Back to the Basics

My youngest kids are girls that are less than two years apart in age. The
older one was not too interested in driving so delayed taking drivers education
and getting her permit. By the time she did start the process her younger sister
was almost ready as well. This resulted in me doing a lot of driving and teaching
for almost a year straight. Whether they were driving, or I was behind the wheel,
every time we were on the road it was a lesson. I would say “we’re a few blocks
from the Jr. High and it’s 3:00 we should be keeping an eye out for kids, right?” or
“this is the first rain in a few weeks, be aware the roads could be slick” or “can
you see the mirrors on that 18-wheeler in front of us? If not, we’re following too
close” etc. etc. etc. These are all just basic safe driving practices that experienced
drivers follow without thinking about. But after a years’ worth of conscienceless
thinking about and actively discussing these issues I felt like a safer driver.

I’ve been driving for over 30 years with 2 tickets and zero accidents in the
last 20. After all that time of safe driving, if spending some time consciously
focusing on the basic principles of safe driving can make me a better driver, I’m
willing to bet the same logic applies to jiu jitsu? If you spend some time focusing
on the basic principles of good jiu jitsu your techniques will get tighter, you will
become more efficient, your defense will improve….in short, your grappling will
get better.

It’s tempting to make a list of “5 basic principles and concepts…..”, but the
reality is every person will be different. If your top game is weak or not
progressing the fundamentals you choose to focus on will be different than they
would be if your go-to guard game needed some improvement.
Focusing on the basics in general will help your jiu jitsu. Focusing on specific
basics that are directly relevant to your game will help you even more. In my
mind, this is an example of a time that paying your instructor for a private lesson,
will be worth every penny you spend. Tell your instructor you would like to
improve upon the foundation of your game – that you would like to make sure
your jiu jitsu is fundamentally sound and ask him for a private lesson, so you can
roll, and he can assess your game and make suggestions.

In conclusion, no matter how long you have been training jiu jitsu, there is
always value in getting back to the basics. No amount of slick moves and fancy
techniques will ever make up for a game that is not fundamentally sound. It’s
never too late to get back to the basics.

Train hard. Train smart. Get better.

Joe

BjjBrick Q&A Q6 Building Your Confidence As A New Student

Here is the question submitted via email.

I am fairly new to BJJ but not to martial arts in general. BJJ has always enticed me because of the fluid flow of the art plus the confidence and humility of its practitioners. I have mainly trained in striking arts and I have to say the brotherhood that I see between the students in Jiu-jitsu is so different. With that being said there is a lot of intimidation. I have never been one to have the most self confidence and I hope that BJJ will change that, which I believe it will. My question is getting over the fear, for lack of a better word, of rolling with folks. It’s not that I am “afraid” to do it but it’s very defeating sometimes when almost instantly you feel weak and beaten as soon as you start. I enjoy drilling and working technique but when we roll at the end of class it kind of gets to me. Is that to be expected? I know talking with other students they have basically said it kind of sucks when you first start but just to keep doing it and it will get better. I know that with continued work it will get better but how do I address the apprehension now? I do know giving up is not an option for me because I have given up in the past on things. Not because it was tough but because I think my self esteem gets the better of me. I know I have to keep pushing because I really want to develop my self not only physically but mentally too.

Thanks for your time. Keep up the great work.

Regards,
Jason

One of the First Things I Learned in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

It was 2002 and I had started training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu with John Castillo. John was a purple belt and he opened up a school in the back of a used golf supply shop. One of the first things that John taught me was not a submission or a sweep, it was not even a position. John showed me how to break-fall.

Early BJJ Lesson“You are going get knocked down and thrown as you learn Jiu-Jitsu; you need to learn how to fall safely.” John explained as he taught me how to break-fall.

At the time, I was 22 years old and learning how to fall was not exciting. I wanted to learn how to choke and armbar people who were bigger and stronger than myself. But thankfully I was not running the class, because learning how to fall is important if you want to keep getting up.

Over the course of my Jiu-Jitsu career, I have fallen many times. This early lesson has payed off by keeping me on the mat.

Our APP That Will Help You Get Better At BJJ


BJJ APPSo you want to get better at Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu? We have an APP for that! Well, not really an APP for your phone or tablet. APP stands for Attitude, Plan, Practice- three of the biggest factors that will effect the quality of your Jiu-Jitsu development.

