Archive for October, 2010

31 Oct 2010

  • Posted by Steve Spencer
  • Champion Grappler Nov 13

    Champion Submission Challenge XV

    No-Time-Limit Grappling Championship


    Saturday, November 13, 2010
    Weigh-in 8:00am • Start at 10:00am

    XSI Factory
    4425 North Thanksgiving Way
    Lehi, Utah

    We will have weigh-in both Friday night and Saturday Morning. Times and locations will be announced as details are worked out. Competitors must wear shorts for weigh-in, NO STRIPPING DOWN.

    New: Kids/Teens (age 5-17) may compete in both the gi and no-gi division for the price of one.
    New: Pre-registration discounts extended to Monday, November 1, 11:59pm.

    Click Here for More Information

    31 Oct 2010

  • Posted by Steve Spencer
  • Hughes, Horn, and Johnson in Lehi this week

    Utah has continued to grow its MMA base, and hosts many significant locals (most recently Court McGee, winner of The Ultimate Fighter), as well as draw visits and training from many other huge names.

    This Wednesday, November 3rd Matt Hughes , Jeremy Horn, and DeMarques Johnson will be signing autographs from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm.

    This is a great opportunity to meet some of the biggest names from the UFC.

    30 Oct 2010

  • Posted by Utah Martial Arts Feeds
  • Happy Halloween

    This Article comes from SLC MMA
    To see the full original article click here



    Don’t Eat too much candy.

    To comment on this post, please visit the original article click here

    30 Oct 2010

  • Posted by Utah Martial Arts Feeds
  • Cody McKenzine’s Guillotine choke, the “McKenzietine”

    This Article comes from SLC MMA
    To see the full original article click here

    cody mckenzie guillotinecody mckenzie guillotine 2

    I’ve been watching The Ultimate Fighter on Spike and Cody McKenzine’s guillotine choke has been on my brain.  Cody hits the choke with a different grip and elbow position; it’s made me curious to know more.  Since Cody’s explanation of how he does the choke was two-seconds long, I’ve had to look elsewhere. Below, a video from Precision Martial Arts down in Texas, showing the basics of this variation.

    The cool thing about this choke is that it just *hits* differently than a normal guillotine.  The top pressure a guy uses to try to escape interacts differently with your grip, you can finish the choke from unusual angles, etc.  One thing I like about it is that you don’t have to have the same hip control to tighten it.

    cody mckenzie guillotine 5compress guillotie

    As you can see on the left, Marc Stevens has passed Cody’s guard – and Cody has only partially kept Steven’s hips from swinging around by getting a hook on the outer leg (I think this is what’s called empty half guard). I’ve even seen guys tapped from clean side control, no hooks attached – although that’s uncommon.  On the right, you can see how a lot of guillotine’s from the guard get finished; by compressing the choke-arm’s elbow towards your own hip.

    Another detail – the position of the supporting arm in the choke is varied.  On the right, you see how the elbow flares up and comes off the body while on the left (it’s sort of hidden) the supporting elbow can stay down and still provide leverage for the choke, as well as keeping the head caged up. From my experience, if the guy on the right sucked in his elbow towards his hips, it’d be easier to wriggle the head free.

    I’ve heard some guys call this the prayer choke, palm to palm guillotine, or now – in Cody’s honor – some suggest we call it “the fisherman”.   McKenzine has a nice body for the choke – long, thin arms ; slender core and slightly concaved chest. The Diaz brothers have such frames too.

    cody mckenzie guillotine 4

    As I’ve been playing around with it, the grip has intrigued me.  Like Josh Koscheck points out, you’ve got to attack the grip to stop the choke, because hip position won’t necessarily do it.

    Anywho, I’d like to know your thoughts and experiences – have you choked or been choked with this? How does it stack up to the regular guillotine? What name would you give this variation?

    To comment on this post, please visit the original article click here

    28 Oct 2010

  • Posted by John Valentine
  • Beginning Your Muay Thai Journey

    This post comes from our newest Author: John Valentine.

