Saturday, January 27, 2007

Video from Openmat 9 tournament

Here is a small video I made from a tournament we participated in last october. For some reasons, not all of our fights was filmed, so unfortunately I don't have any clips from the finales :(

It was a pretty good day the gym as we ended up with four gold, two silver and one bronze medal. I did not compete myself, as I was the organizer of event.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Bachelor Party Challenge Match

Last summer we had a grappling challenge match for a bachelor party. The soon-to-be-married challenger was fighting our instructor Ken Allen who weighed in more than 35 kilos lighter. I think this video is a prime example of how technique can be working against a big, strong guy.

By the way, I just realized that I never turned on anonymous commenting, so I hope that is probably why noone has commented any posts yet! :D It should now be possible to comment without having a Blogger account, so I am expecting floods of comments the next few days! :D

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Pimp my gi

I see gi pimping as one of the most important aspects of being a successful Brazilian Jiu Jitsu athlete. So I always collect tshirts with cool motives, cut them out and put them on my gi. Here are a few pictures from my latest project. The brown girl on the ass is a danish chokolate milk logo.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Geeks with social skills

Yesterday, I stumbled over this old clip from my previous gym. Well, I don't really know if I can call it "old", since the material in it is from late 2002 - early 2003.

It struck me, how cool it is, that the guys on the video from back then are the same guys, that I still enjoy training and being with today. Main difference is, that today, they are all top athletes within MMA and BJJ. Really skilled people that inspire me so much in my own training.

We have never had an instructor in our gym to teach us stuff, nor do we have one today. We have always been this little group of guys who have just enjoyed training, exploring, learning and having fun. Learning and evolving as a group is what have kept us together and that is what still keeps us together today, years later. We have evolved together and shared many great moments inside and outside the gym. For that I thank them all.

This little group that started out over 7 years ago has grown bigger along the years, and all these new guys go through the exact same as we did. All enjoying the process of learning and exploring new things. They too will become great athletes and great friends. Will it ever end? I don't think so. And I don't hope it will.

I talked to one of those guys, with whom I have trained with from the beginning, Thomas la Cour. Today, he is one of the best and most intelligent MMA fighters I know of. We talked about what us in this group of people had in common, and it struck us that we all shared a certain combination of two things. All of us have always been - in school, amongst friends, at work etc. - the geeks with social skills. I am sure all of you have had one of those in your class in school. The computer geek, roleplaying geek or school nerd with a high level of social interaction skills. The guys who are becoming a part of our group today are exactly the same. I can spot them from day one and it never fails.

Maybe this is the magic combination for producing highly intelligent fighting athletes? :)

By the way, don't listen to the song, I am a BIGTIME training addict :D

Sunday, January 21, 2007

BJJ fight at Battle of Copenhagen 3

Here is a video of a BJJ match I had at the Battle of Copenhagen 3 show, which was held in February 2005. I knew nothing about my opponent other than he was training some Jiu Jitsu system in Sweden. Apparently, he was a white belt in BJJ at that time, whereas I was blue. Didn't know about that before we stood in the ring. Really cool guy, before, under and after the fight btw.

Again, I see SO many aspects of my game that has improved since then, but it is also two years ago now :)

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Video of MMA training in my gym

Just some clips from our MMA classes in my gym. You even get to see yours truly training a little!! :D

Friday, January 19, 2007

My BJJ kids

This is a small video I made about 6 months ago with the kids from the BJJ kids class that I am teaching in my gym. Teaching kids is very much different from teaching adults, but even though it can be very energy consuming and take a lot of patience, I always enjoy to see them explore this sport. The first two of those kids are up for their yellow belt in a few weeks, I will be sure to post some pics/video from when they get it.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Submission Wrestling fight last summer

Here is a video of a Submission Wrestling match I fought last summer. As always, I could point out tons of points where I have improved since then. The fight was just before Ken Allen, our instructor from Oregon moved here, and I can really see how much he has taught me. My game has skyrocketed those last 7-8 months.

This is in the very early days of my Five Swords topgame project, but you can clearly see how I already utilize it back then.

I am the one wearing the awesome shorts.

Marcelo Garcias armdrag

I have been studying the videos of Marcelo Garcia doing his awesome armdrag takedown a lot lately. After I have played with it in the gym, this has in no time become my number one takedown. Probably the easiest I have come around for quite a while.

I thought of doing a little tutorial on how I execute the move, but I think that these videos with Marcelo himself are so good and inspirational, that I won't try to copy him.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Marcelo Garcia interview

I found the interview from Arte Suave, that inspired me to the post about creating a Plan B game. Very inspirational athlete!

Cardio made simple. No running included!!

This is a very simple cardio programme I used for my MMA fight and which I am gonna use for the guys in my class who are fighting amateur MMA and Submission Wrestling February 3rd here in Copenhagen.

