The First 20 Episodes of the BjjBrick Podcast

Byron throwing a brick at Gary as he chokes him with a mic cord.

We (Byron and Gary) would like to thank everyone who has listened to the BjjBrick Podcast.  We had a good time making the first twenty episodes.  Here is a list with links to all the episodes so far in case you missed something.

The Podcast is in iTunes, and Stitcher radio

Epi 1- Train leg locks safely – We are both big fans of leg locks.  There is a common thought in BJJ that leg locks are too dangerous to train.  We share some of our advice on how to add leg locks to your game and train safely.

Epi 2- Bringing a friend to BJJ class – This is an important episode that were excited to do.  It can be very disappointing if you bring a friend to class and they do not get a good chance to see BJJ.  We give advice on being a good friend to someone that you invite to class.

Epi 3- BJJ and self defense – This is our first interview episode.  We interviewed our first instructor, BJJ Black Belt John Castillo.  He gives some great advice on self defense.

Epi 4- Interview with Andre Tim Monteiro – Andre is a friend who we are able to train with a few times a year.  He shares some of his amazing story and gives some great advice to the BJJ community.

Epi 5- Interview with Jason Bircher – Byron and Gary have known Jason since they were white belts getting smashed by the big guys (every day).  Jason is a good friend with great advice to help your BJJ game.  Jason was helpful in being our first phone interview, several technical difficulties occurred but most of them have been edited out.

Epi 6- Interview with Jake Fox – This episode we are joined by our good friend and training partner Jake Fox.  Were lucky enough to get him shortly after he received his black belt.

Epi 7- The 12 Commandments of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu from Carlos Gracie – Jake Fox stayed around and talked with us for another episode.  We talk about the 12 Commadments of BJJ from Carlos Gracie.  We do much more that just read the list and agree with everything, we give some of our opinions.

Epi 8- To gi or not to gi – Our friend and training partner Matthew Lowe joins us and we talk about the differences between training with and without the gi.  All three of us have different preferences that leads to an interesting conversation.

Epi 9- An interview with A paramedic, what to do when someone gets hurt in class – Craig is a fellow BJJ practitioner and paramedic.  He shares some knowledge from his many years of experience in the emergency medical field.  He will help you know what to do should someone get hurt in class, we cover everything to the minor soreness, to the call 911 this is a serious injury.

Gary and Byron as purple belts

Gary and Byron as purple belts

Epi 10- Dealing with Injuries – Craig stuck around and we covered this topic that will effect anyone that trains BJJ.  We get some great tips that will help you get back on the mat soon and feel better when you are not on the mat.

Bonus Episode: What happened to Anderson Silva’s leg? – This bonus episode was put out shortly after Anderson Silva injured his leg.  We talk about some of the reasons that might have caused this crazy injury.

Epi 11- Underdogs and what we can learn from them – Are you an underdog?  This episode we talk about what underdogs can do to turn the tables and we cover some historical underdog stories.

Epi 12- The Different types of white belts – Everyone starts at white belt, but everyone brings something to the mats from past experience.  We talk about some of the different types of BJJ white belts and how they can use their past experiences to their advantage.

Epi 13- Dallas Niles of Lovato BJJ – Dallas Niles was in town and Gary did not miss the opportunity to talk with this up and coming BJJ star.  Dallas shares some of his philosophies and training strategies that have helped him in his BJJ career.

Epi 14- Renato Tavares Interview – In this interview Renato Tavares shares some of his BJJ knowledge and his personal story.  Renato has been a vital part of Byron’s BJJ training and it was a honor to have him on the podcast.

Epi 15- The Business side of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu – If you have ever wanted to open your own BJJ school but did not know where to start you should check out this podcast.  We talk to our friend Shawn who consults many small businesses for a major bank.  Shawn will steer you clear of many common mistakes for new business owners.  Shawn also gives some financial advice for the pro athlete.

Epi 16- Brian Freeman- Training BJJ with a T4 spinal cord injury – This is a inspirational episode!  We bring you an interview with Brian Freeman; he is training BJJ with a T4 spinal cord injury that has left him paralyzed in his legs.  His attitude and excitement for the martial art is inspiring.

Epi 17- Interview with BJJ Black Belt Roy Marsh – Roy Marsh, the coach of Brian Freeman, is a wealth of BJJ knowledge and experience.  This was a fun interview for us because we both learn a lot about our own BJJ during the interview.

