Surviving Bad Positions in grappling / jiujitsu - Seminar at Union BJJ, Manchester

Jiujitsu hands
Having lived in Manchester for over 12 years, I've formed many friendships, a huge majority of which are in the Jiujitsu community. I recently travelled back to Manchester to teach my second seminar at my friend John Dang's gym UNION BJJ near the city centre.

This was a special visit. Not only had this seminar attracted attention from students of the art from multiple local Jiujitsu gyms and academies, it was also the first time I'd visit UNION BJJ's new location. Previously, Union used to be at another, very iconic, city centre location in Manchester: the Van Dang Building. That building had been an unquestionable part of North England martial arts heritage. Not to mention, I trained and taught privates in their for the last 6-7 months before moving from Manchester and got to know the team at UNION BJJ quite well.

Speaking to John before the seminar about its contents, he expressed a strong wish for the focus to be on the topic of Survival. As an avid traveler and visitor of Jiujitsu gyms and academies everywhere I go, this topic is very close to my heart. I cannot guarantee that you will win every match or sparring round, but I can show you mechanical principles that will make you feel far more comfortable than usual while surviving bad positions. Heck, I'd even venture to say, if you drilled this principles properly and enough, positions will cease to be "bad" or "good" they will just be "grappling positions".

Here's a glimpse of the seminar curriculum:

Warm up with breath coordination with movement.

Fundamental Body Movements:
The bridge: the perfect positioning and two variations
The shrimp: three variations
The scoop

Opponent has your back: two positions
Opponent mounted on you: two positions
Opponent side-mounted on you: two positions
Opponent dominates you from the Half guard top position: two gateways of recovery

Transitional drills:
How to ensure you always have an appropriate response even when the opponent anticipates your recovery / escape tactics.

Sparring tactics: I shared my three (not so) secret tactics that use when visiting Jiujitsu academies and gyms all over the world to survive against eager grapplers trying to test the visitor guy. Also very useful when I enter the Open Weight division at competitions.

At the end of the Q&A section, I was very happy, John was very happy but most importantly ALL the seminar attendees were very happy. As a high school teacher by trade, I take great pride my curriculum design, lesson planning, delivery and assessment for learning methods so this meant a lot to me.

Post Grappling Pho hit the spot like a dream!

John and his gang have developed a beautiful spirit of openness down at UNION BJJ and they make their head instructor Parrumpa very proud. If you're ever their way make sure to drop in. I can't wait for my next visit.



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