26 Sep 2011

Braulio Estima - Superfight Champion

I've just back from quite possibly the most awesome jiu-jitsu related couple of days of my life. Those very lovely people at Jiu Jitsu Style Magazine fixed me up with a rare press pass and I spent the whole weekend right by the mats taking snaps of as much jiu jitsu action as I could. ADCC this year was a galactic who's who of grappling superstars and the matches did not disappoint. This post is not a full on report - there was just sooooooo much insane action that it would take me a week just to write it, plus I have over 2,000 snaps I have to edit and go through.

Click here to read a blow by blow analysis of the major fights plus news on all the results.

The Brits who competed can all be proud of themselves. It was great to see so many homegrown fighters on the mat and of course so many UK based Brazilian instructors too. Whenever they fought the crowd support was at times thunderous.

Here are just a couple of fave photos from the weekend - it's gonna take me a week or more to go through them properly. One I do, I'll let you know the photo page where I will store them for viewing.

Kron attempts guillotine on Marcelo Garcia


Leo Vieira v Claudio Calasans

Tetsu Hadairo or is it an alien?

Baret Yoshida inflicts pain on Nicolas Renier

Tom Barlow and Jeff Glover doing, er chickens?

Penny Thomas takes Talita Noegeira's back

Kyra Gracie submits Sara Svennson

Cyborg v ?

Lagarto v Xande

Robson Moura celebrates win against Ryan Hall

Tournament Report: ADCC 2011, Nottingham

Braulio Estima - Superfight Champion I've just back from quite possibly the most awesome jiu-jitsu related couple of days of my lif...

22 Sep 2011

I don't usually get much time to watch online BJJ content but I made sure to catch up on the 'Road to ADCC' series of docuvids made by British BJJ filmmaker Stu Cooper. As the absolute winner from ADCC two years ago, Braulio Estima gets the honour of fighting in a massive superfight against another grappling superstar - Ronaldo 'Jacare' Souza


Good luck to Braulio and everyone else competing this weekend. Let's remember this one as the greatest ADCC ever! :)

Braulio Estima Road to the ADCC

I don't usually get much time to watch online BJJ content but I made sure to catch up on the 'Road to ADCC' series of docuvids m...

18 Sep 2011



Chico Mendes (Head of Checkmat Europe), Leo Vieira, Ricardo and me at front
When I was a kid, I sometimes wondered what it would be like to have an older bruv - someone to play with, to beat the crap out of bullies, to train kung fu with (hey, BJJ wasn't around when I was a kid). Instead I had to settle on my sister, who I love, but was not very good at beating me up. Anyway, at the seminar today, the first thing I noticed is the really strong bond the two Vieira brothers have for each other. Leo seems the slightly more serious one, Ricardo the incessant joker of the two - both are easy going and ultra friendly. I can just imagine them as kids, mucking around, trading techniques, both growing in jiu jitsu awesomeness.

Nogi
This was probably the longest seminar I have ever attended: four hours in total, 2 nogi and 2 gi. Leo began the nogi portion with a sequence of takedowns from the clinch leading into a bunch of submissions or back-taking openings. Leo stressed that in nogi, his main priority was to look for the back and to make sure that whatever position he was in, that it was one where he had more options (to attack or defend) than his opponent. It was a very tactical approach to learning. Although I rarely train nogi, I enjoyed this session and took away a number of neat tricks and tips. Leo whizzed through the techniques at a pace though so we probably drilled each one about 6-8 times before moving on. No dilly dallying at a Vieira Brothers seminar!!

Gi
Leo announced before the start of this section that he would present us with a series of open guard options. I love open guard and learning it from one the legends of the game got me really excited! Leo showed us a sequence of options beginning with an open half guard. This soon developed into variations of deep half guard - which took me quite a few attempts to get my head round, but in the end, something went 'ding!' and now, I have to say, I am liking the deep half a lot!!

Beatings
No, not me (although a couple rounds of sparring with my friend Pippa probably constitutes a beating in my case) - I'm talking about the belt whippings at the end of class. We don't really do belt whippings at my academy so to see a vast lineup of folk zealously whipping the newly promoted was funny, and wince inducing at the same time. Notable promotion mention should go to Aaron Naisbett from Dungeon BJJ in the North East. Aaron has been training 11 years and for a large part of those early days, had to rely on instructionals and a bunch of dedicated friends to supplement his trips to Brazil. It was genuinely nice to see the look of surprise on his face when Ricardo announced the black belt award.

Thanks to:
Chico Mendes, head of Checkmat in Europe kindly invited me down to Cheltenham (very posh town in the West of the UK).
Leo Vieira - for being the perfect model and interviewee today (watch out for Leo interview in the next Jiu Jitsu Style Magazine).
Ricardo Vieira - for his helpful tips and, well, just being a legend (nine World titles!)
Pippa Granger - for being an ace training partner.

Good luck to Leo in next weekend's ADCC in Nottingham!!!


:)

Seminar: Leo Vieira, Cheltenham, UK

Chico Mendes (Head of Checkmat Europe), Leo Vieira, Ricardo and me at front When I was a kid, I sometimes wondered what it would be li...

16 Sep 2011

Getting excited, very excited. In fact I'm so excited about ADCC coming to the UK that all conversation about it is banned. But we can look at pretty pictures like, er the ultra cool ADCC program guide that Jiu Jitsu Style are putting together right now. Exclusive - just for Meerkatsu readers, a sneak preview at one of the inside pages. Tom Barlow is one of the three British fighters competing at the event (others are Daniel Strauss and Rosi Sexton).




Tickets for ADCC are still available or, if you can't get to it, you can buy pay  per view for the online screening from Budovideos. I'll be there of course, and reporting back to you with my impressions straight after!

:)

ADCCITING!

Getting excited, very excited. In fact I'm so excited about ADCC coming to the UK that all conversation about it is banned. But we can l...

10 Sep 2011

Been real busy lately with commissions, here are a few recent ones...





Artwork: Cows, Zombies and Koi

Been real busy lately with commissions, here are a few recent ones...

8 Sep 2011


Luta are a lifestyle and fightwear brand created in Brazil by English boxing coach Luke Dowdney. The company carries a strong ethos of developing young talent and assisting those from underprivileged backgrounds. Their company website explains: "Luta is a new fightwear and lifestyle clothing brand that brings together real fight performance, favela street style and a genuine social mission."

I was first approached earlier this year to review various Luta branded items for Jiu Jitsu Style magazine, this post is a lengthier look at those items and a little personal commentary on the Luta story...


Apparel Review: Luta

Luta are a lifestyle and fightwear brand created in Brazil by English boxing coach Luke Dowdney. The company carries a strong ethos of d...

4 Sep 2011



Here's a challenge every designer and illustrator loves - take a well known character or real life subject matter and re-interpret it by twisting convention on its head. When American grappler David 'Koala Bear' Garmo approached me requesting a gi patch mascot for himself, my only question was - how evil do you want your koala bear to be? When he answered 'very evil' I knew it was game on!

Little did David know how popular his new fleshed out mascot would be among his friends, team mates and followers...

Mascot Design: Koala Bear

Here's a challenge every designer and illustrator loves - take a well known character or real life subject matter and re-interpret i...

 

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