California Pro-Am DVD
out the So-Cal Pro-Am Invitational DVD at grappletv.com.
The event took place on May 24,2003 The following
fighters were in the tournament: Cassio Werneck, Jeff
Newton, Rener Gracie, Joe Stevenson, Mario Flores,
Sean Spangler, Jason Miller, Kenny Bond, Gerald Strebendt,
Drew Fickett, Andy Wang, Joe Camacho, Tyrone Glover,
Dennis Asche, Paulo Guillobel and Anthony Tolon. The
were Jimmy Smith, Taka and Jamie Walsh. The Superfight
was between Ryron Gracie vs. Todd Margolis.
Warning: If you like stalling; You came to the wrong place!
The DVD starts with great menus and quality. Multiple
angles are shot for the best viewing possible. The
2 dvd set features the tournament, interviews, and
a special featurette. There are over 4 hours of non-stop
action and submissions. Near the beggining you can
watch a few great techniques before the matches start.
I feel like this is one of the best filmed and produced
DVD's on the market.
The matches were all action and no stalling. Awesome
takedowns, reversals, mounts (dont miss the one Jason
Miller does on Sean Spangler), submissions. Gi vs.
no gi, everything is covered. Top names in the audience
cheering on their teammates and friends, Todd Margolis
singing the National Anthem, what else could you ask
for? Nothing! This DVD set has it all. Hats off to
Karlinhos and to all whom contributed to a top notch
production. Please check out this DVD set at GrappleTV.com,
you will not be dissappointed.
Mr. Story is the owner/webmaster of TudoBemBJJ.com
Renzo Gracie & John Danaher
Review by lincoln
"el tarantula" smith
This book really sets itself apart from previously
released titles. Unlike the "Theory & Technique"
book co-authored with Royler and Kid Peligro, this
title isn't so much a syllabus of moves and counter-moves
appropriated to a certain level of expertise. "Mastering
Jujitsu" concerns itself more with strategy rather
than theory and tactics as opposed to technique.
addresses the anatomy of the overall fight, breaking
it down into 3 phases: 1.) Free-Movement - when both
fighters are on their feet with no grip, free to move
and strike swiftly with little hindrance from the
other. 2.) Standing Clinch - When one or both fighters
secure a firm grip on their opponent. 3.) Ground Combat
- where both fighters are supine and from where positions
may be established or countered, eventually concluding
in an effectively applied submission.
of these phases is a chapter unto itself. For the
Free Range phase, Renzo discusses stance, motion,
range & distance, position & angle, punching
with a jab, cross, hook and uppercut as well as kicking,
knees, evasion and blocking, shooting-in for takedowns
and defending against them. Be stoked. That's just
next chapter addresses the clinch: uses, approaches
and skills for various clinches. Takedowns, both linear
and circular. Submissions, and strikes that may be
applied, as well as escapes from various clinch positions.
onto the ground, Renzo talks about transitionining
from standing to the ground. He reviews fundamental
ground positions and goes over their hierarchy of
dominance. This chapter is brief, but essential.
next chapter addresses "Winning From the Bottom
Position". The guard is discussed here in terms
of neutrality, defense, and attacks from both opened
and closed guard. Escapes from various bottom positions
come next and conclude with some drills to address
this aspect of your game.
following chapter flips us over and discusses "Winning
from the Top Position." Again, strategy and the
transition from standing are assessed before going
into effective guard-passing, as well as methods of
negotiating your opponent in the turtle position,
side-control, mount and rear-mount before concluding
with more drills.
Renzo discusses "Training & Competition",
where he talks about conditioning, endurance, cross
training and injuries, as well as the different types
of competitions from sport Jiu-Jitsu to submission
grappling to Vale Tudo.
we are given a rather formidable and informative chapter
on self-defense. The entire aspect of the "street
fight" is dissected from the six motivations
for their occurrance, different ways fights may start,
and the most common way one may be attacked by an
assailant, and formidable approaches to surviving
is really a superb book and I'm really impressed in
that Renzo explains things from a perspective that
is less "Jiu-Jitsu-centric" than one might
initially presume. Renzo constantly refers to the
styles and strategies of various fighters as an example
of how a particular tactic may be implemented effectively.