The cool thing about it is, that it does not include running :) It is only heavybag work, but you could virtually do anything that gets your pulse up running. I did this every morning for 1,5 months for my MMA fight and I got in the shape of my life (cardio wise). Also, I lost 8 kilos and got a sixpack out of it :-D

Here is the deal:

In every work period, you have to work on the heavybag AS HARD AS POSSIBLE. You must do everything you can to get your pulse up as high as possible. Kicking, striking, knees, elbows, whatever it takes to work as hard as possible. No breaks, you go 110% untill the time is up.

In every rest period, you need to get your breath back, relax, get your pulse down, while at the same time moving around a little. So don't just lie down on the mat. Instead walk around slowly and do some very very light shadowboxing while at the same time relaxing as much as possible. It is like an active rest.

The workout itself is as follows:


Round one
15 seconds of work
15 seconds of rest

Repeat round 10 times (total of 15 x 2 x 10 = 300 seconds)

Rest for 10-12 minutes to get the pulse completely down.

Round two
30 seconds of work
30 seconds of rest

Repeat round 10 times (total of 30 x 2 x 10 = 600 seconds)


So the total worktime is 900 seconds = 15 minutes. Don't be fooled. Even though it doesn't sound like much, it is REALLY though. It you give it everything you have in the workperiods, this will skyrocket your cardio in no time.

Now go play!

My MMA fight

I have fought a single professional MMA fight in my carreer. It was back in December 2003. The very first fight in the very first European Vale Tudo show.

Fighting was generally a good experience. Training for the fight was really hard, did an hour of Muay Thai sparring every morning with MMA gloves and a cardio programme after that. I didn't really train much groundfighting for the fight, which was kind of ironic given the outcome of the fight. I guess I already felt comfortable on the ground and I just needed to get used to the feeling of getting punched in the face. And I did :) After all that sparring I couldn't care less when somebody hit me in training, it was pretty cool although it resultet in that I could not eat much more than youghurt for the last few weeks up to the fight because my jaw hurt so much :-D

During the takedown in the fight, I injured my shoulder badly. It wasn't till the second I stepped out of the cage that I actually felt it was very bad. I was out from training in 6 months after the fight, could only do guard defense with no hands. No lifting weights, which sucked, because I had lost almost 8 kilos for the fight and weighed only 74 kilos. I was one skinny kid LOL :) It took me over 1,5 years before I could do benchpress motion with a little resistance again. Fucking sucked. If I knew it would've happend, I would never have fought. And I didn't even get hit in the fight, how ironic is that!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Video from BJJ class in my gym

Here is a video I made back in august. It is just different clips from the BJJ class in my gym. There is a lot of good instruction and sparring footage in it.

I want to make a new one soon, people have gotten so much better and we have gotten a lot of cool stuff in the gym since then. I think I will film it when Ken is coming back from "vacation" next month :)

Two moves from Reverse Scarfhold

These are two moves that I use all the time from the reverse scarfhold position. One is a way to get to the mount position that I find really high percentage, and the other is kind of a reverse brabo choke. The mount detail, I learned from my friend and instructor Ken Allen and have used it very successfully since he showed it to me.

I am explaining all the details in the clip, also briefly touching the subject of the Five Swords topgame relevance in the positions.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Let him go / Creating a "Plan B game"

Ok I am explaining most of this in the video, but I'll write some of it as well :)

I was watching the interview with Marcelo Garcia in Arte Suave, where he talks about how he always let's his training partner escape from positions and submissions, only to notice what then happens and how he can benefit from the situation. It changed my game over night, and the more I let people go instead of just finishing the submission (as I have done a thousands time before), the more new possibilities opened up for me.

In this example, I show how letting my opponent escape an armbar sets up a beautiful omo plata. If I let him roll out of it, I have another armbar waiting.

For competition, or any other fight where I want to finish it as fast as possible, I would ofcourse just finish the submission right away. But in training, I want to prepare for every possible situation, and am i fighting someone in a competition, it is most likely that he is at least on my own level and therefore capable of escaping most of my submissions. That means, I cannot beat him solely on pulling a submission that he doesn't know, but instead I have to be one step ahead of him and catch him there. Letting him escape so he thinks he is on his way out, then taking advantage of that for setting up another submission is one way to do it. I have a Plan B waiting for him beartrap-style and I am baiting him to step right into it.

I hope you enjoy this little video, it is only a few small techniques, but in training, try to play more and let your opponent escape in different ways. You will be surprised how much it will help your game.

Sidechoke from backmount escape

Here is another old series I have shot with my friend Kári. Sidechoke counter when opponent tries to roll out of the backmount position.

Start with the backmount, with the over/under grip (or harness as it's often called).

A common escape from the backmount is to fall to your side, and then using the floor to keep your opponent in place while you circle to face him (ending up in guard). If your opponent tries this, and falls to the side shown in the picture, then this is one possible counter.

As he starts turning into you, you put your left foot on the floor, taking the hook out, and throw your left arm over his arm to set up the sidechoke.

Doing this with the right timing, you should be able to pull your right foot from under him and securing the sidechoke grip.

From there simply finish the sidechoke whichever way you prefer. I prefer this method, but trying to maintain a 90° angle with his body and to keep my weight lower then in this pic.

