jiu jitsu player ever is set to debut in Strikeforce May event. Roger is 2-0 in MMA so far both delivered via submission and now he is set to take on new competition facing the likes of Kevin "The Monster" Randelman or Rameau Sokoudjou. Roger of course has additional pressure to represent bjj and the Gracie family on the MMA arena after Rolles Gracie's poor performance at UFC 109.

Both are relatively seasoned fighters who have faced tough competition in the past but now both are down on their lack having lost many of their last fights. Kevin Randelman is 17-14 in MMA and former UFC Champion, trains with Randy Couture having previously been associated with team Hammer House. Kevin has explosive power and extreme athleticism but has not been able to take advantage of these qualities as well as his great wrestling skills to win fights as he did in the past.

Rameau Sokoudjou has been last seen losing via TKO to the current light heavyweight champion Gegard Mousasi and Minowa at Dynamite!!. The guy is 7-6 in MMA and boasts some good judo but has not been able to recently win fights against the current top competition.

Roger has also been helping his fellow bjj player Braulio Estima in his own debut in MMA. Best of luck to them both representing brazilian jiu jitsu on the big stage! Here is the link

вторник, 9 марта 2010 г.

New Draculino Website Online

Guys, Draculino the bjj legend has launched his new website at http://www.draculinobjjtraining.com

This is something to get excited about for all of Gracie Barra and bjj players. The site features an entire training program of videos that should help guide bjj players around the world trying to master the gentle art. For those that don't know, Drac has trained many successful fighters and competitors including Romulo Barral and is one of the biggest authorities in brazilian jiu jitsu.

Check out Draculino's interview below: