Why You Shouldn’t Teach BJJ to Yourself (When You’re New)

What is the most efficient way to train BJJ? Is training yourself Brazilian Jiu-jitsu an effective way to learn the martial art? Should you teach BJJ to yourself?

In this video I touch on this subject.

Our friend Nate on Youtube sent a message saying that he wants to maximize his time and save money by training with his friend in a basement first before he eventually joins his local 10th Planet BJJ gym.

He’s doing this to sort of bypass the White Belt phase of his training and prepare for his Blue Belt. So he plans to do this by using his friend to teach BJJ to each other.

Why Is Smart Not To Teach BJJ To Yourself

As I share in the video I think this is a bad idea for your BJJ growth. Primarily because I’ve done it.

When I started training Brazilian Jiujitsu.  I started like Nate is thinking about and piecing together moves in my basement with my friends. This was the way I began my Brazilian Jiujitsu experience.

We did this for about a year.

I found a BJJ gym in Louisville where I would eventually train. And when I did eventually step into an actual BJJ program led by an expert. I realized I wasted so much time training myself! I learned more in that 1 day of training than I did in the year of trying to teach BJJ to myself.

In any form of Martial Arts. It’s always a more effective means to growth to learn from someone who has been there before.

If you’re contemplating joining a BJJ gym or training yourself. I hope the video is helpful to you!

Thanks!
-Chewy

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How I Setup Takedowns in BJJ

When you’re going for takedowns in BJJ. What are you looking for? How do you decide which BJJ takedown to use?

Do you have a systematic approach to takedowns? Do you focus on looking for certain grips or adjustments from your opponent, or do you just lock up and cross your fingers that something will happen?

 

My Process for Takedowns in BJJ

In this video I give a little insight into what I’m looking for personally on my feet when I’m going for takedowns. Mainly I talk about how I determine the BJJ takedown I plan to use.

You’ll see, that just like any other position. I observe which grips i can secure and which grips my opponent gives me. From there I choose the best take down for the situation.

But most importantly, there’s a process to it! Just like any other position.

Often times. I see that most people don’t have a smart approach to takedowns in BJJ. They just lock up and move around until someone screws up. But yet on the ground they know exactly where they are going.

Likewise I try to give you some ideas on what you could look for when you’re on the feet in Brazilian Jiujitsu. So when you think about your takedowns. Think about the moves and positions and see if you have a process to everything.

You’ll have to excuse me a bit as I was super hyper in this video. And I’m kind of all over the place. This isn’t that unusual.

Hopefully these ideas will help you with your own Brazilian Jiu-jitsu takedowns. Whether its for training or competition.

Thanks!

-Chewy

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How To Be Aggressive from Full Guard As A BJJ White Belt

Some people are naturally aggressive, while others seem to lack this innate quality.

Our friend Megan who is a BJJ White Belt  says she lacks aggression. In particular she says she lacks being aggressive from her Full Guard and is unable to pull the trigger when she is rolling in her Brazilian Jiu-jitsu gym. And this is a vicious spiral. Because she lacks aggression due to the fact that her guard just gets passed and she gets passed because she is unable to be offensive.

This is a common situation I’ve seen as a Brazilian Jiujitsu coach.

Some White Belts have too much aggression while others don’t seem to have any at all. Personally I was one of the White Belts that had way too much.

Being Technically Aggressive In BJJ

In this video I discuss some of the strategies I used to build aggression off my back. Because as a Wrestler who got into BJJ second. Being aggressive off my back didn’t come naturally in my BJJ training.

On the subject of BJJ aggression I also want to stress that if you don’t naturally have aggression. It’s ok. Many people are overly aggressive because of  negative factors. Things like ignorance to the positions and fear of losing can cause this.

My goal for anyone wanting to develop more aggression would be to do so based on their technical abilities. Rather than blind aggression. Being aggressive in BJJ is great but doing so without the technique to back it up will lead to a road block eventually.

Anyways, I hope this video helps out any of you trying to be more aggressive in BJJ.

Thanks!
-Chewy

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What is a “Dick Move” in BJJ Training?

What is a ” dick move ” in BJJ? Where is the dividing line between using a perfectly acceptable Brazilian Jiu-jitsu technique and doing something that makes you a jerk, possibly injures someone, or just makes people not want to roll with you?

Before I dive into any more information. Let me say that if you are in question about whether or not you’re using a “dick move” or being a jerk in BJJ. . You probably are.

In the video I share, what I feel, are the 2 biggest determining factors.

Dick Move in BJJ Video 


Those 2 things being. . .

1. The origin of the technique within. What sort of place did this technique come from in you? What kind of emotions fueled it?

2. The intent or objective of this BJJ technique or move. What is the point and what are you trying to achieve?

There are some techniques that are inherently not cool to use. But for the most part. I believe if you are coming from a cool, collected place mentally when you’re rolling. You’ll be less likely to do something someone would consider a “dick” move.

 

When Used A Dick Move

From my own experience. I did dick moves all the time as a younger practitioner because I was afraid to lose, or because I would get frustrated.

