May 31, 2011

Tyson Philosophy

Thanks to Ross Boxing for sharing this great clip on "Iron" Mike Tyson, former heavyweight boxing champ of the world.  As time goes on I am changing my opinion on Tyson.  Whom we perceived as uneducated, thuggish, and rather cold is not necessarily an unfair view.  But as I compete more and more I am starting to see some of his genius which undoubtedly was imparted upon him by his coach/father figure Cus D'Amato.

Those who do not fight / compete in a combat sport really have a hard time understanding the mental-emotional aspect of the fight, and I think Tyson encapsulates some of that here in this clip:



An interesting comparison as food for thought... in boxing you know your opponent, or at least you know who it will be.  In grappling tournaments you do not necessarily know who you will be fighting!  Sure you may recognize a name or two from previous fights, or at least remember the face / school logo.  But in general we do not have weeks and months to analyze our opponent(s).  Couple that with possibly fighting anywhere from 1-7 different fighters in one day.... quite the challenge!

Which do you think would be tougher on the mental-emotional spectrum?  Knowing your single opponent and fighting them, or not knowing any of your opponents and having to fight multiple times with multiple opponents?

Something to think about.
Jake

May 30, 2011

Rigan Machado Seminar Review - Seattle, May 2011

I am over and done with the seminars where a teacher saturates the students with technique after technique.  I have learned plenty of techniques over the past 20 years, but what I look for in seminars now days is clear transmission of a certain strategy or goal, both from the perspective of a student as well as a teacher.  Once again Rigan Machado did not disappoint by any measure!

The largest Machado seminar to date in Seattle, Rigan spent Saturday afternoon imparting over 40 years of BJJ experience and knowledge upon 50 students in two different seminars.  "If you are not staying on top of the latest positions and strategies in sport BJJ, then you simply are falling behind."  And so our training started...

Rigan's genius was not so much in the techniques shown (we covered variants of the D'Arce in the no gi seminar, and spent time on 1/2 Guard Sweeps in the gi section) but in the methodology in which Machado led us through step by step ensuring every detail was remembered.  By using what Rigan calls "fast drilling" he ingrains the movements in us via shear repetition!  After learning the technique and drilling it a minimum of 12 times, the students would stand and lightly jog around the mat.  When Rigan yelled "go" you would grab the closest person to you and both do the drill as smoothly and quickly as possible once each.  Stand up and start jogging.  Depending on the complexity of the technique Rigan would have us do this 10-15 times.

In a 2 hour seminar we only covered 4-6 movements, but the attention to detail was second to none.  "I do not want to give you a bunch of techniques and go away, only to come back and you cannot remember anything."  explained Rigan, "I want your BJJ game to improve because I was hear to help."

To end each session Rigan then would have 3-5 pairs of people spread out in front of him, and he would have each person do each technique one by one so he could observe and ensure every detail was paid attention to.  Who does that???  I have never seen this attention to retention in students with anyone other than Rigan!  You literally get individual attention by an 8th degree red-black belt!

This teaching method and style is amazing both from the perspective of practitioner and coach.  The care and love Rigan has for this art and sport is second to none.   I have attended seminars from another famous name in BJJ and they seem motivated by one thing and one thing only... money.  Every time I get together and train with a Machado they legitimately emanate love and a sense of obligation to actually teach the art and make it better via the students, not their pocket book!

Much thanks to all who made it out in support of Rigan.  I am not sure why we did not have even a larger turnout but I am okay with the smaller group and more attention.  Rigan will be back next year at the larger, expanded NW Jiu Jitsu Academy!

Cheers
Jake

FDA Needs to STFU, IMHO!

Jedediah "The Beard of Death" Holmenshmidt.
Reputed ring leader of the Raw Milk Co op.
I am growing rather tired and short tempered with the tampering that our government incessantly engages in with OUR hard earned money (well... YOUR hard earned money!)!  Apparently authorities from THREE different agencies actually drew weapons and raided an Amish farmer for... one would assume something extremely dangerous since agents from THREE different jurisdictions felt the need to be armed while entering an Amish household...but no... wait for it.........

Selling raw milk! Nope, not even joking a little. Click here for the rest of the story.

