Happy Friday: Orientation Edition

Happy Friday everyone!

Our office just moved, so I’m taking today to get my bearings and such.

I should be back to my usual rambling on Monday, but for now have a great weekend!

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Words from Xande: You Need Judo

So this week is still sort of crazy, so in the meantime please check out Xande and his video on why you need to incorporate judo into your jiu jitsu.

….And have a great day everyone!

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Post from the Part Time Grappler about Invisible Jiu Jitsu

I’m still in the thick of a crazy week- so while I attempt to get my ducks in a row and manage the mischief, check out the article from the Part Time Grappler about Invisible Jiu Jitsu, and have a great day everyone!

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Studies Suggest Strength Training is More Effective at Preventing Sports Injuries Than Stretching

Hey guys, it’s a little crazy here, but be sure to read this study about how strength and proprioception training (I gather it’s a fancy way of saying body awareness/stabilization training) help prevent sports injuries. It appears there were only 25 trials, but it would be interesting to see if these results still held true on a larger scale.

Check it out and have a great day everyone!

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When Committing is Less Painful Than Not Committing

I’m mainly talking about judo, but please feel free to apply this concept to whatever part of your life you may deem this applicable, where not committing to “help” someone can do more harm than good.

So, in judo there are a couple of throws (approximately 5 or 6) that end in “makikomi”- which was explained to me this way:

“I’m going to throw you, and then I’m going to land on top of you.”

Which really sounds scarier than it really is, truth be told, and is one of the prime examples where trying to be gentle with a partner can end up hurting more than actually helping.

See, when you perform these throws, let’s say soto makikomi for instance, you need to maintain contact and basically glue yourself-preferably ribs to ribs- to your partner all the way down to the landing. Which sounds like it sucks, but not really. It’s when the person throwing breaks the connection and creates space between the two players is where the pain happens. Not only does your partner have to deal with the impact of hitting the floor, they get a double whammy of the floor and your weight smashing into them a fraction of a second later rather than taking it all in one blow. I’m sure there is a beautiful explanation for this, courtesy of science and physics, but I’m not really going to get into that right now.

The fact of the matter is sometimes we try to “save” people from harm on the mat by attempting to be gentle, because these are our teammates: we like them and want them to continue training without pain or injury. But keep in mind there are times where these well meaning actions end up doing more damage than just “going all in” and fully committing to your intended action. You partner is (usually) better prepared to defend the full execution of a technique, not a hesitant half-hearted attempt that may end up putting both of you at greater risk for injury than if you had just committed to your original action in the first place.

So keep in mind that while you want your partner to succeed and you want them to continue training, sometimes it really is better, and safer to commit to a technique, rather than forcing them to adjust to some awkward, hesitant attempt.

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Happy Friday: Nickname Edition

Happy Friday everyone!

Nicknames are a capricious thing: they can come and go, or someone can call you something enough times that it just sticks. The nicknames that last the longest tend to be the ones that develop organically- you rarely find a name that a friend or teammate made up for the express purpose of giving you a nickname to last that long.

Anyone else have any nicknames bestowed on them from teammates? While Katie is technically a nickname, in a funny turn of events some of my teammates have used my full name as a nickname (that’s a clusterfluff of a sentence, but you get what I mean). Well sort of: they’ve upped the WASPiness of my name recently and have called me “Lady Katharine”. I don’t mind: it’s pretty funny all in all.

Let me know if you have collected any nicknames along your jiu jitsu journey….Otherwise, have a great weekend everyone!



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Rubber Guard and Playing Catch Up

Sorry guys, this morning was a bit hectic so I’m playing catch-up.

In the meantime, check out Eddie Bravo explaining his rubber guard to Rickson Gracie.

Er, see you later and have a great day everyone!

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A Little Judo, Anyone? Judo Grand Slam 2014 Footage, Courtesy of DSTRYRsg

So, maybe it’s my imagination, but things are a little slow at the moment in the jiu jitsu world (trust me, I’m not complaining, just making an observation). So, while all the BJJ players are back at their academies, sharpening their skills and getting ready for the tournaments coming up, check out DSTRYRsg: they have posted Day 1 and Day 2 of the Judo Grand Slam.

If you’re not sure what that is, or have a couple of hours to kill, check out the site and the videos and sit back, relax and watch some top level guys throw the bejeezus out of one another.

Otherwise, have a great day everyone!


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More Information on Rickson Gracie’s New Jiu Jitsu Federation

The site definitely has more information on it, including the official set of rules rather than just a general overview from bloggers and sport writers, a list of participating academies, and a section that is just itching to be abused, a link that says “Ask Rickson”

While knowing full well this is supposed to be a contact form for questions regarding the newly found association, there’s definitely a temptation to submit etiquette questions, a la “Dear Abbie”

“Dear Rickson,

I’m having a small gathering at my house in a few days to watch some old school vale tudo footage. After said soiree, should I send hand written thank you notes with my jiu jitsu themed stationary, or will a simple email suffice?”

“Dear Rickson,

I’m going to a baby shower next weekend for a teammate who will be having a baby girl. Should I buy them a hot pink baby gi for their impending bundle of joy, a unisex kimono or maybe just give them a gift card so they can decide?”

….And then I can proudly tell my children and grandchildren about how I was kicked out of a tournament organization without even actually participating.

Anyway, if you are curious regarding the actual rules of the organization, or want to sign up for updates on when they will start holding tournaments ( I imagine they have that option somewhere on the site) Check out the actual site, and if you decide to ask Rickson anything other than JJGF related questions,  you did NOT get it from me.

Nope, No-Sir-Ree-Bob: never put that idea into your head… :P

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BJJ and the Stages of Improving

Someone posted this…somewhere, on the internet and I think it’s an excellent way to describe how a person develops in jiu jitsu:





Also fun fact- apparently people frequently attribute this theory to Abraham Maslow (he was into the whole hierarchy thing, so I can totally see why) but these stages of learning were never mentioned in his major works, according to Wikipedia.

Anyway, let’s break this down to make it related to jiu jitsu. I imagine most of you know where I am going with this, because we’ve all experienced it: you start off at step one, making mistakes, unaware of what you are doing wrong, just that something is not going right. Sweeps and submissions just seem to appear out of thin air from your partner, and you are left wondering what the hell happened and where you went wrong.

Then comes that magical period of time, step two, where you know what you are doing wrong,  you just have no idea how to fix it. So you freeze, so you don’t continue to make those same mistakes, but you lack the knowledge to properly correct the problem. This is where I think a lot of people get frustrated the most frequently. You no longer live in blissful ignorance of your own missteps, but you haven’t figured out just yet how to do something about it.

Then there’s the grind, step three. You figure out how to fix the problem, but it takes effort to put it into effect. You have to remind yourself of proper placement, weight distribution, timing, things that eventually will come naturally, but only after tons and tons of drilling.

And if you keep with drilling, eventually you should reach stage four. What once you had to remind yourself to do has now become second nature: don’t have to think about where to place yourself or what to do. Hooray!…And now you are placed in a new position or presented with a new problem and you have to start the process all over again.

….Also hooray?

So if you are feeling discouraged with a position, a sweep you keep getting caught in, take a deep breath, go to class, ask questions, drill and remember this is all a part of the process of learning jiu jitsu and becoming more competent in the sport.


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