how did the first place/people u train w/ define your game

Discussion in 'Grappling Technique' started by devante, Jun 10, 2008.

  1. devante

    devante Silver Belt

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    how did the first place/group you trained w/impact your overall ground/submission/grappling game; what are the pluses and minuses that came as a result of it.

    FOR me i started out w/a grappling club at U of H-it was taught by two blkblt judoka, who were blue belts in bjj; alot of the guys were wrestlers (hs champs/college/juco) or judoka, then there were guys who had all their exp at the grappling club meaning their whole style was built on their curriculum.

    though submissions were taught, the instructors were very aware and well schooled, an the students were the same; but training there gave me some pos and neg

    pos-really got good at maintaining top position, controlling takedowns, reversals/bridges, improved my def footwork/angles, allowing me to control/def takedown attempts and/or escape them. I also had to dev enough of a guard and def sub game from my back cus i was facing guys really good at getting the top position and maintaining.

    neg-my off guard game suffered, coming from a nonexistent grappling background, i couldnt do a thing submission wise; an eventually just settled into reversing/ escaping/ etc to a better position. Had a hard time learning how to recognize and counter subs from the back cus so many guys were fighting for positon to finish, not actively doing so from their back.

    i didn't notice it until i trained w/some straight up submission types or bjj types; who would transition for subs off of takedowns, i.e. i would score one and they would lock in a sub or they would fail on a takedown and transition to a sub. I wasn't used to that, i was used to a transition to another takedown off a missed td or someone wrapping up and then trying to bridge or rev when taken down.

    that was something that stayed w/me for a few years; i was much more of a poor man's wrestler/judoka, w/mediocre submissions and guard work, in large part due to the fact i was training w/a majority of wrestlers/judoka

    anyone else
     
  2. devante

    devante Silver Belt

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    it helped cus alot of better grapplers couldnt get me down or do it easily, an when they did they couldn't keep or control me (i.e.i could rev/brdige and maintain top position and def)

    my guard game made me have to get better at working out of subs, because i had no offense or transition game from the guard.. esp as i trained w/better submission guys.
     
  3. Q mystic

    Q mystic Silver Belt

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    Interesting post devante.

    Why did you consider yourself a 'poor mans' wrestler/judoka tho? Just curious.

    I went to a simple judo club so not alot of news here.:D
     
  4. devante

    devante Silver Belt

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    had no background in martial arts, so i learned through osmosis of sparring/rolling alot, an coming into the game late, an lacking some of the phys tools/dedication; i wasn't able to execute the skills as effectively of someone who had come from that background.

    i was often told i couldn't wrestle or do judo from the perspective of a judoka or good wrestler; but was often told for a non wrestler/judoka i had good judo/wrestling in regards to positioning, def takedowns, controlling an opponent.

    i thought this would be important, esp in that where u train initially in any art can really determine what direction u go, how broad your skills are; it really lays the foundation of who/what you are as a grappler, sure u can and will grow/develop. But those intial roots really impact your growth and how high your floor/ceiling is
     
  5. Calibur

    Calibur Jiu Jitsu Snob

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    I came from a similar background. Did you get your core grip strength from Todd?
     
  6. Balto

    Balto Silver Belt

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    The first school I trained at was from ages 5-18. Obviously it had a significant impact on my style.

    The name of it was the Pennsylvania Karate Academy, but in reality it was a very JKD influenced place. We covered a lot of martial arts. Primarily, they were Okinawan Kenpo Karate, Muay Thai, Kali/Escrima, Jun Fan, and Combat Submission Wrestling.

    So right off the bat I learned how to integrate different martial arts together. I learned about strengths/weaknesses of different fighting styles and how to recognize an opponent's style to exploit it.

    To this day I still try to use my breadth advantage to win in competitive matches. A lot of times I will determine what style my opponent is fighting from and then adapt my style to match their expectations initially. Then I'll do something unexpected from another style to surprise them and throw the match into my favor.

    An example would be going against a "pure" BJJ guy. To start off, I might pull guard or some other typical BJJ strategy. I'll try to act like a BJJ guy as much as possible and convince him that is what I know. Then I'll stand up during a scramble and clinch with him. He will expect me to have little takedown ability since I pulled guard. Then I'll try to surprise him with a big Judo throw to shock him. Hopefully I can ride that advantage from there to dominant position and a submission.

    If it were a match against a Judo guy, I'd probably do the opposite. Play a throwing game for a little to lull him into security, and then exploit that by doing a flying armbar or something.

    So I'm very thankful for learning martial arts the way I did. The ability to integrate different styles has helped me immensely.
     