Jose "Pele" Landi is mentioned for his ability
to deploy effective knee strikes from unlikely ranges
and angles. Bas Rutten is cited for his ability to
land powerful kicks. Chuck Lidell is remarked upon
for his ability to defend take-downs. Other examples
include Randy Couture, Pedro Rizzo and Vanderlei Silva.
this book would certainly benefit any fighter at any
level, I think it is best suited for the intermediate
and advanced student, someone who already possesses
a firm grasp of the basic positions both on the ground
and from standing and is now seeking to piece it all
together into an overall "game-plan." The
one who wins tends to be the one with the best strategy.
This is as relevent to self-defense as it is to competition.
This book is a complete package and provides a comprehensive
representation of what ANY fighter, regardless of
style, will need, to achieve "completeness"
in a manner that is simple and easy to grasp. Trust
me, you'll get more than your money's worth.
Jiu-Jitsu - Details and Techniques, Vol. I
- Passing the Guard"
by Ed Beneville and Tim Cartmell
Review by lincoln
"el tarantula" smith
The problem with most books that have been released
in the last couple of years concerning themselves with
the subject of BJJ is that they strive to address EVERY
aspect of the art in equal proportion. Since the art
has proven to be so inexhaustibly vast, the authors
of past titles have chosen to provide a very general
overview of BJJ's totality as opposed to going into
any great detail about the nuances and technical minutae
of the game.
the Guard" is the first book I have seen yet to
contradict this trend. And the subject of the book's
focus, as the title would suggest, is the perfect place
for such intense analysis. The guard is THE most versatile
position in BJJ. From the guard, a well-informed fighter
can attack, defend, submit, neutralize and initiate
reversals. Inversely, if a well-informed fighter should
find himself in another fighter's guard, he can do likewise,
provided that he is able to achieve a successful pass.
So the guard may very well be considered the main junction
upon which all other aspects of BJJ congress.
authors have also devised a format using a symbol system
that is easy to understand and follow rather than a
numeric sequence accompanied by text. (There is text
explanations provided, but its function and purpose
are more to buttress the photo sequences rather than
visa-versa.) This enables the photographs (all 1,400
of them) to speak for themselves. Many of the sequences
are shot from alternate angles so that no detail go
This chapter is not long, but it does cover the basics
very well. It addresses posture, hand placement, grips,
breaking open the closed guard, tangled arms and ranges
within the guard. No matter how advanced you may be,
it never hurts to review and polish the basics since
they mean the difference between a successful pass as
opposed to total crap.
II: Passing From the Knees
This starts the reader off on very simple passes (stacking
passes, over-the-knee passes, etc.) to more advanced
techniques (double underhook passes, scissor passes,
counters, submissions to conclude, etc.) all of which
are executed from the kneeling position. DUH!
III: Standing Passes
Again, this chapter begins with the simple stuff. (Which,
by the way, you should not take to mean, "ineffective.")
(standing-up in the guard, how to counter an ankle sweep,
preventing your opponent from "turtling,"
etc.) This chapter really shows how to negotiate an
opponent with a really aggressive open guard and starts
to get very acrobatic!
IV: Defenses & Counters
This chapter shows how to counter all those pesky-ass
submissions that your opponent can put on you from his
guard: guillotine, cross choke, leg-chokes, armbars,
more armbars, omo plata, bicep slicers, triangles, kimura,
sweeps, etc. All those times you got tapped from guard
and racked your brain asking yourself, "What could
I have done?!" That's this chapter in a nutshell.
Learn it. Know it. Live it.
V: Half Guard
Thanks to guys like "Gordo," the half guard
has gone from the runt of the guard family to a highly
effective position from which a fighter can apply various
sweeps and attacks as well as defend. Several good passes
are detailed here with a couple submissions thrown in
for good measure.
This chapter demonstrates attacks you can apply on your
opponent while remaining inside his guard: Ezekial,
neck cranks, ankle locks, knee bars, etc. Hey! Why pass
when you can end it right there?
VII: Turtle Position
Though not a direct blood-relative of the guard, the
"turtle" is a position to which many opponents
will resort in order to neutralize a successful guard
pass. When this happens, your opponent not only exposes
his back, but makes himself susceptible to numerous
clock-choke and crucifix variations, armlocks and neck
cranks; many of which are detailed in this chapter.