It is time we take back our freedom and speak out against "our" government and tell them we are not interested in their pawns (FDA / DEA / Homeland Security / etc.) meddling in our affairs.

Surveillance footage of hardcore gentlemen
making "milk" runs.
Much thanks to Marks Daily Apple for turning me onto the Food Renegade a great site with a wealth of knowledge with everything food related from seed to stomach.  Check it out!

Cheers

Jake

May 29, 2011

Dream BJJ Camp

Thats 7 world title kids!
Apparently no one told these cats the economy sucks, but man o' man what an awesome BJJ camp this woud be, August 7-12, 2012 Immersion Series Seminar with Robson Moura in Northport , Maine.

Limited to 30 people, UP TO 3 training sessions a day with Robson Moura as well as various other activities both on and off the mat.  This would be a great trip, but I seriously wonder about material and retention (sorry, when over $2000 of my money is involved, I really want to ensure I get something out of it).  Am I allowed to tape the sessions?  I mean... 6+ hours a day and though I might be able to do it physically, mental retention will wane in about the 3-4th hour.

Either way it is an exciting opportunity for anyone serious about training, or like me REALLY wants to visit Maine!   If any of my readers want to adopt a Jake for a week and send their new favorite son to Main next year, make sure to email me and hit me up!



Cheers
Jake

May 27, 2011

ATTN: NWJJA Students

I just got word Rigan will be at tonight's (Fri. May 27) open mat at the dojo.  I have no clue if he will be rolling, but he will be there with Brian.

May 26, 2011

Codefour Classic - July 9th 2011

Interesting submission grappling tournament coming up in Bellingham, WA. July 9th 2011. The Codefour Classic will be an adults only grappling tournament where you can wear whatever uniform you wish, and choose from nine different weight categories, and their is no gender separation.  Rule set looks general, shying away from most leg attacks at all levels.

May 25, 2011

1930's MMA with Nat Pendleton

World champion wrestler Nat Pendleton is shown in this 1930's clip demonstrating some rather familiar moves.   Just because pop culture just latched onto MMA does not mean it has not existed for many, many decades!  It is great to see old footage like this to witness the similarities and differences in how we box and grapple today, though you will notice the fundamentals have stayed pretty much untouched even in the last 100 years.

Also here is a link to a great resource for wrestling info and pics.

Enjoy.

May 23, 2011

'Ninja' Rua Says Goodbye


Well folks I am still here.  I guess someone forgot to stop by and pick my ass up on Saturday.   Unfortunately a great one has left us, or at least left the active world of MMA.

Sherdog broke the report that Murilo 'Ninja' Rua (older brother of Mauricio 'Shogun' Rua) is calling it quits competing in MMA at 31 years old.  A tough loss at the BAMMA event in England over the weekend was the deciding factor.

Anyone that knows me knows I am a HUGE Pride FC fan, and the retirement of Rua marks yet another member of the golden years of MMA to fade into retirements horizon.  Ninja always brought a fight and had some stellar wars over the years.  He will be missed.

“I will continue to work with MMA, doing seminars, teaching classes, training fighters and doing my share to help [the] sport that I love so much,” he wrote. [It is] time now to help others and enjoy my family, my wife, my kids and move [on]. Life goes on, memories will stay forever and MMA will still be my life forever.” 
















May 21, 2011

Know Your Role, Take Control - The Rapture Post

"Train Hard / Fight Easy" Galeic
As I patiently wait my own personal angel to carry me off to nirvana, I figured I would type up one more post just in case my number is not up yet.   A certain comment was dropped to me the other day about intensity in a class.  This individual mentioned he wants a serious workout, and classes with instruction often do not give him the workout he needs.  I have heard similar comments throughout my years from students on an off, and would like to share my thoughts and opinions with you.

First we need to make clear the role that each individual is playing.  I, Jake, am the teacher.  My job is to develop a curriculum, organize the drills and lessons needed to convey the principle(s) of said curriculum, and then to execute said lessons to my captive audience (that's you).  My role is pretty simple in the grand scheme of things, but teaching different people from different walks of life always presents challenges of varied levels.  As you see the role of teacher is rather busy since they must walk around ensuring the students are getting things right, making corrections, and clarifying details.

So in general my job is to TEACH you to do something.

