Our friends at BjjPix recently conducted a fun interview with us (link above) where we discussed everything from how we got started and winning world championships, to who wins when we spar. For those that have enjoyed all the material we have put together, this should provide some insight as to where it all comes from.
Special shout out to Emilio Carrero for doing great work on the interview.
We don’t promote a lot of outside material here, but this new takedown for BJJ series is on another level. It also has some serious credibility behind it.
The Takedown Blue Print is a new series by Olympic Judo medalist Jimmy Pedro and Olympic team member Travis Stevens.
Whether you are a BJJ practitioner looking to improve your throws or a high level Judo practitoner looking for help from the very best, 4x Olympian Jimmy Pedro – The Best US Judo Competitor ever and 2x Olympian Travis Stevens will show you in tremendous detail how to take your opponent down.”
Throws such as
– Osoto Gari
– Ouchi Gari
– Ippon Seoi Nage
– Drop Seoi Nage
– Sumi Gaeshi
– Foot Sweeps
– Tai Otoshi
In addition, Travis and Jimmy teach you to deal with the most troublesome BJJ competitors including
– The guy who grabs double lapels
– the guard puller
It you can’t take your opponent down, you are not a complete grappler and this DVD will help you get there.
Here is a sample technique against a guy who grabs double lapels: http://www.mediafire.com/download/o1vrruth5yzlc38/Successful_Take_Downs.mp4
People are really liking this throw by Travis at Copa Podio as well: http://takedownblueprint.com/semifinal/
We seriously recommend checking it out, and upping your takedown game.
By: Tyler Bishop
I am currently working on an article for a major jiu jitsu publication discussing PED’s in Brazilian jiu jitsu. It’s something that is usually talked about off the mats between confidants, but just how many competitors are using steroids, growth hormone, and the alike?
I need your help. Please fill out the poll below.
Also, I am soliciting anyone willing to go on the record and discuss their experience using PED’s while training jiu jitsu (benefits, side effects, etc.). Use the form below to contact me. Thanks, Tyler.
[contact-form][contact-field label=’Name’ type=’name’ required=’1’/][contact-field label=’Email’ type=’email’ required=’1’/][contact-field label=’Comment’ type=’textarea’ required=’1’/][/contact-form]
By: Tyler Bishop
“Dude, screw it. I think I am getting worse”, said my friend as we changed in the locker room after class. Not exactly the kind of thing you would expect to hear from a purple belt after class, right? So I asked him, “What’s up? Just having a bad day”? His reply helped me uncover something about jiu jitsu that I think most of us know deep down, but shy away from. He answered me by saying, “Nah, I just don’t train right. I just come in and roll, and now these little jerks are starting to berimbolo my face off. I am just behind. I think I probably use to be better than I am now”.
As a white belt or blue belt it’s not uncommon to view jiu jitsu as a linear upwards projection. You start knowing absolutely nothing. And although we all advance at different velocities, everyone can learn and progress through jiu jitsu. However, what many fail to realize – especially early on – is that jiu jitsu is not something that remains a simple time in = development out formula. We often assume that if we put time into jiu jitsu we will receive that equal output back out in terms of progress. It’s confusing, because this formula actually is 100% correct when we start jiu jitsu. You’ve heard the saying “there’s no where to go but up”, right? It’s easy to see that some get more output from their time in while others might receive very little, but it’s easy to recognize this formulas existence… in the beginning. But as we progress through jiu jitsu, the evil truth that can be convenient to ignore is that once we have progressed to a certain point of competency in jiu jitsu that formula actually disappears.
Gasp! You mean that I could show up to jiu jitsu, train all night, and not get any better. Yes, that is what I am proposing – and not only that. I am suggesting that there are circumstances in which you could actually regress.
It’s no secret that we all get older, develop injuries, and so on, but the truth is that losing performance in this manner is normal. However, developing an inefficiency in our development in performance due to training habits or methods is unnecessary. It’s easy to prevent. My friend that I described in the beginning would have to do very little to turn his regression into progression. The only thing he has to realize is that his effort must now be more thoughtful than it was before. He can no longer rely on the formula that works in the beginning (time in = development out). He must now start to strategically consider his progression when attending practice, and take additional steps to encourage his development. Let me break this down by recommending 3 easy strategies…
#1: You have to want to get better, and think about your progression outside of jiu jitsu
If you show up to practice and are counting the others around you to take take control of your progression you have already fallen behind. Your training partners and instructors should have your best interests in mind at all times, but that doesn’t mean they know all of your struggles, strengths, weaknesses, and so forth. You have to want to get better for yourself. This means leveraging the resources around you to get better, not counting on them to do it for you.