    Following a class I was teaching recently at Hidden Valley Martial Arts, Steve Spencer approached me about writing a piece on Muay Thai kick boxing. I was honored to do so, and then began to reflecting on my Muay Thai path and the things that originally drew me to the sport. While it has been over a decade since I first stepped into the gym, I could still remember the excitement and nervousness I felt as I contemplated my decisions. I also remembered that I had many questions. The following touches on some of the things you may be asking yourself as you consider starting your own journey into Muay Thai.

    What is Muay Thai and where does it come from?

    As one might guess, the art of Muay Thai originates from Thailand, and while there are conflicting opinions as to the exact date of its creation, many indicators point to it having been around in one form or another since the Middle Ages. Tracking the history proves difficult due to the lack of written records during Muay Thai’s early years, where we must rely primarily on its oral traditions.

    What is not in dispute is that Muay Thai’s history is deeply entwined with the history of Thailand itself. Many believe that origins of Muay Thai were born out of necessity as constant invasions led the Thai people to look for effective ways to defend themselves in hand-to-hand combat when tactical weapons had failed or were unavailable.

    Muay Thai is famous for and is commonly referred to as “the art of eight limbs” which comes largely from its use of punches, kicks, elbows, and knee strikes (eight points of contact). When you compare this style to others such as traditional western boxing that has only 2 points of contact (fists), you soon learn to appreciate the real life and deadly applications that this art holds. Muay Thai is a both a professional and amateur sport, and also has a popular following in the fitness community for its “hard charged” work-outs.  It has also made a name for itself as one of the most effective and at times devastating forms of self-defense, a fact that has been proven time and time again in the UFC and other MMA venues.

    However, for the people of Thailand, Muay Thai is more than just fighting. It represents a spiritual way of life and is deeply engrained in their history, culture, community, and identity. Like baseball here in the states, Muay Thai is Thailand’s highly revered national sport.

    Is Muay Thai right for me?

    Before you can answer this you must first decide what you hope to gain from your martial arts training. Is it to get in shape? For self defense? Your health? Challenge? Discipline? Fighter training? Regardless of the reasons you choose, you need to make sure that they are the right reasons for you.  Knowing why you are training will help you understand what, how, and where to train.

    For me, my goal was to become a more well-rounded fighter.  I was already coming from a strong wrestling background, so Muay Thai seemed like a perfect choice for me to round out my already strong take-down and ground game.

    Should you choose to train in Muay Thai, you will find that while there is much to learn, you can progress fairly quickly if you apply yourself to building and mastering a solid technical base. While the sport does have some physical demands you can go at your own pace and focus on those techniques that are within your limits.  Additionally you can enjoy Muay Thai even if you are not ready spar, gaining skills through focus mitt and heavy bag training.

    If you are looking for other rewards they are plentifully; transcending beyond simply the physical advantages.  The art has enriched the physical and moral well being of the Thai people for generations, and when you become connected to the history and tradition you will find it will become an increasing part of your way of life.

    Additionally, you should feel good about learning one of the most applicable forms of self defense making it a perfect choice for the young, old, both men and women, and yes children as well. So whether you choose to be involved as a fighter, student, or future “Kru” (instructor) Muay Thai is well worth your attention and a closer look.

    How do I find the right gym?

    While this process can be stressful at first, finding the gym can be easy if you know what you are looking for.  Here are a couple of suggestions:

    First, find a teacher that is both knowledgeable in the fundamentals and has training goals for his students that are aligned with yours. If he wants everyone in his gym to spar or be a fighter, then depending on your goals this may or may not be for you.

    Second, try to understand as much about the gyms moral fabric and character as you can; this can also be referred to as the “vibe.” I often tell students that you can get a read on this if you take the time to talk to the students, and the instructors. When meeting your future instructor, share your goals openly and ask him/her how they can help you meet them.  Respect is the cost of entry into this sport so if it is not shown by your instructor then keep looking!

    If you find that the main focus of your discussions with the instructor seems to be about contracts or money, keep looking!

    Case in point, when I was looking a new gym for my Jiu Jitsu training I stumbled upon Hidden Valley Martial Arts. The Gym’s owner, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Judo Black Belt, Michael A. Hermosillo told me, “The new student is the most important person in our gym and everyone needs to pitch in to help them develop.” For me these were the types of attributes I was looking for in my next Sensei (martial arts instructor).

