December 28, 2011

DVD Review - "Strategic Knife Defense w/ Leo T. Gaje Jr."

The Pekiti Tirsia Kali community at large has been patiently waiting for lineage holder Leo T. Gaje Jr. to produce a series of instructional DVDs to accompany his already crazy busy seminar teachings.  Well my steel wielding carvers your wait is up as Tim Waid in conjunction with his teacher Leo T. Gaje Jr. have released the first DVDs to be produced by the Pekiti Tirsia Kali Global Organization.  Volume one in the classic series is "Strategic Knife Defense: Defensive Tactics for Law Enforcement"

With the goal of presenting the authentic Pekiti Tirsia Kali system of combat blade fighting, this "classic" DVD is an absolute must have for anyone interested in not only blade fighting, but just the historical footage of Leo Gaje teaching back in 1987 is priceless!  I have heard there is tons of footage of Gaje teaching seminars, private lessons, etc. throughout the decades he has been teaching the world over.  Waid and Gaje have decided to release these teachings and footage for practitioners to see the authentic system of Kali as it was handed down to Gaje, whom in turn hands it down to his senior most students.

   As stated above this video footage was taken over 25 years ago where it seems this was to be the first in a series of instructionals geared towards the law enforcement community, so though the quality is not the HD crystal clear image we all have grown accustomed to, the producers and editors did an amazing job of restoring the footage and transferring it to DVD.

  Again basic editing was involved in this recording back in the day, but there are a few moments where camera angles change or they zoom in where needed.  Overall the quality of the instructional is not affected by any of the video technology.  Sound quality is excellent as well, as I never found myself straining to hear anything explained.

Beginning to end the disc runs an hour long and has an easy to navigate menu where the DVD is broken into six basic categories:

  • Intro / Knife Attacks
  • Counter Knife Attacks
  • Knife Jabbing Attacks
  • Knife Tapping
  • Baton Tactics
  • Empty Hand Tactics
  Aimed as a basic introduction to the knife and bladed combatives for law enforcement personnel, "Strategic Knife Defense" is a great starting block for anyone new to bladed weapon arts, or situations where one may encounter a bladed aggressor (security / LEO / military / bouncers etc.).  To quote Gaje:

  "The purpose of this video is to get the officer acquainted with edged weapons, and to understand principle movements and strategy of knife fighting."

Drawn from the fundamental principles of PTK, Gaje takes viewers through the common attacks someone wielding a knife would use, as well as the fundamental counter movements to these most common slashes and thrusts.  These angles of attack are common movements we use in everyday life, yet when we look at them in a martial context we see the reason why our predecessors created the art the way they did.  

By no means is this a collection of techniques thrown into an hour long video, actually quite the contrary.  Gaje takes the time to explain exactly why someone will attack in this manner, and why you respond the way you do.  Throughout the video he shows a number of various counter strikes, joint locks (some seem a bit flashy as I doubt they would be very high percentage on a fully resisting opponent), and a couple of take downs.  Overall the message is clear... a large repertoire of techniques is useless without the fundamental building blocks to execute said techniques.  

The "Knife Tapping" chapter, though only a few minutes long, offers some very interesting insight into Leo Gaje's teaching methodology.  In this chapter he emphasizes acceptance of the blade being the primary focus of knife tapping drills.  Though just touched upon it is interesting to note the wisdom in the young Gaje's experience where he was talking about combat psychology and blade psychology way before it was a cool subject on internet chat rooms.  

If the purpose of this DVD was to inform LEO about the dangers and benefits of edged weapon defense, and lay down the foundation for future training volumes then Gaje succeeded in his endeavor.  I am not sure if this series will continue on with his teachings of strategic knife defense, but in the baton chapter Gaje mentions future volumes.  

Historians, teachers, or practitioners of Pekiti Tirsia Kali will not want to miss this volume simply to see there grand teacher moving and training 25 years ago.  A classic by all means and at $40 it is a hell of a steal!  

Train Hard.  Train Smart.
Tim Waid (L) alongside his teacher Leo Gaje. 

Combat Network Magazine Issue 9

This is not the
current cover!
I was recently asked to be the contributing "Internal Chinese Martial Arts" editor of Britain's very own online martial magazine Combat Network Magazine. 

This was a bit of a last minute thing so I scrambled to get a piece out on the move "Step Up to the Seven Stars" from Taijiquan, a classic entry technique.   Let me know what you think!

Check out the article and pics here! 

Thanks to the Shadow and DKB Images for assistance with the article.  Thanks
to NWJJA and Brian Johnson  for use of the dojo for photos.


December 26, 2011

Great Training Today!

While the majority of you were laying on the couch recouping, a handful of dedicated grapplers had some great training today!  Wanted to send a big thanks to the four who actually read this blog; Karliss the Latvian Destroyer / Motorcycle Matt / The Baconater / and Kelland  "The Rape Dummy" (BTW for once I had nothing to do with that nickname!).  Great training partners and a solid workout the day after mucho gluttony and self abuse!