Epi 18- Zak Maxwell Metamoris 3 Preview – Zak Maxwell is one of the top BJJ athletes in the United States.  He talks about his upcoming match with Sean Roberts in Metamoris 3.

Epi 19- Sean Roberts Metamoris 3 Preview – Epi 18 and 19 go together as we interview the athlete that will be hitting the mats in Metamoris 3 against Zak Maxwell.  Sean Roberts is a fierce competitor that is well known for finishing some tough competitors.

Epi 20- Growth Vs. Goals: what is better for your BJJ? – There are two different training modes we can be in.  Growth mode is when you are focused on learning and getting better.  Goals mode is a time that you focus your training on a specific goal.  Are you in the right mode for you right now?

Thanks for joining us for the first 20 episodes!  E-mail us at

Epi 18 Zak Maxwell Metamoris 3 Preview

Zak maxwell

This episode is in iTunes, and stitcher radio

Today we bring you the first episode of our Metamoris 3 preview. We have an interview with Zak Maxwell, he will be competing in Metamoris 3 against Sean Roberts. Zak is a black belt he is currently training at Gracie San Diego.

Some of Zak Maxwell’s accomplishments:
Pan American Champion as Purple and Brown belts.
World Champion as a Brown belt.
Pan American Absolute as a Brown belt.
3X ADCC pro trials as a Black belt.Zak maxwell2
Metamoris 3 will be the first time Zak has been in a submission only match. We talk to him about his match with Sean Roberts. Zak also tells us what it was like for him to start training as a kid. Zak also offers some of his competition tips.

Zak Maxwell’s Gi sponsor is HyperFly. Swing by their website and if you get a Gi tell them thanks for supporting Zak!
Quote of the week- “Look at what you have, not what you want.” Roy Marsh

Article of the week- 10 Tips to help the Non-Competitors Stay Motivated. From
Zak Maxwell’s Facebook page
Gracie San Diego
Our Roy Marsh interview

Next week we have an interview with Zak Maxwell’s opponent Sean Roberts.

Epi 17 Interview with BJJ Black Belt Roy Marsh

Roy marsh

Roy Marsh on the far left

This episode is in iTunes, and stitcher radio

This week we bring you a very educational interview with Roy Marsh.  Both Gary and Byron got a lot of knowledge out of talking with Roy, we hope you do too.

Roy Marsh is a Black Belt under Royce Gracie. He has been training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu since 2001. Roy’s game is always changing but he prefers a top game with a lot of top pressure. His go to guard is the butterfly guard. He trans a lot with the military.
Roy talks about:
Self defense- he gives some ways he adapts training for his BJJ students to deal with real world situations.
Training for a tournament- He give some great advice on developing a strong tournament game.
Breaking everything in BJJ down- Roy breaks BJJ down into four factors the two big factors are distance and angle, the two smaller factors are timing and pace.
Staying positive after a tournament- If you have something bad to say about your tournament, you should also say something good about the tournament.
Roy’s House Theory- He wants to fight you in areas that he is good at, this is his house. Have places in each position that you are very good at.
Jiu-Jitsu is for everyone- He is a firm believer in this, find what works for you and find ways to work around your own limitations.
The BJJ community- We have such a great community and friends in this sport.
Roy will be putting out a DVD this year on back control. Look for this DVD and we hope to have him back on the show to talk about back control.
Quote of the week- “I can be paralyzed and miserable or paralyzed and happy, I choose to be happy.” Brian Freeman. You can catch a entire interview with Brian in episode 16 of the BjjBrick Podcast.

Article of the week- Roger Gracie- Understanding the phenomeom.

Team rok
Roy Marsh’s website

Next week we start our Metamoris 3 preview!

Episode 16 Brian Freeman- Training BJJ with a T4 spinal cord injury

This episode is in iTunes, and stitcher radio

This week we are very lucky to have a interview with the very inspirational Brian Freeman.
Brian is a disabled vet with a T4 spinal cord injury with Brown-Sequard syndrome. He is brian freeman bjjfrom Rockingham, North Carolina. Brian enjoys training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, his 8 year old daughter convenced him to get on the mat. He started by taking private lessons first then transitiond into the regular BJJ class.
Brian shares with us how BJJ has changed his life. BJJ has caused Brian to be more active then he was and also helped him with his lack of appatite. Jiu-jitsu has also given him more confidence.
we also talk about Brian’s:
-First UFC experence
-Favorite techniques
-Unique challanges
-Rwards that BJJ gives
We thought it would be ineresting to talk to Brian’s coach BJJ Black Belt Roy Marsh (Team R.O.C.). Roy is co-owner of the Martial Arts Academy of Southern pines and he is the head instrctor of the BJJ program. Roy was kind enough to talk to us about training with Brian. Roy is a firm beliver that BJJ is for everyone. When Brian showed interest in learing BJJ Roy was happy to help.

