Cryptid Jiu-Jitsu seminar 2/20/16

In February I went for a visit to my Affiliate group Cryptid Jiu-Jitsu  (CJJ) in Waseca; Minnesota, it is great to see that that they are growing, offering more class times and getting together even on off times just to train. The head coach is Rob Eggers; one of my blue belts, the force behind the scenes is Jason Lynch, he make sure everything else gets done.  Without these two it would be difficult to start a club and keep it going. They deserve a lot of credit!

As the popularity of BJJ as a sport grows; it’s important to me to address an element of self defense in all my seminars with these guys, especially as there are law enforcement and corrections officers that attend. I’ve come to think of these guys as my friends, I want to make sure they know the distinctions between, sport, sport fight and real fight/ survival.  With so much that can be work on at any point, we focused on defending the big ole Haymaker, how to make frames and options for take downs. Little by little we’ll add on.

The rest of the class was working guard passing; starting with some movement drills, a lot of these guys are kinda big, most being well north of 200 pounds;  I have some friends that refer to movement as “little guy S**T” and equating movement to speed and jumping around,  however, being big is not an excuse for improving movement and timing and being find the best way for you to move to the best of your ability and body type (I’ll stop there before I end up on another tangent).

Then worked passes some standing guard passes, and half guard passes, we worked some basic passes for each position and when there is a beginning group I like to do two things; one, when I explain that they are learning basics, it not that the technique is something simple that is used only by those just starting but that is just a starting point and there is a lot of detail and complexity that can always be added as they learn and can be developed to use to a high level. That what they are learning is laying a foundation for their game to build on.

The second thing I like to do is leave “Breadcrumbs” at toward the end and show how the same technique can be used in multiple positions with a little adjustment. It is much easier to know how to use one technique really well than having to learn a new one for every position.

It is great to see that they’ve become addicted to BJJ and are so hungry to learn.

CJJ Seminar
CJJ Seminar

Cryptid Jiu-Jitsu Seminar on 1/23/15

Cryptid Jiu Jitsu
Cryptid Jiu Jitsu

I’ll be going back to Waseca, Minnesota for another workshop with my affiliate group Cryptid Jiu-Jistu (formerly Brickhouse MMA). These are up and running, they have one of my blue belts down there to teach during the week and are hungry for more. I’m always excited to share Jiu-Jitsu and help people grow.

Please follow the link for details on the Facebook event page.

12/17 Women’s Self Defense (escaping mount with arms pinned)

Akagi1188-1I love it when I get asked a question that is outside the normal BJJ sport frame of mind; at the end of class one of my female students that is new to BJJ said that one of her biggest fears is someone sitting on her chest in a very high mount and their shins/knees over their biceps trapping their arms. My first thought; I would never hold mount like that (automatic BJJ sport response, Duh), it took me a moment to catch up and get out of the sport BJJ world, she wasn’t saying what is a mount escape, she was saying “This terrifies me, what can I do?”.

Well After I work out what i thought was a viable concept of an established mount escape, and testing it out with her, she asked if it would work on someone bigger than me.  I said I don’t know, lets find out. I called for my assistant coach Joe to come over, I weigh 180ish he’s about 235. I asked him to get into the position in question and his reply; ” I wouldn’t hold mount like that”  ( so it’s not just me).  We tried a couple other variations for that situation but it seemed to work. Before writing this I wanted to test the concept one more time with Coach Tom, he’s about 265 , it took a little more effort a but worked as well and decided to put it out there and put it down on video.

Keep in mind; I’m addressing this as a “concept”, this in one instance in what could be an assault or rape situation. This is not meant as a end all solution but only to show that you have options and hopefully that it sparks an interest in learning some options for escaping from the ground. If it starts you on a Jiu-Jitsu Journey all the more awesome, but find a good gym with a good coach that will answer your questions.

New Belt Promotions at the Minnesota Kali Group



On November 14th the Minnesota Kali Group hosted my friend and coach, Professor Chris McCune of McCune’s Martial Arts. We had a great seminar on working on setting up throws with a new concept behind it and some escapes from knee on belly. Always great to get new tech to add to our game.

We had a great turnout for the seminar and to help with the testing; Chris had a few of his guys, as well as folks from other gyms in the affiliation and also had my guys from Waseca Barbell MMA come and get a chance to meet people from our BJJ family.

Now for the best part, the promotions. My approach on testing varies from group to group. However; when we have someone or a few that are ready to get looked at we are sometimes 4 to 6 moths out before I think they are shiny enough to pass. Additional time is made to prepare, coming in at various off hours, encouraging to ask for partners to drill with on their own time, and pushing their conditioning.  I’m always impressed at the dedication and effort that they put in, not only is it for that they want to do well, but since the other students step up to help, that they want to do well for them too. And although when we encourage someone to test; it’s never a for sure thing, they need to see it through and not give up. They need to earn every inch of that belt.

Sometimes we include a set of techniques from our curriculum; and they spent months repeatedly drilling the techniques, series and flows. I never quite tell them what is in store for them; leaving a little air of suspense for them to look forward to. However; this time we did rounds, seven rounds of live rolls and two rounds of drills. I brought in guests from other gyms so they would have different people to roll with, different games to deal with, the unknown variables.

Probably the best thing for me as a coach is seeing people grow, rising above their own expectations and overcoming challenges. And with that I’m very proud to say that everyone one passed and the Minnesota Kali Group has 1 new blue belt, 2 purple belts and 2 brown belts  and McCune’s Martial Arts has added a new blue belt to their ranks.

Joe Swore and Topher Braddock for Brown.

Ryan Reynolds and Tom Riggle for Purple

Gregory Lassale and Julius Thomas for Blue.


Great job to everyone, always improving.

Proud of my friends Joe Swore and Topher Braddock achievement in earning their brown belts.


Gregory Lassale and a hard earned blue belt!