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Welcome to the Happy Grappler. The key to a consistent practice is joy. As an aging athlete, I continue to seek out methods that help to keep a smile on my face, relatively fit and pain free. This is my mental graffiti. Enjoy!

Monday, March 26, 2012


Greetings one and all!

Sorry for the delay in posting, but I have injured my back and am in considerable pain. A coupla weeks ago, I was experiencing a lot of accumulated soreness and tightness in my hips and hamstrings, to which I attributed the volume of running that I was doing. That day I started to reduce my volume and use the non-running time for mobility work and some qigong time. The next day at jiujitsu, I was being used as a demo partner and was swept in a way that I didnt expect to move to, and tweak. If I know myself (I have a long history of back issues) it is a herniated l5/s1. I cannot get comfortable. Sitting for anything beyond 8-10 minutes is very uncomfortable. Standing and walking downstairs is difficult as well. So I called the chiro and will see about getting adjusted. Will keep you posted on the details. I have still been training, but I now have to loosen up for about 30 minutes before and after training to stay in a moderate level of discomfort.

On the training front, I have once again been drawn to the basics of jiujitsu. I have witnessed some glaring deficiencies in my own practice and now must address those issues. My open guard is so poor, it would appear that I can get passed with no effort. My half guard has glowing deficiences. I have wasted a lot of time on techniques, submissions, movements, guards, etc. that are way too advanced. I have had numerous conversations with his imperial suppleness about this, as he has eloquently suggested, admiring "ferrari jiujitsu" from afar, but motoring with "taxicab jiujitsu" which is hallmarked by reliability and simplicity. Every time I train now, I am working on the Upa, elbow and knee escape, taking the back; closed guard; triangle, arm bar and rear naked choke. I need to delay my views of Mendes, Galvao, Torres and watch more of Rickson, Royce, Roger and Rener. I figure with some dedicated years of practice, I should have a few things down well rather than do a hundred things poorly.

On the video front I am including a video of Rener Gracie taking on a group of SWAT cops during a seminar. Notice the fluidity yet simplicity of the movement. Notice also how he uses fundamental movements on a masterful level; bridging, shrimpling and the ease of the triangle. True jiujitsu.

The second is another Rener Gracie video which shows a core strengthing and lower back rehab exercise that I have been using as of late. Study on this.


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