In this episode, Atos Black Belt JT Torres talks about motivation for competing, training, and finally opening up his own academy.
He is one of the most well rounded Jiujitsu competitors out there and has had notable wins over some of the best including Lucas Lepri, Murilo Santana, Clark Gracie, and Michael Langi.
The ADCC Bronze medalist returns this year to try and take gold as he competes in one of the most difficult brackets we have ever seen, EVER!
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Before Brazilians knew anything about jiu-jitsu, the Japanese developed the gentle art. Japanese jiu-jitsu/judo was officially introduced to the Gracies when Japanese martial artist Mitsuyo Maeda and Gastão Gracie met ringside at a fight on November 5th, 1916. Maeda was traveling around the world with his friend and fellow fighter, Satake, demonstrating their techniques by defeating a hundred plus men of other disciplines. Gastão Gracie was a businessman and helped Maeda find his footing in Brazil. In return, Maeda taught Gastão’s son, Carlos, the techniques of Japanese jiu-jitsu. Carlos took what he learned and began to teach Brazil.
While Carlos was busy throwing people around on the mats, his brother Helio sat on the sidelines, under doctor’s orders. Helio was skinny and weak for no reason anyone could find, so almost everyone was cautious to allow him to train.
As the legend goes, a student showed up, looking for Carlos one day. Helio saw an opportunity and decided to offer to teach the student what he’d memorized watching his brother train in jiu-jitsu. But Helio’s technique was a bit different; he modified movements as needed for his frail frame. Helio’s new student was hooked and said he’d like to return to the mats under Helio’s instruction instead.
Carlos and Helio knew they stumbled on something. They worked together to make sure they modified the techniques of Japanese jiu-jitsu/judo to leverage the weakness of Helio’s frail body. They found strength in weakness and Gracie Jiu-Jitsu was born.
To put their technique to the test, Helio took on challengers. While the size of Helio’s opponents and the results of his matches over the years were correct across the board, Gracie Jiu-Jitsu survived. A large part of the legacy was born out of their publicity. In 1925, Carlos opened an academy in Rio and one advertisement supposedly read, “If you want your face smashed and split open, your backside kicked and your arms broken, contact Carlos Gracie at this address.”
The story came full circle when Helio caught wind of some Japanese challengers in Brazil. Under the leadership of Masahiko Kimura, the Japanese fighters were visiting from the Imperial Academy. Kimura offered Helio the chance to fight his disciple, Kato. The two tangled for the first time on September 6, 1951 in front of a crowd of tens of thousands. While Kato threw Helio around like a ragdoll, their first fight ended in a draw. They came together again for a rematch on September 29, in São Paulo, when Kato found himself caught and choked unconscious. The weak had won.
Kato’s defeat was enough to convince the larger and strongest Kimura to challenge Gracie Jiu-Jitsu and take on Helio. Kimura claimed he would defeat Helio in under three minutes but when the match went much longer, Kimura was dumbfounded. The bout ended in the second round after Kimura briefly put Helio to sleep, and upon waking up, trapped Helio in the arm lock we now know as the kimura. Carlos tapped the mat to surrender and save his brother’s arm from being snapped. Nevertheless, Kimura returned to Japan impressed with how far and advanced the Gracie family had brought Jiu-Jitsu.
Even as jiu-jitsu continues to grow around the world, there is no denying Helio Gracie was integral in the evolution. It was never about winning as much as it was about expressing the art and the technique through embracing weakness and vulnerability. Understanding your limitations brings clarity and Helio transformed the gentle way for the better.
What weakness helps you show the art?
By Daniel Scharch
Show the Art Presents:
The Finishers Sub-Only 4
**Updated Start time: 12:15pm first match will begin and it will be live streamed on the Show the Art Youtube page for free
Venue: Pure Mixed Martial Arts – 41 Pine St #12, Rockaway, NJ 07866
Weigh ins begin at 9am
Winner takes 2,000 per division
$250 – Fastest Submission
$250 – Best non-leglock Submission
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JM Holland (10th Planet Bethlehem) is a Brown Belt under Eddie Bravo. He will be competing for the third time at STA Finishers! He always brings an exciting match and will be competing in Combat EBI in March.
He will be competing in our 145lbs division.
This event will feature two 16 man brackets at 145 and 170 with the winner taking 2 grand for first place. We will also debut 4 kids/teen match ups. All live from Pure MMA in Rockaway, NJ.
We will be streaming the event LIVE from our youtube page!
Video shot by Samuel Rivera Films
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The historic UFC 205 at Madison Square Garden is upon us and we have put together a contest to spread the excitement!
Our UFC 205 Pick Em’ Contest! Starts today….ends 7pm November 12, 2016.
All you have to do is:
-Pick the winner of each fight
-Pick the round the fight ends in
-Pick the manner in which the winner will claim victory
-You get 1 point for every correct answer
-Picking the WINNER rules all
-If you incorrectly pick the winner, but the round and finish were correct…you DO NOT get points
-You only get points for round/finish if you pick the correct winner
-If there is a tie in points, we will go buy who selected the MOST correct winners
-If there is still a tie, we will go by method of finish… then round
-You must enter by 7PM EST (NYC time) the night of the fights 11/12
-The winners will be announced the next day 11/13
-We will be contacting the winners personally via email first, so please submit an email address you frequently check. Also, make sure we don’t go to your spam folder
-STA prize pack include our NEW rash guard and tee shirt
-A bag of coffee from KIMERA KOFFEE
-93 BRAND prize pack including shorts and a rash guard
-A prize pack of soap from THE ARMBAR SOAP CO
-STA tee shirt
-A bag of coffee from KIMERA KOFFEE
-93 RBAND tee shirt
-Soap from the ARMBAR SOAP CO
We appreciate everyone’s support and participation! Lets make this thing blow up the inter webs!
