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Legends DVD

January 30, 2008

The “Jujutsu Legends” DVD I enjoyed very much.

But it should be noted that it’s not an instructional DVD. It feels more like a surfing DVD you’d find for sale at Quicksilver or any other surf shop. Complete with smooth chill lounge/hip hop background music and even a surfing chapters. I’m not surprized. The DVD is called “Jiujitsu Lifestyle” and somehow surfing, the beach, a relaxed way of life goes hand in hand with jiu-jitsu. It’s a natural fit. And that might be the key to truly understanding BJJ. More on that later.

On the DVD are segments on Royler Gracie (the guy I’d most identify with in the BJJ world, I believe he’s the smallest of the Gracies and being a small guy myself gotta represent), Leonard Vierira, Demian Maia, Kid Periglo and Ronald Jacare.

The DVD also has three matches from the PanAm 2007 tournament and, by far my favorite part of the DVD, a segment on Naoya Uematsu. Told ya I was getting to him last post.

Just a reminder about who Naoya Uematsu is: Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu-jitsu and a professional Shooto fighter.

In his part of the DVD, Naoya travels Southern California to take lessons and spar with: Jean Jacques Machado, Eddie Bravo, Javier Vazquez, and Rani Yahya. Here are some screenshots.

Naoya vs Jean Jacques.

Gaining the back.

Working a submission. Jean Jacques was actually working for a rear collar choke and transitioned to a beautiful armbar. Jeez, I miss rolling with a gi.

Next up is Eddie Bravo vs Naoya.

“That move doesn’t usually work on little guys. That’s one of the rare moves that works on big guys…. But his neck is so big, he felt like a big guy.”

Here’s the move (really a submission) that Eddie was talking about. Set up from Eddie’s famous rubber guard, seconds away from the finish.

Next we have Javier Vazquez vs Naoya.

Somebody’s happy to have a new partner to choke out.

No idea how they got into this position. And I’ve watched the scene at least six times. But it leads to this —

A rear naked choke. It’s a thing of beauty. I’d name my firstborn child “Mata Leo” if it meant she/he’d be bad ass in jiu-jitsu. And if I was high.

And finally to close up, Rani Yahya vs Naoya.

Rani introducing Naoya and his crew.

A really bad snapshot of Rani and Naoya after the class.

Rani working a guillotine. He submits Naoya pretty quickly. Seconds away from tapping.

Gaining the back (a recurring theme) and again seconds away from finishing.


Fluidity is absent if you’re a Japanese practioner of BJJ

Yep, I’ll go on record with this. The way Naoya rolls when you place him against these other practioners is hard, linear and stiff. Much like every single Judoka I’ve seen and gone up against here in Japan.

I suppose it may have something to do with the way the Japanese train here in virtually everything they do. Rigid and automatic. Everything is the same. The process is the same. From Shodo to taking the Driver’s License test. It’s the same.

Japanese have an outstanding work ethic

This stems from the hard, linear way of doing things. Because everything is the same, the proceedure is the same, it develops a very specific and diligent manner of performance. And when one trains at that specific level they’ll always perform at that level.

Granted Naoya is a professional fighter and granted he got tapped many times when he sparred, it should be pointed out that he was not in the least bit winded when sparring ended. Everyone else, save Jean Jacques and Eddie Bravo – who had something done on his arm, looked a bit tired.

I guess that’s like asking whether or not you’d want to have Sherk’s conditioning or Penn’s skill level.

Me? I want both.

Oh and I found vids on youtube to two of the sparring matches found on the DVD. Eddie vs Naoya is here. And Rani vs Naoya here. Enjoy.

Train hard.

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