I thought I would leave you with some solid quotes I recently found in the Nov-Dec. issue of Europe's awesome new Jits rag, "Jiu Jitsu Style."    JJS is hard to find on the newsstands over here (seen it once or twice at the downtown B&N, but nothing consistent), so I suggest subscribing to their electronic version (available on i Phones and pads).  It is not only cheaper, but you get the mag immediately, and it is packed full of interesting interviews, techniques, and product reviews.  Their interviewers actually ask some interesting and engaging questions (for instance this issue has Fabio Gurgel talking about the ugly break-up of the original Alliance troop in 2001).

JJS is a step up from the similar Jiu Jitsu Magazine found stateside, with both of them blowing Gracie magazine out of the water (Gracie has become a mere shell of its former self, which was never that great!).

Anyways... some interesting meditation material here.  Enjoy!

Fabio Gurgel on Alliance's success through the years at major competitions:

"When we went to competition Jacare never put any pressure on us, it was always fun.  He taught me how to enjoy the moment of the fight, not before or after, but when you are on the mat.... we just learned how to enjoy the competition.   I think this lesson is what gave me success in the competitions and is the backbone of Alliance's success at the moment."

"You cannot build a successful team if you are only looking at your top students... The basics need to be very solid."

Asked if one needs to compete to teach:

"Of course, you must know the feeling of competition, this is important.  If you compete you may not be the best competitor, but you know the feeling and can help your students to prepare."  

Nicolai Holt on competition:

"If you want to test your BJJ, you have to do it in competition."

Nicolai Holt on the sport vs. self defense debate:

"I do not perceive a debate.  If you train sport jiu jitsu, you will be better able to handle a self defense situation."

December 25, 2011

NWJJA Kids Class - Kid Jitsu

Worlds Youngest Black Belt on the far left!
Check out some pics from Coach Mike's kids class at NWJJA!  After the new year Coach Mike will also be adding a Saturday morning class in addition to Tues and Thurs evenings.  Mike is doing a fantastic job with the little ones, stop in today and sign your kids up for the most effective martial art out there and one of the best ways to get, and stay in, shape all your life!

Train hard, Train smart!

Coach Leary crushing the competition! 

Coach Mike is a passionate teacher and intelligent
grappler.  Uber intelligence powered by
a state of the art solar panel on top of his head!

December 24, 2011

Happy Holidays & Monday Open Mat

Happy holidays everyone!  I hope you have a great end to 2011 and stay safe and warm with those close to you.

Also wanted to give a heads up to NWJJA students... I will have an open mat Monday Dec. 26th at 11am for those of you in need of choking, or being choked, from the holidays!  Gi or no gi does not matter, just show up and wrestle.

Please spread this message all over email and facebook.


December 23, 2011

Gracie Magazine Back Issues Still Available

Last minute stocking stuffer!  Just wanted to remind all that I have the following "Gracie" magazineissues for sale in sets. I am willing to part with individual issues but discounted rates will not apply. Email me for S&H and to place your order: [email protected]

Set #1                                                              Set #2
($90)  ($25)

Issue # 110                                                      Issue # 124
111                                                             125
112                                                            126
113   127

Three Harmonies Holiday Schedule

Here is the schedule for Three Harmonies Students for the remainder of the year:

Dec. 24th - No Class

Dec. 26th - Class 9:30am / NO 6pm classes

Dec. 28th - No Class

Dec. 31st. - No Class

Jan. 2, 2012 - Regular schedule resumes

Be safe and stay jolly!

December 22, 2011

Updated 2012 IBJJF Rules In English

Here are the newly revised IBJJF rules for 2012 in English!!  Save the PDF as it is going to be invaluable to study for both practitioners and coaches alike!

Click here to link to the color document!

Train hard... 2012 is going to be a kickass year for jits!

December 21, 2011

A Martial Artists Gift Guide: Tim Cartmell Edition

Alright you procrastinators, here is your last chance to make Merry that fool in your life who gets enjoyment out of punching others in the head, getting round kicked in the thigh, and knows how to deal with skin diseases you never knew existed!

I have trained under Tim Cartmell for over the past decade.  Mostly in the stand up arts, but as I have dedicated my life to BJJ Tim has been instrumental in my grappling game.  Below are a number of gift ideas that are sure to please the most finicky of fighters, as Tim's info is top notch!

Granted all opinions on this blog are biased because they are my opinions, but I really don't think anyone can argue that the one pivotal book EVERY martial artist needs to have actively resting on their bookshelf is "Effortless Combat Throws" though it looks like it is currently out of print.  Regardless of experience or background, this text is the quintessential book on throws and takedowns as it is principle based, not stylistically based.   The DVD of the same title is excellent as well!

"Standing Grappling: Escapes & Counters" is another essential stocking stuffer.  Again, not sportive in it's approach Tim offers escapes and counters for a variety of common holds and pins one potentially could run into in a self defense situation.  Based on leverage and technique, size and strength are not needed for these easy to learn techniques.  PERFECT for women training for self defense!  Click here and go to the bottom of the page to order your "Escapes and Counters" DVD!

