Thursday, August 28, 2014


I'm claiming close to total, if not total, ignorance here.  I know very little about Kabaddi, other than it's an ancient Indian game that involves wrestling like throws and takedowns and what looks very much like a handball court-type field (we don't have that in the US either).  And, it's fu*king incredible.

OK.  I know bit more than that.  It's complicated.  It involves inhaling and holding your breath and then "raiding" the other team's territory to get points by tagging other players.  In the process you could easily get taken down hard.  It looks gnarly and it's definitely a kind of the crazy-ass grappling game we could grow to love.  Too bad no one plays here in the US (and probably most have never heard of it).  Check out a video created by the Wall Street Journal recently on the Kabaddi "craze."  Then watch some recent World Kabaddi League action.

The world is awesome.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014


Utilizing lockflows in your training regime can be a priceless method for improvement. They teach you patterns of movement to recognize when your opponent is actively resisting. Lockflows are heavily ingrained within Cacc and Cacc inspired arts including todays art of choice - Luta Livre.

Today, Nico Welko, LL Brown Belt and National Coach of RFT Deutschland (Renovação Fight Team) shows us more than a handful of powerful submissions that are chained together in a nasty lockflow.

Take some notes and enjoy the video!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014


Since we are on a Sambo kick this week, we of course bring you more Sambo. We don't need to reiterate the benefits of Sambo, since we have done that several times before. So today, we want you to watch and enjoy some high level Russian Grappling in the comfort of your beanbag chain.

The Japan East Sambo Championships took place in April, but only recently videos of the event have been posted online. As usual we are here to provide with the vids, so check out these two matches with nasty finishes and some amazing throws and takedowns.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014


We've probably explained a dozen times why we think Са́мбо (aka Sambo) is a badass grappling art on par with our style, BJJ.  So much of the technique is similar or the same, yet Са́мбо remains distinctive.

One thing we love about Sambo is the emphasis on quick submissions and lock-flow type joint attacks.  Unlike BJJ, which, in its current state as a sport, emphasizes extensive guard-play (and minimal little takedowns), Са́мбо is fast, guard-play is minimized, and the subs are quick and sometimes violent. Of course, BJJ is about quick subs as well, but it's also a lot about sweeps from guard and guard passing (especially at the world class level).

Check out this very tight flow from an americana-type sub to an armbar. Then check out another that illustrates a reverse armbar to a gnarly wrist attack.  You've seen all of this before, but not quite like this. 

Sidenote: is a pretty burly site with great original content.  Too bad my Russian language skills don't exist.

Thursday, August 14, 2014


Is the world a better place than it was 10 or 20 years ago?  We say yes.

Sure, you've got Islamic extremists beheading ethnic minorities in Iraq, Russian empire building in in Eastern Europe and a continuous cycle of violence and death in Gaza.  Even worse, the price of a decent açaí bowl has really gotten out of control. But, the children are learning Jiu Jitsu, and that's what really matters.

Ten years ago, I could not have imagined watching a video on YouTube featuring a 22-year black belt World Champion phenom teaching a seminar to very little children on one of the more elegant and nuanced open guard techniques in BJJ.  God bless our modern society and Jiu Jitsu!

Monday, August 11, 2014


Ladies and gents, for those of you privileged enough to watch Metamoris this past weekend, you were in for a huge surprise. Yes, this is a spoiler alert - meaning that if you skip over reading this, you'll be angry. As far as I am concerned, M4 surpassed all the other M's combined. We are pretty sure this event left a lot of BJJ practitioners scratching their heads and pondering not only the outcomes and styles within the event, but also trying to figure out WTF Ryron Gracie is talking about.

So the matchups and the winners:

Garry Tonen v Kit Dale:
A quick back and forth with Kit on top, Tonnen scrambles for the back and grabs a sneaky front choke in the transition. Kit flips over to escape, but Tonnen lands in mount to finish the Aussie in seconds!

Saulo Ribeiro vs Rodrigo "Comprido" Medeiros:
A super technical standup match between two legends of the game. Obviously the kimonos slowed the overall match down, but for us it was truly entertaining. Technique for technique each man fought for grips for well over half the match. Saulo hit a beautiful drop seonage about 10mins into the fight, but soon after it was back on the feet. The match ended with some exciting sweeps back and forth and ended in a draw. We are pretty sure this match left a lot of BJJ players confused as to why both men didn't flying scissor each other.

Secret Match Glover v Yoshida:
In the secret match, neither opponent knew who they would face until they stepped on the mat. Hardcore fans cheered when Shoot Wrestler Yoshida was announced, and out of know where Jeff Glover jumped on the mats to face him after removing his headset and suit. The match was a display of unbelievable grappling positions, control and technique, that left us in awe. Of course Glover clowned around and gave up position several times to somehow wind up in threatening spots. The back and forth was both entertaining and super technical. Ryron Gracie made a surprise cameo to add his two cents and fill in for Glover, whom he did not have a whole lot of nice things to say about. What topped off the match was Ryron scolding Glover for "running away' and saying "We need to keep it realistic." Now most of you, by this point have heard the "Let's keep it fun" propaganda or the "It's about survival" speech. As with most things Gracie, I'm tired of hearing it. Keeping it realistic and survival really have no place in a submission only grappling tourneys. It's a sport, and as a sport it's not realistic, and if sports were about survival everyone would be the winner.

Keenan v Vinny:
I was super excited for this match. Both guys are incredibly strong yet very flexible and both strike with laser like precision. That was the opposite of this match. Vinny kept top pressure with a bit of hesitation to engage in the spinny-spinny-worm-abolo. Vinny quickly locked up a nasty heelhook in transition that would have tapped 99% of people. I guess Keenan is that 1%. Anyway, Keenan played footsies for the remainder of the match until he established mount and went for an armbar triangle when time ran out. Total action can be encompassed in less than a minutes time. Two high level guys who unfortunately didn't match up well and it disappointed us, aw-shucks.

