Posts Tagged ‘BJJ for women’

Is Jiu Jitsu Changing? Springfield MA

 

What if I told you the answer to that question might be “no”. Most people would say that the answer can’t be “no”- not now at least, not after the evolution that has occurred over the last decade. You can point to the exponential growth of competition and it’s competitors, the availability of high-level instruction, the prevalence of video instruction, and a growing group of professional jiu jitsu athletes as proof that the sport has advanced far beyond where it was just 10 years ago. But, all of those things are elements of the sport, not the jiu jitsu. So again I’ll ask the question, has the jiu jitsu actually changed?

There is no doubt jiu jitsu techniques are hard to hide in this day and age, and that new positions and techniques are available like never before. Now with live streaming of every major event, and YouTube, there are no more secrets, so it forces everyone to evolve and grow. But are the fundamentals that win championships any different than they were 10-15 years ago? Earlier this year when we were out in San Diego visiting Master Royler Gracie, he shared something with us that was sort of eye-opening. He told us that the approach he would take to competition now would be no different than the approach he took in 1999 (discussing technique and strategy). Now you are more than welcome to form your own opinions about this topic, but I can tell you that Royler was very sincere in this sentiment.

Let me submit an argument that perhaps you don’t always have to learn the “latest” techniques (although there is nothing wrong with this) to compete at the very highest level in this day and age. The case would be that jiu jitsu in it’s pure unadulterated form can be learnt and applied the same way today in competition as it was in 1999, and that in fact, jiu jitsu’s effectiveness is not changing, merely it’s competitors.

 

Exhibit A: Royler winning the Mundials in the late 90′s

 

Exhibit B: Kron winning the Pans in 2008 with relatively similar, and equally fundamental BJJ

 

Exhibit C: Roger Gracie,  one of the most dominant competitors in the last few years

I understand completely that it is pretty absurd to suggest that jiu jitsu isn’t changing, especially given what you see the Mendes Bros., Miyao Bros., and other high level competitors doing on the mats, but I would simply like to suggest the idea that jiu jitsu is not evolving beyond it’s own effectiveness.  The premise of this article is that fundamental jiu jitsu is never changing, even though the execution might look different.

How can this benefit you? Don’t always concern yourself with learning everything that’s out there. Learn  proven technique from qualified instructors, and focus on application. All jiu jitsu works, old and new. So study all the above videos, there si something we can all learn from each of them.

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Springfield BJJ asks, Is Brazil the Most Important Country in UFC History?

ANAHEIM, CA - NOVEMBER 12:  UFC World Heavyweight Champion Junior dos Santos is seen in the octagon at UFC on Fox:  Live Heavyweight Championship at the Honda Center on November 12, 2011 in Anaheim, California.  (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images) Jason Merritt/Getty Images

Brazil is the most important country in the history of mixed martial arts, but not in the history of the UFC.

When the UFC burst onto the scene in 1993 and had a Brazilian by the name of Royce Gracie as its poster boy, the whole concept of “mixed rules” fighting was a new thing to contemporary American sports scene, then obsessed with boxing and unrealistic Karate/Kung Fu films.

However, “no holds barred” fights were nothing new in Brazil. These sport of fighting was called “Vale Tudo” which was Portuguese for “anything goes,” and it became immensely popular in Brazil in the 20th century.

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The biggest stars of the Vale Tudo scene?

The Gracie family.

Their patented weapon?

Gracie Jiu-Jitsu.

Their fighting art (which was basically Judo modified to focus more on ground techniques rather than throws and arbitrary competitions for points) was eventually exported via Rorion Gracie, who traveled to the United States and, after some struggling, managed to get on his feet and even break into Hollywood, where he is famous for teaching Mel Gibson a bit of Jiu-Jitsu.

Rorion’s exploits, as well as those of the Gracie family, were written about in an edition of Playboy magazine that caught the attention of an advertising mogul by the name of Art Davie. Davie and Rorion came up with an early version of the UFC (then called War of the Worlds).

This meeting, along with the help of pay-per-view executive Robert Meyrowitz, led to the creation of the UFC and the airing of the inaugural event in which Rorion’s relative Royce Gracie showcased how effective the family art could be against someone who didn’t know it.

But it wasn’t exactly the family art.

What they (brilliantly) branded and marketed as “Gracie Jiu-Jitsu” was actually Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. The Gracies didn’t invent it; they just packaged it and sold it better than anyone else.

Nevertheless, it started a martial arts revolution.

Soon after the first UFC events, serious fighters began training in all facets of Jiu-Jitsu. You had to know BJJ, or at least how to counter it, if you were going to be successful in the cage.

This lead to strikers cross training in BJJ. Once the BJJ fighters realized that the strikers knew what they knew, they started training in striking, and mixed martial arts was born.

Thus, Brazil and BJJ helped to create the modern sport of mixed martial arts, but it wasn’t the most country in the UFC’s history.

Yes, a Brazilian with a Brazilian fighting style helped create the UFC, but that was the old UFC, the UFC owned by the Semaphore Entertainment Group.

The modern-day UFC is owned by a company known as Zuffa. And it’s Zuffa that’s responsible for much of the UFC’s current success.

Zuffa backed the UFC even when it was making a loss, and eventually got the UFC onto Spike TV in the form of a reality show called The Ultimate Fighter. The show catapulted the UFC into stardom practically overnight; it had a place in society now.