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Each month we will be giving away free gear to ONE random subscriber. All you have to do is subscribe to our newsletter. As long as you are subscribed, you have a chance to be selected. Literally we will select at random, so everyone has an equal chance to win. This month we are giving away a free Show the ART Mandala tank top! Winners will be notified via email so make sure we aren’t in your spam list!
Next month, in addition to our monthly giveaway, we will be launching contests to win much more. Stay subscribed and we will keep you updated!
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Head on over to www.BJJHQ.com to get our exclusive new Jiujitsu gi!
It is called the DARK MATTER gi and it’s our second collaboration with Inverted Gear.
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Super comfortable and reliable!
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Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson is a man of spinning back flips, spinning back kicks, and super shiny gold championships in his future. After his exquisitely technical win over Rory MacDonald (UFC Fight Night), he will tell you the title shot is inevitable.
“This was the most nervous I’ve ever been before a fight,” Thompson said on the most recent episode (#38) of the Show the ART Podcast. “Just because I really wasn’t sure exactly what he was gonna go out there in the octagon and do.”
A few years back, Wonderboy traveled up north to the famous TriStar Gym, to train with one of the elite coaches in the world, Firas Zahabi. TriStar is the home of legend and long time welterweight king, Georges St Pierre, and his ever evolving protege, Rory MacDonald. So the story goes they had trained together and were always cordial, but had never sparred together. The important thing to point out is that both guys learned about each other’s fight strategies, which played an important role in their highly anticipated fight on June 18, 2016.
“Three weeks before the fight, we were rolling and I was like you know what…watch him try the Ryan Hall flying heel hooks,” Thompson said. Ryan Hall comes from a prestigious Jiujitsu pedigree and is well versed in leg lock attacks. (Google Ryan Hall BJJ matches, he is an incredible grappler!)
“I knew he was gonna do it because I know he’s a heel hook guy,” said Thompson of Rory MacDonald. “I was like watch him go out there, try and throw one of those flying heel hooks in the first round and try and make a statement.”
Rory attempted a couple of solid Imanari roll attacks on Thompson and it truly did make a huge statement in the fight. The first one in particular was very precise and in my eyes, Thompson escaped by the skin of his knees. (If you don’t know what an Imanari roll is, google it haha! Seriously, google it.) It is used mainly to set up heel hook submissions, which are dangerous to the knee. It was popularized by a former MMA fighter by the name of Imanari Masakazu.
“I’ve done some training with Ryan Hall and I knew Ryan would go up to TriStar and do some training up there as well,” Thompson said. Referring to the heel hook (Imanari roll) attacks, Thompson said, “thats something they were working on.”
All in all, Rory MacDonald put up an excellent fight and showed how skillful he is. He did an excellent job complicating the rhythm that Wonderboy likes to fight at, which forced both fighters to become extremely methodical in their “in-game” strategy. In the end though, Thompson’s striking proved to be too much for MacDonald and he won via unanimous decision.
If Wonderboy doesn’t get the next W.W. title shot, it will be a crime against humanity and all that is right with the world.
If you are a little more interested in what Wonderboy had to say, please check out the rest of this podcast episode by visiting iTunes or Stitcher and searching Show the ART Podcast : MMA & Sports.
You can also visit our website and watch all the episodes there!
Denny Prokopos is a man that may be flying below the radar as a favorite in what seems to be one of the most star studded “sub-only” grappling events of the year.
“Preperation has already started,” Denny said on a recent episode of the Show the ART Podcast. “I had a European tour where I did a seminar tour…right when I got back, Eddie (Bravo) told me, he’s like…GET READY.”
Denny is an EBI (Eddie Bravo Invitational) veteren and EBI 2 Champion. He is coming off a loss from EBI 5 and looking to redeem himself after suffering from a terrible staff infection two weeks before the competition. He is back now and has a laser sharp focus on the gold.
Denny went on to talk about his preparation and how visualization and note taking play huge roles in his progression.
“I’m very happy with the results I am getting in training,” Denny said. “Especially when I look at all the years of how I was doing in training, when I look back at my notes, as I’m reflecting…I feel that I’m making the best progress on the jiujitsu, the wrestling, the strength & conditioning coming together.” “I have copious notes since the age of twelve. …how I’m doing in training, and how I’m learning, I can learn quicker now.”
He explains how his consistent note taking before and after training has helped him improve his game. Going back and reading notes on how he was feeling can benefit him by understand what was going through his mind during the good or bad sessions. He can then harness these feeling to future sessions and/or competitions to help be at his best. His notes also help him track his progress on how he was moving and training with all his training partners.
“When you’re fighting, you need to be clear,” Prokopos continued. “The more clear you see things, the more clear victory is.” “Victory is more clear to the one that knows himself better.”
His mental clarity is at an all-time high and in his mind is the champion already. It will be a tough task, as he facing some of the best grapplers in the country. People like EBI Champs Eddie Cummings or Geo Martinez will be waiting for him before he can claim the throne. He will have to get passed the dynamic Jose Gutierrez in the first round and the competition will only get increasingly difficult from there.
Click on the video above to listen to the entire interview or download it now (& subscribe) on iTunes.