Galvao v Sonnen:
The much anticipated match that we all knew would end in submission. This fight was hyped from the start and rehyped with the possibility of the NSAC, intervening. In the end Sonnen landed a beautiful low single that dropped Galvao to his butt. From that point on Sonnen played patty cake until Galvao established a deathgrip and double unders to take his back and finish with the RNC.

Barnett v Lister:
By far, two of my favorite grapplers aside from Sakuraba. My thoughts initially were that Lister was going to have his hands full and his leg lock game would be far from dominant vs a competitor that was not only significantly heavier than him, but also had an equal leg game. It played out just like that, Lister avoided the standup game of Barnett and pulled butterfly to guard. From here Barnett would dominate on top with incredible pressure and passing. Lister stayed strong through several bent arm lock attack and a crooked-head-scissor. With 30 seconds left, Barnett passes Lister's guard again, stops him from turning away and baits him for the head and arm kesa position. From there it's game over, Barnet locks his hands and sits out for the tap and thousands of BJJ player's heads explode. It was an incredible match that utilized pure catch wrestling for the win.

Quick Overview:
Tonnen is a beast, Throws do exist in BJJ, Surprise match was amazing, Keenan and Vinny disappoint,  Yoshida and Glover are awe inspiring, Barnett uses old school wrestling to sub Lister for the first time in 16 years.

M4 did not disappoint,  our highlights include a diversity in style match ups as well as thinking outside the confines of just BJJ. If Metamoris continues down this path we will see more and more amazing matches with grapplers (young and old) from all disciplines participating. Events like M4 will hopefully continue to grow grappling arts for the best and make them known in the mainstream.

**And as a side note, earlier I replaced Sato for Yoshida. Yes it was a mistake, yes he is "another asian guy," but in my defense they have almost an identical background, game, and fight at the same weight. And for those idiots that still don't know who I am talking about - its Rumina Sato. Shit happens, oh well...

Wednesday, August 6, 2014


Respiration is a key element in most living creatures, and in particular mammals. Despite thousands of years of breathing, most of us have not mastered the art of breathing. Breathing is part of our autonomic nervous system - otherwise know as our involuntary control over muscles. In essence, we don't need to think about breathing, we just do. Even though breathing is a high level function that works on it's own, we can vastly improve our breathing for many applications which includes sports, day-to-day life and for SI (stress inoculation.)

Breathing is similar to stretching, the more time you put in, the more you will eventually get out - and quite frankly it could change your life. Today we feature our buddy from VT Gym, BJJ Black Belt Liam Resnekov. We have featured his videos many times, and one of the main reasons is because he shows simple yet innovative techniques and concepts. Over the past few months he has done a few videos he entitles body hacks, where he talks about improving your health on and off the mat. Liam shows a variety of exercises to improve your breathing, and he ends with several drills that eliminate panic from stressful positions. He also gives a shoutout to BJJ Blackbelt and S&C Guru Steve Maxwell. Liam credits Maxwell for showing him the last drill that comes straight from RMA and Russian Systema.

Pay attention, cause this video might change your game on the mat as well as improve your life off of it.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014


The kimura don't need no ones help in being a brutally badass grappling technique  Still, a couple of years ago, David Avellan and his "kimura trap" system came along and elevated the trusty shoulder-destroyer to new heights, giving it its very own "game."

Enter the technique below, featuring Eric Uresk and brought to us by Phuket Top Team.  It's a clean and relatively simple way to get to the kimura trap entry point from a single leg defense.  The hard part, as I see it, is spinning off of the sprawl/head stuff to the get behind your opponent after the shot.  You'll see what I mean when you watch this.  Do it, but remember to be gentle on your teammates shoulders (unless your teammate is named Len).

Wednesday, July 30, 2014


Xande Ribeiro is a World Class athlete and one of the best Jiujitsu players in the world. Despite being very accomplished, his game is rather simple and to the point. You don’t see Xande looking for berimbolos and it’s rare you see him even pull guard. Some might even call his game the advanced basics, with heavy emphasis on weight distribution, and sound positioning from the top or bottom.

The Ribeiro brothers have also utilized Judo cross training as an essential aspect of there training regime. Both brothers have trained in Judo since they were young, and Xande explains why cross training is so important. So when Xande or his brother speak, we listen. Take the next 21 minute, watch the video, take his words seriously, and start throwing bitches on their heads.

Monday, July 28, 2014


The Rickson Gracie we know, the myth, the legend, has for many years been seen as the  soul of Jiu Jitsu.  The conscience of Jiu Jitsu.  Part myth, part reality, we, he's been embraced by the practitioners and students of the Jiu Jitsu as its patron saint.  Perhaps it all began with the the 1999 documentary film "Choke," which revealed his philosophy and captured his presence. 

But, Rickson's been low key, to say the least, in recent years.  He's quietly lived much of his life  in Brazil (so I am told), away from the UFC-hyped community and from the IBJJF tournament world as well.  He's done the occasional interview (we spoke to him in 2012) and continued teaching seminars.  But, he hasn't taken a leadership role in the BJJ community at large.  Until now.

By now, I mean last week, when Rickson launched his Jiu Jitsu Global Federation.  The mission of the JJGF is impressive and massive in scope.  Rickson's views on the modern-day Federation-style competition Jiu Jitsu is poignant, honest and, we think, correct.  He was the featured guest this past Friday on Budovideos' "This Week in BJJ" web series.  The result is literally mandatory viewing material for all grapplers.  If you did not watch, you must watch now.