Thursday, December 31, 2009

Bodymechanics drills - Rickson style!!

I think that bodymechanics is a skill you need to work on just like you need to work on technique, strength and cardio. It is something you can do on your own and for me personally, it has really benefitted my game a lot.

I have a pretty large repertoire of bodymechanics drills in my game at the moment, and I am showing my most common in this video. I have not really learned them from anywhere specific, but picked them up a few at a time along the way from seminars, training with different people, ginastica natural videos, capoeira training and also made a few up myself. I hope you can use some of the drills yourself, I would recommend anyone to do them or something similar as a part of their grappling training.

I've wanted to do this video for a very long time, since it is something that people ask me about quite often. Finally I got it done, and I really hope you like it, cause I had sand EVERYWHERE when I was finished LOL

Enjoy :)

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Going to Thailand

I am going back to Thailand tuesday next week, and will be there for two weeks. I was there in February with my girlfriend and it was an amazing trip. Primary plan is to relax on a beach while all the Christmas craziness is passing by at home, but I will also visit a few gyms down there and see what I can find of training.

I will be in Tiger Muay Thai from the 16th-20th, where my friend Philip will try to get an MMA fight at the BBQ Beatdown event on the 19th. Hopefully they can find an opponent for him. After that we go to Koh Phangan, and I will try and drop by Jungle Gym, who supposedly should have some grappling training too.

If anyone who reads this is in those camps at the same time, let me know and we can do some training :)

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


Thanks to everyone who congratulated me on my promotion. Ofcourse it is a nice acknowledgement of the time and work I have put into BJJ, but I must say, that what I am most proud of, is the fact that we just managed to hand out 11 blue belts and 5 purple belts to our team. I am honored that all these guys are inspired by the training and feel like putting so much effort into reaching these milestones together. I hope they - and many others to come - will continue to enjoy this amazing sport with me for a long time :)

Monday, December 7, 2009

Faixa Marrom

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Video from latest turnament in Sweden :)

Went to a turnament in Sweden this weekend with a team of about 20 guys. Lots of beginners joined in who did great. Really looking forward to work with these talents in the future :)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Training with Augusto Ferrari

Last night, I had the pleasure of training with Augusto Ferrari, who dropped by my gym to do a little workshop. He was teaching 90 minutes no-gi and 90 minutes gi.

I really enjoyed the training and liked his game a lot. He was all about base and pressure. I especially liked his guardpassing game which was almost identical to what Martin Aedma showed me in Estonia. Crazy pressure and balance, it was impossible to sweep him in any direction.

Another thing I really liked, was how he opened up his game when he was sparring. Although I felt he could crush me anytime, he was rolling very light and fluid, giving me some openings here and there instead of just closing me down. Awesome sparring with a very impressive grappler.

I got a little video from the training. It is me in the first round of sparring. Unfortunately, it is a little out of focus, gotta blame the cameraman for that ;)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Eighties style montage video

Here is my latest video of my BJJ Junior Team in competition:

Check back soon, as I have tons of little projects for this blog going these days :)

Friday, October 16, 2009

I think this is funny

I made this video during a long discussion on a danish martial arts forum with some Kyusho guys who believe in "pressure point knockouts". I had nothing else to do that day, so it ended up being a pretty long debate. I failed, however, to manage to get anyone with the "skills" to do a demonstration/test, so in the end, I decided to test it myself. The foundation of combat sports is, as we all know, constant testing of technique in sparring and competition, so why not give this a chance as well ;)

Hope you enjoy the video! (For further entertainment, I recommend reading the comments on the YouTube page as well)

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Got a visit from Robson Barbosa and Mauro Salomao last night

About a month ago, I met this guy Robson at a tournament in Sweden. We got to talk and he offered to come by my gym to teach a bit. He is normally teaching in Helsingborg, which is not too far away from Copenhagen where I am located, so I thought it would be a good idea.

Last night, he dropped by together with his friend Mauro and they taught a good gi class. It was the more traditional approach to training that I have experienced in a lot of gyms around in the world, but nevertheless it was interesting and a tough workout with some really good sparring too. Two light, technical grapplers (with seriously impressive grip strength!!]) always makes up for some good rolls.