Following in the footsteps of "Standing Grappling," Tim put his "Ground Proofing" curriculum on disc.  Geared towards practitioners and teachers who do not have any ground fighting in their school curriculum.  Again not sportive based Tim and his Shen Wu crew teach how to safely fall down, protect yourself on the ground, escape common holds and pins, attain the dominant position, and safely rise to your feet!  If you are training in a system / style that has no training on the ground then this disc is a MUST HAVE!


Wrapping up the grappling aspect of Tim's work is THE book on guard passing, aptly titled "Passing the Guard" Tim and co-author Ed Benneville share the secrets to effectively pass the guard (arguably one of the most difficult tasks ALL grapplers need to deal with!).  Packed full of techniques, this text delves into the strategy and tactics as well in order to make a more complete game for the reader.  I also love the 2nd edition incorporation of solo drills and added techniques!  Again THE essential book on the subject of guard passing.

From here we delve into the more specialized works of Tim Cartmell, namely translations and DVD's of the classic Chinese martial arts.

Tim has translated, and co-authored some great titles including:

  • "Xing Yi Nei Gong" co-authored with Dan Miller, this text offers great insight into the ancient art of Xing Yi Quan including important translations and basic theories.  Again this title has been OOP and hard to find, accompanied by exuberant prices when it is found.  I suggest ebay as a source for any hard to find books.  A DVD was also produced of "Xing Yi Nei Gong."
  • "The Method of Chinese Wrestling" is a great translation of Tong Zhongyi's classic on the Chinese wrestling art of Shuai Chiao.  Very little quality work is available in english on Shuai Chiao, and this translation is a great addition.
  • "A Study of Taijiquan" by Sun Lu Tang was one of the first books ever written on Taijiquan, making it historically a very important text.  Expert translator Tim Cartmell offers his translation of the art he studied under Sun Jian Yun (Sun Lu Tang's daughter).  Tim is one of the foremost experts in the United States on Sun Taijiquan.  
  • "Chin Na Fa" by Jinsheng Liu, was a fun project Tim embarked on as he felt this text offered some insight into grappling applied in self defense situations from a traditional Chinese martial point of view.  
  • "Practical Chin Na" by Zhao Da Yuan is again, arguably THE text on joint manipulation (again from a Chinese based stand point, obviously not applicable to ground grappling today).  And yet once again I write with bad tidings... hard to find, as are the DVD's that were made in conjunction!  Click on the title link and Amazon will redirect you to some used sellers.  

Tim's latest project involved a comprehensive overview of the Sun Taijiquan system that was encapsulated in a text book and DVD set that has set new standards in terms of production quality and detailed information.  "Traditional Sun Style Taijiquan" co-written with Troyce Thome, covers the entire Sun Taijiquan curriculum minus combative techniques.  Posture testing, footwork, proper alignment, and the entire traditional form are taught in a succinct manner.  This text offers details on Taijiquan that any practitioner can benefit from, not just Sun players.  

And I must mention that the second chapter on the history of Taijiquan is probably the most eloquently written piece I have ever seen.  ;)

To go hand in hand with the oversized text Tim also produced a 5 DVD set that students can learn the entire Sun Taijiquan system from.  Techniques are demonstrated but a more thorough disc is upcoming regarding applications.  Sold individually at $40, or as a set for $150 click here to order!

One way or another I think you can find something of interest on this list.  If you are in the So Cal area stop by Ace Jiu Jitsu and train with Tim in person!  His lessons will take your skills to the next level.

Merry Holidays,

December 18, 2011

Grapplers Gift Guide: NWJJA Edition

Countdown is on for those of you who decide to participate in the bedlam known as the Holidays.  Chanukah starts Tuesday.  Little Baby Jesus Day is in less then 7 days, and Kwanzaa starts the following day.  So for those of you still undecided about what to buy that grappler in your life who has it all here I offer a few ideas that will please even the most stubborn of cauliflower eared wrestlers, and all of these gift ideas are supporting your local community and business people!

You can click here to be directed to the NWJJA store link.  Or to order the groundbreaking DVD series you can link to the Amazon page by clicking here!  Or you can contact me directly to place an order as well: [email protected] / 206-941-3232

Brian's "Basic 12 - BJJ Curriculum" is one of the finest programs put on DVD and all three volumes are available!  $40 each, or you can order the set at $100.
    Here is what some folks are saying:

"Brian did a great job of presenting the material where anyone could understand it. With the many examples he gives of each technique how can you go wrong?    Gabe and I started with vol. 1 and can now successfully do the top control and work our way around the body as the dvd instructs. It really is like being in a class with Brian. This week we're going into the arm bar from the mount to back. The detail that Brian gives and the how and whys are priceless for this humble beginner. Also absolutely LOVE the rear naked choke. Not to mention the work out from doing these techniques using mild resistance."  - Mike G. 