And as I share in the video. You can take a BJJ technique or adjustment that is perfectly fine and change it into something negative just by the mental state in which it was executed.

I go into more detail in the video, plus I talk about the absolute most important thing to consider when you’re rolling in BJJ.

This is especially good for BJJ White Belts who are learning the ropes and trying to figure out what is ok and what’s not.

I hope the video helps!
-Chewy

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Half Guard BJJ

2 Half Guard BJJ Drills For Positional Control

One of the most important aspects of the Half Guard is control of the underhook and space. Whether you’re on top or bottom. Having control of the Underhook gives you such a stronger position to attack from.

There are ways around the underhook, But if you are able to secure it, why not do it?

This video was taken during one of our No Gi BJJ classes. We did a series of Half Guard BJJ drills.

The 2 shown in this video were focused solely around regaining or countering the Underhook and to build better movement for Brazilian Jiu-jitsu.

I like these Half Guard BJJ drills because they help develop technique for positioning in BJJ and give both top and bottom, something to work on. Instead of just one person going while the other sits idle.

This helps keep both parties focused and moving. When we do drills like this I prefer to set a timer rather than shoot for a particular rep count.

One reason is because people move at different speeds. Second is because oftentimes people move quickly to achieve the rep count they were given and then ease up after that’s accomplished. Even if there is more time to drill.

The first drill is a Half Guard Pummeling drill. This drill was inspired by the stand up pummeling drill used in Wrestling and Brazilian Jiu-jitsu. But just from the Half Guard.

The second drill which starts at 1:35 of the video is a Hip Switch to a Reverse Half Guard position. In the video we go to Quarter Mount since this was the position we planned to set up our passes from that day. But there are an innumerable amount of attacks you can use in Brazilian Jiu jitsu from that position.

So if you’re a Half Guard BJJ player or have trouble giving up the Underhook when your rolling or competing in Brazilian Jiujitsu. Watch the video, try the drills and hopefully they’ll help you improve!

As always, thanks for watching!
-Chewy

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BJJ armbar vs tight hands

BJJ Armbar From Mount Vs Tight Hands

If you’ve train BJJ then I guarantee you have been in a Mount positions unable to finish your opponent. If you get someone in Mount and they just ball up it can be very difficult to get the Submission. This is especially true when someone keeps their hands together.

This is the problem our buddy Nurzhigit is having. He says he’s finally able to get some offense going during his Brazilian Jiu-jitsu training but says that he can’t seem to finish once he gets to Mount because the person will lock their hands together.

I have a whole arsenal of techniques to deal with this very situation because over the years I’ve experienced the same frustration. I could get to Mount during BJJ competitions or Brazilian Jiu-jitsu training but I couldn’t seem to get the submission.

So I had to develop multiple ways to attack because I knew I SHOULD be able to snag the submission from Mount.

In the video I give two of the simplest ways I know to combat our opponent in Brazilian Jiu jitsu locking their hands.

 

Basic Setups for BJJ Armbar and Keylock

1 option is a basic 2 on 1 that works well pretty much through all belt levels. A basic setup using the Keylock / Americana from Mount and transitioning to the BJJ Armbar from Mount if the opponent turns to defend (which is very common).

The 2nd is another evergreen technique involving a hand crawl to isolate the head and shoulder. I’ve used this one, again, since I was a BJJ white belt.

If you watch my channel you know that I’m not really into fancy techniques. I like straight forward, more “old school”, Brazilian Jiujitsu techniques that allow me to dominate position and chip away at the opponent.

I hope the 2 submissions and BJJ armbar setup from mount shown in this video helps!

Thanks again to Nurzhigit, from Kazakhstan, Aktau city. Who trains at Caspian Brothers BJJ.

-Chewy

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Fast BJJ Big guy

Be a FAST BJJ Big Guy by Rolling This Way

 

Are you a BJJ big guy? If so, how do you roll with smaller training partners during your Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practices?

In my experience one of the best ways for BJJ big guys to roll with their smaller training partners is to do so with as much finesse and speed as possible.

The reason?

Because every big guy is strong, right? But not every big guy is fast. So by adapting your style and attempting to move at a smaller person’s pace. You in turn train your body to be quicker. I mean who doesn’t want to become a fast big guy?

I was a BJJ Big Guy who wanted to move FAST!

One of the comments I get consistently when I roll in jiu jitsu with people is that I move really quickly for a big guy. This was not by accident or because I’m naturally a fast person. Instead, it’s something I’ve developed over the years when training with my smaller training partners.

I’ve talked about it before. But back in 2009-2010 I went on a journey to create more movement and develop more speed into my game. When I watched Brazilian Jiu-jitsu competitions I noticed that I was attracted to the people that had very good movement.

I also noticed that in many cases. The person that stops moving usually loses the match.

So in order to boost my ability to move in BJJ. I started training with my smaller training partners in a much more speed and finesse oriented fashion. There is far more scrambles and constant adjusting. Which is tiring for a big guy at first, but gets easier overtime.