Attitude– Your attitude is a huge factor in your success. A positive attitude will help you get past the many hurdles you will have in learning Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.  A positive attitude will help you get back on the mat after a tough day of training.  Your teammates are more likely to help and coach you if you have a great attitude.  A humble attitude will keep you focused and motivated even after an accomplishment or milestone.

I recommend that you smile more, enjoy the training and make friends with your teammates.

Plan– Invest the time and energy to make a plan. Organized training is more effective than training moves and techniques randomly. Determine what areas of your game need to be worked on, and what areas of your game are already good but could be even better. Are the techniques you are good at complimentary of each other? Take time off of the mat to study the techniques you have selected in your plan. Your best techniques should work together, that way you can funnel your opponent to an area that you are very strong.

I recommend you get even better at your best technique, and it never hurts to add a few more ways to get to that technique.

Practice– Having a great attitude and a well thought out plan are excellent, but they will not get you very far if you don’t practice. Time on the mat cannot be substituted. If you are able to drill the techniques that you have in your plan you should do this. During the rolling phase of class it’s important to work your plan and not just go through random techniques on your training partner.

Make the most out of each time you step on the mat. Time with quality training partners on the mat is valuable.

Your-First-Year-Of-BJJ-artwork-1199

Epi 81 Interview With Coach and Competitor Chris Easter

The BjjBrick Podcast is in iTunes, Stitcher radio, and RSS link for Andriod

Chris Easter

Chris Easter

Chris Easter is a Black Belt and has been training BJJ since 1998.  Chris has a game that focuses on the basics.  Chris has moved many times due to being in the military, this has given him the opportunity to train with many amazing practitioners and share Jiu-Jitsu.  He is now training at Sergio Penha’s. 

We talk about:

  • Moving and finding a new gym
  • Training in the military
  • The importance of drilling
  • Different types of drilling and what they will accomplish
  • How his off the mat training has changed over the years
  • Dealing with injuries
  • His favorite techniques
  • Training with Paul from Open Mat Radio
  • Finding an instructor that is a good fit for you
  • Coaching advice
  • “Its all about angles”
  • The amount of details for basic techniques
  • What he focuses on before a match
  • How BJJ helps you when you are going through problems
  • First tournament advice

Chris Easter Facebook Page

Links:

Quote of the week: “If you try to avoid responsibility people will push it back on you, if you take accountability when things go wrong people will take it away from you” Jay Bell

Article of the week: “10 Benefits of Playing Sports

First year of BJJ

Catch us next week for another episode of The BjjBrick Podcast

Your First Year Of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Audio Book

Your First Year Of BJJ artwork

 

Welcome to the amazing experience that is Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ). Byron helps to get you through your first and often most difficult year of training. His goal is to help you simplify and find joy in BJJ. Many people start BJJ only to quit after their first few months. This book will help you start off right and avoid common mistakes, reducing the odds of quitting and help you adapt quickly to this new lifestyle. Download it here Price $11.99

Epi 51 Simple and Very Effective Training With Matt Thornton

The BjjBrick Podcast is in iTunesand Stitcher radio

Matt ThorntonMatt Thornton is the founder of Straight Blast Gym.  He was introduced to BJJ in 1991.  In 2001 Chris Hauete awarded Matt his black belt.  He can be found running his own Academy in Portland, Oregon, when his is not traveling.

This episode we talk about:

  • His personal training history
  • We go deep into what are the fundamentals of BJJ
  • Why he recommends not teaching your style, just teaching fundamentals
  • How to find your own game after you get the fundamentals
  • The process of becoming a black belt in BJJ
  • Why many people make the “all you can eat buffet” mistake when studding martial arts
  • Conor McGregor’s striking style and movement
  • Fundamentals are not style specific
  • The principal of Aliveness
  • The iMethod (introduction, isolation, integration)
  • Why it is important to make BJJ simple
  • The SBG kids program Growing Gorillas
  • Some advantages for kids to do BJJ vs other sports
  • Advice for students competing for the first time
  • Staying calm during competition
  • His early BJJ techniques
  • Why learning to relax is a key to beginner BJJ
  • Conor McGregor getting his brown belt
  • Having passion for the martial arts

Contact Matt Thornton by Email here sbginfo@yahoo.com or visit the website http://www.straightblastgym.com/

Quote of the week: “I am a slow walker, but I never walk back.” Abraham Lincoln

Article of the week: “How To Be A Douche In Jiu-Jitsu” by http://jiujitsutimes.com/

 

We end the podcast with Ultimate dancing with Byron’s Mom talking about Randy Couture on dancing with the stars.