  • NWJJA T-Shirts are also available in limited sizes: $20
  • NWJJA Rash Guards: $40
  • NWJJA Back Pack $40
  • NWJJA Patches (LG) $12 / (SM) $8
 Nothing beats lesson's when you are a martial artist, and one on one training is essential for the  advancement and progression of students.  Private training allows the instructor to focus on one person and their specific needs for an hour.   A pack of lessons make for great stocking stuffers: Private Lessons with Brian Johnson can be arranged through me as well and are $75/hour.

  Or perhaps you are looking to get in shape for the New Year, in which case come on down and sign up for lessons!   BJJ is a fun way to get into shape, learn self defense and now you can join the circuit training at NWJJA as well!  Tuition starts at $110 / month.  

  Skip the ties and socks this year and give your grappling loved one what he or she REALLY wants; some Jits!  

   Remember to slow down and appreciate what you have. 

   Have a safe and happy holiday folks!


Wrestling Prodigy

Minus the stupid haircut this will be my new, not so little, nephew in 10 years if I have anything to say about it!  This kid is awesome!


December 14, 2011

A Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

Here is an open letter written by my friend and coach Brian J. Johnson on the meaning of BEING a black belt.  My comments will follow below.

and in most cases it still does. When I started BJJ the thought of getting a black belt seemed near impossible. In a way that was freeing. "ok well, now I'll just practice jiu-jitsu and strive for improvment beacuse I LOVE JIU-JITSU"! As a result Oct. 27th of 2005 I was awarded my Black Belt ( a complete and total shock! "why are all these people showing up for class"?... I never claimed to be all that bright).
It seems as of late some instructors have well, let me see..."jumped the shark" ( If your not familiar with that refernce I'm sure you can google it ). Now I have been pretty good at staying away from the politics and dramas that sometimes go with having a dojo and I hope that dose'nt I will try to tread lightly.

   Students: ask yourself what is more important, having a BB or being a BB. No one say's " I just want to get married". "I don't care who too I just want that certificate" ( at least I hope not). You should strive for a deep quality relationship with someone you truly love and as result you should then get married and get that piece of paper!...ok, ok I realize I am talking to a mostly male audience so I'll put it like this... put a black belt on a turd what do you got?

   Coaches: Quality control is up to us! I have learned alot about this in the last year... We should er on the side of having higher standards! I for one am going to re-commit myself to producing the best possible BJJ practitioners I can! I won't get suckered into the buisness of handing out belts to grow a "team" of black belts.

   Don't get me wrong it is noble to want to achieve BB, it is noble to award a BB. Let's just make sure that we don't loose sight of what this art is all about!!!!...and make sure that:
   Please share this with everyone you know that trains, teaches, competes, dreams, loves! the art of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu."

-Brian J. Johnson

   This letter is in response to an individual in the local BJJ community who was just recently promoted to black belt.  Out of respect for my coach I will not name the individual here, but any local BJJ cat that is reading this blog knows him, as he has literally bounced from one dojo to another over the past several years.  For instance he left our academy about 18 months ago as a two stripe blue belt (he came to the academy about 6 months prior with that rank).  After TELLING our coach Brian that he was ready for a purple belt, and subsequently being told "You are not at the purple belt level reflective of my academy yet, but lets work on your game and get you there." by Brian... this individual decided to move to greener pastures.  

   Now my numbers are not always real solid, but even if I am off by 6 months, this individual went from blue belt to black belt in under 2 years!  Now keep in mind I have rolled with this man and in all honesty he is bigger and stronger than I am he usually dominated the positions.  As far as submitting... rarely did he nail a submission, and overall his defense was good as I rarely nailed a sub as well.  That is me, 18 months ago... a three stripe blue belt.  You would think a cat just this side of a black belt would be dominating my rookie ass no!?  

   I do not understand people.  I do not understand why you would want something you have not earned.  Why someone would offer something so meaningful and important as a black belt in BJJ, so easily and without merit.  Coming from the traditional Chinese martial arts I have dealt with this bullshit for years, and the state (currently swirling the bowl!) of affairs for CMA is due largely in part to similar type practices.  Sadly I knew these days would come where belts are handed out like candy.

   In the end, if you are reading this, homie I wish you the best!  Sincerely!  I look forward to seeing some clips of you fighting in tournaments at the black belt level to prove your skills and to shut up critics like me!  When I see that day, I will offer my apologies.  

Happy Frickin' Holidays,


December 13, 2011

Three Harmonies Holiday Schedule

Three Harmonies students please note the following classes will be cancelled:
December 24 / 28 / 31st.

Have a safe and merry holiday season, and a wonderful new year!


Bow and Arrow Choke with Coach James Foster

Our good friend James Foster has started offering some online clips and tutorial's from his BJJ classes recently, and below is a great breakdown of the bow and arrow choke from back mount.  I have been working a lot of back mount and seat belt grip lately so this fits in PERFECTLY with my game!  Thanks coach!