The student, lets pretend it is you, comes to the class they paid for and trains for X amount of time each lesson.  The reasons for training can be as varied as the hand of poker you were dealt last, but overall the students job is to make class prepared on time, listen attentively to the instructors instructions, and execute said instructions to the best of ones ability.

The students job is solely to DO!

You will notice I did not use the word "TRY."  Try gives a student an out when they fail (and we all fail).  This builds self doubt and creates a negative mentality.  The student is to DO what it is I tell them to DO.   I am not supposed to DO the work I tell the student to DO.  My role is clearly stated above and it is impossible for me to do the work for you with you getting the results you want.

So if your goal is to get in shape then work harder on the round on the bags.  Push yourself with more intensity that next mitt round.   You and only you control your conditioning and shape.  I cannot give you, nor take away, your endurance and stamina.  It is solely in your control.  Take control of your training and push yourself harder.  The teacher is here to teach.  I can simply show you the path, I cannot walk it for you.

Personally I think most people have never really, truly pushed themselves beyond comfortable limits and therefore have no point of reference.  I have thrown up, past out, cramped so badly from training that I did not think I could walk to my car!  All from pushing my self past my comfort zone.  Hell, in a 1/2 hour mitt session with my boxing coach I can completely deplete the tank just simply by working 110%!

Another interesting observation is the individuals that have usually made these comments, are often some of the students with the most potential in terms of ability and aptitude for learning.   Self discipline often lacks in those individuals.

If you find yourself saying "I just don't get enough of a workout" at your next martial art class, first ask yourself "Did I go 110% tonight?  Did I really push myself?"

Food for thought!  I need to jet and pack!

Jake

May 20, 2011

Height = More Power / More Play

Thanks to my friend Martin for turning me onto this interesting article from Science Daily.  Research by University of Utah's Dave Carrier suggests the reason human beings have evolved from quadrupeds to bipedal creatures is the mechanical leverage gained when striking an opponent.  He also proposes that a secondary attribute to being tall is female selection.  Fact is every woman I have ever dated has been attracted to my height (6'4"), and many women list height as one of their top 2-3 turn on's when looking for mates.  

"The results of this study are consistent with the hypothesis that our ancestors adopted bipedal posture so that males would be better at beating and killing each other when competing for females," says David Carrier, a biology professor who conducted the study. "Standing up on their hind legs allowed our ancestors to fight with the strength of their forelimbs, making punching much more dangerous."
"It also provides a functional explanation for why women find tall men attractive," Carrier adds. "Early in human evolution, an enhanced capacity to strike downward on an opponent may have given tall males a greater capacity to compete for mates and to defend their resources and offspring. If this were true, females who chose to mate with tall males would have had greater fitness for survival."

"From the perspective of sexual selection theory, women are attracted to powerful males, not because powerful males can beat them up, but because powerful males can protect them and their children from other males," Carrier says.
"In a world of automatic weapons and guided missiles, male physical strength has little relevance to most conflicts between males," he adds. "But guns have been common weapons for less than 15 human generations. So maybe we shouldn't be surprised that modern females are still attracted to physical traits that predict how their mates would fare in a fight."

Those last two quotes are quite telling on many different levels.  


My teacher Tim Cartmell has been saying the exact same thing for years.  We both use analogies regarding natural movement and natural reactions drawn from our ape ancestors.  Watch two children or untrained women fight... 

Food for thought on a gorgeous weekend!
Enjoy,
Jake 

May 18, 2011

The Body Shot

Body shot.  Liver shot.  Body rip.  Hitting the bread-basket.  Spleen shot.  Many names represent what is essentially the sweet science of striking the trunk of a fighter.  Minimal observation will note that one does not want to strike to the sternum or upper torso, but rather towards the "floating" ribs which poorly protect the liver on our right side, and our spleen on the left.  The so called solid organs.

Seattle's very own Ivan Salaverry:



I have been working body hooks with my boxing coach lately, and subsequently I have been reviewing it with my striking students.  I must admit a strange fetish with body shots.  Outside of choking a fool out, there is nothing quite as gratifying as hitting someone to the body, and watching them consciously quit!  Though often referred to as a body knock out, the victim of a brutal body shot is fully awake, yet the body will not allow you to continue.  Mentally you want to stand up and fight, but the pain and the spasm that is caused causes an exuberant amount of pain and leaves a unique taste in ones mouth!