To take matters into you own hands, simply start planning your development outside of class. Think about new positions that you would like to learn or work on. Ask your instructors questions about these new positions, or pull a classmate aside at an open mat and work through the position. This kind of forethought will help organize your training and will provide some focus that can lead to steady progression.
In a worse case scenario in which you are truly crunched for time and training, try subscribing to an online academy and analyzing techniques outside of class. Pay attention to the details, and find time to drill these techniques with a teammate. By Taking extra time to work on the techniques that matter to you, your efforts to improve are likely to increase as well.
#2 Challenge yourself, and step outside of the norm
Guess what? It’s pretty easy to show up everyday to class and roll with the same bunch of folks day in and day out. Maybe you avoid the big guy, the new guy, or the guy that’s really good. Why? It’s convenient, easy, and comfortable. However, progress is usually a little bit more difficult than that.
To push your development along, try training and rolling with new people at your academy. Their reactions and style may force you to improve or adjust your “go to” techniques. These adjustments are a form of progress.
I have a really talented training partner that has helped me significantly develop my guard game. He is so incredibly strong and talented that there are certain techniques that just don’t work very well against him. This was not a fun thing to learn or develop. It meant having my guard passed a lot! However, training with him has helped me make my guard that much harder to pass.
This is actually one of the quickest and easiest ways to develop, but it is often the most painful. Don’t worry about your pride, or about being uncomfortable. Just think about getting better.
#3 Take private lessons
You’re not the best in the world. Chances are, you’re not even close. Hopefully, you’re not even close to the best at your academy. This means that there are a lot of people around you that you can learn from. One of the best ways to learn from a higher belt or instructor is to do a private lesson with them.
Many good instructors can help you pick out and identify exactly what you need to work on, but I think it’s better if you have some of this already in mind. But just like in number 1, don’t just have something generic in mind and show up counting on the instructor to learn for you. Have some specific things in mind (i.e. I want to learn how to make my De La Riva Sweeps better – rather than – I want to learn sweeps).
Private lessons aren’t cheap, and can be a waste of money if you don’t invest yourself into really learning and applying these techniques. I have taught private lessons before then watched the person I did the lesson with roll for an hour without trying a single one of the techniques we trained. Make sure that you get your money out of your lesson. Insist on the techniques you learn. Force them down the throats of your training partners. Accept the failures and learn from them. That’s the only way/ If you are afraid to try the techniques you will have wasted your dollars ( or pesos).
I hope this has all been helpful. It’s easy to forget how easy progression was at white belt, but often we do very little different when that progression wears off. Hopefully, this can provide some much needed motivation to help you improve your jiu jitsu.
Welcome to another episode of “It’s Science”. We continue our 2013 season with a look at Rubens “Cobrinha” Charles (2010-2013). Now on to the fun stuff…
Abstract: All matches observed of Cobrinha used in this small sample occurred at gi IBJJF events, inside his weight division, and between 2010-2013. Only techniques, occurrences, and outcomes that were recorded are displayed in the data below (i.e. if no butterfly sweeps occurred, there will not be a representation of that in the sample data). Matches were selected at random based on available matches – selected using a random generator from 20 total available IBJJF matches matches between 2010-2013. This is a limited sample – but given the estimated amount of matches in this time period – it is well above the percentage necessary to create a scientifically validated trend sampling.
Breakdown: Some things simply get better with age. Cobrinha may be a perfect example of this mantra. While Rubens Charles once reigned as king of the featherweight class, it’s in the last few years where he may be at his most dominant. We decided to only study the past 3 years of competition to keep techniques and styles relevant, in doing-so we leave out a lot of the bulk of Cobrinha’s career. Fortunately, he has remained competitive and strong. In fact, one could argue that today, in 2013, he is at his very best.
Most impressively, Cobrinha submitted his opponent in 9 out of the 14 matches we observed. That’s a 75% submission rate in all of his tournament wins. You would be hard pressed to find many other active competitors doing the same, much less one that is over the age of 30. His average match length was very short because of this – roughly 6:15. When matches are short, it allows you to be aggressive, fast, and dynamic. Cobrinha does exactly that. He pulled guard in almost all of his matches, and used a slick combination of De La riva Guard and Sit-up guard to score first by sweeping his opponent. His opponents often made the mistake of fighting the sweep and giving their back. This was the beginning of their untimely end. In our observation, Conbrinha did not lose the back once. Once he got to your back, you were finished!