For those of you unaware of Coach Foster, he is a second degree black belt in the Seattle area (Kent, WA.) with a very successful academy, Fosters Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.   A super nice cat and great coach, if Brian was not in town James is the man I would be training under! 

 Contact James quickly as he is offering a deal on private lessons for the month of December for any and all (do not have to be a member!).  

Seminar Fail!

I would love to be sitting down writing out a report of the Jacare' seminar I attended over the weekend, but unfortunately it was cancelled.   Apparently the host, John "Salami" was stricken quite ill, and I sincerely hope he gets much better!  Rumor is they will be re-scheduling Jacare' ASAP after the first of the year.

If I may offer a suggestion as someone who has hosted seminars, workshops, and the like for the past 12 years: always get the personal information of those attending the seminar (phone # / email), and have a list that can be accessible to a partner or responsible student.  That way when folks are coming in from 150 miles away you can contact them ASAP and let them know seminars are cancelled!  Facebook is NOT a message delivery system!

So I hope to offer a review sometime early next year as I am still very stoked to have an Alliance affiliate so close.  I also found out the same group plans on hosting Eddie Bravo, and Sambo expert Igor Yakimov! Promising training opportunities coming up!


December 9, 2011

United Grappling Federation 2012

A new kid has popped up on the grappling tournament block, the United Grappling Federation claims to be  "The premier western state grappling tournament provider."  I look forward to some fresh blood in the area and hopefully I can make both the Washington, and Oregon state championships.  The format sounds VERY similar to Grappling X, which made an appearance this past summer in Oregon.  Overall it was a decent tournament, but suffered from the same ailments most local and regional ones do; slow starts, dead mat time, questionable refereeing, etc.  Lets see if UGF can step up and take the reins!

I am not sure who is behind the organization but here is there preamble if you will:

After competing in dozens of tournaments and speaking with many other competitors and spectators alike, we decided to form our own organization to provide what competitors and spectators wanted most: high quality tournaments that run on time, experienced referees, top of the line medals, event specific t-shirts and much more. The United Grappling Federation was founded in 2010 with the sole purpose to become the premier provider for Submission Grappling and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu tournaments across the Western United States.

Three Harmonies Students

A reminder their is no class Saturday Dec. 10th for Three Harmonies Students.  Stay home and train solo;)

Have a great weekend!

December 7, 2011

Mendes vs. Rader - 2011 ADCC

Here is the match between Rafael Mendes and Justin Rader.  I have been working a similar game in terms of omoplata's and rolling inverted.  I am no where near as talented, nor mobile, as either of these grappling giants but one must admit if a 6' 4" 205# redneck from Ohio could nail omo's like this and transition so smoothly from position to submission... that would be awesome!


December 5, 2011

Jacare Coming to the PAC NW

Founder of Alliance BJJ, one of only five students to be promoted to black belt by Rolls Gracie before his passing, and one of the few individuals who can boast nearly 4 decades, DECADES, on the mat.... Romero "Jacare" Calvacanti will be in Oregon this weekend for a special seminar that you do not want to miss!

I have had the fortune to train with a handful of red-black belts in my short time in BJJ (Rigan Machado / Carlos Machado / JJ Machado / Fabio Santos) and I cherish the lessons from the "old guard" as they have forgotten more about grappling then I will ever know.  I have wanted to train with Jacare for many, many years and finally I have the opportunity to make it happen as one of his brown belts has opened up Alliance Oregon which means only one thing.... MUCH tougher competition to come at the local tournament scene!

Here is some rare footage of Jacare rolling:

December 3, 2011

Judo in Parliament

This is exactly what we need to do to our politician's here in America!  A little tomo nage to shut down that bullshit bill!!

December 2, 2011

Family Life In Iowa

What I want for Xmas... America to get their priorities straight.  We have SO many more important issues to deal with then wether two people, regardless of their orientation, want to get married.  Don't we?  Why must we continue to fragment our society with meaningless marginalization?

Get over your bullshit phobia's and learn to to focus on something a bit more meaningful.

December 1, 2011

The Ground Never Misses and Amazon

Just a friendly reminder this holiday season while you are shopping for your martial arts teachers, oh and family too, if you link to via my blog, I get credit points for the purchases you make.  After X amount I can cash these in for money or credit at Amazon myself.

Not that I encourage you using an evil conglomerate who is trying to take over the world like Amazon, but IF you do please enter their website via the link under the blog roll on the left hand side of this page.


November 30, 2011

Roger Gracie Speaks.... You Should Listen

What better way to wrap up brovember then with an awesome interview by BJJ Hacks with Roger Gracie!  Not only is this video crisply edited, but the interviewer asks some great questions not the same ol' cliche queries.
Great attitude.  Very humble.  Oh... did I mention a multi time world ass kicking champion too!?!?  

I will train with this man someday, until then enjoy the interview!

