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What WERE Helio's changes to JJJ?

Discussion in 'Grappling Technique' started by DMcKayBJJ, Dec 13, 2005.

  1. DMcKayBJJ

    DMcKayBJJ Blue Belt

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    We've all heard how Helio took the JJ he learned from Maeda and adapted it for his small, weak frame, thus giving birth to BJJ/GJJ.

    But what WERE the big adaptations? I've never studied anything but BJJ, but from what I understand, most BJJ techniques are the same as techniques from JJJ, Judo, etc. I own the "Gracie JiuJitsu Master Text" that Helio wrote recently, and I'm curious to find out what moves are so "revolutionary" from Helio.

    So the simple question is:
    What really were the revolutionary techincal adaptations that Helio came up with, that make GJJ so different from JJJ?
     
  2. stephensharp

    stephensharp Brown Belt

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    At the time Maeda left Japan, JJJ was still being modified. As a result, he brought a pre war Judo/JJ to Brazil, which was a little more meatheaded, and Helio's brother was a scrapper, so what he showed him was geared more toward that mindset. Helio basically made the same changes that Kano and Mifune and others were making in Japan, but without steering it all toward competition.

    It all got more technical, and then the Japanese started taking out techniques and lowering the ammount of time on the mat to keep their art "fan friendly", whereas BJJ continued towards fighting.

    When Kimura came to Brazil to fight Helio, he said it was like he stepped into a time machine, traveling back to the pre-war Kodokan.

    The major changes came more from Rolls and the like bringing in Western wrestling and such.
     
  3. Shadowdean

    Shadowdean Fear the Menanite!!!

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    The biggest thing was the positional heirachy that is taught in the ground game in BJJ.
     
  4. FutureBxer

    FutureBxer Brown Belt

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    is it just me or are these two answers very broad/vague?
     
  5. IMP

    IMP OBLIVION RECORDER

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    maybe focus on ground instead of throws that require mani strength?
     
  6. thecas

    thecas Blue Belt

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    For this you have to ask someone who has trained in JJJ and BJJ. I fit the criteria slightly[JJJ for 6mths, BJJ 1 lesson :). But read lots bout BJJ.

    The most significant thing is that JJJ does not seem to have a knee on belly position.
     
  7. KDawg

    KDawg Orange Belt

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    knee on belly is the position used to teach the basic armlock series in Judo. Ude hishigi juji gatame, ude hishigi ude gatame, ude garami

    Great question in the first post! Now I am curious too.
     
  8. fozzit

    fozzit Guapo Mestiso

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    Knee on belly was a official pin in Judo and it is called Uke Gatame which means floating hold..It is no longer legal
     
  9. TheHighlander

    TheHighlander Green Belt

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    Really the only changes are in the rules, both the competitive rules and the less formal rules of typical sparring/rolling. To be revolutionary it would need to be something completely different, such as pulling guard/butt scoot, but that concept came from a JJJ school. Given a set of rules, most everything (i.e. positional emphasis) else follows.
     
  10. dutchmasterj3

    dutchmasterj3 Blue Belt

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    The biggest thing was bringing more of the techniques to the ground and the application of leverage.
     
  11. blanko

    blanko Guest

    according to carlinos helio's contribution was mostly on the defensive aspects of BJJ. Helio upgraded the defence of BJJ and "took it to the next lvl". If you read "Grappling Masters"
     
  12. JustSomeGuy

    JustSomeGuy Purple Belt

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    Man what a great question. Actually Helio learned from his brother Carlos, Carlos learned from Maeda, but that's not so important. Look up Kosen Judo sometime as well for a little more info. De La Riva's utilization of the guard game is the only thing that comes to mind that is any slight depature from Pre-War/Kosen Judo, and Helio didn't do that either.

    I guess the one thing that Carlos (and Helio) did was not allow a once great(er) art to be stripped down due to politics and interaction with the Olympics. Taking a subsection of Judo and preserving it away from Japan was a really good thing in that sense. Then for the next few decades as mainstream martial arts were getting softer and less realistic, the Gracies kept their version of Judo in a vaccum and tested it the same way it was done in the late 1800-early 1900's in Japan. By continually accepting challenges from all new comers and refining it by those means.

    Then right when martial arts in the US were at their all time crappiest, in pops Rorian and Royce with the Gracie Marketing Machine (UFC) and the new craze in martial arts exploded onto the scene. Very smart marketing no doubt. So aside from being astute businessmen, I see the Gracies as more of curators of older Judo than so much as revolutionists of a bold new style. It just looks bold and new because most of us are unfamiliar with older arts from different parts of the world. Whatever the case, I'm glad its here now.
     