  7. devante

    devante Silver Belt

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    actually yes
     
  8. devante

    devante Silver Belt

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    excellent post-this was what i was looking for
     
  9. Trickster***

    Trickster*** Banned Banned

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    I started training at an MMA school. There were 3 classes; Basics, Kickboxing, Grappling. The Kickboxing was good and the grappling was ehhh but it was a good overall experience. I learned a good overall base both on my feet and on the mat, but not any amazing SKILL.

    I went from white to black then to instructor finally to owning my own school. It turned out to suck and I left. I took some time off, then started training Kung Fu which was some SERIOUS stand up. If I ever got in a street fight this is the martial art I would turn to, it is straight up VIOLENT! Putting your thumb into eye sockets, ripping noses off, throats out etc. But I missed grappling to I stopped doing Kung Fu when I felt like I could defend myself in any situation and went back to BJJ.
    So now I am 7 months into training, I just got my blue belt last night and Im glad Im back doing BJJ. We do stand up once a week so I still get to throw puches and work on my timing.

    ANyway to answer your question....my first school gave me a great base for stand up, takedown defense and grappling but it wasnt GREAT at any ONE aspect. When I owned my own school I really got a lot better because once you teach and you break down moves it really helps you with your own technique.
    Roger Gracie says this as well, which is why he is so good at the basics bc when he teaches he is forced to have perfect technique.

    I hope that answers your question...good post idea!
     
  10. HEAVY GRAPPLER

    HEAVY GRAPPLER Brown Belt

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    I wrestled for 6 years, but that was 10 years before I started submission wrestling.

    When I started SW, I still had a few good takedowns, decent base and an okay scramble. This was the residual effect of thousands of hours drilling these techniques in my teens.

    The place I started SW was a JJJ club, and I picked up some submissions other people at my BJJ club don't seem to use. ie, wristlocks, that keylock using my leg from scarfhold. Not always the most effective, but sometimes unexpected.

    Because I am fairly strong in top position from wrestling and SW, I have the luxury of spending more time working guard now. Ironically, if I turn out to be a strong guard player, it will be largely because I started out in wrestling.
     
  11. devante

    devante Silver Belt

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    i can relate to this in that i feel my time really gave me a good functional base of skills to effectively be able to handle myself w/a variety of diff grapplers and variety of sizes/styles; i don't think tech i learned a great deal technically. But i learned alot functionally, which in some cases can be as or more important, when it comes down to what u can or can't do in grappling or mma or self def.

    also it helped my standup by giving me the comfort and skills to def, counter what almost everyone does when they can't stop ur off or get through ur def, clinch and trip/throw or shoot; unlike most guys who just learn basic td/clinch def. I spent alot of time w/that, meaning i didn't just limit myself to def the intial td, but also the transition or switch; as well as being able to react intelligently if taken down, not to mention it keeps people off balance and my standup more eff cus i can be freer w/what i do and can land against better strikers cus of my ability to grapple.
     
  12. devante

    devante Silver Belt

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    thx excellent post
     
  13. lethalazn

    lethalazn Purple Belt

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    I have more interesting beginnings

    My friend who used to compete in submission grappling after learning from his best friend who actually did BJJ (now a close training partner of mine) needed a training dummy...I volunteered....and then eventually joined a recreation center that had an Open Mat for Grappling, and finally joining an actual BJJ school 2 years after I started

    Pros: It was FREE! Since I barely learned any moves, I tried to pick up as many habits as I could (i.e. what to do and what NOT to do) so when I had actual instruction, it was really just a matter of filling in the blanks. and it got the notion of how well you perform in sparring is way more important than how may moves you memorize. O and beating people who paid thousands of dollars for crap mcdojo instruction, that was fun while it lasted.

    Cons: No official instruction=Crap guard, my short legs screw over my triangle so all I had was armbar and guillotine from there, and for awhile I was totally unaware of how to properly sweep from guard (or that such option existed) but now sweeps are my bread and butter since they suit my physique I prefer top-game anyways :)

    How it defines my game now: My game's been totally revamped to suit me better since I had official instruction, but one thing that my beginnings have always taught me: Good Habits > Knowing techniques
     
  14. Shadowdean

    Shadowdean Fear the Menanite!!!

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    I have a loooong back ground. I did Kung Fu under Dennis Brown for a year in 1991 then did TKD from 1991~~1999 ish. I still use my TKD for the backbone of my striking, having modified it with 2 years of boxing training, some shotokan, and some San Shou training. I got the shit beat out of me when I was younger, a lot, so that just made me tough. In 02 I started BJJ, a year into that, I also started to wrestle at the college I was attending. 04-07 I also did Judo with the Georgetown Judo Club under Jimmy Takamora (sp?). I also train sporadically in Sambo. More than anything, from all the various arts, I just learned to have an open mind about everything.
    Kind of off topic, but being small I resigned myself to being a bottom player that for the last 6 months or so, I have tried to play a top game more, or at least fighting harder before going to my back into guard or half guard.
     