And for those of you living in a grappling black hole the past 10 years:


November 29, 2011

Gracie Magazine Back Issues

Just wanted to remind all that I have the following "Gracie" magazine issues for sale in sets. I am willing to part with individual issues but discounted rates will not apply. Email me for S&H and to place your order: [email protected]

Set #1                                                              Set #2
($90)  ($25)

Issue # 110                                                      Issue # 124
111                                                             125
112                                                            126
113   127

November 28, 2011

12 Commandments of Jiu Jitsu

Words to live by from Carlos Gracie Sr.  (Thanks to

1. Be so strong that nothing can disturb the peace of your mind.
2. Talk to all people about happiness, health, and prosperity.
3. Give to all your friends the feeling of being valued.
4. Look at things by the enlightened point of view and update your optimism on reality.
5. Think only about the best, work only for the best, and always expect the best.
6. Be as just and enthusiastic about others victories as you are with yours.
7. Forget about past mistakes and focus your energy on the victories of tomorrow.
8. Always make those around you happy and keep a smile to all people who talk to you.
9. Apply the largest amount of your time on self-improvement and no time in criticizing others.
10. Be big enough so you can feel unsatisfied, be noble enough so you can feel anger, be strong enough so you can feel fear, and be happy enough so you can feel frustrations.
11. Hold a good opinion about your self and communicate that to the world, but not through dissonant words but through good works.
12. Believe strongly that the world is in your side, as long as you stay loyal to the best of yourself.

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Private Lessons

I currently teach stand up striking and grappling, as well as a little Kali and I love doing so.  I hope to someday own my very own academy and offer a bevy of class formats, one of them certainly being my passion; Brazilian Jiu Jitsu!

So in an attempt to prepare for that fateful day of being an instructor floating in the ocean alone I wanted to kick start my on going tutelage by not only becoming "A" coach, but rather training to be an exceptional coach!   With my professor's blessings I am going to start offering private and semi-private lessons on Brazilian Jiu Jitsu / Grappling.   Naturally I am limited to 5+ years of BJJ experience, and am currently a purple belt under Brian Johnson.   But I think I can offer some decent insight into some of the basic principles and strategies of the gentle art that will fit into your game well.

If you are interested in arranging a lesson hit me up at 206-941-3232, or via email [email protected] and we can schedule some mat time.  I will be charging $55/hour, or $60/hour for 2+ students.  Keep in mind those loved ones with cauliflower ear over the holidays... private lessons make great stocking stuffers!

Here is one of the kindest comments a coach has ever offered me, from my friend Brian Johnson:

"Jake has a passion for the art and an eye for detail that is rare...that with an ego-less honesty make him a perfect teacher of BJJ. If you are a purple belt or below he is a great coach!"

Train Hard.  Train Smart.

November 27, 2011

ADCC Partners With NAGA

In a recent interview Kid Peligro did with ADCC president Marko Leisten (click here to read the entire interview), Marko announced the partnership with Kipp Kollar, president of NAGA.   With the ADCC format of tournament becoming very popular worldwide, it has not gained the attention they would like here in North America.  The dominant force in grappling organizations here in the western hemisphere is certainly the IBJJF, followed by Grapplers Quest and then NAGA.  Most organizations are adopting the IBJJF's rule set in an effort to unify rules, match durations, etc.

While there is nothing wrong with this format per se, the ADCC rule set and format differ drastically with fewer weight classes, longer matches where the first 10 minutes no points count, no gi's allowed, and more liberal submission allowances ( including heel hooks and neck cranks).  Overall you can see a much different strategy must be employed for ADCC format tournaments, and up until this announcement the ADCC qualifiers and events were poorly organized, and sparsely promoted (here is my review of the 09 regional ADCC tournament). 

According to Leisten NAGA will be adding ADCC divisions to their multitude of tournaments throughout N. America (was not clear if NAGA was going to add these divisions to their international tournaments).  This is great news for all grapplers looking to get the experience of ADCC format fighting, as well as a great opportunity for grapplers to qualify for the "big show" every two years (held in a new location each time)!

My one concern with this announcement is the general lack of NAGA (as well as IBJJF and Grapplers Quest) events in the Pacific Northwest!  NAGA is super huge on the east coast and in the south, but the furthest west they come is Vegas.  Skipping right over the entire west coast to Hawaii!  Same goes for Grapplers Quest, who again come as far west as Vegas, but offer nothing else for the west or northwest folk.  It is understandable (and a wise business decision) to avoid the IBJJF infested waters of California as they have a huge tournament monthly.  But the lack of major tournaments up here in the PAC NW (to include our brethren in western Canada, which again is poorly supported by grappling organizations) is frustrating especially given how big the sport of grappling has become in cities like Portland, Seattle, and Vancouver!