In my mind, this is really the gem of the whole book
because 9 times out of 10 I get throttled whenever I
resort to turtle position and yet, whenever an opponent
turtles-up on me, I often find myself waiting for them
to switch to a position with which I am more comfortable.
I was really surprised at how much cool stuff was contained
within this particular chapter.
This chapter shows numerous drills exercising the muscles
one uses when executing the techniques detailed in the
book. Most of them are solo drills with a couple of
partner drills as well. All good stuff to know.
conclusion, Beneville and Cartmell have provided for
the jiu-jitsu community what it was sorely missing,
(Besides international recognition qualifying the sport
for inclusion into the Olympic games): a comprehensive,
readable, easily understood text that gives a thoroughly
detailed analysis of one of BJJ's core aspects. What
Mario Sperry did for the medium of instructional video,
this book does for the medium of the illustrated manual
Any fighter, regardless of skill level would benefit
greatly from reading it. I would not, however, contend
that this book is the first and last word on the subject.
Some of my favorite passes didn't make it into this
book. But then again, the day the entire lexicon of
jiu-jitsu techniques can be inventoried and catalogued
within the confines of a book is the day jiu-jitsu ceases
to grow, morph and evolve. And should that day come,
we're better off shelving it with the other artifacts
of history. Besides, the book's usefulness is not in
recycling information to which I was already privy,
but in exposing me to those possibilities of which I
was unaware. So it suffices to say that this book is
not "definitive," but it IS the closest thing
we have and clearly creates a precedent that will prove
difficult to surpass. The fact that this is only Volume
I and the book ends with a "To be continued..."
would infer that this book is the first in a series
of others to follow which should give us all something
to look forward to with much anxiousness and anticipation.
Gracie Way - An Illustrated History of the World's
Greatest Martial Arts Family"
by Kid Peligro
Review by lincoln
"el tarantula" smith
This book concerns itself less with technique and
application of Brazilian Jiu-jitsu and focuses on
the history, legacy and values of the art's progenitors:
the legendary Gracie family.
The book recounts the stories of the ten most significant
members from the family - Carlos, Helio, Carlson,
Rolls, Rorion, Carlos Jr., Rickson, Royler, Royce
and Renzo. We learn about Carlos' dessimenation of
the art to his brothers, about Helio's ingenius refinements
and emphasis on leverage, about the challenge matches
fought, about Carlos' fascination with nutrition,
the efficiency with which the first academy functioned;
continuing on with Carlson taking up the torch in
defending the family name in challenge matches to
refining how Jiu-jitsu is taught, to Rolls' development
of the opened guard and other advancemnets he brought
about by investigating Judo, Wrestling and Sambo to
his street scuffles with multiple luta livre fighters.
Rorion's determination to introduce his family's art
to the world follows him through coming to the states,
building a foundation from the ground up, teaching
out of his garage, and ultimately having the entrepeneurial
savvy to produce America's premiere No-holds-barred
event: The UFC. We learn about how Gracie Barra came
into being with Carlinhos at the helm and his desire
to see the sport gain more legitimacy and respect
through the forming of the Confederacao Brasilerio
de Jiu-jitsu. One gets to read about Rickson's domination
of the sport at an early age, his exploits in Vale
Tudo and the unlucky group of Japanese promoters who
decided to invade his Pico Blvd. Academy. We go on
to learn about Royler's arduous training schedule
and total technical prowess that earned him multiple
titles against such rivals as Soca and Leozino. We
revisit the days when Royce demonstrated the efficiency
of his family's art by dominating bigger, stronger
opponents in the first UFC's and we become acquainted
with Renzo's marathon run of pro-fights divided between
several events and promotions.
What's nice about this book is that it delves in the
personality of each subject and shows how they collectively
shaped the art int their own image, how the art is
imbued with the spirit and values of each and how
one family's commitment to each other can effect the
Peligro has produced, yet again, another superb screed
allowing those of us to understand more comprehensively
the roots of the art that we have taken into our hearts.
Each chapter is imformative, revealing and inspirational
and includes an assortment of photos never before
seen from the family archives. The subject is even
compelling enough to interest the non-practitioner.
If nothing else, you get to see how dorky everyone
looked in their childhood.
These are not necessarily the thoughts, comments or
opinions of GrappleTV. However, they are the thoughts,
comments and opinions of the respective contributing