Incorporating a new move into your sparring and competition repertoire can be tricky. Too many people go and and try their nifty new technique on everybody right away, hoping that it will work at least some of the time. But this may not actually be the best way to do it.
In fact, this scattershot method, and not having a concrete plan for rolling out new moves, can even be counterproductive… (more…)
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First of all, I want to thank you for creating your instructional apps and having these frequent tips/newsletters. They have really helped me to get started in BJJ. Even though I have been signed up to receive your emails for a while now I have only just begun my training. (more…)
MMA has been my guilty pleasure for a long time.
On the one hand, I’m a huge fan. I’ve been watching the UFC since its inauguration in 1993, and have enjoyed fights in Pride FC, Shooto, WEC, Strikeforce, Bellator, and many other organisations. I have good friends who are professional fighters, and have helped them prepare for their fights. And I have nothing but respect for the skill, athleticism and mental toughness of the modern MMA fighter.
Serious training requires focus and intent when you’re on the mat. Those precious few hours of training every week deserve your complete attention so you can get good faster; life is too short for half-ass mediocrity. (more…)
Stephan’s note: today I interview Burton Richardson who has spent decades researching the training methods that make martial arts techniques practical, reliable, and functional. His approach is very applicable to street self defence, but is equally valid for anyone wanting to compete. (more…)
A reader writes: Hi Stephan, I’ve been doing BJJ for about 6 months and am wondering if you have any advice about what to do when you’re starting on the knees?
I find that most wrestling-style takedowns are very difficult to do from the knees, especially because my opponents are really good at sprawling. (more…)
An article by Jeff ‘Wombat’ Meszaros
When Yogi Berra said, “half of this game is ninety percent mental”, he was talking about hitting a ball with a stick and running around an empty field. He wasn’t talking about rolling around with some sweaty dude who’s trying to tear your arms off. (more…)
Although the sport and art of grappling is currently mostly a male activity, many female readers have commented on how important it is for women to learn to grapple (see Why Should Women Grapple?). In this article Liz Bader, an active mixed martial art competitor and instructor, explains what women should be aware of before they step onto the mat for the first time. (more…)
by Guest Author, Mark Mullen (BJJ Brown Belt, Judo Brown Belt)
I’ve been grappling for many years, and here’s a situation that comes up all the time…
I often spar younger, heavier, beginners. At the end of the round they’re usually fighting for breath, arms trembling from fatigue. (more…)
Let’s talk about an advanced concept that top submission artists use all the time.
But first, let’s set the stage by talking about the limited number of common positions in Brazilian Jiu-jitsu. (more…)
I’ve trained on a lot of different types of mat in my day: wrestling mats, foam core mats, puzzle mats, and rock hard old school Judo straw tatami, just to name a few. (more…)
Sarah Kaufman is one of the top fighters in women’s MMA.
And she is officially amazing!
Here’s an in-depth interview and podcast with Sarah. (more…)
Marcelo Garcia is maybe the very best person in the world at attacking the turtle position.
But before I tell you how I know this first hand, I should point out that as you get better you’ll run into the turtle position more often. (more…)
Erik Paulson is an MMA Master Coach. He’s trained tons of fighters competing at the highest levels of Mixed Martial Arts. And he held the Shooto light-heavyweight title in Japan for 5 years.
He’s also my friend and a mentor. (more…)
It’s easy to train an activity when you’re calm, relaxed and not tired. But being able to execute those same movements correctly when you’re fatigued and gasping for breath is something entirely different. (more…)
Physical attributes are really important for Brazilian jiu-jitsu and submission grappling (a point further discussed in this article about physical attributes and BJJ).
Being able to feel your opponent’s intent and react to it even before he moves (like when he’s trying to bridge his way out of your mount) requires sensitivity. (more…)
Friendly rivalries on the mat often turbocharge your grappling progress.
Recently I was corresponding with a BJJ player who kept on getting caught in the same leglock by a fellow student with a Sambo background. (more…)
Today, at the gym, a young grappler asked me a question he’d obviously been wondering about for a long time.”How long did it take until you had grappling all figured out?” (more…)
Back in my early teens, when I was infatuated with Kung Fu, I read a book purporting to describe about 50 supernatural abilities that Kung Fu masters could develop. Skills like levitation, or making your body impervious to weapons, or killing people with a poke of your fingertips… (more…)
A few weeks ago I went to a training session with the goal of working on and experimenting with the so-called “Sao Paulo Guard Pass.” My plan for sparring this day was to start in my partner’s closed guard, and then only use this one guard pass. (more…)
“Box a fighter, and fight a boxer.”
This old saying isn’t only limited to boxing – you can use the very same principle in grappling, jiu-jitsu and MMA.In a competition, or a ‘serious’ match you DON’T want to play the other guy’s game. His game is what he’s good at. (more…)
One of the things I talk about in my Beginning BJJ online Course is the importance of not telegraphing your moves, particularly your explosive escapes, by holding your breath.