My boy Crocop back in the Pride days.


Here is a great breakdown from MMA Junkie of what is happening physiologically:

Q. Dr. Benjamin: I have a question for you that's driving me nuts. I've been fighting and sparring for a long time, and over the years I've had all kinds of injuries -- separated shoulders, deep bruises, stress fractures, you name it. However, in all that time I managed to avoid ever taking a serious gut/liver shot until recently. And I think I can easily say that this was one of the most painful things I've ever felt. It was like my entire brain shut down to anything but the pain. Once that subsided, it got me thinking: why does a well placed gut shot hurt so badly? What organ or collection of organs is it that sends a big, fat "ouch" racing up my spinal column? Granted, separating my shoulder was incredibly painful, but even that didn't compare to the gut shot in terms of sheer physical agony. (From William C. Jenkins)
A. Wow. Where are the easy questions? Please allow me to use my knowledge, training and experience to work through this one since my search of the medical literature did not find any good formal studies on this topic.

The"gut" and/or liver shot is often debilitating to say the least. But I believe that there may be two separate and distinct mechanisms related to this incapacitating phenomenon.

First the generic gut shot.

A gut shot is simply blunt force trauma to the abdomen that causes significant pain and difficulty breathing to the recipient. This mechanism has been widely described as related to spasm of the diaphragm. Here goes the dreaded anatomy and physiology lecture. (Sorry, blame it on Bill. He asked the question.)

The diaphragm is a large flat muscle that runs horizontally separates the thoracic cavity (chest, lung and heart) from the abdominal cavity (belly, organs and guts). It acts like a bellow that moves (contracts) up and down changing the pressure within the thoracic cavity in order to help the lungs fill and release air (respiration/breathing). When struck the diaphragm can, for lack of a better word, "cramp" (spasm) causing significant pain and difficulty breathing since it is not moving properly to help the lungs move air.

This has also been commonly described as the "solar plexus" (which, by the way, is 
not a medical term). I first learned about the solar plexus while watching "wrastlin" on TV on Saturday nights as a little kid in Houston. Man, whatever happened to Gorgeous George, the Von Erich's, Dick Murdoch, Jimmy "Superfly" Snuka and the Masked Mexican Assassin El Diablo – talking about living room throw downs and putting your little brother in a sleeper hold!! Pardon me. I digress.

The second mechanism is blunt trauma to a solid organ or the dreaded "liver shot." Abdominal organs for the most part are covered with a thin but very tough fibrous membrane called a capsule. The capsule of solid organs (liver, spleen, kidneys, etc.) does not like to be stretched or deformed. The capsule of hollow organs (intestines, bladder, stomach, etc.) is specifically designed to accommodate stretching.

The liver is the largest solid organ in the abdomen and quite superficial, which leaves it poorly protected. It is on the upper right side (right upper quadrant) of the belly just above the belly button and extends above the lower border of the rib cage. So a large portion of the liver is left unprotected and relatively exposed to a well placed body shot.

When a solid organ takes a forceful blow and the overlying capsule is stretched, 
severe pain ensues. Once again, it is the body's attempt to protect itself from further harm or rupture of an organ. Reflexively (without thought), the combatants arms come down to cover the midsection and many times the injured person will fall to the ground and assume a modified fetal position to further protect. The fight is over or soon will be. The primitive instincts of the body have gone into override and are taking on a strictly defensive posture.

Legendary fighters have learned that when you hurt your opponents with a head shot, they will cover their face. Therefore, the next blows should be delivered to the now-exposed body (abdomen/belly). If these clean body shots do not finish the fight, the reflexive covering of the abdomen will lower the hands and leave your opponent's chin begging for more.

High quality MMA is really 95 percent mental. At the most elite levels, everyone has game. But the combatant who can out think his or her opponent on that particular night has a tremendous advantage.

That's why the combatant with greater athleticism or a superior physique doesn't always win.



