Jon “Macarrao” Thomas is a feather weight brown belt from Alliance. He was 2007 Pan Am blue belt champion, 2009 Pan and Worlds purple belt champion, and 2011 Pan and World brown belt champion. He closed out the divisions with his teammate Michel Langhi in 2009 and 2011. He gave a BJJ seminar at Fox Fitness November 10, 2012.
Jon came to the open mat before the seminar started. This was a great opportunity for anyone to roll with him; he is very down to earth and glad to roll with whoever asked. I was happy to take the opportunity to roll with him and have my game systematically taken apart.
He started the seminar with a short introduction. After that he told us some of his core BJJ philosophies, and then explained what the seminar was going to be about.
The first half of the seminar he covered re-positioning and how it is a big part of his BJJ. He stressed getting out of bad spots quickly before the referee even awards points to your opponent. He had a lot of awesome details on escaping side control and getting your guard back. The small details he demonstrated have already improved my escapes.
The second half of the seminar Jon focused on spider guard. Again he showed his favorite techniques, and explained his thoughts on using the spider guard in tournaments. I really enjoyed his thoughts and details on the omoplata. I was in the belief that the omoplata was more of a sweep, if done on a competitive opponent. That is not the case for me any more, I am confident that I will be using the omoplata as a finishing move a lot more often.
Jon finished the seminar with some great advice. He had some really good thoughts about training hard vs. training smart. He also talked about isolating positions and positional sparing. He was happy to share his tips for competing at your best level, and fixing your weaknesses. Jon also gave us an opportunity to ask him anything. I really feel that he did not hold back anything and he showed us what has made him successful.
Jon Thomas gives a great seminar! I am a brown belt and my main training partner for the seminar was a white belt. We both learned a lot from the seminar. He not only showed many game changing techniques, but he also explained it in a way that everyone could understand. His thoughts on re-positioning, and his advice on training smart are the things that really stood out to me the most. If you get a chance to train with him or go to one of his seminars, I highly recommend it. I am looking forward to training with him again.
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