    We will each have our own criteria we are looking for when we look to choose a gym.  But if you take the time to understand their atmosphere as well as their goals and intentions and how they align with yours you will find yourself building long-lasting, treasured friendships with your new gym-family.

    What’s the hardest part of Muay Thai?

    I tell prospective students that the hardest part of Muay Thai is the same as making any positive change in who we are: Taking the first step to begin your journey.

    I still reflect back on when I started my Muay Thai training over a decade ago in a small gym in Las Vegas run by Grand Master Toddy and Master Chan.  I remember feeling nervous, uncomfortable and yes a bit scared as I first slapped on the gloves. All of those feeling were not only normal but were also signs that I was about to embark on a special journey. One of character, humility, respect, and one that would push me farther than I ever thought I could go.

    Today, while I am fortunate enough to be able to share knowledge through teaching, I am still approaching Muay Thai with a “new student mentality”, respect, and in many ways gratitude. I hope to meet you in the gym soon to discuss your Muay Thai goals but until then, good luck with your training and keep fighting!

    27 Oct 2010

  • Posted by Utah Martial Arts Feeds
  • Has anyone out there tried CrossFit?

    This Article comes from Arcanum Brazilian Jiu-jitsu Blog

    To see the full original article click here

    I’ve been looking for another training program to try since completing P90X this past spring. P90X is an effective program, but my opinion is that it’s geared more toward looking ripped than actually building athletic prowess. The CrossFit program looks a lot closer to the workouts I’ve seen on YouTube for hardcore BJJ / MMA gyms out there. The workouts look dynamic and interesting, and from what I can tell and it’s more oriented towards elite fitness than muscle definition like P90X.

    Is anyone doing CrossFit now and if so how is it working for you?

    © SkinnyD for Arcanum, 2010. |
    Permalink |
    No comment |

    Post tags:

    Feed enhanced by Better Feed from Ozh

    To comment on this post, please visit the original article click here

    25 Oct 2010

  • Posted by Steve Spencer
  • Martial Arts Do’s and Don’ts in the Zombie Apocalypse

    Welcome once again to October.  As the cold weather, the falling leaves, and the scary decorations begin to show up around us our minds are turned to pumpkins, trick or treaters, and of course:

    How to best prepare ourselves for the inevitable Zombie Apocalypse?

    Specifically today, I want to address some key do’s and don’ts of using our martial arts skills against the hordes of the undead.


    3- Don’t wear the Gi

    When facing the undead, no-Gi is the plan of the day.  Ever try to hold onto a dog that has no collar?  It can be a challenge.  Put a collar on the beast, and it’s easy pickins though.  Don’t give yourself a handle to ensure your ability to be handy take-out for the undead.  Greased-hog style is a better bet.  If weather doesn’t allow for your nudist animal instincts to run their course, then I would suggest body armor.  Stay away from loose fitting clothes that provide little protection.

    2- Ignore the tap

    That little girl is no longer a ballerina, no matter what she’s wearing.   No matter how nice they may seem, zombie’s are not your friends.  Don’t show any mercy, as they won’t show you any.  Be sure that your ingrained training doesn’t kick in when you’re wrestling an undead head from its shoulders… Mistaking frantic flailing for a tap can end in an ugly mess.

    1- Do not pull guard.

    The number one DO NOT for martial arts and zombies?  I cannot say this strongly enough: DO NOT PULL GUARD.  If a zombie should take you down, kick the hell away, pray you don’t get bitten, and run like hell (or chop them in the head with a fire-axe.)  If you are foolish enough to pull guard, you will shortly be that dumbass shambling down the street with people pointing at your stomach and pelvis injuries asking,  “How the hell do you get bitten like that?!”


    3- Sweep the leg Johnny.  Leg kicks rule.

    As Bas Rutten (who I predict will be one of the last human’s standing during the Zompacalypse) shows us in this video (you may want to skip toward the end of it), if you can’t walk, you can’t do shit!  Most zombies are gonna be way to slow to catch a leg kick.  Some may even be as slow as Warpath was in this video.  Take out the legs with some solid, Bas Rutten style force, and your can laugh at the bastards while they crawl toward you down the street.

    2- Weapons just got cool again.