Both Grapplers Quest and NAGA have made murmurings about coming up here, but that talk quickly faded to whispers.  I know here in Washington state we have had legislature on initiative's to try and make grappling and grappling events on par with MMA where promoters would have to pay exuberant fee's and insurance riders just to hold the event.  I also know promoters have had a hard time finding someplace that is both big enough, and affordable.  Seems that the city of Seattle likes to price folks out of house and home just to rent some space!  Like many things here it seems this city is not very inviting to new grappling organizations, which is a shame as events like Grapplers Quest and NAGA would bring revenue to the area and put the PAC NW on the map of serious competitors!

I hope to see some events from NAGA, GQ, and/or the IBJJF here in the Northwest sometime in 2012.  I think we are due.  Until then keep your eyes peeled for the new ADCC divisions in NAGA tournaments nation wide.  NAGA runs a great show, go support them!


November 23, 2011

No Class Thursday

Friendly reminder that there is no Three Harmonies Class on Dead Turkey Day
(Thursday 24th).

Be safe and have fun!

Punch Town Karpal eX MMA Gloves - Review

New kid on the block Punch Town, a UK based company, is coming out of the gates swinging with their Karpal eX MMA gloves.  I was lucky enough to be sent a pair for review on The Ground Never Misses,  so for the better part of the last 6 weeks I have been using the Karpal's in sparring, pad work, as well as rounds on the bag.

Your standard 4oz size is really the only thing "standard" about these gloves, as right off the bat Punch Town products are eye catching!   Now skeletons and skulls may not be your idea of decor but in the fast paced, sink or swim business of MMA manufacturing everyone needs something that sticks out.  Punch Town does just that with sharp designs and eye catching contrast.   The Karpal eX for instance has the feint graphic of metacarpals (notice the play on spelling) or the bones in your hand.  And these are not the cheap "iron on" type designs either as they weather the wear and tear very well.

High grade leather and tight stitching are paramount with the Karpal's, but I am curious to see how they hold up over time since it is only a single stitch.  I have no noticeable scuffs nor any wear after over 6 weeks of using them.  They have held up excellently!

Outside of the great customer service I got from Aaron at MMA Opinion (the first distributor of Punch Town), two factors stick out about these gloves; the Boa Tite dual strap closure system, and the comfortability when wearing the Karpal eX.

The Boa Tite dual strap is Punch Town's trademark wrist support system for their MMA gloves and I must admit it is killer!  Glove manufactures have been trying to figure out how to offer the support and strength that a tape job does in an actual MMA bout.  Some made extra long wraps to loop around several times, some designed funky strap cuts and lengths, but Punch Town has taken the wrist support to a whole new level by offering a strap system that pulls tight in both directions, not just unilaterally.  This keeps the glove securely fastened with no shifting when contact is made.

Lined with a (dare I say) soft fabric interior these gloves are actually nice to wear!  Minimal "break in" time was spent as they fit quite well and contour to my hand with minimal pucker on the pinkie side of the glove when a tight fist is made.  The design is excellent being form fitting and tight, but not restrictive by any means.  A lot of the credit is due to the Boa Tite wrist strap which really keeps the glove locked in place and the wrist strong and supported.

Overall Punch Town's MMA glove the Karpal eX is an excellent glove.  Affordably priced.  Perfect for bag work, and mitt rounds but I must say I think they are too hard of a foam (and being at only 4 oz) for sparring.  Strikes to the head especially must be avoided as these gloves are just a bit too hard and unforgiving in that respect.   Keep your eye on Punch Town because if their MMA gloves are representative of their product line as a whole these guys are here to stay and will continue to innovate and create.   The Boa Tite system should be standard on all MMA gloves!

Retailers and schools can check out Zengu for ordering info.

Check out MMA Opinion to order your pair of Punch Town gloves just in time for Black Friday!


November 16, 2011

Kushti Wrestling

I have written about Kushti, Indian wrestling, before but here is a brand new blog all about Indian wrestling called Kushti wrestling.  Check it out as they have some great info and awesome photo's of this amazing traditional art.

November 15, 2011

November 13, 2011

NWJJA at the Revolution

The NW Jiu Jitsu Academy was well represented at the November edition of the Revolution Tournament with eight members showing up to fight.  Everyone fought hard and did very well.  The few we lost were so damned close it was not even funny!

Motorbike Matt fought a couple of hard fights in a big bracket along side Josh.  Both fought well and strategically, unfortunately their opponents capitalized on one single ounce of pressure that is taken off.

Taho "Big Walker" Kakutani fought a couple of hard matches that were once again very close.

Scrappy Phil came out strong in his first match against a wiry purple belt.  Phil did well working to pass the guard but his opponent caught him in a tight kimura getting the tap.

Randy the Baconater fought extremely well getting a wrap choke Brian just taught us last week (somebody stop this guy!), and losing a nail-biter by points.  Not to bitch but Bacon passed dudes guard and was in side control and the ref was not counting fast AT ALL!  Those points would have won the match.  Not sayin', just sayin'.