Big thanks to Ross at Rosstraining.com for this compilation:


One of the most overlooked, and under trained, attributes in the striking arts is proper angulation when throwing, especially on the bag.  You need to "see" your target and hit is appropriately.  Make sure you are practicing your shovel hooks, lead hooks, rear hooks etc.  Pay close attention to the angle in which your fist is hitting.  Start incorporating body shots into your repertoire and your sparring will go through the roof!

Enjoy,
Jake 

Rommel Tortal Seminar in Seatown

For those interested in improving their stick and knife skills, Rommel Tortal will be visiting Seattle, WA.  Check out the flier below for more info.







May 15, 2011

Follow Via Email

Check out the link on the left menu where you can sign up to follow The Ground Never Misses via email.  Whenever a new post is published you will get an email reminder to check it out!  You will also notice I have made two separate blog rolls, one for diet and the other for martial arts.

I hope these small additions help improve your reading pleasure here at The Ground Never Misses!

Cheers
Jake

May 14, 2011

Rigan Machado Tutorial

Woke up at about 5 am and could not get back down, so this will be the third (and possibly final) post of the day.
I am so stoked to have our friend and coach Rigan Machdado coming back to Seatown for training (click here for more information on the seminar).  I am always on the look out for anything Rigan related on the web because he is just so damned talented.  So imagine my elation (and I can hear all my training partners excitement as you read this) when I found this gem of an instructional on YouTube:

Now, many consider the wrist lock "cheeky" or not a very legit submission, but it has won world championships, and quite frankly if it is good enough for Rigan... 'nuff said in my book!  This variation is money!!!  Watch and learn:



Here is a good interview by the same cats with the above video:



And finally some competition footage.  Rigan boasts a 365-0 record in BJJ competition, but what truly is impressive is his dominance in ALL grappling formats.  Here is a clip of him cleaning house at a Judo tournament in 93:



And here in 94 Rigan kicks some ass in Sambo as well:



The poise, precision, balance, and overall humble nature is compelling and inspirational.  If I can attain a quarter of what Rigan has attained in his pinkie, I will die a happy man!

Come join us May 28th for a great day of gi and no gi training with Rigan Machado, one of the best grapplers ever to live!

Jake

ADCC Super Fights Announced!

The tap heard around the world!
ADCC has announced its super fights for the September 24-25, 2011 tournament in London!  The biggest news is the re-match between Royler Gracie and Eddie Bravo.  In the 2003 quarterfinals Eddie came out of nowhere with a tight triangle that Royler could not escape.  It is considered one of the greatest upsets in grappling history as this was the ONLY time Royler had been submitted in competition!  Eddie being a protege of Jean Jacques Machado added a little pepper to the mix as well!

Another match pits Renzo Gracie vs. Ze Mario Sperry, and then Braulio Estima faces Jacare in what promises to be a barn burner.

Renzo is an inspiration to all, a true warrior in every sense of the word.  Always training.  Never says no to a fight.  And he backs up what he says!  Of all the Gracie family, Renzo truly embodies the samurai spirit and attitude, where others try a bit too hard in my humble opinion.  This will be a tough fight for Renzo as Sperry is big, and tough!  Both have winning records in the ADCC; Renzo winning in 98 & 00, and Sperry winning 98 & 99.

As for Royler / Bravo II... I am of course rooting for Eddie as I love his approach and attitude, plus we gotta' represent Machado JJ!!!   But in all reality Royler is going to bring it like nobodies business, and I am not sure what kind of grappling shape Eddie is in since he has been rather focused on other aspects of his life and career as of late.  To the best of my knowledge neither have actively competed in the last 5 years.

Here is the full fight from 2003 between Royler and Bravo:



No matter what I will be tuning in to watch the excitement and competition.  Should be a great year for grappling!

Enjoy,
Jake

"There’s a Certain Truth and Reality That the Mat Brings Out in You..."

Though I have only met him once, Roy Dean has quickly become an inspiration, and a jits mentor if you will for me.  His approach to the art is balanced seemingly both on the mat and off.  Though he excels at BJJ, he remains humble and does not take anything too seriously.  


His most recent blog post is a transcription of an interview Dean did, and it encapsulates what I feel but in a much more elegant, coherent manner.  I too feel that the mat represents truth.  You can choose to hide, or neglect the truth, but the mat shows the absolute honest truth at that very moment in time.  Buddha would say that the mat represents the cloth that wipes the dust from our mirrors.  Our mirror being our true nature, dust representing the emotions and attachments we collect from our past, and subsequently worrying about our future.  In essence we are rarely in the moment, so how can we know our true nature?