    You know those weapons in the martial arts stores?  The ones you kinda snicker at, and wonder rather anyone actually buys them who doesn’t believe they are a level 61 Paladin?  Well, they just got cool again.  And those obscure martial arts that you didn’t spend as much time learning, like Kendo, the ancient art of beating and hacking the hell out of stuff with weapons?  Ya.   That course your retard cousin talked you into taking is about to pay off.  Grab a sword, machete, or hell, a chair leg and rain down the punishment.  Just a reminder though:  I probably wouldn’t use that to cut your food afterward.

    1- Defy gravity.

    Number one on our list of handy martial arts skills for defeating the hungry hordes?

    I must have picked the crappy Karate classes to take when I was younger, because the Kung-Fu Theater moves like this never seemed to be a part of the curriculum.  But as you can see from some sweet scenes in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Zombie Ass Kickers, gravity appears to be more of a suggestion than an actual law.  If you took the course in running through trees, walking on water, and jumping over tall buildings in a single bound, then ya,  do that shit.

    If you enjoyed this, you might enjoy a related post on The Best Martial Art against Zombie Invasion.

    22 Oct 2010

  • Posted by Utah Martial Arts Feeds
  • What I learned by giving up submissions for 6 weeks

    This Article comes from Arcanum Brazilian Jiu-jitsu Blog
    To see the full original article click here

    This is a follow-up on my Zero Subs experiment. If you missed my original post, you can read it here.

    Zero Subs was a training experiment that helped me finally get that monkey called “Ego” off my back. This may be a long post, but I hope you’ll take the time to read it – I learned a lot and I think it’s worth sharing.

    First a little background.

    One of the biggest challenges in my BJJ career thus far has been dealing with nerves. In my first months of training, just driving to the gym would give me butterflies. Even at work, thinking about BJJ would get me worked up. It was a terrible feeling and I wanted to get rid of it.

    I eventually owned up to the fact that my nerves were a result of my ego. I was just plain scared of being submitted – for some reason I was taking it personally. Stupid, I know…but it was really standing in the way of my progress.

    When my team moved facilities, I decided to turn a new leaf and do my best to buck Mr. Ego. I devised the Zero Subs Experiment. The goal was to go on a submission “fast” and instead work for superior positioning and experiment with flow. Any time I got a potential submission hold, I would let my opponent work the escape and keep rolling.

    It made a huge difference, and I’ve come away from it with some good lessons:


    This principle comes up over and over and over in the jiu-jitsu sphere. But it never sunk into my white belt brain. It wasn’t until I let go of the fear of losing that the idea of “winning” in training became unimportant, and I could finally focus on learning.

    Let me clarify my point. Obviously you want to learn how to submit people. But HOW you submit or are submitted is far more important than WHO. Sparring is a way of gauging your knowledge and learning. Whether you win or lose makes ZERO difference to your worth as a person or your worth as a BJJ practitioner. To treat tapping in class a way to caress your ego instead of a tool for learning is downright stupid and wrong. The only thing it does is stand in the way of you and your training partners’ progress.

    Not only that, it can significantly cut into your enjoyment of the sport. Hard to be happy when your happiness depends on other people losing. But that’s what the ego demands.

    Lesson Two: Eliminate the fear of losing so that you can relax.

    As soon as I started Zero Subs, I noticed a difference during sparring. Just the simple act of removing the option to win by submission allowed me to relax significantly. My mind felt clearer and I stopped muscling the moves so much.
    This was probably the area my coach noticed the most. He says there was a huge difference in my level of relaxation when rolling and consequently my technique made big strides.

    Lesson Three: Relax and let your training take over.

    In other words, let your body show you what it has learned.
    Finish reading What I learned by giving up submissions for 6 weeks.

    © SkinnyD for Arcanum, 2010. |
    Permalink |
    No comment |

    Post tags: , , , , , , , ,

    Feed enhanced by Better Feed from Ozh

    To comment on this post, please visit the original article click here

    22 Oct 2010

  • Posted by Utah Martial Arts Feeds
  • Staying Mobile

    This Article comes from Utah Judo
    To see the full original article click here

    Last night in Judo we worked on two different aspects of the same, key concept in Judo: Staying Mobile.

