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“In my opinion there was no BJJ brand that represented the beauty and elegance we all experience when participating in the gentle art. I was looking to create a brand that had meaning, that word that came to me was ORIGIN.” Pete Roberts
Origin BJJ has been getting a lot of press lately because of their move to have all of their gi manufacturing at their Maine headquarters. Origin is the product of Pete Roberts and his desire to get out of the corporate word and to pursue his passion for BJJ as a career (for a little more on Pete check here). Their products are designed from his experience as a student, competitor and teacher. To that end Origin’s products include gis, nogi apparel and training accessories. With a reputation for service and quality I was very excited to use Origin spats for my initiation into the world of spats.
In this part of our series exploring and charting Caio Terra’s Modern Jiu Jitsu series we will be focusing on his instruction regarding the Butterfly guard, standing passes and takedowns. These sections are available as Apps (Butterfly guard and Guard Pass/Takedowns) directly from ITunes for all your Apple devices. This information is also contained in the 3rd DVD in the Modern Jiu Jitsu set. If you haven’t already seen them please take a few minutes to check out our breakdowns for the Closed Guard, the Mount and Turtle/Back series.
I won’t go into too much detail on the quality of instruction (excellent), the audience (white/blue belts) or production value (excellent) because those aspects of the set have been covered in our previous reviews. So, straight to the meat of it…
As a young man, I feel obligated to say that we need to expand our consciousness regarding women in Jiu-Jitsu. Women having been fighting in MMA for years, women’s boxing was accepted as an Olympic sport, and now women can serve in combat in the US military. So it bothers me when there are still discussions about whether or not women can handle a little Jiu-Jitsu. Most articles that make general statements about women are directed towards beginners: how to survive, what to expect, etc. I’m more interested in supporting the girls who are already training and love it. More women than ever are getting involved in Jiu-Jitsu and they are the role models for bringing more women into the sport. They train gi and no gi, they compete, and they roll with men and women. So what advice can I offer my Jiu-Jitsu sisters?
Tip #1 – Learn to analyze Jiu-Jitsu
The skill of being to analyze movements, applying or resisting a technique, will serve as the foundation for everything below. Just as we exercise physically to develop muscles we must also strengthen our ability to articulate WHY techniques are and are not working. How often have we come across a technique that didn’t work well in sparring and abandoned it? Being able to troubleshoot issues makes it much more likely that we critically think what we are doing with our bodies. The goal is to raise your awareness over every part of your body so that you can sense everything that is going right or wrong with the techniques and resistance to them. Not to mention, this will also improve your communication to your partner or instructor to get more input.
Bret Perchaluk was born in 1984, He stands 5'7 and fights at 165lbs. He started his path in martial arts when he was 6 years old. His mom enrolled him in Kung Fu classes 3 times a week. From there he wrestled in high school and went on to wrestle Division 1 varsity at Rider University in New Jersey. He received his Judo black belt January 2012 from Rodrigo Artilheiro, who is a coach on TUF Brazil, and Judo/MMA coach at Xtreme Cotoure out in Las Vegas. He got his belt issued by USA Judo thanks to Olympic Legend and Coach of the 2012 Olympic Team, Jimmy Pedro. In 2012, he placed 3rd at the IBJJF NoGi Pans. He also has MMA experience.
He still remembers when he saw the first UFC with Royce Gracie in 1993. He thought that learning Jiu-Jitsu would be good for self-defense and a fun new sport to compete in. In 2001, he enrolled at the progressive fighting systems academy. Currently, he's back at a Traven gym, Combat Sports Center, training under David Oliviera. Bret received his brown belt June 9th 2012 after competed at the Mundials in California as a purple belt. “David and Traven gave me my Brown belt, and it was a huge honor and something I had worked hard towards.”
Bret can’t really say what he does for the government, just that he’s done it for a while now. He teaches and works in the field. Says Bret, “I have been all over the world for work and not to anywhere nice yet. But I'm keeping my fingers crossed for them to send me to Brazil.”
Jiu Jitsu purists love to say “A belt only covers two inches of your butt. It’s up to you to cover the rest.” While that sentiment is certainly in the spirit of Jiu Jitsu, learning the art for the sake of learning and not viewing a belt as a goal, belts can mean much more or different things than we often give them credit for. Our belts are a representation of our journey. They are a reminder of who we were, who we are becoming, and what we have endured to get there. Each stripe represents hundreds of hours of mat time and growth. Each rank represents a new responsibility and greater expectations; not to smash everyone in your path but to help others grow and follow in a similar path of growth as BJJ players and people.