"Discover who you are" is Deans motto for business and life, and below he offers his explanation of the moniker:    


Discover Who You Are -


"Essentially I’ve discovered that if you chip away at something, not only will you become more skilled at it but it will transform you.  Jiu-jitsu is one of those rare life disciplines that can be interesting for decades… and it can stay with you in different periods of your life.  So you start as a teenager, you’re at one mental space.  You continue through college and your 20s… You get married, you have kids, you’re in your 30s. You know, the gym may get boring for you.  You may enjoy rock climbing for a few years, you may enjoy mountain biking for a few years. You may enjoy those disciplines for an entire life.  I feel that BJJ, or jiu-jitsu in general, is a dynamic form of yoga.  I did not come up with that, that was Matt Thornton I originally heard that from.  But I really feel it’s true.  It takes you and puts you in a situation where you’re working with and against your evolutionary instincts to not be dominated. 


   It brings you to one pointed concentration while you are moving around on the mat and there’s something very cleansing about that, and there’s something that is kind of primal about that.  And we’re able to funnel it through the techniques of jiu-jitsu; we’re able to actually transform these evolutionary instincts that we have to fight or flee.  And be able to create something very rich and very complex; essentially a physical language where we can communicate with each other without exchanging words.  You really can tell a person’s personality when you roll with them.  So jiu-jitsu is a lifetime art .  And once you’re able to get on the escalator, you stick with it, you discover things about yourself.


I am much more skilled than I ever imagined I would be.  Now that’s not to say that I’m the most skilled.  There are plenty of guys that are way tougher but if you just stick with it.  You think as a white belt, “Man, if I could only get my blue belt” then “If I could just get my purple.”  And eventually you’re a black belt and you’re like “Man there’s so much more to learn”.  It’s so much different.  You definitely realize the high end and the low end and you discover your own limitations.  And you learn to accept them.  It’s OK.  You know?  You beat someone in a match, that’s great.  You lose to someone in a match and you’re like, “Heh, that guys better”.  And once you’re honest… once you’re honest with yourself, it just takes you down and squares you.  There’s a certain truth and reality that the mat brings out in you that allows you to sit a little bit more comfortably in your own skin and in your own soul. 


So that is “Discover Who You Are”.


Allow the discipline to transform you.  A lot of people end up serving the discipline; they get injured, they give up their wife, they give up their job to chase the discipline.  The discipline should enhance your life, you should never serve the discipline.  And sometimes you lose perspective on that.  I have certainly stepped over that line where I’ve lost perspective and over trained.  “Oh, this means so much.”  Where you’re crushed after a loss, you’re elated after a victory.  Hey man these are just markers, they’re milestones on your own journey.  No one else is watching.  It’s your own trip.  Enjoy it.  Craft your journey carefully and you will discover who you are."

May 11, 2011

First World Championships

Big thanks to Draculino for sharing this on his blog, the first ever IBJJF World Championships in 1996!   Turn down the music and watch some of the old guard go to work.  I am not familiar with 95% of these guys, but Draculino is found throughout.

Notice the great throws and take downs!  Judo seems to have been much more of a prevalent aspect of BJJ training in the recent past.  Sorely needed in my humble opinion.

Good luck to all those fighting in a few weeks!  I was hoping to make it this year but it is not looking doable.  Hopefully next year.

Enjoy,
Jake


May 8, 2011

Drive and Determination: Alencar vs. Lovato 2008

Much thanks to Roy Dean for reminding us of this epic battle at the 2008 Pan Am's between Rafael Lovato Jr. and Roberto "Tussa" Alencar!  This is just amazing jits right here.  The drive and determination is amazing, reminding us to never, ever quit!

I have been fortunate enough to train with both of these gentleman over the years, and they both are excellent teachers and super friendly cats.  Even rolling Tussa is quite gentle though in control ALL the time.  I have never had the opportunity to roll with Lovato Jr.