I learned some cool details and is looking forward to do some more training with the two in the future.

Congratulations, Gunnar.

Watch out for this guy!!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

My new approach to sidecontrol escapes

As you might have read in one of my recent posts, I am trying to force myself to focus more on escaping sidecontrol, since I think it is the biggest weakness in my game.

I was trying to make an agreement with myself, that I would do at least five escapes every day of training. It worked pretty well in the beginning, but along the way I caught myself forgetting it and not doing any escapes some days. So now I am trying something else. My 1000 flighthours project has been a really good way for me to set a goal for my training, so I have decided to do something similar with my sidecontrol escapes.

In my top secret BJJ notebook, I have made a little table, where I set an X every time I succesfully have escaped sidecontrol in sparring:

My first goal is to reach 100 escapes, then see where that takes me. I will also keep track of the counting here in the blog (look in the right coloumn).

Monday, September 21, 2009

Going to ADCC in Barcelona friday

It never really appealed to me to watch a grappling tournament in a Middle East desert, so when I found out that the ADCC was held in Barcelona this year, I decided to go check it out.

Looking forward to see the biggest submission wrestling competition of all and ofcourse to spend three days in sunny Barcelona on the beach, now it is starting to get a little colder up here in the north :)

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Video of our facilities

I just put together this video for our website:

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Kids Team moving forward

The last month since I posted last time, has been really good training wise. No injuries worth mentioning, and I have gotten a solid amount of training, sparring and teaching done. The gym is really crowded with people, and it is very, very warm to train there, especially with the gi. I just imagine it is like training in Brazil :D

One of my projects that I care about very much, is my team of BJJ kids. We started this class about four years ago, and in the beginning it was very much a "play and have fun" thing. There was no real goal with the training and we went to one tournament and lost all our fights big. Along the years, this has really changed, and the last year or so, the team has seriously taken off, both training- and ambitionwise. When we started, we had a small group of 7-10 year olds. It was pretty difficult to have them to any "serious" training. They grew older and we changed the age limit of the class to 11-15. Also, I have made set some very specific competition goals for the team and made it clear to anyone who wanted to join, that we train for competing and we expect them to be serious about it. Ofcourse, the training is still fun for the kids and the vibe of the team is most important. Also, noone is ever forced to compete if they don't feel like it.

Obviously, a team like this will naturally limit the number of kids who feel like participating, and I think that is a good thing. I would rather have 10 dedicated students than 40 non-dedicated that are going nowhere. At this moment, we have about 15 very dedicated kids, who train and compete together as a team. It is extremely satisfying to see how they do in competition now compared to how they did four years ago.

Also, I have learned a lot as a coach and teacher from the process. Teaching and coaching kids is really a very different thing than with adults, but I think I have settled on a good formula now and I am very confident that we can make it very far, as long as they feel like going on.

This weekend we went to a competition in Sweden (approx. 70 participants) and did really well. I put together a small highlight video, hope you enjoy it.

Watch out for us at the 2013 Europeans!! ;)

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Took some photos of my gym

About 6 months ago, we moved our gym down the hall to a bigger location. Since then, we have been putting a looot of work, time and money into building it up to be the way we want it. Finally, I feel like we are almost there. We would still like to get some mirrors in and a cage wall, but we need to save up some more money before that can be done.

Our (me and my business- and trainingpartner, Carsten) philosophy with the gym has since day one been to try and create the best possible training environment. Obviously, people have a very different opinion on, what that is, but the gym you see in the photos are our perception of a very good physical training environment. Ofcourse, there is also a human-, social- and training/teaching side of "the best environment", which we also put a lot of focus and work into daily.

With a good training environment follows everything else. Attendance, good vibe, serious training, etc., that all leads to performance, be it fitness, weightloss, social aspects, competition results or just sportstraining for the sake of sportstraining. At least that is our philosophy :)

I always try and travel as much as possible to visit gyms around the world, and I am also up for "returning the favor" to the community, so whoever wants to drop by Denmark for some training, feel free to come and knock on our door any day!

