Archive for June, 2011

Awareness vs. Mechanics

June 29, 2011

The most important jiu-jitsu principle is taking what the person in front of you gives you. 

The mechanics of a move, posture, or position are designed to support awareness based principles.  Without awareness of momentum and energy in real-time I don’t care how good your mechanics are, your doing jiu-jitsu moves not jiu-jitsu. 

A pitfall of intermediate and advanced levels is you can force things on lesser experienced grapplers that seasoned veterans and people with size, speed, and strength will nullify or take advantage of.

I did a web search to reference the following quote that has always stuck with me to no avail before Chris’s comment below revealed it came out of Saulo Ribeiro’s ‘Jiu-Jitsu Revolution’ DVDs :

“There is no proper position without the proper time.”


Question #1: Generating Momentum

June 24, 2011

1.  Top level people seem to generate momentum from virtually no wind-up.  How?  Is this attribute trainable or does it just come from experience?

I believe everything is trainable.  This may or may not be true, but at least I’m giving myself a chance at finding an answer. ;o)

The key to carving away at more efficient movement is gaining an intuitive understanding of timing, mechanics, and momentum through repetition, repetition, and more repetition.

Marcelo Garcia does two passes 90% of the time.  Each of these passes being a little different because every energy is unique.  Garcia uses the term ‘muscle memory,’ and says he doesn’t think consciously while rolling.  It’s reaction and feel. 

So yes it’s experience, but experience developed through a conscious focus on few things, not twenty.   

Application wise, you have to get a training partner and drill a specific scenario, preferably a high percentage one, or put yourself there during sparring over and over against a lesser skilled opponent. 

You can’t of course competitively focus spar against higher or evenly skilled training partners’s because you won’t get the reps in, and are not as likely to be relaxed.

This is the practice aspect of training.  I’ll write more on this later, but one can’t realistically refine anything if all one does is come to class before sparring at random.  Sparring in a purely competitive roll context tests practice effectiveness, while class is for learning and reviewing material for later practice.

Details and inches: Video of Marcelo breaking down a signature move

June 10, 2011

Outside the north-south choke so much of what I try to get across in this blog is demonstrated here:

Kesting spent 4-5 years experimenting with this choke, likewise his questions are brilliant.  Based on my experience a lot of people don’t have any questions entering a private (never mind good ones), or worse yet want me to calibrate where they are belt wise.

Marcelo is on the mat 3-4 a day, so 5 years of him working this choke is equivalent to the 15-20 years the average 3-4x a week grappler puts in.  Based Kesting and Garcia’s time invested this 10 minutes of FREE info is worth hundreds of dollars yet people commented on the poor audio.  Like Danaher wrote below: ‘Many will look, but few will see.’ ;o)

I didn’t necessarily like Kesting’s question about body types as 95% of the time this is an excuse not to even try.  Marcelo alluded to this as well.  You can make almost anything work if your willing to give it time, though, and practice.  To me genius isn’t about what you think, but how you think.

Chuck Norris is a BJJ Black Belt…

June 2, 2011

…so I’m hoping at the ‘black belt’ seminar this Saturday Eric can and will show us the breakdown, schematics and all around finer points of the following technique: