No Gi Reflections #7 | Class Quality – the difference between hosting and coaching

One of my biggest influences in the coaching world; John Danaher.

One of my biggest influences in the coaching world; John Danaher.

I’m going to try and refrain from turning this post into a rant and the reason for that can only be due to the fact that I have been spoilt. Yes, spoilt in the realms of high quality coaching. Instead, I will try to form this post into more of a published discussion that I had with a training partner of mine recently, in the hope to shed some light towards the current holes in the BJJ club format here in the county of Surrey, UK.

Over the last 3 years, I have carried out much of my own research, self-experimentation and learning from others at the ever amazing Locker 27 Strength and Conditioning Gym in Surrey, UK.

However, it is perhaps only in the last few months since attending No Gi classes twice a week that I have come to appreciate a core element of the Locker’s ethos more than ever; quality coaching. I have been exposed to some of the best coaches in the country at this place, many of whom work for the Harlequins rugby team, some being ex-professional athletes themselves and others just very passionate coaches and scholars. By default, my mirror neurons have picked up on the importance of quality and I strive to apply it to all of my clients’ sessions, be it via strength coaching, mobility assessments or submission grappling.

The flip side to that coin, though, is the fact that I have somewhat re-entered the outside world in the form of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu clubs and classes and have fast come to the conclusion that there is a LOT to be desired with; the class format, coaching quality and (lack thereof) syllabuses.

Continue reading

No Gi Reflections #5 | No Gi classes are still a rarity here in the UK

@brucelee @tmxofficial

A video posted by Eddie Bravo (@eddiebravo10) on

In the quest to improve my own No Gi game by breaking through a recent stagnancy phase I have been experiencing, I took to our friend, the search engine to see what classes were available to me within as smaller radius as possible.

The result? Not many! Though there are a few clubs in the Surrey county area, all of them offer only one No Gi class per week. One! I would have thought the recent boom of Mixed Martial Arts’ popularity over the last decade would have spawned more interest from the community, creating such a demand for No Gi classes that clubs would have to lay them on more frequently. Not the case.

Continue reading

Week 3 of 12 – Everything Hurts | The Cloudfoot Diaries #59

Only 3 weeks in and I’m now in a lot of pain. My joints are aching. My tendons nagging. And my energy levels nowhere to be seen.

burntout

Hints towards the flavour of overreaching are present. My appetite has decreased significantly and I’ve resorted to behaviour matching that of an insomniac when in bed. To be honest, it’s been a rough week. Time to reassess the programme some more. Training used to be fun!

A quick rundown of week 3;

Continue reading

Combining Gymnastics with Weightlifting; Week 2 of 12 in review | The Cloudfoot Diaries #58

The second of the twelve week, gymnastics and weightlifting combo-experiment is complete. Rather than post each day separately, I’ve compiled the training log and lessons learnt in to one post.

kai

I had the privilege to sit down with master stuntman and all-round nice guy, Mr Kai Martin  (click the link and check his showreel..Holy Shit!) at the beginning of the week, to pick his brains on programming and the like. If there’s a goal I’m trying to achieve, relating to strength, hypertrophy or some for of gymnastic skill acquisition, Kai has probably done it – it’s his job to get in shape to match the actor that he’s doubling, and they include famous actors of all shapes and sizes.

Here’s what he had to say relating to my programme…

Continue reading

From Weakness to Strength – New Snatch PB! | The Cloudfoot Diaries #57

Day 6 of 6 has been and gone for week 1. Here’s me harping on how weak I am towards the tail end of the first week and yet today saw me hit a new PB on the Snatch – 70kg, the very weight I missed on my third lift at my first weightlifting comp.

Then my coach suggested 73kg, followed by 75kg. Well, I was pretty shocked and surprised from hitting 70, and my CNS felt pretty fried so I didn’t hit 73kg as shown below…


Continue reading

Why are Front Planche progressions such a mission? | The Cloudfoot Diaries #56

I don’t know if it is the illusory, effortless nature that planche masters seem to exude in the photos I have seen, or my inflated ego that leads me to believe I can hold a front straddle planche, but either way I’m still deflated and confused at just how much of a mission it is to hold this f*!*in’ thing!

easyPlanche

Continue reading

If you’re ready early, GO! | The Cloudfoot Diaries #55

Briefly carrying on the theme of life’s interventions…

I’d finished work and had an hour until the scheduled time of Weightlifting club started. I felt energised and knew if I went to sit down and rest, my feet would elevate, my relaxation phase would kick in, and it would be over. Day 4 of the programme brought about a lesson in readiness;

If you’re ready early and ahead of schedule, don’t wait, GO! 

Continue reading

When life gets in the way | The Cloudfoot Diaries #54

Day three of training and already life has gotten in the way. I could lie and tell you I crushed the schedule. The reality was I felt weak as piss, sore as hell and had a whole sandwich of life issues to get in the way of focusing on getting the job done.

I’m a firm believer of the power of our three centres; physical, emotional and spiritual. I can attest from my own experience that if any of the three centres are significantly out of whack, your training is going to highlight it. For me, Day 3 saw all three areas significantly tarnished due to life’s ups and downs and I found it very difficult to do even the most basic of drills.

threecentres

Continue reading

Chewing what you’ve bitten off | The Cloudfoot Diaries #53

Day 2 of the ninja blueprint and I’m already sore as shit. Awesome. Clearly got a long way to go.
This session was a focus on Weightlifting, complemented by some gymnastics dynamic strength work and shoulder prehab/mobility work.

Foam Roll – Adductors, ITB, Quads, Thoracic, Pecs, Hip Flexors
Lacrosse Ball – Calves, Piriformis

Pulse Raiser – Skipping for 200 contacts

Mobility – Variety of exercises for 5 minutes, specific attention to ankles, hips/adductors and thoracic spine.

2 sets x 10r GHD with PVC pipe behind neck – also courtesy of Klokov.

Handstands – 5 sets for max. time on paralettes – with aid of the wall where necessary. The goal here is to really differentiate between a stacked position versus a banana-shaped handstand. Banana is much easier to hold, but stacked is the style I’d rather master.

handstandstyles

Continue reading

Revisiting Sprinting and APRE Front Squats | The Cloudfoot Diaries #52

sprinting

Day 1 of the ninja blueprint programme is done and I’m happy with its contents, duration and programming, however, not so enthused by the DOMS it has caused right at the beginning of the week.
Allow me to elaborate…

Here is Day 1 :

Continue reading