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:


imageJust 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 # 124111                                                             125112                                                            126113   127115117120122123124125126127128157158162Words 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.image5. 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.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!

imageSo 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.

imageIn 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!


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

Be safe and have fun!

imageNew 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.

imageHigh 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.

imageLined 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.

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


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.imageA SICK rolling kimura at the World Sambo Championships 74kg final.

imageThe 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!


imageHere 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.imageThis 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.imageRegardless 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.

imageimageCould 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.


imageUnfortunately 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!

imageBrian 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.


On my short visit back to the motherland (Ohio) I attended a Columbus Bluejackets game of which my brother in law is a season ticket holder.  The 3-1 win over Anaheim would prove to be only their second win of the season, but it was hard fought and well played overall.  Afterwards we were fortunate enough to get “backstage” to meet some of the players as they exited the locker rooms, and while I am am not a collector of memorabilia or anything I do like meeting elite athletes and showing my support.  Not to mention these are prime opportunities to see the real character of a hockey superstar (or up and comer).

So a few Bluejackets come stumbling out of the locker room meeting the fans, taking pictures with the kids, signing autographs… the whole nine yards.   Jonas Hiller, Anaheim’s net-minder who just lost to the worst team in the NHL, comes walking out clearly not expecting any fans in “enemy territory” and starts heading towards the bus.  Two young ladies next to us scream his name and get his attention where he comes over to sign autographs, and take a picture with the girls.  Come to find out they are new to hockey and he is their favorite player.  Jonas literally made their year by simply coming over to spend not even 2 minutes with them!   It reminded me of what this great sport is all about.

Now keep in mind players do not “have” to do these things, though it can be argued that you are a complete douche waffle if you cannot spend 5 minutes hob-nobbing with the folks who struggle in their day to day lives to make enough to care for their families and buy those tickets, which in turn pay for the Masserati’s and BMW’s of players such as Teemu Selanne.

I have grown up watching Teemu play and he is honestly one of the best ever!  But the way he reacted when some kids called his name made me want to pull his suit up over his head and beat the Finn out of him.  He just mumbled “Not tonight” to the crowd and quickly jumped on his cell phone.  What an ass!  Apparently Finnish hospitality is not like Ohio’s!
I am grateful that RJ Umberger took a few moments and shook my hand and took a pic.  I have met him a couple times and he is always nice and more then willing to meet with fans.  A grad of Ohio State RJ just signed an extension with Columbus so it looks positive that he will retire there.  I hope the Jackets can get their shit together to win him a championship!

I guess this experience just put a few things in perspective, especially in a place where the economy is hurting SO BAD!  Be humble and grateful for what you have.  Some of us would give limbs just to step on the ice and play a game we love, let alone get paid MILLIONS of dollars to do it!   It does not take much to show some class.  Conversely it does not take much to show a complete lack of it either, huh Teemu!?