Tuesday, January 9, 2007

Welcome to my world! :)

About a year and a half ago, I made the website The idea was to create a community, where BJJ and MMA enthusiastics could share techniques, drills, ideas, etc. I still think the idea is great, but unfortunately it never really worked out, since almost noone was willing to put in the time to upload stuff to the site.

So that project has been a little forgotten for the last year or so. Then recently, my friend Matt Kirtley (who was one of the few very active users on MMAlibrary) started a Jiu Jitsu journal ( I never really had the time to look into it untill a few weeks ago. I was caught. There was no turning back. I had to do something similar :) Also, I had been following for a longer period and always liked the idea. I am not making this blog to compete with the other guys, but only because I think it is a great way to communicate and share information with people of same interest. It is my contribution to the BJJ community.

So, here I am. will be closed within a short period of time, and this will be my new place to share my thoughts and experiences with Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. I might have a little different approach to it than some of you, but hopefully we can all learn something from eachother and together enjoy this amazing sport that I love so much.

I don't believe in keeping secrets. I truly believe that sharing information is the way forward for our sport to keep developing and expanding in the future. I will write a piece on this later, but to sum it up - this blog will be my place to share all my secret moves and strategies. Hopefully to inspire someone out there, whoever you are, to do something simliar. In the end, we should all benefit from it. What you give is what you get!

Welcome to the world of Zhoozhitzu do Graugardo!

A simple way of thinking topgame...

I have played this topgame for quite a while now, but it is not untill recently that I actually started to think about what I have been doing. I am trying to think a little outside the box positionwise, so the game has no fixed positions, nor does it follow the fundamental five for topgame. For many years I have been fixed in the 3 basic topgame positions, but this new way of putting my game in system has completely thrown that away for me. Positions is now kind of made up along the way. May sound silly, but works really well for me.

It is really simple. All I think about when playing topgame is controlling at least one of five parts of my opponents body, in this text called "control points". Each control point has an objective which is fulfilled, if I grab one or more "handles" for that bodypart. If I control one or more I am ok, if I control none, I have to turn it up and get one quickly. And apart from being aware of the guard, that is all I do to prevent my opponent from escaping. I don't block the guard with hand/foot/hip always, as some of the "handles" for the control points makes it impossible for my opponent to pull guard anyway. Neither do I worry too much about my opponent getting the underhook, as many of the handles combined with correct weight distribution will nullify that completely.

What these handles do is ofcourse "just" to keep my opponent either flat or turned away from me, which prevents him from escaping in other ways than turning away from me. If he choose to do that, I attack the back.

Below, I have listed the control points, the objectives and some examples of "handles" that I grab to control as many of the five as possible. There are probably more, but these are what I use. In the bottom, I have posted a little videoclip, where I play this topgame in isolation.

Hope this is usefull for someone out there :)


Here are the five control points:

1. The head
2. The near side elbow
3. The near side knee
4. The far side knee
5. The far side shoulder

Ze Master Gameplan:
- Prevent opponent from turning into you by controlling at least one of the five control points. Preferably two or more.
- Be aware of the guard
- If opponent gets on his side, move 180 degrees around his head and control handles on opposite side right away.
- If opponent turns away from you, go to harness.


Control point one - The head
Objective: Keep head turned up or away from you.

Crossface / Shoulder of Justice.

Use forearm to turn head.



Grab shoulder for one-armed prybar.

Grab gi behind neck for one-armed prybar.

Control point 2 - The near side arm
Objective: Keep elbow from touching the mat.

Lift arm above elbow.

Hold elbow up using thigh.

Kill arm using hip.

Sprawl on arm.

Control point 3 - The near side knee
Objective: Keep knee from touching the mat.

Scissorgrip with hand.

Scissorgrip with foot.

Grab leg and lift.

Lift knee with thigh.

Control point 4 - The far side knee
Objective: Keep knee from crossing opponents centerline.

Underhook leg - diapercheck.

Scissorgrip with hand.

Scissorgrip with foot.

Control Point 5 - The far side shoulder
Objective: Keep shoulder touching the mat

Underhook and put weight on shoulder.

Overhook and put weight on shoulder.


Now all you have to do to play topgame is control at least one of these at all times :)

Here is a little videoclip of me playing around with this in some isolation:

I don't move very well in this clip because I have a f*cked up back injury, I am going to make a new clip when my back gets better. But you probably get the idea. I control at least one point always using the handles. If my opponent turns into me, I go 180. If he turns away, I take the back.

Now go play ze zhoozhits!

(Thanks to Ken Allen for the help on the pics and video)

Guard Surfing: The New Generation

This if funny for those who are familiar with the Guard Surfing drill :)







Hip in.


Taking the back.

The Old School (before aliveness)

The New School (after Aliveness)

Stupid kids :)

New Guard Surfing passing photo series

We have been working a lot on developing new guard passes from the Guard Surfing drills. Here is one we have been having a lot of success with:

Example of how to defend this pass: