Posts Tagged ‘sports’

Rizin Fighting Federation 2 happened a few days ago in Japan. Hopefully marking the return of a full time player in Japanese MMA. This marked the return to the ring for The Emperor Fedor Emelianenko vs. Jaideep Singh after a 3 year lay off. Singh an unknown in the MMA world is an experienced K-1 kickboxer.  The next big fights were  Kron Gracie vs Asen Yamamoto, Bob Sapp vs. Akebono, Gabi  Garcia vs. Lei’d Tapa, and Muhammed Lawel vs Jiří Procházka. This was night two of the extravaganza. Night one was capped off by the loss of one of my favorite fighters of all time. Shinya Aoki dispatched kazushi Sakuraba.

Lets start with the fight that caught my attention.  I have not heard a lot about this card except it was to mark the return to action of Fedor. Fedor looked to be in his usual shape never an opposing physical specimen. Singh an experienced kickboxer looked out classed from the bell. Fedor in usual fashion rushed his opponent finally taking him to the ground and finishing the fight. Fedor was never in trouble and looked to be the Fedor of old. No one would expect him to jump back into a top ten heavyweight fight. It was a nice tune up. The big question is what is next for the Emperor.

The next is one I was really excited to see. Kron Gracie vs  Asen Yamamato. Kron the son of Gracie Jiu Jitsu legend Rickson Gracie is seen by some as the next MMA wunderkind. This fight showed a few holes in Krons game, but from someone known for their ground prowess,  he didn’t look to bad. Yamamto  also new to professional fighting put up a very good fight and looked to be a game fighter. Kron looks to be improving with his standup, but a few holes were definitely exposed. Kron took control as soon as the fight hit the ground. Yamamoto was able o reverse position a few times, but was ultimately caught in a triangle finish by Kron.

Here is the first of the traditional Japanese Pride style fights. And what I mean are the fights that border on freakshows. It is Bob Sapp vs. Akebono. Sapp a giant of a man had made a pretty good run in MMA and K-1 has been relegated to the freak show matches in MMA. This was fought under shootboxing rules. So basically it is an MMA match with no groundfighting. You can do standing submissions and takedowns just no fighting on the ground. This is a weird fight to say the least. The fight is stopped most of the time to work on a cut on Akebono. The even weirder thing is the cut is behind his ear.

The next one is Gabi  Garcia vs. Lei’d Tapa.  This fight was just plain awful. Gabi Garcia came in with a highly touted jiu jitsu career winning multiple world championships. She showed in this fight to have no stand up game at all.  Granted this was Garcia’s first pro fight she looked horrible. She has a long way to go to look to be a credible MMA fighter outside of her jiu jitsu. Her opponent didn’t have much of an answer either. This fight was amateurish at best. Garcia slimmed down for awhile but seems to have bulked back up for this fight at 205lbs. Garcia wins after knocking her opponent down with a flailing backfist and following up with some ground and pound.

The next is Rizin’s Light heavyweight tournament finale between King Mo Muhammed Lawel vs Jiří Procházk. This was definitely a more exciting fight than the semifinal matches. King Mo ended this with a straight right after some wild exchanges on the feet from both men. Mo also controlled the fight on the ground also.

The last and most heartbreaking for me came from night one of Rizin. It was Shinya Aoki vs. Kazushi Sakuraba. Sakuraba now 48 is past what would consider a fighter’s prime. Aoki controlled the fight from the start, taking mount and back mount finally finishing the fight by strikes. Sakuraba has been and will always be my favorite fighter, but it breaks my heart seeing him take a beating like that. Please stick to grappling. His Metamoris match was awesome to watch. I just don’t have the stomach to watch him take those beatings anymore.

All in all the card was not a bad one. It had some definite highlights, but also a few lowlights. I am for a return of Japanese MMA, I just hope it isn’t built on the sweat and blood of MMA legends. Japanese fans are do for a new crop of MMA superstars. Lets hope Rizen can pull that off.

 

   How hard is too hard. Rolling last night I got my shoulder tweaked twice in just a short rolling session. The first if I would not have bailed out with a forward roll I would be wearing a sling today. The second one, I actually had to verbal tap in a cross between a kimura and a straight armlock.  So here is my question. How hard do you go with someone who is not one of your normal training partners? The guy I was rolling with is a super nice guy and I have no doubt that he was not trying to injure me. It is just one of the things that can happen and does happen from time to time. I have always used the simple etiquette of rolling to the level of aggression of my partner. Then sometimes if I have a super aggressive partner I just play like a stump. Root myself to the ground and play 100% defense.