  13. SuperSuperRambo

    SuperSuperRambo Senior Moderator Senior Moderator

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    Many of the techniques are the same, but the intricacies are very different. For example, the finishing holds, chokes, armlocks, are all basically straight from judo and even traditional japanese jujitsu. But the positional emphasis and focus on the ground was Helio's making. The old style relied heavily on power, Helio's style was slower, and focused on methodical control. I can't possibly mention every specific change, there are so many very small thngs he changed. For example, a straight armbar from a side mount is the same no matter what martial art applies it, but Helio's adaptations would be the kind of thing where first you scoop his far arm, post the outside leg, spin around the bodyt while half exposing his back, grab the gi opn his near leg to prevent him from rolling, half sit and put your weight on him, switch arms, and then sit back into the armbar. This as opposed to simpley grap his far arm, spin around, and armbar.
     
  14. Soid

    Soid Renegade of Funk

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    Hmm.. I don't know, I kinda lean towards that Jiujitsu is a family thing rather then Helio refining it all on his lonesome. I think each family member contributed probably as much. The family is so huge I can't see Helio actually single-handedly taking full credit for the evolution of bjj.
     
  15. Bubble Boy

    Bubble Boy Black Belt

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    Technique-wise? Nothing.
    The guard work that has developed over the years has branched considerably from contemporary judo. I've never seen a bit of evidence to suppport that this guard work came from Helio though. It's mostly developed from the rules of competition BJJ.

    Sounds right. The BJJ that Royce was doing in the early UFC's is exactly that: the Judo of pre-war Japan. Interestingly enough the Brazilians weren't the only time capsule conduit to the present day. In Japan, Kosen Judo retained all the traits of early Judo, and not suprisingly looks almost exactly like early UFC bjj.

    The guard game of modern BJJ is more evolved than the early UFC days of BJJ.
     
  16. blanko

    blanko Guest

    if you have a chance, pick up "Grappling masters". There is an interview with Carlinos where he states that Heilo is the one who took jiu jitsu to the next lvl by improving the defensive aspects of it. Which is what BJJ is, being able to defend yourself long enough against a stronger opponent untill he tires.
     
  17. gusano

    gusano White Belt

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    The Gracie family took jiu-jitsu to another level after it was introduced to them by Maeda.
    To say that Helio singlehandedly accomplished this is ignorant.

    However, Helio does indeed claim to have modified the jiu-jitsu that his brother Carlos taught, so.........I DEFY anyone to cite specific examples of EXACTLY what Helio "changed".

    What the Gracie's did was refine and evolve the ground fighting and submission aspect of jiu-jitsu. In Japan, Judo took another direction. The rules of Judo dictated the emphasis of what was trained and how much it was trained.

    In Judo you can win by perfect throw. How much more incentive than that does one need to practice throws? In Judo you are stood back up after 30 seconds on the ground. How much incentive is that to practice submissions on the ground? In Judo you can win by pin. How much incentive is that to transition and submit? In Judo if you are about to be arm barred or triangled, if you make it to your feet you are restarted. How much incentive is that to perfect escapes from arm bars or triangles?

    I'm not saying that one is better than the other, just that the rules dictate where the emphasis is placed in training.

    In BJJ you can't win by throw, you have to submit your opponent and this usually happens on the ground. Why is BJJ often accused of having weak takedowns? Usually because both players are so willing to get to the ground to commence the fight that there isn't much of a fight to get there.
     
  18. Madmick

    Madmick Cerebrage Staff Member Senior Moderator

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    Dude, I'm not an expert, so I'm here reading to learn. You've offered nothing but a book title. If you disagree with what these guys are saying, please be specific.

    "He made it defensive" is not specific. When I mean specific, I mean something that is practical, something that could be used to fight. I can very well apply "improved defense" to an opponent, can I?
     
  19. Half Boston Crab

    Half Boston Crab Purple Belt

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    Where did you hear that? Uki gatame (floating hold) is a legal pin in Judo, but it is not quite the same as knee on stomach. It is when you have an armbar (juji gatame) on him with your leg over his chest and he resists by holding his arms and you grab his leg and throw back your leg that's across his face for posture and pin him with an armbar threat.

    You can see a vid of that move and a lot of other ones here: Judo techniques
     
  20. stephensharp

    stephensharp Brown Belt

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    By what I was to understand, Maeda's Judo was different than Kano's, as Kano was small of stature, and Maeda was well built, so combine that with the bit of early catch wrestling he'd done and the fact that Carlos was a brawler, always getting into fights, so they had some roughneck tactics to their game. Helio was tiny, so he worked more technique and leverage. He changed the way his family was playing the game, but Kano had already made these changes in the Kodokan far before, and Mifune and others refined the throws to match.

    Maeda was a black belt in JJJ before he joined the Kodokan, so he likely had a lot of old habits, and hadn't fully embraced Kano's changes... Kind of like if a Judo or BJJ guy cross trains, how even if he gets very advanced in one of the arts, his style will be quite different than his instructor in either one art. It's a little presumptuous to say one of his students revolutionized anything if they adapt it to their own game by fully going in the direction of BJJ or Judo, though. Helio just came to the same conclusions a lot of other people already had, but he did so without any influence from them, which is commendable.
     

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