Hope you enjoy the photos! (click panoramas for higher resolution)

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

729 Flighthours video

Alright, so I finally made a new sparring video for my flighthours project. Since I started, I have been sparring for a total of 271 hours. This time I have made sure, that the video contains both gi, no-gi and MMA sparring. I have had a tendency to put mostly no-gi video up for some reason.

I am sitting and looking back at older videos in the project, and I realize, that my game really hasn't changed that much strategically since I started over two years ago. I have heard many times, that purple belt is where you define your game and from there it is all finetuning and adjusting the rest of the way. I think that is true, since I basically do many of the same techniques that I did back then. I do however see, that my game has become much more tight and smooth and it is obvious, that my timing and setups has really improved. Especially my wrestling and takedowns has taken a big leap forward. I guess that is an area, where timing and explosiveness is also a much bigger factor than technical knowledge, compared to ground grappling where the techniques often can be performed slower and with fewer movements at a time.

Another thing that is very satisfying is, that when I look back at all my little lists of what techniques I have been working on implementing or improving over the last two years, all of them are now solid parts of my A-game. So making a decision to improve in certain areas, have definitely worked for me, and I have managed to succesfully incorporate new techniques and improve holes in my game with this method.

I have put some MMA sparring in the video this time too. I train a good amount of MMA with the guys every week, since we have some who are competing on a regular basis. As you might see on the video, my striking is not very impressive. I don't really have a lot of interest in striking training compared to grappling, but I wanna do it anyways for two main reasons:
  1. I want to be the best possible sparring partner for our guys who are competing in and training MMA.
  2. Grappling is my passion, and I wanna be as good at it as possible in all areas: Gi, no-gi, MMA and self defense (the latter of least interest). Trying to wrestle people who want to hit me in the face is a great way to push myself to make my grappling work in a very stressed environment. Especially comitting to takedowns is an area, that is really improving from practicing it with striking involved.
Ok so nuff' said, here is the video. It is pretty long (over an hour), and I don't expect you to watch it all, but maybe you can cath a detail or two that you can try and incorporate in your own game. If you have any questions or would like explanations on anything I do, feel free to leave a comment and I'll get back to you :)

My list of things I am currently working on in sparring is:
  • Escaping sidecontrol
  • Sweeping by positioning opponents point of gravity over my own hip (X-guard, etc.)
  • Takedowns, takedowns, takedowns (especially fireman's carry)
  • Holding high mount and finishing with crosschoke
  • Pressurepassing guard

Escaping sidecontrol is probably THE biggest hole in my game at this time. I was talking to my friend Kári about it yesterday and he has a somewhat similar problem. I think it is a product of having good guard defense, combined with being in the top level of the group of guys I train with on a regular basis. I think maybe around 80% of my sparring time consists of attacking. When I am on bottom, it is mostly in the guard and people I train with normally rarely pass it. So no wonder my sidecontrol escapes sucks :D This was really obvious to me in Estonia and London where a few high level guys put me in a lot of trouble when passing my guard and closing me down in sidecontrol.

In order to improve them, I have set myself a goal to let people pass my guard in sparring at least 5 times every class, then try and escape sidecontrol. I'll see how that goes and then maybe raise the number later. I'll do it for three months, then evaluate if my sidecontrol escape game has improved.

(For some reason, my mount escapes are really good, don't ask me why?)

I have been thinking a lot about understanding how sweeps work on a conceptual level, and is really working hard on moving my opponents point of gravity above my own, which has fundamentally changed and improved the way I sweep from guard.

Fireman's carry takedown has completely taken over my thoughts for the last two months or so. It's like having a song in my brain I can't get rid of - I constantly think of the movement of that technique. What a fucking nerd I am LOL

When I was in Estonia, one of the instructors had some great details on the crosschoke from mount. I am going for it all the time in sparring, and the rate of success for my mountchokes has gone up A LOT with these details. Will keep trying it until I can choke anyone from mount, just like Roger LOL

Friday, July 31, 2009

Martin Aedma's Estonian Guardpasses From Hell

As mentioned in an earlier post, one guy from Estonia had a very cool way to pass the guard, which completely shut down my own game. Normally I think I can defend my guard pretty well, but against this pressure I was totally lost.