It’s not often you find a competitor who not only stands the test of time, but improves as they get older. Cobrinha is likely to join the ranks of top competitors like Saulo and Xande Ribeiro, Royler Gracie, Pe De Pano, and Megaton – to name a few – that have been a force at their weight well into their master and senior years. This was truly one of the most fun studies we have done.
- Submitted 75% of his opponents in winning matches
- Scored first 58% of the time
- Pulled guard 79% of the time
- 56% of his sweeps came from the Sit-up guard
- He averaged 1.12 sweeps per match
- He finished a choke from the back in 5/5 matches in which he achieved the position
- 83% of his passes were a “knee-through style” pass
- His average match length was approximately 6:15 (almost the length of a blue belts full match)
|Top Technique 1||Sit-up guard to Single Leg|
|Top Technique 2||Choke from the back|
|Number of Matches Observed||14|
|Wins by Points||3|
|Minutes of footage watched||84 minutes|
|De la Riva Sweeps||5|
|Ankle Pick sweep||5|
|Sit-up to single leg||8|
|knee up, from hg to mount||1|
|Taking the Back|
|from passing the guard||1|
|choke from back||5|
|cross collar top||1|
|Start of Match|
|Pulled on by opponent||3|
Jiu jitsu is so much more than just a sport, or a form of competition, but there is no denying that this competitive desire is the focus of many jiu jitsu practitioners. So when it comes to competition, study and analysis can become useful tools that can assist in
So when it comes to competition, study and analysis can become useful tools that can assist in tournament and physical performance. If you haven’t read or observed our study of the 2012 World Championships, I highly recommend starting your research there. However, there are a few tips that you can start implementing now to improve tournament performance…
1:) Build a gameplan
Guess what, the best in the world don’t just “see what happens”. The best in the world make it happen! You should do the same thing. If you haven’t checked out our series “It’s Science”, you should study up. One theme that comes across rather quickly is that the must successful competitors have a few things they are really good at, and then they put themselves in position to implement those strategies.
Building a gameplan is no easy task. In our book we will go into detail about how this can be done, but until then focus on a few important elements. Write down what you are best at (top 3), determine how you can get into these positions/scenarios, and figure out how you can go from your feet at the start of a match to one of these pre-determined positions. Once you have gone through this process, practice it religiously. If certain problems keep arising, make adjustments and move forward. A good gameplan is a series of events that you can put into place and seemingly fight above your normal ability level at.
2:) Focus on scoring (preferably, score first)
If one thing sticks out from the 2012 World’s study, its that people that score first win. Regardless of the circumstances that lead to this anomaly, scoring first should be a high priority. Make this a strong element of your gameplan if you want to be successful in tournament jiu jitsu. This means fighting or approaching your opponent differently than what you might typically do in the academy. It means fighting with your brain as much as your brawn.
It makes sense that scoring is directly proportionate to winning, but this concept seems to be a hard lesson for many. Many fight conservatively and leave points on the table throughout the match only to become tired and unable to score late in the match. Take points whenever they are available, you can never guarantee another opportunity. You will never look back on a tournament and say, “I shouldn’t have scored all those dang points!!!”.
3:) Diversify your training partners
Why leave anything to chance? There is a time and place for everything, and while working with training partners of relative skill and size is best for building a gameplan, part of developing a complete gameplan is determining the multiple types of reactions to your strategy. Once you have developed a comfort with your style and gameplan, try testing it against training partners of all sizes, strengths, and abilities. Try to
Once you have developed a comfort with your style and gameplan, try testing it against training partners of all sizes, strengths, and abilities. Try to fully-understand the options your opponent has available them. What made our study of Rafael Mendes so amazing was how well he knew the options of his opponents. This lead to him dominating the competitive scene for a very long time. You won’t know all of the reactions until you have to account for the multiple body types and skill levels that are out there.
I am an advocate of improving personal performance to get better at things – especially in jiu jitsu. This doesn’t mean that physical development is the end-all-be-all of improving jiu jitsu, but it can be a very dynamic tool in streamlining your improvement. I hate the idea of a limited range of motion, or existing injury limiting the weapons at my disposal. Along with taking NeoCell Collagen Sport, NeoCell Collagen Joint Formula, these recent exercises have helped me prevent injuries, increase flexibility, and improve my jiu jitsu. I wanted share them with the community, as we have seen a strong influx of visitors since our last article on injuries in bjj. I hope you enjoy the video. I will have more up soon, what did you think so far?