    Mobility on the feet:

    It is very difficult to throw someone who doesn’t move, and who doesn’t want to be thrown.  A bad Uke can make for a frustrating session.  If you look at the differences between beginning Judo students, and more advanced students, the most fundamental piece will be rather they are “accepting” or “taking.”

    A beginning student will just attempt whatever throw they want.  They will reach out for that Osoto Gari rather the movement and Kazushi for it are right or not.  A more experienced student of Judo will “accept” the movement of their opponent, and utilize it.

    This doesn’t mean you need to be passive, and wait.  But it does mean that you need to create movement in order to have movements to accept.  One of the most fundamental ways to do this is: Ashi Waza.

    Ashi Waza is, essentially, foot technique.  This is made up of such moves as Ouchi Gari, Kouchi Gari, Deashi Harai, Hiza Guruma, Sasae Tsurikomi Ashi, and similar foot attacks.  As we step around and move with an opponent, Ashi waza opportunities open up everywhere.  Also, Ashi Waza techniques, even when they fail, create openings for other things.  Just as an example, I love to use Ouchi Gari to get an opponent to pull their leg back, setting up an Osoto Makikomi.

    When we stay mobile, we create actions and reactions.  This gives us what we need to have motions and Kazushi changes to accept.

    But although this sounds good in concept, in practice it is easy to still get so focused on what we want, rather than what is being given to us.

    The exercise we worked with to help feel what is being “offered” was this:  Grab a partner, circle each other, and use your Ashi Waza (gently… we don’t want anyone falling yet.)  But do this with your eyes closed.  Don’t look and think about what you see.  Feel the Kazushi, their’s as well as your own.  Stay mobile.  Create movements, and feel the openings in Kazuhsi.

    On the ground:

    On the ground, it can be tempting at times to fight like a boa.  A boa grabs it’s prey and holds on.  Then it slowly advances… inch by inch.  There is no surprise.   The snake and the victim both know what the intent is.  The snake counts on its strength to do this.

    Too often this can happen on the ground.  We get into a position of control.  It might be side control, mount, or whatever we tend to favor.  We then work slowly without giving up anything.  We might work for Americana, Collar choke, or a variety of things.  But we still hold, like that boa.

    The problem is that this is very limiting as far as what we learn, or what our opponent learns.  There are few surprises in this methodical combat.

    So what we did instead is this:

    One person on bottom, the other on top in side control.  The goal is to submit your opponent.  But the key rule to this game is: You cannot hold any position longer than 10 seconds.  If you have someone in your guard, you must work to change position… sweep them, arm bar, something.  From side control you must submit them, or move… maybe north-south or knee in belly.  Keep mobile.  Keep fluid.  Learn and experience new things.  Keep them guessing.

    To comment on this post, please visit the original article click here

    18 Oct 2010

  • Posted by Utah Martial Arts Feeds
  • Sylvio Behring Jiu Jitsu Seminar Tuesday Oct 19th

    This Article comes from Heavy Judo
    To see the full original article click here

    Posted by Steve Spencer from ‘Utah Martial Art

    I know it’s short notice folks, but you can still register for this one!   I wanted to pass along the details:

    Master Behring will be teaching a seminar at Hidden Valley Mixed Martial Arts on Tuesday, October 19th from 6 PM to closing time. You can come learn from one of the greats of our sport for. This is an unbelievable opportunity to learn Master Behring’s own style of Jiu Jitsu.

    Master Behring is a 7th degree Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt. He is also the man who awarded former UFC fighter and BJJ World Champion, Fabricio Werdum his black belt. One of Master Behring’s many activities also includes coaching current UFC Middleweight Champion, Anderson “The Spider” Silva.

    Master Behring was honored as the Best BJJ Coach in Brazil in 2003 and is currently regarded as one of the BEST BJJ instructors in the world. And next week he will be teaching at one of the best Jiu Jitsu organizations in the world The Sylvio Behring USA Jiu-Jitsu Association.

    Do not miss this seminar. Master Behring will be teaching his personal Progressive Guard System, this is your opportunity to learn this style from the man who invented it.

    This seminar is open to everyone who has a love of Jiu Jitsu. If you can make it, it’s going to be an event that you’ll talk about long after it’s over and one you’ll never forget.

    To comment on this post, please visit the original article click here