15.4.16

BJJ Interview: Valor Kimono Founder Kevin Adshead



I recently ordered a beautiful gi-material brown belt from Valor Fightwear after a very positive review from my friend Seymour at Meerkatsu. I was so impressed with the quality and aesthetics of the belt I contacted the company for an interview and got through to Mr Kevin Adshead, the founder. He was very generous with his time. I hope you enjoy it.



Hello. Why don’t we start by you telling us a little about yourself?

My name is Kevin, I am 34 years old and I am originally from London and now live in Essex. I am the owner of Valor Fightwear and I also own/run a couple of gi stores as well.

8.4.16

BJJ / Grappling interview: Grapple Nation Promoter Jake Cross


As some may know, I recently did a 20-min submission only jiujitsu super fight at Grapple Nation 7, a well run grappling promotion up in Manchester, in the North West of England (more on my match in a future post). I thought it'd be a good opportunity to interview the event promoter, my friend Jake Cross.

Hello. Why don’t we start by you telling us a little about yourself? 
Hi Liam, my name is Jake Cross and I am 25 years old from Manchester, England. I am an events promoter that has brought such event as Sub-North, Grapple Nation and now Empire Grappling Events Ltd.

4.4.16

BJJ / Grappling tips: Yoga & Jiujitsu



Adding yoga to jiujitsu is a great idea. The functional understanding of your body that the poses and flows of yoga give you, not to mention the breath control and mental focus, will go a long way to help both prevent injury by strengthening your joints and muscles and raise your competitive performance. Just look at the examples of Eddie Bravo, Sebastian Brosche and any Gracie. 

The thing is, we already know this. 

So why aren't yoga studios full of aspiring jiujitsu practitioners? The reasons are many:

1. Lack of additional time
2. Money
3. Not really knowing where to start...etc

All these reasons are perfectly valid and if like to use this post to help you overcome some of them. 


15.3.16

Submission grappling / MMA gear: Joint Guardian



Just a quick post to highlight a NoGi MMA brand that was kind enough to send me a sample of their products. Joint Guardian are a relative newcomer on the MMA Nogi gear scene but are indeed unique in their message:

"We produce innovative, socially responsible fightwear that allows our customers to wear the armor they need, while contributing to making this world a better place"

Making the world a better place how, I hear you ask. 

They strive to use organic and / or fairtrade cotton

They strive to use recycled polyester to reduce their environmental footprint




They are members of the 1% for the planet movement. Read more about it here: http://onepercentfortheplanet.org

But what really makes this Start-Up unique in my eyes from a social-responsibility POV is their take on fighter sponsorship:

"Just like other fightwearcompanies, Joint Guardian also sponsors fighters. What makes our sponsoring deals different from everyone else is that we ask our fighters to choose a good cause and to give something back! Fighters can choose any cause they consider worth supporting! Once Joint Guardian has decided to sponsor a fighter and his/her cause, Joint Guardian will do everything in its power to raise money for your cause and support you on your way to the top."




As for the products, I found them of a very high quality. My only gripe, which is more with me and my appetite for good food than with them, is that they were tight in my body frame. I'm 177cm and 85kg and the size medium spats, shorts and rash guard were..ehm.... Snug! 




Initially I didn't like the (removable) EVA knee protectors during ground grappling but I wasn't too bothered as I soon removed them. I have, however, found them more useful if you incorporate a lot of wrestling shots (or on my case, judo) into your training.  

I'd like to extent my thanks to Dhani and team at Joint Guardian again for the opportunity. Keep up the great work. 

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ZHOO ZHITSU IS FOR EVERYONE!

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1.3.16

BJJ / Grappling tips: Paradox of jiujitsu.




What's the hardest yet most tantalising thing about jiujitsu? It's that fact that demand all of your attention when you are doing it. Not some. Not most, but all. 

What's the best and fastest way to improve your jiujitsu? It's to tone down your attributes and focus on the details of the techniques. 

We know these statements to be true, but how do we put them in action? Here's my suggestion. 

1. Add more steps: 


John Will once told me: "every technique in jiujitsu, and in life, is made of steps and the more steps and micro steps you add, the more exact and accurate your jiujitsu, and life, will be"

As an example, John demonstrated the omoplata shoulder lock from the closed guard then he taught it quickly in 2-3 moves / steps. To emphasise his previous point, he re-taught it in 6-7 steps and the whole group understood it and performed it much better. He then gave us 4 minutes to discuss in pairs how we could even more steps to the omoplata with the motivation that the pair of students who had the most steps won*.