   The older I get the more I want my sparring sessions to be labeled exclusively as a flow roll, positional sparring, or a competition team sparring session. The flow roll is what I find the most useful for actually learning jiu jitsu. It can only be done with a few specific training partners. These are guys I have rolled with for hours. The next is the positional sparring situation. These can usually be rolled with any partner. This is because you roll with a specific purpose. The variables are limited making it a little safer. The last is competition sparring. This can be done a few ways. Let’s say partner A is competing in a big tourney a few weeks away. Partner B is not competing. Here is the ratio of the level of aggression. Partner A will put forth 65-70% while B will put out 30-35%. This is a time were A gets full resistance, but by B mentally throttling down the chance of injury goes down. The other way is a little more of a gamble. Two guys line up and roll it out till someone taps. This way is always more dangerous. Almost all the times I have been injured while sparring, it has happened this way.

   This simple formula took me a while to really figure out. I basically started out just going into sparring full bore. I never used to look at sparring as a real learning situation. Now intelligent sparring is where you can put it all together. Without this tool jiu jitsu would be as useless as some other martial arts where no sparring takes place. Learn to flow roll and learn to roll at varying intensity. Be sure to throw positional sparring in there too. Rely on good partners who can dial back their aggression. Jiu Jitsu cannot be truly learned without a good partner to study with.

I noticed something with my son this year during wrestling season. He was just not as strong as the other kids his size. I first chalked it up to him taking a year off from wrestling. Then I started to realize it just wasn’t the lay off from wrestling. It was his lay off of just about all sports and activities, since playing baseball at the beginning of last summer. To take it even further it was his new obsession with a video game called Minecraft and a couple of others. Which I understand the video game obsession I spent many a night hunting bad guys on, insert popular fps of the time. As much as I understand his video game obsession, I know too that he spends way too much time playing it. With school, homework, chores, and then videogames, he has stopped being physical. He stopped going outside and playing. As a parent I feel like I didn’t do my job and make him turn the game off and go out and play. I am not with his mother so he lives about 45 minutes away. This has made parenting so much more difficult. I don’t know if this is why I missed this or I just could hear my parents telling me turn off my Nintendo and go outside.
Now that I know what one of the issues is, I want to correct it. I don’t want to be one of those crazy parents that you see on some horrible reality show, pushing their kids to beyond reason, but I want to make a change for the better. Now how do I get my son to be competitive without enrolling him in boot camp. Time to start with some stealth parenting.
Here are some stealth ways to disconnect your kid from the TV, Xbox, or computer.
1. Get them out of the house. How you say. Take them to the park. I can’t tell you how good of a workout you can get by playing on a jungle gym. Climbing, running, jumping is about as athletic as you can get.
2. Play a sport with your kids. Get outside and play ball. It does not matter what sport with a ball. Baseball, football, basketball, it does not matter.
3. Go bike riding. This is one of our favorite things to do with the kids. I have mentioned my eleven year, but I have a three year old also who absolutely loves to ride on the back of a bike.
4. Go for a hike. Find a good nature trail and plan a day. Picnic, hike, have fun. Most state conservation websites give you all the info you need to find a great nature outing.
5. Go to the beach, a lake, or river. Swimming is a great exercise. See number 2. Play ball at the beach.

Ok these are just a few of the things you can do to get your kid in shape. The plus, if your are out there doing these things, you will also get the added bonus of getting in better shape. Now these all seem like warm weather activities, and yes for the most part they are. You just have to be more creative when the weather is bad. Locally we have a place with a warehouse full of bounce houses. Two or three hours and your kids will crash out as soon as they get home. You just have to find things that are fun and physical.
The biggest advice I can give, if you want to get your kids that edge in competition, is get out and play with them. Disconnect them from the Xbox and yourself from the TV or computer. Get outside and play, don’t just watch them. Play with them. If you don’t they will end up right back playing computer legos, while the other kids get stronger. Go play with your kids. I know I will be. Stealth is the key.

Zero Mind

Posted: February 21, 2013 in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu
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The concept of zero mind is a pretty familiar one in most sport circles. Most people are familiar with it called being in the zone. The zone is the place where there is action with no thought. I usually refer to it as thinking with no thought. It is not a place of pure reaction, but more of a place where conscious thought has a governor. It is a place where thoughts of everyday life cannot exist. To be in the zone or be in the moment you cannot be thinking of anything outside of what is directly in front of you.
Being in the zone or having a zero mind has been a place of meditation for me personally. It is a very spiritual place for me. Now don’t confuse spirituality with religion because that is not what I am referring to. Being spiritual for me is being closer to whatever the force that binds everything together is. Use whichever name you like for it chi, ki, force, or even the divine. I have experienced some of my most profound moments in my life being in this mindset. From the birth of my children, to marrying my wife, to grappling on the mats, life is truly lived in the zone, within the zero mind. These are the moments we really live our lives, not worrying about our mortgage or car payments. Only the now only the zero.