A Guide to Grappling Gear


You're training in a sport that, at its core, consists of two human beings rolling around trying to submit one another. This all seems very simple, and you don't need a lot of gear to get started other than a mat (and maybe a gi). But In this article I am going to discuss a few additional items might make your time on the mats more enjoyable and productive. The MOST Important Training Gear of … [Read more...]

UK Grappling Styles

UK Grappling Styles

by Jeff Meszaros So we've finished the first two legs of your around-the-world adventure to try out all the grappling arts (click here for Asian Grappling Styles and/or click here for European Grappling Styles). While you've been wrestling up a storm I've been beside you the whole way to cheer you on and run up your credit card bill at expensive restaurants. Also, I've done a bit of research … [Read more...]

European Grappling Styles


by Jeff Meszaros So, we’ve finished the first leg of your around-the-world grappling tour and it’s been a blast (click here to read Asian Grappling Styles, the previous article). In the previous part of the journey we started in Japan, where you got thrown flat on your back by judo champions and slapped around by sumo wrestlers. Then, in Korea, you did ssireum, which was kind of like sumo but … [Read more...]

Asian Grappling Styles

Asian Grappling Styles

by Jeff Meszaros Do you like traveling? Of course you do! There’s the food, the music, the culture, the art, and if you’re a martial artist, you can bring along your mouthguard and try the local style of fighting, whatever it may be. Depending on the place, you might also need your shorts, pants, jacket, belt or jug of oil. Because each country has its own distinct style. Wouldn’t it be fun … [Read more...]

How to Escape Kesa Gatame and the Headlock

How to escape Kesa gatame and the headlock

Kesa Gatame is one of the most under-utilized positions in BJJ. People in jiu-jitsu tend to ignore this position but generations of judo players and wrestlers have proved that Kesa Gatame IS a powerful and effective way to pin someone. And - even worse for someone caught in it - Kesa Gatame is also a great entry into some very effective armlocks, leglocks, neck cranks and diaphragm … [Read more...]

Dealing with Big, Strong Wrestlers in Your Guard

Teaching a class

I got the following question on Twitter where I hang out as @stephankesting. I think it's a question worth exploring because a lot of people find dealing with strong, large and aggressive wrestlers very difficult. Question: Hi Stephan, I’ve been training BJJ for a few years now, but I get frustrated when I roll with one particular bigger, stronger whitebelt coming from a wrestling … [Read more...]

The 2 Easiest Takedowns for No Gi Submission Grappling and MMA

2 simplest no gi takedowns

Just because you didn't wrestle in High School or do 10 years of Judo doesn't mean that you always need to pull guard! In this 5 minute Youtube video Denis Kang and I riff about the the simplest, easiest takedowns for No Gi. Denis is a BJJ black belt and has fought in Japanese Pride, the UFC, and ADCC, so his credentials are impeccable. And me? I just like to find the easiest ways to do … [Read more...]

Podcast EP28: How Bernardo Faria Won Double Gold at the BJJ Mundials


In this in-depth interview I talk with Bernardo Faria, the 99kg BJJ fighter who recently took gold in not only his own weight class but also in the absolute division of the 2015 BJJ Mundials. Some of the highlights of my talk with Bernardo Faria included... His mindset going into big tournaments How he developed and refined his highly individual BJJ gameplan What he's learned training … [Read more...]

Top 10 Throws and Takedowns for BJJ

Throws for BJJ

If you do BJJ or submission grappling then you should have some ways to get the fight to the ground.  Yes, pulling guard is an option in sport BJJ competition, but ultimately this is a martial art, which means we have to at least occasionally consider the self defense aspects of what we're doing. Are you going to pull guard in a streetfight?  Not bloody likely. In this Grapplearts article … [Read more...]

Podcast EP22: Adam Singer on Modern MMA Training and Competition


Stephan: I’m here today with my friend, Adam Singer, who runs The HardCore Gym in Athens, Georgia.  He is probably best known for being Forrest Griffin’s MMA coach during the formative years of Forrest’s career. He’s also a jiu-jitsu black belt and has trained tons of fighters. I’m really looking forward to picking his brain about MMA and jiu-jitsu and the relationship between these things. … [Read more...]

Podcast EP13: Roy Dean on BJJ, Aikido, Judo, Wrestling, and the Martial Artist’s Path

Roy Dean - setting up armbar 2

You can listen to, read, or download this interview in several different ways... Hit play in the middle of the audio player at the bottom of this list, and/or Right click on this link and select ‘save as’ to download this mp3 file to your computer, and/or Subscribe to the Grapplearts Podcast in iTunes (RECOMMENDED, because this allows you to also listen to previous interviews and … [Read more...]

Best Takedown vs. Larger Opponents?

favorite takedown vs big guy 1

Every grappler needs to have a basic understanding of takedowns.  You don't want to be so uni-dimensional that you have no idea how to take somebody down. But the problem is that not every takedown you learn from Judo or wrestling will work on someone a lot bigger and stronger than you. … [Read more...]

Countering the Double Leg with a Sitout & Switch

Sitout and Switch

I respect most grappling arts, not just BJJ.  Freestyle and collegiate wrestling, in particular, have a lot to offer to submission grapplers and BJJ practitioners.  Obviously we can get a lot of good throws and takedowns from wrestling, but we can also 'steal' some very powerful moves on the ground as well. … [Read more...]