The UFC would continue to grow and hold events in other nations, but its principle fanbase was in the United States, and more UFC shows were held in the United States than any other country (since it was and is an American company, after all).

But that’s not to discount what Brazil has done for the modern UFC. Many of the Zuffa era’s best fighters—such as Anderson Silva, Junior Dos Santos and Jose Aldo—are all from Brazil. The Brazilian market is also a massive one for the UFC, and the MMA circuit in Brazil is ripe with amazing, undiscovered talent.

Still, while it was Brazil that ultimately created MMA and the old UFC, it was the actions of Americans in the United States that helped bring it to it’s current heights.

Both countries have their importance, and modern MMA/the modern UFC couldn’t exist without either.

to start your MMA training visit www.linkbjj.com

Bruce Lee, Father Of Mixed Martial Arts MMA Jeet Kune Do

Western Mass BJJ is a big fan of how Bruce Lee affected martial arts in Springfield Ma.
Mixed martial arts or MMA as this popular fighting sport is commonly known is a combination of different martial arts combat styles including kickboxing, jiujitsu, wrestling, boxing and others.  The MMA fighters are basically using the most effective fighting techniques from different styles of martial arts in the ring.  Interestingly enough, there is a Bruce Lee connection to MMA.
So instead of training in just one discipline like wrestling or boxing, MMA fighters must train in a variety of techniques from different martial arts which make them better rounded fighters.  Although it may seem like a novel or revolutionary concept, this idea of using the best of different martial arts styles is not new.
In fact, the martial arts legend and action movie star Bruce Lee, is considered by many in the martial arts world to be the father of mixed martial arts.  He was the first to publicly advocate training in a variety of martial arts styles including western boxing and wrestling.
Bruce Lee moved away from being a traditional martial artist utilizing classical forms, stances and techniques.  He created his own style of martial arts called Jeet June Do which is pretty well his style of mixed martial arts.  He even compiled his ideas of mixed martial arts in his book called Tao of Jeet Kune Do.
This caused some controversy among some of the traditionalists in martial arts back in his time, especially before he became famous through his movies.  But as time went on, even after his death, his concepts became more accepted by modern martial artists around the world.  He has influenced countless numbers of martial artists to train with a variety of martial arts techniques.
History now suggests that Bruce Lee was way ahead of his time with his early ideas of mixed martial arts.  If he can only see what he has started now with the explosion of MMA as a popular sport.  He would be certainly be proud.  The mixed martial arts MMA world definitely owes a lot to Bruce Lee for having the ingenuity and courage to go against the traditionalists to develop the mixed martial arts concept so many years ago.
Brought to you by Western Mass BJJ

Free Women’s Self Defense Seminar at Team Link Enfield

On Sunday April 29th from 12-2pm Team Link Brazilian Jiujitsu Enfield will be conducting our 2nd FREE women’s self defense seminar. This seminar is for women age 14 and up. The last seminar was a lot of fun and we had great feedback from the women that attended. PLEASE don’t take your safety lightly.You will learn self defense techniques but more importantly you will gain valuable KNOWLEDGE that could save your life.

Team Link Enfield is located inside of Northeast Elite Wrestling 72 Shaker Rd. Enfield,Ct. 06082. Call 1-855-CTLINK(528-5465) to reserve your spot today.

PLEASE forward this to any women you know who might be interested.
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The First American to Earn a BJJ Black Belt

Craig Kukuk was the first US native to achieve the rank of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt (1992) by Royler Gracie. Kukuk is also the co-author of one of the very first Jiu Jitsu instructionals, the “Renzo Gracie – Craig Kukuk Brazilian Jiu Jitsu” a historical piece of footage that helped advertise Jiu Jitsu in America in a time when the sport was not yet spread countrywide.

Craig Kukuk Jiu Jitsu


Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie > Helio Gracie > Royler Gracie > Craig Kukuk

Weight Division: Super Heavyweight (100kg/221lbs)

Craig Kukuk Biography

Craig Kukuk was raised in California, United States, becoming a high school wrestler before joining the Gracie Academy in the 1980’s. Craig got very involved with Gracie Jiu Jitsu, learning from Rorion Gracie for many years, earning all his belts up to brown belt from Helio Gracie’s son.

By the time Kukuk was ready for his black belt, Rorion advised Craig to visit Brazil and train there to gain more experience. It was in Brazil where he trained at the original Gracie Academy in Rio de Janeiro. This is the place where great champions such as Rickson & Royler Gracie learned much of their fighting knowledge. There in Brazil Craig received his black belt from the hands of Royler Gracie thus becoming the very first American black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

Upon his return to the US and after a short spell being an assistant instructor of Rorion Gracie,  Craig decided to move to the East Coast. There he opened a few gyms in that area. Shortly after Craig brought Renzo Gracie to partner up with him at his New York gym they two formed a strong partnership and together they launched one of the most successful Jiu Jitsu instructional at the time, the aforementioned “Renzo Gracie – Craig Kukuk Brazilian Jiu Jitsu”. It is rumored on the internet that this instructional and the fees involving this video effort were the root of the break-up between the two instructors at the time. Though the actual reasons behind this bitter separation are still somewhat of a taboo subject within the BJJ community.

Craig has most recently created  On-Line private classes in submission grappling and BJJ and currently devotes most of his time to these classes and his academy in Boise, Idaho.

If you want to start working towards your BJJ black belt in Western Mass

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