  15. devante

    devante Silver Belt

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    how dare u come in and upstage me in my own thread dammit; ur post i can really relate to, because of how i learned (i.e. alot of sparring). As i got more disciplined in my training/etc i did the same thing, filled in the blanks and as a result have rounded out my game a bit better; which was noticed when i went back to the grappling club 3yrs later, the instructor and some of the regulars who were still around commented on the growth of my game.
     
  16. Cash Bill 52

    Cash Bill 52 Brown Belt

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    I did a couple years of Kempo in grade school and I wrestled in an eighth grade tournament. Mainly I got my athleticism from playing hockey for 20 years.

    When I started with Cesar and Ralph Gracie in 96 it was a small place with many future stars of bjj and MMA. I had a big ego. I thought I was going to beat all of them. I was soon humbled and fell in love with getting my ass kicked. Our school became very MMA centered which is understandable based on the talent pool. I was 32 and started getting injured in training and bjj started feeling like work. So I took advantage of other California sports like mountain biking, golf, hiking, and swimming. I kind of thought bjj would die out. John McCain all but banned the sport. I wound up taking 5 years off. Then I heard our team was making a push and MMA was making a comeback so I got back into the game. (4 years ago)

    But I digress...

    I basically learned by getting my ass beat all the time. Now that I'm one of the advanced guys at our Pleasant Hill school I seem to have a more passive game. I try different things that I see online. Aesopian taught me the brabo choke. I like to play around with x guard.

    I'm not kidding myself. My strength is well.. my strength. Many moves that people learn don't work on me because of my strength. I like to go for the takedown and pass guard. Basic chokes and armbars are my finishing moves. Once and a while I'll pull some fancy move and I'll be like, "Did you see that?" That would be my ego still plugging away.

    I like to get in the ring once and a while and do some Muay Thai, boxing, and MMA. I only do that with my friends that I feel comfortable with. I only do touch sparring and no slamming. I have no desire to be a cage fighter.

    Most of all I would say that my training partners, our team's connection to MMA and the Gracie family have really made me the "fighter" that I am today.
     
  17. devante

    devante Silver Belt

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    excellent post
     
  18. el_cazador

    el_cazador Orange Belt

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    The first place I trained, the biggest positive that came out of it was that it made me tough. I had come from a few years of amateur boxing late teens/early twenties and thought I was tough, until I started training with an old-school catch-as-catch-can practitioner. I got beat up and beat down so hard I wanted to run home and cry to momma.

    Eventually I started to pick it up and the beatdowns stopped. The motto was wrestle everyone like they are top-level. Flexibility, and neck strength were also huge with this guy. I built up my neck over the years, and have disgusting flexibility, especially for a 230+ lb grappler.

    Wrestling at that gym defined my game to a T as it is today. I am a big, strong guy who likes to muscle (yet stay within the boundaries of technique) and grind, and go 110%. I play the top game and do not favour being on my back, and leg-locks are probably the strongest part of my game. The toughness and ability to take punishment I learned in that gym have been my biggest advantage over the years.
     
  19. devante

    devante Silver Belt

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    first hand experience is very important, developing that toughness/humbleness necessary to improve and be comfortable against other and/or better grapplers; i got my ass handed to me for 7mths straight. I was slammed, tripped, thrown, dragged, choked, triangled, armlocked, forearm choked, rnc'd, kimura'd, leglocked, arm triangled, etc; then little by little i began to be able to def takedowns, rev/bridge (to get better/top position), def submissions, work my way out of submissions. An eventually i began to sub people; but it was 7mths straight of a beatdown..

    also i think it also helps when i train w/guys on my level, cus im used to going against bigger/stronger and better schooled guys; or when i do get handled i don't crumble or get doubtful, because i been in that position b4.

    great post-people underestimate the value of mat time and mat conditioning; there are many people who are tech better than me, who can't sub me or do alot w/me just based off of exp and toughness that comes from gettin dominated by superior grapplers.
     
  20. YeahBee

    YeahBee Samdog Original Nine

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    the judo I did as a child didn't really teach me anything exceptional, no subs or groundwork beyond a few pins and reversal, never did guard work then either

    I got into watching MMA while in Uni and rolling aroudn seemd fun so a bunch of us dudes in the dorm started doing it, a solid group of 5 people with as many as 10 others joined in from time to time

    one was a BJJ blue belt, one was a american high school wrestler, another had done judo and one had done some pretty hardcore hapkido

    pretty fun, I developed my wrestling influenced judo style from the wrestler and a resemblence of a guard from the BJJ guy, I still like guilliotines, that was what hethe bjj guy did to me the first couple of weeks:p

    the wrstler was almsot half my size and it was an even game

    So when I later started up judo again I had some basics.
     

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