Brian's Tattoo of Royce Gracie logo with wheelchair inside. Ossss

Brian’s Tattoo of Royce Gracie logo with wheelchair inside. Ossss

Quote of the week “Pratice does not make perfect, prartice makes myelin, and myelin makes perfect” Daniel Coyle. This quote make not make since at first but we break it down. As you pratice it actually makes small changes in your brain that makes things easier for you to perform.
Article of the week: “Getting Tough”

Daniel Coyle’s website
Brian on twitter @wheelchairjitsu

Epi 15 The Business side of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

This week we talk to Shawn about the business side of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.  We get some great advice from Shawn about how to start your own gym or help make it more profitable.  We also get some advice for professional athletes, and how they can save some money.  He give some advice on where to go to get help making a business plan.
Shawn also gives tips about using social media to promote your business.
Quote of the week: “If you work hard and smart, you will be successful in life” Renato Tavares
Links this website is for Kansas but there are economic development sights like this for every state.  this website can help you get your business off and running, for free.
If you need to contact Shawn email him here

Epi 14 Renato Tavares Interview

This week we bring you an interview with BJJ 5th degree black belt, Renato Tavares.  Renato has been training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu since 1974, thats 40 years!!
Renato talks to us about:
-Importance of having strong fundamentals
-Comparing BJJ to life- He breaks down the different belt colors to different stages in life
-A story about when he moved gyms and ended up loosing $40,000 and training in his garage.  Now today he has his successful gym with many students and 17 schools in his association.
-Advice on competing for the first time.  He recommends doing a few smaller tournaments before doing larger ones.  Renato actually does some “in school” tournaments to give his students practice at competing.
-The belt promotion requirements that have been set by the IBJJF.  This has become a big topic in BJJ, Renato helps clear up some confusion about the belt system.
-Setting goals, he gives several tips on how to set goals and meet them.
-He takes us through his warm up routine.
-He shares some of his most happy moments in his BJJ life.
Quote of the week:  This week we have a one word mantra “Go”.  We talk to Jason Bircher from KCBJJ, and he explains how this simple mantra has helped him with his training.  Jason is a black belt under Renato Tavares, and we are fortunate to match him up with our interview with Master Tavares.
Article of the week- “One of the biggest mistakes you can make in BJJ training”  This mistake is something that both Gary and Byron have done and if you are able to avoid it, it will save you time and energy.  We recommend that you swing by this website and read the article.
Renato’s sponsors Ground control and Ground fighter

From left to right. John Castillo (he is in Epi 3) Byron Jabara, Renato Tavares

Epi 13 Dallas Niles of Lovato BJJ

Courtesy of Mike Calimbas

Courtesy of Mike Calimbas

In this weeks podcast Gary sits down for an interview with Dallas Niles.  The BjjBrick Podcast is in iTunesand Stitcher radio

Dallas Niles is a 29 year old purple belt.  He recently did a seminar at Wichita Jiu-Jitsu Club.  Gary took the opportunity to get a great interview.
Has been training BJJ for about 6 years under Rafael Lovato Jr.  Dallas closed out the 2012 pan ams with Jarrod Dopp.  He has placed at the Europeans, no-gi worlds, and won american nationals.
Dallas will be competing in the Europeans at the end of January.  After that he will be competing in a long string of tournaments for the next 6 months.
Dallas shares with us lots of information about; training, motivation, goals, competing, coaching, dealing with losses, competing with wrestlers, go vs no-gi training, his favorite submission,hobbies out side of BJJ, and much more.
Contact info: Of Dallas Niles

Courtesy of Mike Calimbas

Courtesy of Mike Calimbas

Quote of the week – “If you think, you’re late. If you’re late, you muscle. If you muscle, you get tired.  If you’re tired, you die.  When you die is when you tap.” Saulo Ribeiro
Article of the week- (actually a website)- Mike Calimbas is the worlds number one photographer of BJJ.  Byron and Gary have both liked his Facebook page and we recommend that you do to.  If you miss a tournament Mike will provide your news feed with stunning pictures of all the action.  Visit or his facebook page

Courtesy of Mike Calimbas

Courtesy of Mike Calimbas


Next week we have an outstanding interview with BJJ black belt Renato Tavares!