Not that I am anywhere near this level, but I can relate to the series of events.  You will see Tussa make one fatal mistake when in RLJ's guard at the end.  RLJ bumps Tussa to the right while controlling Tussa's right hand.  This forces Tussa to reach across his body with his left; a fatal mistake.  RLJ then hugs tight to Tussa and sweeps him with my money sweep (by money I mean I have no others!) that I used when winning NAGA Worlds last December.   One tiny little error.  One tiny little lapse in judgement.  This sport is a game of strategy and millimeters.  I find jiu jitsu infecting my thoughts and dreams because of this very aspect!

I find this clip very inspiring and educational.  A lot can be learned in these short 14 minutes.  Excellent edit and accompanying score as well.  If the last 4 minutes do not get your heart racing and adrenaline pumping then I don't know what will!  It makes me want to get back on the mat and fight!  Unfortunately I think that won't be happening at any major events soon.

Enjoy,
Jake

May 6, 2011

Huffing Meat Glue

Most of us have heard of huffing, the practice of abusing inhalants of various kinds including glue and adhesives.  Well today kids we have a sock of a different flavor; Australia Today has released an expose on the growing use of "meat glue," or Transglutaminase.






What truly sickens me about this expose is not that humans are doing this, but the wasted potential that lies within so many people that seem to be driven by one thing, and one thing only... greed!  Imagine if we could take this kind of knowledge and understanding of the microbial world and do something crazy like say... feed starving kids.  Or institute better nutrition programs for our public schools.  Or maybe work towards curing diabetes.

Just so much potential and what do human beings waste it on... huffing meat glue in order to get more bang for their buck!  Sad.

Educate yourself.  We need to get closer to our farmers, our butchers, our suppliers.
Much thanks to my homie Merf for turning me onto this expose.
Jake

May 4, 2011

Rigan Machado Seminar - Seattle, WA.

World renowned competitor and coach Rigan Machado will be visiting the Emerald City May 28th, 2011!
'Nuff said.


Bully Beatdown

Some of my students were asking me my thoughts on the infamous bully video that I am about 2 months behind on.  I mentioned I had not seen it so I could not really comment.  Well thank to Elton I have now seen the vid, just in case you did not:



So my thoughts are:

  • Good on him!  No kid should be bullied, and all should be taught to stand up for themselves and fight back when the moment is proper.  
  • The moment was more than proper!
  • Grappling was the deciding factor, yet AGAIN in a "street" altercation.  
  • Skinny needs power development.  If you are going to sucker punch someone, make sure it is only takes one.  And if it takes more, reign down upon him, don't get cocky and hunt and peck.
  • I like the restraint with the big kid.  Knocks the other stupid and then backs off.  Clearly his intent was to simply stop the attack.
Quite simply if your kid is being bullied then teach them to defend themselves.  They need this on many different levels.  

I also want to say something no one else is saying... if your kid is a bully, where the fuck are they learning it from?  I am so sick and tired of seeing these double wide pieces of trash rutting and procreating without a single thought on how to raise a child properly.  Kids learn from adults, they are not born bullies.  What schools need to institute is some bully beat down on the parents of some of these children.  Go to the source and start there!

Cheers,
Jake 

May 3, 2011

The 4th American Cup

This past weekend I attended Claudio Franca's 4th annual American Cup in San Jose, CA.  Quickly becoming one of the largest tournaments in California this spring tourney brought over 800 competitors to Independence High School, which reminded me more of a compound with its endless cookie cutter buildings.  800 competitors over two days on six mats.... and it was quite possibly the smoothest tournament I have yet to attend.

I was not scheduled to fight until 5:30pm and was staying an hour away in San Fran with my cousin.  I was a bit worried about my weight, but I had trained hard all week and had not touched a beer in two weeks prior so when Friday rolled around I got one last roll in and came down to 201.5!  I have not weighed 201 in over 15 years at least!

Big shout out to my coach Brian for getting on the mat with me on Friday mid day before I caught my flight, and for all his help in preparation for this fight.  I respect you as a brother, and love you like a father.
Also big thanks to Matt and Scotty.  Both showed up on Friday and thoroughly kicked my ass.  You two have become two of the best training partners and I am grateful!  