Thanks to Martin for letting me shoot this video, which is exposing all his secrets!! :D

Back from London

Just came back to Denmark after spending 6 days in London, training in Roger Gracie Academy and Team Carlson Gracie. Got to train every day, some days both afternoon and evening. It was good to get some flighthours in with some people I am not used to roll with.

(Team Carlson Gracie)

I still wanna continue my project of looking around Europe for different places to train. Estonia was really awesome, the level there was quite high for most guys and the mentality and approach to train was as close to my own gyms as it gets. Breaking down techniques into concepts, using modern and proven teaching systems and understand how people learn and acquire physical skills are essential teaching skills in my opinion. The gyms in London had a more "traditional" approach to teaching methods and training, which does not really appeal to me in the long run (show technique, drill 5-10 minutes, then spar). Sparring was tough though, and that was mostly what I came for anyways :)

(Roger Gracie Academy)

Now I am back in CSA and the summer vacation is soon over for most people, so I am really looking forward to some super hard training over the coming period. We have some guys fighting MMA and I am looking to take my kids class to about 4-5 tournaments before the year is over. For the adults, we will pick one or two big tournaments to focus on so we can make sure everyone has the same goal in training. Last time, we had about 30 competitiors at the Nordic Open BJJ tournament and it was a great experience.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Home from Estonia - off to London

I came back from Estonia a week ago, and it was an awesome trip. Had a lot of good inspiration and training there plus Estonia was a great place in itself. I knew a few of the guys a little on beforehand my (dark, dark) past in the SBG, but most of them I never met before. As always, whenever I walk into a gym somewhere in the world, there always seems to be lots of people that I connect with really well, and ofcourse this was also true for Estonia. Lots of cool people with really high level of skill, I could definitely go there more often for some good training.

I shot an instructional with one of the guys up there on his guardpassing game, which I think was pretty awesome. He applied a ton of pressure to my legs and basically completely shut down my guard. I was helpless, so I had to learn it :D I will put the video online here when I get back home.

In five minutes, I will be out the door to go to the airport and fly to London. I don't know anyone there, but I am staying there for a week and planning on just knocking the door to some gyms there and see how much training I can put in during my stay. Obviously, I wanna go to Rogers academy as well as the Carlson Gracie Team, but we'll see if I find time to check out any other places. Theme of this summer will be BJJ-networking in Europe I guess :D

I'll be sure to write about my experiences in London as well as in Estonia when I get back home in about a week. Untill then, enjoy training :)

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Status & going to Estonia

Alright, I know I have not been very good at updating my blog for quite a while now, but as always, I am returning and promise to post some stuff again :)

I had a pretty bad shoulder injury for about 5 months that made it really difficult for me to train, and that always makes me lose a lot of motivation for writing blogposts. Injury time is not a time where I feel very innovative about my game, I just wanna train around the injury and get over with it. But now I am fit again, and training is going really well.

I have filmed a lot of sparring lately, but mostly MMA. I will put some of it online soon together with some rolling gi and maybe no-gi. Even though it is really warm summer weather now, I train BJJ mostly in the gi. I am going to London 21-27 to train in the Roger Gracie and Carlson Gracie gyms which are mostly gi-based so all my gi-training will be good preparation for that. Also, my weightlifting has really come up in gear again, and I am focusing a lot on core- and gripstrength.

Next week, I am going to Estonia to teach and train at the Summer BJJ and MMA Camp in Tartu. I think it is going to be a really cool week with lots of training. I myself is going to teach gi, no-gi and MMA and I am also really looking forward to attend all the other classes and get some inspiration home myself.

If you feel like coming over, check out this link:

For those of you, who don't know Estonia, it is probably one of the most exotic places in Europe. Lots of little islands, beaches, palm trees, etc. Some people call it "the Thailand of Northern Europe".