Epi 12 The Different types of white belts

The BjjBrick Podcast is in iTunesand Stitcher radio

Join Gary and Byron on the BjjBrick Podcast

Join Gary and Byron on the BjjBrick Podcast

Today we are going to be talking about the different types of white belts in BJJ.  You might be a white belt or you might be coaching one, this episode should be a benefit to anyone who trains Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.


Types of White belts


Totally new:  You may appear to be a blank slate, but you are going to bring something different to the table.  Good for you for getting in there and trying it out.  In the long run this grappler should be a smooth rolling partner.
Coaching tip- Make it fun.


Wrestler:  We welcome this talented grappler to the BJJ mat.  Your years of hard work on the mat will pay off.  Find ways to adapt your game to dealing with the different positions and submissions.  Your mat strength and ability to scramble well are priceless.  We recommend Justin Rader’s new DVD for any wrestler looking to transition into BJJ (we put a link at the Bottom of the page).  We talk about the big cultural difference between BJJ and wrestling.  Wrestlers get a big advantage in getting to compete a lot in a short amount of time.  This helps get rid of the nerves that may hit many people who do BJJ.
Coaching tip- Help them transition there skills to fit BJJ, and make sure they learn both sides of the game not just the top position.


Experienced with other martial arts:  No matter what art you have dedicated yourself to learning there will be benefits from what you know.  Judo is a great martial art back ground for BJJ.  The striking arts are a lot different but you learn a lot of discipline and the ability to deal with pain and discomfort.  Do remember, that you are doing a new martial art and you need to leave your colored belt at home.  You will be starting as a white belt, if you walk in wearing a colored belt some students will probably go a little too hard on you thinking that you are ready for it.
Coaching tip- Help them stay positive, and acknowledge their accomplishments in the other arts.


Strong:  Congratulations you have put the time in the gym and became very strong.  At first your strength will seem like it is failing you, as smaller players teach you that strength is not everything.  In the short term learn the techniques.  In the long run your strength will be there for you and make your moves even better.
Coaching tip- Pair them up with people who will roll safely.  Try to get them to focus on the technique.


Skinny: This person will often have a difficult road as a white belt, but if they hang in there they can become a technical beast.  Most schools have a lot of smaller people, they will be happy to share there skills with you.
Coaching tip- Acknowledge that it is a difficult road but it will soon get better.  Protect them from catching too many hard rolls.  These grapplers will make a coach proud.


Overweight: If loosing some weight is a goal BJJ can help.  Try to find ways to enjoy exercise and if you have fun with BJJ you are on the road to success.  Don’t push your self too hard, keep it fun.  During openmat you can take a round or two off to take a break.  Your weight can be an advantage, try to avoid using your weight in ways that if you lost your weight your BJJ would suffer (no big guy moves).  If you are not on the mat yet, just give it a try.
Coaching tip- Push them but not too hard, and stay positive about progress.


Old:  You are older and wiser (hopefully).  Listen to your body.  Don’t ignore your ongoing pains.  BJJ can be hard on your body so go at your own speed.  Roll with people who are not likely to injure you, it is okay to avoid some people.  Try to give your body time to heal in between days you train.  Even though you may lack with experience on the mat you might find yourself in a leadership role with the team.
Coaching tip- Understand that they may not be able to train as much as the younger grapplers.  Find out what there goals are and help them reach those goals.


Young:  First off we must say that you are NOT invincible.  If you have the opportunity to wrestle in school we both (Gary and Byron) recommend it, even if it means you take some time off of BJJ.  We list many advantages to doing some wrestling, even if you are not great at it.
Coaching tip- It might be hard to let one of your students leave for wrestling season but they will grow a lot in that time.  Just be sure you call them and make sure they get back in the gym after the season, they might bring a friend or two back with them.  Make sure the young grappler understands that it is okay if they don’t win as long as they learn from it.


Athletic:  If you are good at other sports try to find some unique aspects that you bring to the table.  Athletic people just seem to pick up things quicker, focus on a few moves and get really good at them.
Coaching tip- Find ways that they like to get coached.  They are use to getting coached and should take it better than most.


Competitor:  Remember that you are a white belt, competing against other white belts.  This is just the first step in your competition journey, good or bad learn from it and look to move up in the ranks.  Develop a game plan with your coach and try to force your game on your opponent.  Stick to the game plan.
Coaching tip- Help them avoid burnout, expectantly after a loss.


Busy: You have a job, a spouse, a family, or what ever is taking your time.  We recommend that you try to find time to grapple at least once a week.
Coaching tip- Having a wide range of times people can train will open up opportunity for busy people to roll.
Bonus (you):  Everyone is different, I am guessing that you can relate to more than one of these categories.  Find what works for you.  People grow at different rates, you might get promoted quickly or slowly.  Just keep training.


Quote of the week: “Don’t listen to what people say, watch what they do” Unknown.  Watch someone teach a technique, but then also watch them do it as they roll.  There might be some small details they forgot to tell you.
Article of the week: – Five Things I Learned About Life From Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.  Swing by and check out the article it is an interesting read.  If you would like to send us an article email it to
Justin Rader’s Hybrid success formula:  We have both trained with Justin and are very excited to get into this DVD, and learn from this world class grappler and coach.


Epi 11 Underdogs and what we can learn from them

The BjjBrick Podcast is in iTunesand Stitcher radio

We talk about the David and Goliath and other underdogs that found a way win.  What do these underdogs have in common?  If you are an underdog how can you turn it to your advantage?

Join Gary and Byron on the BjjBrick Podcast

Join Gary and Byron on the BjjBrick Podcast

We talk about a book by Malcom Gladwell: David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants.  This book sheds a new light of the David and Goliath story.

We compare David to Royce Gracie, in the early UFC.

We also talk about Nick Newell, the one armed MMA fighter that continues to win fights.  And Anthony Robles the champion wrestler who is missing a leg.


Quote of the week: both of these are from Rickson Gracie “Where there is discomfort there is fear.” “You have to find comfort in uncomfortable situations.”


Article of the week: “3 Tips for Beginners in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu”.  If you are new to bjj even if you have some experience this article makes some great points.

Here is the video Gary sent to Craig.  Enjoy! Then send it an unsuspecting friend.

Malcom Gladwell’s books: Outliers, Blink, The Tipping Point, What the Dog Saw: And Other Adventures, and David and Goliath.  All these books are interesting, my personal favorite is probably Blink.

Daniel Coyle- The Talent Code: Greatness Isn’t Born. It’s Grown. Here’s How.  Here is my review of this book.

Seminar with Dallas Niles

Don’t break the chain calendar, 100% free just open it and print it.

Epi 10 Dealing with injuries

Join Gary and Byron on the BjjBrick Podcast

Join Gary and Byron on the BjjBrick Podcast

The BjjBrick Podcast is in iTunesand Stitcher radio

Just about everyone will need to deal with an injury from time to time this is a contact sport.  Today we talk about healing quicker, training with the injury and when to take some time off.  It is important to listen to your body, if it hurts it may be trying to tell you something.

Byron Jabara, Craig Cannady, Gary Hull

Byron Jabara, Craig Cannady, Gary Hull. Pic taken April 11, 2015

Craig talks about having problems healing due to cholesterol medicine.  Here is an article talking about the side effects of some cholesterol medicine.

Gary and Byron both share stores of dealing with rib injuries.  Gary recommends keep working out with something, even if it is not BJJ.  He takes salmon oil from supplement u.  Gary will use a foam roller to help get rid of neck, back, and muscle pain.

With some injuries like ribs or back, it will be painful to move so it will be too difficult to roll.

If you can’t train, you can study a select move or two intensely.  When you return to the mat, you will have some new stuff to work on.

We talk briefly about the need to have health insurance to help you financially if you get seriously injured.

Jiu-Jitsu does not really have an off-season, like many other sports do.  Most sports go months when people don’t train much.  In BJJ we just keep rolling, often this means that our bodies will not fully heal.

Injuries to people in their first year can convince the person that the sport is not for them.  If this happens to one of your training partners you should contact them and try to encourage them to get back on the mat once they are better.

It is important to help your injured teammates get back on the mat.

It is especially important to keep safety in mind when rolling with a new person.

A good way to prevent injuries is to leave your ego at the door and get rid of a negative attitude.

Quote of the week-“If man were to say something deep in woods and no woman was around to hear him, would he still be wrong?”

Article of the week- Tap out 101- Tips if you Starting BJJ Over Forty

The free don’t break the chain calendar just open it and print it!