This encouraged my smaller training partners to roll more with me because I wasn’t trying to smash their head off every time. And the benefit for me was that I learned to be faster and more fluid in Brazilian Jiu jitsu.

And I still have the option of turning the strength on and being heavy if I need it.

So if you’re a BJJ big guy and you train with smaller guys often. Try rolling with them in the way I talk about in the video and see how it helps you.

I hope the video helps!
-Chewy

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BJJ White Belt

Don’t Play Catch Up As A BJJ White Belt

How can you catch up to the people in front of you as a BJJ White Belt? How do you stick it out in training when you get frustrating because nothing is working?

These are the questions our friend Jeff asked concerning his BJJ training.

He’s being doing Brazilian Jiu-jitsu for about 2 months and says everyone in his gym is either a 2 stripe white belt or above, and no matter what he does, he just continues to get smashed.

 

Part of the Process as a BJJ White Belt

Getting smashed into the mat as a BJJ White Belt in Brazilian Jiu jitsu is one of the most frustrating things in BJJ. But it’s something we all go through, it’s part of the process.

BJJ is often fun at first because of how new it is. But overtime it can become aggravating when you don’t feel like you’re making progress. You just feel stuck.

 

 

Having an “A-HA” Moment

In the video I share a story from my personal BJJ journey about how I got beat on for nearly 6 months of my BJJ training. Then eventually things started to “click” and I started to make noticeable progress. I had what I call an “A-HA” moment in BJJ. It’s that moment in your Brazilian Jiu-jitsu training where things just seem to come together.

This moment turned Brazilian Jiu-jitsu into something completely different for me.

If you’re someone who is experiencing a rough patch in BJJ. Even if you’re not a BJJ White Belt. Maybe you’re a higher level belt. Watch the video and see if you’re able to take some of the advice and apply to your situation and avoid getting frustrated, or at least have a way to work through it. Because if you can work through it. Those moments where everything clicks are ahead.

Thanks for watching! I hope the video helps!
-Chewy

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Guillotine Choke Counter With Double Leg Takedown

A Guillotine Choke Counter Is A Must

The Standing Guillotine Choke can be a nasty submission that makes people get gun shy with their takedowns. Having a guillotine choke counter is an important tool to have if you plan on having a takedown oriented game.

Typically I’ve seen two common mistakes people make when they are coming in for a single leg or double leg takedown and get caught in a Guillotine Choke.

First is that they freeze. Instead of adjusting and making angles. They have a oh shit, deer in the headlights, moment and freeze up. Then they’re submitted.

The other mistake I see really often when stuck in a standing guillotine choke is that they continue to drive straight forward right into the person’s full guard. Which pretty much seals the deal for them.

I’ve done previous videos talking about head positioning and how important it is. You can check that video out here.

I posted another Guillotine Choke Defense Using Front Head Lock Counter From Wrestling
https://youtu.be/xdNLElSqFhw

As I share in a lot of my videos. I use a lot of wrestling with my Brazilian Jiu-jitsu. So in this video I show some basic adjustments that will help you blast through the guillotine choke with a double leg takedown.

You’ll beat the submission and you’ll also end up in side control.

So if you’re getting caught in the guillotine choke when you’re practicing or competing in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Check out the video and start drilling this guillotine choke counter.

Even if you’re not getting caught. The tips in the video will help make sure you don’t get stuck when trying to do a double leg takedown in BJJ.

I hope the video helps!
Thanks!
-Chewy

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2 Non-BJJ Books For BJJ Training

2 Non-BJJ Books For BJJ Training

 

Recently I was asked about what books I would recommend for BJJ training, Martial Arts and life. While I feel unqualified to touch on “life” I do feel plenty qualified to talk about BJJ training.

I also took this question to be non-BJJ books.

Taking Ideas from Non BJJ Sources

Being able to draw parallels to BJJ through other non BJJ sources is important for the overall mindset of someone training Brazilian Jiu-jitsu. I think this because if you can find other sources of information or input it helps you get outside of box and ensure that you’re no being restricted.

Think of it as learning Brazilian Jiu Jitsu techniques from multiple sources. Your coach, training partners, seminars, drop ins at other gyms, youtube, dvd, etc. All of these areas have their contribution to your training and learning. Not being restricted to one in particular is helpful to your growth.

Using 2 Non Bjj Books for Bjj Training

In the video I talk about 2 books that have had a big impact on my BJJ training.

The first is Talent is Overrated by Geoff Colvin. I first read this book back in 2010 when I started teaching and training Brazilian Jiu-jitsu full-time.

With the ample time I had to train. The lesson of deliberate practice in this book helped me direct my training properly so that I was able to train effectively.

The second book recommendation I share in the video is The War of Art by Steven Pressfield.

It’s a very short read but packed with all sorts of thought provoking ideas. One such idea is adopting the lunch pail mentality to your creative endeavors. Basically embracing the grind.

Adopting these two ideas, deliberate training and being able to grind it out, made a huge impact on my game.

So to my buddy Luis, and anyone who is looking for some non-BJJ books to inspire their BJJ training. I hope these recommendations help!

-Chewy

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