September 17, 2012

Most Impressive Martial Artist's Still Alive - According to John Will

John Will is one of my great inspirations both on and off the mat.  I have had the pleasure of training with him over the past 6 years and I must say he is one of the most impressive martial artists / coaches I have ever come across.  One of the things that impresses me most is his humble approach to the arts.  For instance he just shared the following post on whom he considers the most impressive martial artists still alive, in no particular order:

8th degree Rigan Machado
- Rigan Machado: his insight into the nuances of BJJ goes beyond anyone else I know - and I know some of the best. I have witnessed him tying up and tapping out world champions - seemingly, without effort.
- John Smith: perhaps someone only the wrestling community would know. My favourite American freestyle wrestler - current USA coach. Amazing competitive record and all-round takedown genius.
- Richard Norton: one of the best martial artists on the planet. All-round paragon of excellence - the person who taught me never to accept mediocrity. An amazingly proficient martial artist.
John Smith 2x Olympian / 4x world champ

-David Meyer: a great martial artist whose moral compass is set to true north. Once he came to realize that there was a better and more complete style of Jiu Jitsu down the road, he not only closed his school but suggested that all his students go and join up. David is an inspirational being.
- Marcelo Garcia: not only does he have extraordinary skill in BJJ but he is an all-round nice guy, driven by passion and joy, and seemingly without a nasty bone in his body. A smiling virtuoso.
L-R: David Meyer / Chubby Jake / Mr. BJJ / John Will
      Now ... having just named those awesome martial artists - I must say that there are also many, many others that come to mind. Each brings something unique to the martial arts landscape ... and it is an imaginary amalgam of this large collection of inspirational figures that should serve as a kind of archetypal guide for each of us as we strive forward in our efforts to be better than we currently are ... JBW

Truly an inspiration that at John's level and rank he still find inspiration in those around him and gives credit always where it is due!  


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