Fascism, the USSR, Iran, Afghanistan, El Salvador and Vampires.

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Most of the time I restrain myself and keep the discussion in this blog focused on Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Grappling, and MMA. But sometimes I just have to go outside the reservation... Like many people, I'm a huge fan of Dan Carlin's Hardcore History show. No matter what I'm involved in, whenever one of those exquisitely crafted podcasts comes out I drop everything and immerse myself in … [Read more...]

Five Reasons to Grapple in a Streetfight

5 reasons to grapple in a streetfight

A lot of self proclaimed self defence experts will emphatically and categorically tell you to "never, ever go to the ground in a streetfight."  But no single strategy works in every situation, and anyone telling you to always do something, or never do something, is automatically wrong. The truth is that you may well be forced to use your grappling skills in a self defense context. … [Read more...]

Podcast EP18: John Perretti, MMA Matchmaker

John Perretti

I recently talked to John Perretti, the former matchmaker for both the Ultimate Fighting Championship and the Extreme Fighting Championship. In our fifty minute interview John and I discussed the early days of the sport, how he found and selected fighters, brain trauma in the combat sports, his disdain for the current state of the UFC, and much more. So if you're a fan of early MMA there's a … [Read more...]

Podcast EP11: Draculino talks about the Evolution of BJJ

Draculino talking about BJJ

Recently I managed to catch up with Vinicius 'Draculino' Magalhães and pick his brain about the ongoing evolution of Brazilian Jiu-jitsu. Draculino started training in Rio in the 1980's, back in the days when many of the big names in BJJ were just young kids with blue and purple belts around their waists. Plus he's trained many great competitors in the sport, as well as having personally … [Read more...]

Submission Grappling vs. Classical Ju-jutsu; when cultures and concepts collide

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Introduction There are many similarities between the sport of Submission Grappling and the classical Japanese Ju-jutsu systems. Both arts emphasize grappling over striking. Both arts recognize the importance and efficiency of ground-fighting. … [Read more...]

Podcast EP4: The Heyday of Carlson Gracie in Rio (podcast)

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The Carlson Gracie Team in Brazil was one of the original powerhouses of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. I recently had the opportunity to interview 7th degree Carlson Gracie black belt Marcus Soares, and he took me to Rio in the 70's and 80's on a narrated stroll through BJJ history. It's a fascinating 35 minute-long piece about back in the day, when most of today's competitors were still in diapers … [Read more...]