For these reasons we felt that our belts should have a similar story. Just like no two players games are exactly the same, neither are two belts when they are hand dyed. Maybe you’d like to dye custom belts for your go to training partner who is about to receive his or her next grade or maybe you’re a professor that would like to dye belts for your students. Maybe you don’t want to dye your own belts at all and just want to check out how our belts get from our supplier to you with a little extra love but below is a short guide to our belt dying process (that is constantly under revision) so you can add a little FLOW to your game.
It wasn’t that long ago when a new fightwear company burst onto the martial arts market scene placing itself in the endless superhuman race to demonstrate its strength to service the BJJ community with their products.
Soaring high off the successful release of its debut kimono The Assassin, Jotunn Fightwear’s phenomenal introduction has already established themselves as a rising standout company looking in constructing its own lane toward greatness.
Picking up where they left off from the stealth like approach they formulated with The Assassin Gi model, the second edition to the kimono series “The Samurai “ offers not only a clean look for the serious jiu-jitsu athlete but also displays Jotunn’s daring in being innovative, versatile, and different with the creation of all its products.
Taking the gi out of the artistically designed Netted bag you will notice clearly that the Jotunn Samurai kimono goes in a totally different direction than the crystal-weave classic-like concept the Assassin gi offered customers.
We are almost two months removed from the criminal accusations that shook our Jiu-Jitsu community (Matthew Maldonado, Nicholas Schultz accused in New Year's Eve rape) and I can’t say I’m surprised by the responses thus far. Reactions have ranged from the unequivocal denial, to the centrist and measured “innocent until proven guilty,“ to the outraged and vehemently hostile. Out of all those who have voiced an opinion, there are a substantial more that have dug their heads into the ground and remained silent. Dr. Martin Luther King was attributed as saying, “All it takes for evil to prevail is for good men to stand by and do nothing.” These words and the meaning implied wherein has great relevance to where we find ourselves today.
Willful blindness is a term used in law to when an individual seeks to avoid liability for a wrongful act by intentionally putting himself in a position where he will be unaware of the facts that would render him liable. The irony of willful blindness is that it makes us feel safer even as it puts us in danger.
In the microcosm that is the Jiu-Jitsu world, we are a tiny group in which what the majority condones will become the standard in which we operate. As such, we must take great care never to surrender critical thought for social acceptance.
Turning a blind eye to blatant disrespect, gender discrimination, bullying, unethical business practices and criminal behavior makes the observer complicit, albeit to a lesser degree, but nevertheless a party to the transgression and in some cases legally liable. A feeling of futility has provoked our collective silence.
Yet change has come in the dialogue now being had regarding cultish behavior, criminal background checks for martial arts instructors, a renaissance and return to a holistic martial arts education, in which the mind and body are taught in concert and many other great threads of conversation. These thoughts and communications are seeds of change, it just takes time to grow.
We cannot forget that Jiu-Jitsu is a martial art that promotes the concept that the smaller weaker person can successfully defend against a bigger, stronger opponent. So why wouldn't we, as a community and individuals, try and protect the smaller weaker person in all respects. Remember, what you permit, you promote.
Apollo FG is the product of Mark Finlay and his desire to make a gi that will actually fit thinner/leaner athletes. As anyone that’s read my reviews knows I’m a tall and lean guy myself and the reason I started to really get interested in gis is because it was so hard to find out that actually fit me. The Omega series is a heavy-duty 550g gold weave jacket with 9.5 oz ripstop fabric. The Omega is available in white, black and blue. The gi has regular and slim sizes and most important of all you can have it for $120 (which includes shipping).
Conversations regarding the legal consequences of employing martial arts techniques off the mat are rare, if had at all. Usually these conversations are had after an incident has already occurred, to either chastise the student for using said techniques on the street or as a cautionary tale to other students.
The more knowledge you obtain, especially in the case of professional fighters and high-ranking belts, the more scrutiny your actions are under when used in a non-sanctioned event. For example, a professional fighter getting into a simple assault and battery, those charges could increase to aggravated battery with a deadly weapon. The deadly weapons in question are the hands and feet of the fighter. This isn’t such a crazy notion to people who understand how skilled fighters can use their precision and expertise to devastate.