BJJ seminars are awesome. The good ones are great (I never forget how small BJJ is in the world and how lucky I'm to meet a good teacher) and even the bad ones are an opportunity to meet grappling friends, old and new, and do some rolling around in jammies.
This Saturday, aka yesterday, Fighting Fit hosted a BJJ / grappling seminar by Mr David "Malandro" Onuma, black belt in BJJ under Ricardo Vieira and multiple European Championships medalist. My first impression of talking to David over the phone was that of balance, open mindedness and maturity and meeting him confirmed all that and more. He is in his early 40s, has 2 small children and a busy full time job. He is also fully immersed in a number of other martial arts and disciplines. Add to all that the list of achievements above and it becomes clear that:
a, he must have a strong sense of structure and organisation
b, he's full of energy, focus and enthusiasm
c, he's very selective with whom he spends his time.
The seminar was scheduled for a 10 o'clock start and, after a thorough BJJ-based warm-up (oh my god so many drills!), David covered both gi techniques (spider guard entries and techniques) and no-gi (pummeling and clinch) techniques and strategies. The techniques and tactics were awesome but David's delivery really topped the charts.
David was generous with his time and while we had only booked him till 1 he was happy to stay and roll for another hour. I had the pleasure to roll with him and he toyed with me. He was everywhere. He used simple BJJ fundamentals but executed them with such timing and fluidity that I felt helpless. If you want to organise a seminar with a black belt who's done it all and has a great sense of humor and structured teaching and delivery, Mr David "Malandro" Onuma is your man.
Many can show you how to sweep with the spider guard, but no one will finish it with such a manly pose. Many will armbar you from mount, but no one will highlight the importance of exposing the embroidered name on the black belt. I already look forward to his next visit.
The seminar was also very important to me as it gave me the long-sought opportunity to meet with my very good friend Seymour "Meerkatsu" Yang who was kind enough to trek all the way from London to attend and report on the seminar. Not only did I get a chance to pick Seymour's brain about a couple of techniques and strategies and had a couple of rolls with the "Escapologist" himself but I also got to drag him with the Labs gang out to lunch. I'm happy to say the meercat came to rainy Manchester a guest but left it a friend, brother and honorary Lab Rat. I bid him good bye and took my bag home to bore my wife with tales of my adventures. I feel so lucky.
Thank you David, Seymour, Ian and Martyn for making this happen and to all the attendee Lab Rats who made the whole event a success. We hope to have David back at Fighting Fit / the Labs very, very soon.
----Did You Like This Article?--- Click here to add The Part Time Grappler to your Favourites / Bookmarks