Grapplers Retreat is a training camp that is located in the Mendocino Coast in Northern California. Unlike other camps, Grappler’s Retreat is a unique program that strives to bring the jiu-jitsu community together thus providing a memorable training experience for those in attendance. In this interview we talk with the head director of the program Alex Aftandilians has he tell us the details on what makes this camp special.
How did the grappler’s retreat program get started?
Alex: Grappler's Retreat started as a loose idea after I first visited the Mendocino coast, and became a reality after I met a small group of grapplers who had already been training here under the tutelage of Antonio Almeida, a Brazilian Top Team instructor. Antonio had moved to Mendocino from Brazil a few years before I made the move from Los Angeles. When I met Antonio and his group, I shared some of my ideas with him, and soon after we became partners is the establishment of Grappler's Retreat. Read More >>
Motivation can be describe as a driving force by which humans use to achieve their goals. Everyone in life is driven toward a particular goal. Not matter obstacles they have to encounter, it is motivation that allows an individual to meet those challenges in order to reach the goal they wish to accomplish. The same can be said when it come to practitioners in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
BJJ Legends took the time to have an in-depth conversation with top BJJ and Grapplers in the world to ask them what has kept them motivated through their BJJ journey. Keep up with BJJ Legends to read the continuing series.
Being a fan of MMA it is common to have an individual that we look up to. Although these iconic figures inspire us to peruse a particular direction in life, not known to us there are heroes that have made a strong contribution to society, out side the sport of MMA.
U.S Serviceman, Soldiers have been labeled as some of the greatest heroes of our time for their commitment and sacrifice for our country. Some of these individuals you can find training on the mats in various BJJ and MMA schools. In this article BJJLegends showcases some of the soldiers that train in BJJ and MMA.
Read on about Robert Kristopher Moe, Todd Templeton,Brett Cottrell, Bo Francy, Chris “The Exorcist” Price, Brandon Magan, Click Here >>
It is said that adversity introduces an individual to himself. For BJJ/MMA instructor James Clingerman the struggles he endured in his life have shaped him into the positive driven individual he is today. Born and raised in Indianapolis, "Indiana" James had a normal life growing up. As a child he showed a great interest in martial arts. “I use to watch old Kung-Fu movies, read dozens of martial arts books and even practice moves on my little sister, “he said.
Starting Jiu-Jitsu at the Begining
Although he displayed a love for martial arts, James was very bashful as a kid. Going through this phase was very troublesome for him especially in school. “Although, I managed to get good grades, school was hell for me because I couldn’t function well in a group of people. Today I would probably have been diagnosed with Social Anxiety Disorder, with a little OCD, “he said. After many years of going through this problem, in an effort to bring him out his shell, his dad would eventually enroll him into Karate thus giving James the strength and confidence he needed to face whatever life threw at him it turned out to be the best move in James’s life.
It was just two weeks ago that Caio Terra once again added another pan am title to his already impressive resume. After his amazing performance, during an interview with Budovideos.com, Caio made a strong statement that sent shockwaves throughout the jiu-jitsu universe concerning the use of steroids. In this interview we sit down with the man behind this controversy as he discuses how the use of steroids ruin our sport.
Steroids have been an issue that has never been touched on in our sport, what was your reason for touching on the issue at the pan ams? Caio: I wanted to win and still talk about it. Cause if I have lost and said something they would call me a bad loser. The thing is that this has been going on for years and the only few people who doesn’t do it are scared of touching this subject. I had my car all scratched after the tournament and got threaded by many people.
What was the automatic response you got from your fans and peers? Read More...
Mark Holst and his Jiu-Jitsu study are only a piece of his MMA experience.
For 25-year-old MMA fighter Mark Holst his life in the sport can be defined by one principal “Act as if it were Impossible to fail”.
Born in 1985 in Ottawa, Ontario back when the movie Rocky IV was released Holst had a good up brining growing up showcasing great signs of enthusiasm, drive, & exploration for the things life had to offer. He was constantly active from his adolescent to his teen years participating in sports such as skiing, tennis, and soccer. These character traits made his transition into martial arts very easy.
An enthusiast is a person who is ardently attached to a cause, object, or pursuit. While most Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) practitioners' main focus is to reach world championship status. There are some that just have a genuine love for the art. Here, we take a look at how a man took his love for martial arts and turned it into a successful business that has helped take Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu to the mainstream.
Jake Mckee better known as “Budo Jake” has been involved in martial arts since 1987.Although he was well aware of Jiu-jitsu after watching the first UFC, it wasn’t until 2004 when Marcio Feitosa moved to the US that he started training BJJ at Gracie Barra which he automatically became hooked on the art. In addition to his training, he is also the owner of a very familiar martial arts company and is the host of a highly popular online show called “Rolled Up.” With most of his days spent at work and most of his evenings on the mat training or filming episodes it is evident that martial arts has literally became his life 24/7.
It is said that nothing great in this world is accomplished without passion. If you look back at great athletes over the years their love and passion for what they did allowed them to become remarkably great at their work. For 43 year-old Jay Zeballos, his passion for martial arts has not only lead him to many great achievements as a competitor but has also opened up the door to more financial opportunities and touch many people’s lives along the way.
While most forms of marital arts rely solely on katas, forms, and constant repetition, in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu... most of the techniques we learn must be used with a training partner. Everyday on the mat we come in contact with different people each with their own unique style of doing Jiu-Jitsu, some providing a great help in our training, while others crippling our progression. Over the years there have been different opinions on what defines a good training partner. In an effort to find out the mystery to this question, I got the opportunity to interview someone that knows what being a good training partner all about...
[social][/social][einset][/einset]Team Lloyd Irvin Black Belt Jay Hayes is a BJJ practitioner that has been doing Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu for over seven years. With a several wins in many tournaments and running one of the best schools in New Jersey (NJ United MMA-www.NJUnitedMMA.com), Jay Hayes is considered by many as one of the best American Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Black Belts out there today. Aside from being a great competitor and coach, Jay has also been the training partner for many notable figures that you see ripping up the tournament scene today and has been quoted by Jiu-Jitsu phenom JT “Spiderman” Torres as the guy that has helped him prepare and win at some of the toughest BJJ tournaments such as: the Pan American Games and Brazilian Nationals.
(Check out Matt's charity www.FightIIWalk.com) It said that “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy”. "Everyday in bjj and in our daily lives we are often forced to deal with obstacles which prevent us from living happy lives. Whether it is dealing with a stream of loses in competition, a serious injury, or even losing your job.
Whatever the case may be it is clear that sometimes life can be pretty unfair. However in a lot of cases those problems that we are forced to deal with are merely roadblocks that try to stop us from reaching the true goals that we wish to accomplish in life. Take MMA fighter Matt Betzold for example. A 26-year-old fighter from Phoenix, Arizona Matt Betzold has had many tough battles on the mat and in the cage.