Brett "Dutchess" Smith continues his no gi reign and is showing huge improvements in his gi game to boot.  I am glad to hear he will be sticking around NWJJA for a while longer!  Great addition to the dojo!
Dutchess, the Cool Aid Kid, and Scrappy
Hats off to Connor "The Cool Aid Kid" Faust for doing awesome in his first grappling tournament!  Kid has been training his ass off and came in to fight a tough, tough fight against one of Foster's new white belts after scaring off an opponent or two!  This was a huge step for you Connor.  Analyze the fight and we will all help you work out the kinks, but all in all you did awesome and listened to your coaches!

Thanks to Mike "Chicken Wing" Leary for showing up to help coach with Brian being out of town.

Yours truly did okay.  I got a bye in my small bracket for the first round, then went on to go 1-1 in the double elimination format.  I will analyze more after reviewing the tapes and letting shit sink it.  My first fight I felt really solid and it showed as I dominated one of Marcelo's purple belts (James I think) keeping him from scoring a single point on me in the 7 minute match.  I am a bit frustrated that I could not finish him, but I am happy with the win overall.

Rocking the OTM RSC 420 Gi!
My second match was very frustrating as my stocky opponent, Jack, from Eugene, OR. ended up passing my guard in the last couple of minutes and I could not escape his side control.  I really need to work hard at not allowing big guys to pass my guard.

Overall I am happy with everything I saw at the Revolution, and very proud of all the NWJJA fighters.  I appreciate your positive feedback and patience in my attempts to help coach.  I am new to coaching BJJ so I hope I helped more then I hurt.  Any constructive feedback is greatly appreciated!


Big Food Exec Speaks Out

Here is a great interview by Seattle based Andy Bellatti with former food marketer Bruce Bradley who spent two decades working for the likes of Nabisco, General Mills, and Pillsbury.

To read the entire interview click here!

Q. On your website you write that you've "seen some disturbing trends in the food industry over the past 20 years." What have you found most insidious?
A. The landscape has changed dramatically since I started my career at Nabisco in 1992. In response to Wall Street profit pressures and the growing power of retailers like Walmart, the food industry has undergone a tremendous wave of consolidation and cost cutting.
This has hurt our food supply in many ways. First, huge, multinational food companies now dominate the landscape. Wielding far greater lobbying power and much deeper pockets, these companies have been very successful in stagnating food regulation. Second, cost savings have been a key profit driver for the industry, but they've had a devastating impact on both food quality and food safety. Think factory farming andgenetically modified organisms (GMOs), just to name a couple of examples. Third, as consumers' health concerns have increased, processed food manufacturers have become even more aggressive in making dubious health claims or co-opting fad diets to market their brands and develop new products.
The net impact of this transformed landscape has been disastrous from a public health perspective -- with obesity rates skyrocketing and a never-ending flood of food recalls.

November 11, 2011

"All Gave Some.... Some Gave All."

Regardless of your political views and opinions, we all owe a debt of gratitude for the men and women who serve in the US Armed Forces.  I want to say thank you to each and every one of you on this often overlooked, but most important remembrance holiday, Veterans Day.

Never Forget... Always Grateful.

Come Support NWJJA at the Revolution Tournament Saturday

November 8, 2011

"Good Night Joe Frazier. I Love You Dear Friend."

Could not surmise it better then with George Foreman's words in response to the news of Smokin' Joe Frazier's passing yesterday of cancer at the young age of 67.  For the entire story on ESPN click here!

Fans of the pugilistic arts should need to introduction to one of the greatest boxers ever to live.  I have no personal experience to speak of, only admiration for a man tougher then nails, and sharper then a razor!  I wish him the most peaceful of journeys in his next big adventure.


November 7, 2011

Ace JJ Takes Care of Some Bizz-ness at the 2011 No Gi Worlds

Unfortunately yours truly is flat ass broke so I do not have a first person account of the 2011 No Gi Worlds like I had planned for most of the year!  But thankfully with the world wide intertube info is just a click away.

Wanted to throw a huge congrats out to Ace Jiu Jitsu and there fighters who kicked ass at the No Gi World Championships in Long Beach, CA. over the weekend.  Co-owners Chris Thue and Asa Fuller won their respective weight categories at the black belt level.  Where Mat Hwang took home the gold in the 175# brown belt division!  This is Mat's biggest win and coach Tim Cartmell mentioned he could not be prouder.  Look for Mat to receive his black belt from Tim next month becoming Tim's first black belt!

Congrats guys!

November 4, 2011

BJJ Basic - 12 App

Brian Johnson and creator Matt Wilson are pleased to announce the launch of the "BJJ B-12" app available for window's based phones (i-phone and android app's coming shortly).  This is the entire basic curriculum of world champion Brian Johnson of the NW Jiu Jitsu Academy here in Seattle, WA.  

An excellent resource for both practitioners and coaches, the B-12 App. will come in handy when rolling on the mat and you need access to a certain position, transition, or submission immediately.  Just whip out your phone and scroll through the easily navigated menu to get right to the page you need.

This is the same material presented on the 3 disk DVD series of the same title.

Click here to order the app, or for more info!

Help us spread word on twitter, facebook, and via the net if you would.