Back to the tourney...
   So I wanted to ensure I had plenty of time to get there and get changed and relaxed etc. etc.  so I left the Mission around 3pm-ish.  Traffic was perfect and it was beautiful all the way down to San Jose.  Just short of an hour the bitch-in-a-box (AKA a GPS) told me I was arriving to the location on my left.
NOTE: ALWAYS use a GPS!  This was not easy to find and was in a very industrial area of town.  No signs, no nothing.  Make sure you know where you are going and never assume they will have tons of signs and put these events in obvious places!  


First things first... weight.  Found the check scale and jumped on to see how their scale was weighing today.  205.8 with my clothes on.  Looking solid!  Good.  Next get the lay of the land, eat a little, start to make sure I hydrate but not too much.

Overall the rings were run smoothly.  I saw one or two down at any given time, but they were quickly filled with fighters.  Divisions all were starting on time, or damn close to it!  They called my division about 20 minutes late, which in Brazilian time is actually a half hour early.   I stepped off the scales at 205.5 with my OTM 420 RSC 4# gi on.  Had about a two pound window... damn near perfect!

So the ref called me and my opponent onto the mat.  I shook his hand, and then shook my opponents hand and wished him luck.  The ref actually took the time to explain his role, what he expected, and made sure we were clear on the terms and verbage he was going to use.  While I do not agree that Portuguese terms should be used outside of Brazil (and Portugal), if they are going to be then the time and effort to explain them and what they mean is greatly appreciated!

Once again I am struck by the adrenaline memory eraser and even worse is that I did not have a single person to hold a video camera for me, so I am left with my Holy Grail hazed mind to piece together the match.  I have gone through the fight two thousand times over the past 72 hours and still do not have answers to some of my questions.  Amazingly, at first, I even forgot that I had my opponent in a triangle!

Standing he scored 2 points off the bat with a take down.  I am not sure where the take down was, but I guess since he kind of stumbled and fell in my general direction HE took ME down!?  Fortuitously he took me down right onto my hooks and I started to work my sweep ensuring his posture would stay down with a kimura grip on his right arm and my right arm holding his belt keep his head down.  Needless to say his base was solid and I was not sweeping him anywhere, so I guarded up and started to work my guard game.

I must admit this is where I am happiest about an otherwise poor showing.  I am, finally, in the right weight division at heavy 207.5>.  I easily broke down my opponents posture and held him down, and in general I felt very strong.  Stronger than I ever have in tournaments.  Unfortunately I just could not get him to give me an arm, nor get a sweep working.   I could tell I was tiring him as every time I broke him down he exhale with a sigh, but he defended everything I threw at him!  Mad props!

So the clock is around 2 minutes and I need to start working for either a sub or sweep, or back out and move to another position.  I am down 2.  Working my entangled arm (and this is what I forgot immediately following the match when I went outside to cool down and get some air) I noticed he was starting to get lazy with his free arm, and while the triangle is not one of my go to moves (for the exact reason you are about to see) I saw the opportunity, and for a fleeting moment I swore I heard Brian's voice in the gym yelling "Triangle!  Triangle!"

I am pretty sure he passed me on my right side which makes sense since I normally entangle their right arm, but overall this is all foggy at best.  The little bugger squirmed out of my triangle.  I under hooked his leg as he stood, he came back back and I worked to get his sleeve with my under hook arm.  From there on out all I remember is a scramble with him ending in my 1/2 guard for a quick second, then transitioning to mount where he scored his final 9-0 blow.  The clock rang about 8 seconds after he got the points.

A lot of the time and details I am not sure of, and I think that is the worst part!  Not knowing!  I was surprisingly gassed afterwards.  Really sucking air.  I fought hard and gave everything to the end, but I thought I was in better shape than that!?  Perhaps my body adjusting to fighting at the new weight.
Overall I have a lot to process, and I am probably boring the shit out of you by now.  It does not look positive in the piggy bank for the worlds next month, so I am not sure when my next fight will be.  Frustrating working so hard and coming back with nothing.  This is the best shape I have ever been in and certainly the most prepared I have ever been for any fight in my life.  I was hoping to put in a better showing this time around.

The rest of my stay in San Fran was no less hazy, but a lot more relaxing!  It was nice to finally eat a burger and beer!  Thanks to all who helped me prepare,  especially Dana!

Train Hard.  Train Smart.
Jake

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