20.2.16

BJJ / NoGi grappling seminar at Berserk MMA- Stockholm, Sweden



It was my great pleasure to teach a  NoGi grappling seminar last Monday at Berserk MMA back home in Sweden.

The beautiful and super clean facilities at Berserk MMA



Berserk MMA was founded by my friend Johan Halldin, who is also the owner of Fighter Magazine, Scandinavia's leading martial arts publication. The attitude there is very relaxed and, in a word: healthy!

15.2.16

Gracie Jiujitsu Legends: Helio Gracie's second son Relson Gracie on the health benefits of Jiu Jitsu

I really like this video. Actually, I love any video of someone above 50 doing things many 20 year olds can’t do. Relson Gracie has done a great job preserving his health.



What he has done here, which I think every human being out there should, is taken full responsibility for his life. Many people succumb to an image of getting old. A negative image. Relson, however, and many like him refuse to age badly. They refuse to allow the number of candles on their birthday cake (or flan, or smoothie or avocado or whatever Gracies eat on their birthday!) to determine how healthy he should be. For that, I salute you Relson.

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ZHOO ZHITSU IS FOR EVERYONE!

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1.2.16

BJJ / Grappling / MMA tips: getting back into jiujitsu

What's the best way to get back into Jiujitsu?

Jiujitsu is an integral part of my life, but, as a part time grappler, there are times when I cannot train for a couple of weeks, or even more. Obviously if I can sneak in a session here or there I will but that's not always a possibility. 

Some may have to take a shorter or longer break from training. This could be due to work, family, moving home or even an injury. Hopefully, these obstacles subside and we find our way back to the mat, but people are often too eager for their own good when getting back into training and it's not uncommon for them to burn out within the first month or so. I know this because I have been that person. 

Here are 5 pieces of advice I've gathered over the years that I hope may be of value to you:

28.1.16

BJJ gi review: Scramble - The Godfather



The Godfather BJJ Kimono from Scramble.

Officially licensed, this gi features a 550gsm pearl weave top and 12oz cotton twill pants. Prints of The Godfather himself, Don Vito Corleone, adorn the inside of the gi.



20.1.16

BJJ / Grappling tips: TRAINING SORENESS IN COMBAT SPORTS



This article was first published on Badboy- UK with the kind help of subject matter expert DOM KINSEY – Founder and Head Coach of Iron Warrior Fitness. I hope you enjoy it and that you gain something from Dom's infinite experience and wisdom.

A certain level of soreness after training (AKA Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness or DOMS for short) can be a welcome reminder of the great session you had the day before, but sometimes it can be a crippling pain that restrict the amount of training you can do. I spoke to Strength and Conditioning expert Mr Dominic Kinsey on the subject of DOMS and he shared a few helpful tips to handle this love / hate relationship.

15.1.16

Jiujitsu Lifestyle Humor: anti Gracie Diet Song Titles

courtesy of graciediet.com/ 
I tried the Gracie Diet for a couple of months over the summer and quite enjoyed it. If you're thinking about giving it a go, I recommend getting Grand Master Rorion's book on the subject because not only does he explain the diet (the rules of which you can find at here) but he helps you get into it in a structured phase-by-phase manner. If the Gracie family are good at one thing, it's deconstructing something and teaching it to the masses!

Nonetheless, I thought it'd be fun to put together a list of song title that involve food combinations that violate the rules of the Gracie Diet. There's literally loads! Here are my select ones.

Sweet like chocolate by Shanks & Bigfoot:



Never eat dessert. Sweet foods and savoury (cooked) flavours should not be mixed!

Banana pancakes by Jack Johnson



What? Were you not listening? Why would you mix eggs, flour, milk and butter (cooking fat) with a fruit? Tisk tisk!


4.1.16

BJJ Tips: Guard attacks are sweeps, submissions, back takes and standing back up

I don't have my book in front of me but the concept is
echoed around Renzo-Danaher's book 
Mastering Jujitsu
My jiujitsu teacher professor Eddie Kone has me teach classes under observation and gives me regular INVALUABLE feedback on both content, class management and lesson planning. Recently I taught a lesson on the clinch and the leg hook takedown under his supervision. As part of the warm up, I taught the technical stand-up and then we drilled it against resistance*. Sounds simple right? You try it.

Perform the technical stand up while someone is laying their weight on you. Not even trying to pin you. Just laying some weight on you.

The reason I like the choice of topic is for two reasons: the way the curriculum is taught and the reason behind why it's taught the way it's taught.