September 11, 2011

"If you do only No-Gi, your technical level will decrease..." - An Interview with Rafael Lovato Jr.

I have been a big fan of Rafael Lovato Jr.'s since training BJJ.  He is my size so I look to him for technical knowledge, and when I trained with him a while back in Seaside it was easily one of the best seminars I have ever been too!  His competition record speaks for itself so when he does an interview I tend to take a few moments and sip some Kona and try to glean some insight that will make my game better.

Recently Electric Ocean's did an average interview at best, but here is the gem from RLJ:

I prefer Gi training but to be at your level, what would you recommend to the new comer to the sport, Gi or No-Gi?
Definitely Gi! I didn’t even start doing No-Gi until I was already a brown belt. For a new student, it is important to get all of your fundamentals and technical base with the gi. It will be very easy to transition into No-Gi as you become a high level blue belt and then after you become a purple belt, I think you can start mixing them up a lot without it hurting your technical level. If you do only No-Gi, your technical level will decrease, because it is much simpler and you can get away with slipping out of stuff and scrambling.

Sound advice from one of the best grapplers in the world!   I have grown tired of the no gi / submission wrestling boom going on.  Top notch douche waffles like Josh Barnett talking trash about BJJ compared to Catch As Catch Can being the art of violence!  (Ughh... Cormier PLEASE kick his ass and take the belt!!!!!)  I have just grown tired of some of the representations and representatives in the no gi world.
I have seen a lot of slop in the no gi world and a fundamental understanding of the gi game would pay huge dividends for anyone interested in competing in that format!  RLJ's insight is spot on in my opinion.

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