 

Details at the end of the show about how to win a free patch! United States only

BjjBrick gi patch in action

Details of how you can get a free gi patch at the end of the podcast. sorry US only

Details of how you can get a free gi patch at the end of the podcast. sorry US only

Episodes 21-30 of The BjjBrick Podcast

Join Gary and Byron on the BjjBrick Podcast

The BjjBrick Podcast is in iTunes, and Stitcher radio

Epi 21 The importance of escapes and how to get better

We both spent a significant amount of time working on escapes. We have had a big increase in confidence with our grappling by getting better at our escapes. It is good to know that you will be able to escape a position.

Epi 22 The basic positions in BJJ and what to do from them

This episode we are covering some of the basics. We are going to break down some of the main positions in BJJ and give you some guidance for each one.

Epi 23 Interview With Coach and BJJ Black Belt John Connors

This episode of the podcast we bring you an interview with coach John Connors. John is the author of the e Book Quick Start Guide to Complete Jiu Jitsu Competition Readiness”.This is a great guide for someone who is an experienced grappler or just starting out.

Epi 24 Four Different Types of BJJ Matches

-This week we talk about the four basic types of matches you could find yourself in BJJ. We gave each match a symbol, to make it simple.

Epi 25 Girls in Gis with Amber Oxford

This week we have an interview with Amber Oxford. Amber is a Blue belt that trains at Wichita Jiu-Jitsu Club. Amber is holding a free event called Girls in Gis on April 12 at the Wichita Jiu-Jitsu Club.

Epi 26 Gi Guide with Tom Machowicz

In this weeks episode we talk to Tom Machowicz (Mac) from Fuji Sports. We cover everything from getting your first gi to helping a seasoned veteran figure out what gi is best for competition.

Epi 27 An Interview with Allen Hopkins

Allen Hopkins is a 3rd degree black belt under Master Pedro Sauer. His school is in Hattiesburg Mississippi. He attended his first seminar July 13, 1991 it was thought by Grand Master Rorion Gracie. After that seminar Allen Hopkins was hooked on Gracie Jiu-Jitsu.

Epi 28 Supplements with Dwane Clifford from Supplement U

This week we talk to Dwane Clifford about training BJJ and how supplements can be a tool to help you reach your goals. Dwane is a friend that we met on the mats. He has a passion for supplements and helping people reach their goals. Dwane has a philosophy of discovering the customers goals and then helping them find the right supplement or training to help.

Epi 29 Stephen Whittier of 40 Plus BJJ

-Stephen Whittier is a black belt under Roberto Maia.  He has an academy in Wareham Massachusetts Called SBG East Coast.  Stephen has become a huge resource for the over 40 grappler.  He has lots of great advice not just for the over 40 grappler, but anyone who steps on the mat.

Epi 30 Ryan Hall Interview- BJJ, MMA, and Self-Defense

-In Episode 30 of the BjjBrick podcast we talk with Ryan Hall.  Ryan is widely considered one of the best lightweight submission grapplers in the world.  Ryan owns 50/50 Jiu-Jitsu in Falls Church, Virginia.  He is a Black Belt under Felipe Costa and a professional Mixed Martial Arts fighter representing Tristar Gym.

Epi 22 The basic positions in BJJ and what to do from them

The BjjBrick Podcast is in iTunes, and Stitcher radio

This episode we are covering some of the basics. We are going to break down some of the main positions in BJJ and give you some guidance for each one.  BjjBrick-Podcast art bjj

We give tips and general strategies for:
Guard
Side Control
Mount
Back
Standing
Turtle
Quote of the week: “When you loose say little, when you win say less.” Matt Hughes

Article of the week: nuclearchainsaw.com “11 Things Your Jiu-Jitsu Instructor Won’t Tell You”.