Archive for February, 2011

“Getting better at Jiu Jitsu”

February 28, 2011

Today was a fantastic day at the office! Such a great day of teaching and training, I am truly living the dream! Teaching and training Jiu Jitsu is more than just a job or hobby for me, it is my life! And what a great life I lead… I was fortunate to teach a Jiu Jitsu class this morning followed by a No Gi Jiu Jitsu class and then do some private training with a training partner/coach and get my butt kicked! ūüôā¬† But hey, I learnt heaps and my game improved and I’ll be better tomorrow for having trained today. And that is the most important thing, living, learning and always seeking to improve!

At the end of the day, the way to get better is to show up to training with a good attitude, train smart, learn, experiment and try to execute your techniques using the minimum amount of effort. Seek the best coaches and instruction you could find, keep an open mind, watch and study the best Jiu Jitsu athletes in competition. Train with the best people you can, again keep an open mind and most importantly wrestle/roll¬† “to learn”.¬† Fighting every match in the gym like it is the finals of the Mundials is not conducive to learning quickly and reaching your potential!

I guess I would be remiss if I didn’t say that competing will also help you improve faster as long as you compete to learn. Put yourself and your game under pressure, learn from your mistakes, learn to dictate the pace of the match and control your emotions and mind under duress. And yes I know competing isn’t for everyone but it can help you learn, develop your game and expand your comfort zone! As a matter of fact, I have recently decided to start competing again this year to put myself to the test!

Good Luck With Your Training and Happy Rolling!

Felipe Grez

Jiu Jitsu Kingdom


“Volta Terere!”

February 27, 2011

Here is a great highlight reel of one of the greatest BJJ competitors and coaches to ever live, Fernando “Terere” Augusto. A lot of the newer people to¬†Jiu Jitsu¬†may not know who he is but has fought and beaten some of the best Brazilian Jiu Jitsu athletes ever to step on the mat who themselves were black belt world champions in¬†Brazilian and often much heavier than Terere!

In addition to this he was instrumental in helping develop Andre Galvao and Rubens “Cobrinha” Charles’s¬†Jiu Jitsu¬†games as their instructor at his former school/team TT Jiu Jitsu!¬†Terere¬†was just as famous for teaching Jiu Jitsu to kids in the poorer areas of Brazil known as “Cantalogo¬†Favelas(Slums)” and bringing them to competitions at his own expense to encourage and motivate them as well as have their vocal support in the crowd!

Fernando "Terere" Augusto

Terere has been an influential part of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu competition history and you would be well versed to learn a little more about him. Sadly he suffered a massive addiction to drugs after a series of unfortunate events and has only recently appeared to be coming out of it and getting back to his former self. He appears to have beaten the drug dependency and is back training Jiu Jitsu! Let’s hope Terere returns too his former glory and thank Jiu Jitsu for saving his life! ūüôā

Good Luck With Your Training And Happy Rolling!

Felipe Grez

Jiu Jitsu Kingdom

“Changing the Game”

February 5, 2011

I’d like to¬†talk about how the evolution of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is “Changing the Game”! Brazilian Jiu Jitsu as we know it has certain laws/principles that¬† remain constant, even when the technical details vary. Lately it seems even these laws are beginning to change(eg. people are giving up their back to defend the pass or playing half guard using the overhook etc)!

Marcelo and I after training!

The way the game is played in Gi, No Gi and MMA competition has evolved tremendously from its original form as taught by Grandmasters Helio and Carlos Gracie! Gracie Jiu Jitsu as it was formerly known still forms the foundation of the art that we all know and love, however in this day and age, and with the rise of competition(Gi, No Gi and MMA) the art continues to evolve and adapt itself to better suit the rules of the competition.

For example more schools who focus on winning BJJ tournaments tend to lean heavily towards strategy and tactics to win within the rules of BJJ competition. You see a lot of matches decided by advantage, or both guys pulling guard and attempting to sweep and control/stall for the victory.

Me at Lloyd Irvin Martial Arts Academy!

For those more interested in No Gi competition, the emphasis tends to be more on wrestling style takedowns and various leg locks as well as strength, conditioning and all round athleticism!

For the MMA minded individual again the focus tends to be on getting the takedown, attaining solid position and grinding out a win from there be it via ground and pound or positional dominance as well as becoming super athletes!!! Fighters appear to be less willing to take a risk attempting a submission that may get them reversed or hit!

Australian Kyokushin Karate legend and Mixed Martial Artist, Cameron Quinn and I.

Now while I realise this is a very broad overview/generalisation, there is still no denying the truth! Even amongst the actual techniques, the evolution is clearly evident! In my own experience over this last month I have learned a few techniques that have completely changed the way I roll and look at various positions.

For example, the way Marcelo Garcia taught me to guillotine my opponent even if he passes your guard the “correct(previously)” way and still finish the submission has left me astounded!! Adding in¬†Marcelo’s North South Choke has changed the way I roll and look for submissions from the top position! I am almost exclusively trying to set it up every time I pass the guard as it opens so many other submission opportunities and is so hard to defend! Even a half guard sweep taught to me by Paul Schreiner (which he credited Luke Steward for) has changed the way I play and attempt to pass half guard!!!

A mat chat at Marcelo's New York Academy after training!

Personally I look forward to seeing what the future holds and where the art takes us. Hopefully back towards a daring and bold submission based game!!! Again, I completely understand the value of the traditional basic techniques and still believe they should form that vast majority of your foundation in the art! However I respect and embrace change rather than fear it and I think you should too!

Good Luck With your Training and Happy Rolling!

Felipe Grez

Jiu Jitsu Kingdom