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Podcast Episode 144 – Aikido vs MMA, the Full Story with Rokas

Have you seen the “Aikido vs MMA” video that went viral within the martial arts community?

In 2017 Aikido black belt Rokas Leonavicius called up a local MMA gym and explained that he wanted to test out his Aikido against a trained mixed martial arts fighter.

The results of the resulting sparring session were predictable; despite 13 years of serious Aikido training he was unable to get his techniques to work against a skilled and resisting opponent.

What wasn’t predictable is that Rokas then shared the video of that sparring session with the world. And that video was followed by many others detailing his attempts to make Aikido functional against resisting opponents.

We went into the background of that first match and the rest of his journey through Aikido, BJJ, Aikido and Boxing. It’s a fascinating episode.

To listen go look for The Strenuous Life podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Soundcloud and Google Play. and then listen to episode 144 with Rokas.

(A subscription, rating, and review on whatever podcast platform you use is always super appreciated!)

Alternately  you can listen to the discussion in the embedded player here:

Here’s some of what we covered in today’s podcast…

02:05 – Rokas’s background in Aikido 04:21 – Wrestling in Eastern Europe 05:43 – What attracted him to Aikido? 14:20 – How long should you train before Aikido is applicable? 20:20 – Testing Aikido on Youtube 23:55 – The Aikido vs MMA video 26:23 – Functionalizing Aikido 38:18 – How did Aikido take off? 40:59 – Real life consequences of the Aikido vs MMA video 48:43 – Elements of Aikido that carry over into other arts 61:53 – Where can we find Rokas?

Here is the video of that first sparring session in May of 2017…

And here is the video of their next sparring session, 1 year later, after Rokas had spent some time boxing, wrestling and grappling on the ground!

Check out Rokas’s Youtube channel by clicking here and his website at Rokasleo.com

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Podcast Episode 131 – Kirik Jenness of The Underground Forum, the Fighter’s Notebook and More

In this episode I have a great talk with Kirik Jenness who is mayor for life of the underground forum at http://mixedmartialarts.com, the author of The Fighter’s Notebook, the official records keeper for mixed martial arts, and has “done every job in MMA except for being a ring girl.

This man is one of the founding fathers of MMA in North America and had a TON to share!

Here’s just some of what we covered…

01:27 – Kirik’s martial arts beginnings 06:15 – The origins of the Underground Forum and MixedMartialArts.com 10:21 – The Fighter’s Notebook 19:55 – Participating in early MMA 24:49 – Organized crime and combat sports 29:11 – Was Pride the golden era of mixed martial arts? 32:37 – Officiating early MMA events 37:06 – Octagons, rings, and other crazy fighting areas 46:26 – Creating ranks for fighters in MMA and boxing 51:48 – Craziest moves in MMA

 

The best way to listen to this podcast is to go to your favourite podcasting platform, subscribe to ‘The Strenuous Life’ Podcast, and then look for episode 131. You can find it on most podcast platforms, including…

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/strenuous-life-podcast-stephan-kesting-grapplearts/id320705565?mt=2

Google Play: https://play.google.com/music/listen?authuser&u=0#/ps/I3qvbtkdb74xrpv6ozbzie2ca4e

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/user-993426357

Stitcher: https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/stephan-kesting/grapplearts-radio-podcast

You can also listen to interview on the embedded player below…

 

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Stephan Talks to Chewy from Chewjitsu on The Strenuous Life Podcast, Episode 120

Chewy (aka Nick Albin) is well known for the BJJ advice he gives on his prolific Chewjitsu channel, so I was thrilled to have him on the podcast.

It’s a great chat and we cover a ton of material, including

How he got his nickname, His journey from wrestling to MMA to jiu-jitsu, Gi vs no gi training, Preventing injuries in training, Why he decided to leave tech and go full time in jiu-jitsu, Getting his black belt on the same day that his mother died, How jiu-jitsu saves lives, His youtube channel, Crazy gyms and insane coaches, And more.

This is all in episode 120 of The Strenuous Life podcast, which is available on many different podcast platforms including…

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/strenuous-life-podcast-stephan-kesting-grapplearts/id320705565?mt=2

Google Play: https://play.google.com/music/listen?authuser&u=0#/ps/I3qvbtkdb74xrpv6ozbzie2ca4e

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/user-993426357

And Stitcher: https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/stephan-kesting/grapplearts-radio-podcast

You can also listen to my conversation with Chewy on the embedded player below, but if you’re not subscribed on your favourite podcast player then you’ll likely miss all future episodes of this podcast and I have some other very cool guests lined up!

Find out more about Chewy’s school at derbycitymartialarts.com and check out his Youtube channel at youtube.com/chewjitsu

The post Stephan Talks to Chewy from Chewjitsu on The Strenuous Life Podcast, Episode 120 appeared first on Grapplearts.

Cults, Comets and Critical Thinking!

I’ve just released a new podcast episode (episode 093) just out that starts with martial arts training and ends up talking about mass suicides and alien spaceships trailing comets…

At it’s core it’s a rant about the importance of testability, falsifiability, and critical thinking.

You can listen to this episode (number 093) on my Strenuous Life Podcast which is available on iTunes, Google Play, Soundcloud, or Stitcher.

Or you can just click play below, but then you won’t catch future episodes like you would if you subscribed at one of the podcast provider services above!

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New Podcast with Historian Daniele Bolelli: How Violent Was Our Past, Really?

Daniele Bolelli is a martial artist, historian and the creator of the History on Fire podcast. But this time I managed to get him for a return visit to my own Strenuous Life Podcast (Click here for information about our first podcast together).

You can listen to this podcast in Episode 092 of my Strenuous Life Podcast, which is available on iTunes, Google Play, Soundcloud, or Stitcher.

You can also listen to the podcast on Youtube in the video at the bottom of this post!

Here’s just a bit of what we covered…

The evidence for and against an ultra-violent human past vs a peaceful noble savage model of our hunter-gatherer past The rise of MMA in Asia.His process of researching and producing History on Fire, one of the leading history podcasts How to get rid of weight cutting in mixed martial arts competition Daniele’s proposed ‘Gladiators for World Peace’ program and how it’s going to get him the Nobel Peace Prize His return to Italy as a tourist Is it too soon to tell whether we’re moving towards a more peaceful future? Ötzi the iceman, Neanderthal DNA in our genomes, and a mass murder that occurred 430,000 years ago And much more!

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MMA Weight Cutting with UFC Fighter Alan Belcher (And More)

 

I just released a new interview with UFC star Alan Belcher who has had some of the most exciting, edge-of-your-seat fights in the UFC.

In our chat Alan shares lessons learned from 26 MMA fights including…

The details of cutting major amounts of weight before an MMA fight His mindset while fighting Rousimar Palhares, one of the dirtiest and scariest fighter in MMA Lifting weights as physical therapy to hold his body together Exactly how he structured his UFC training camps and when you should be doing your heaviest training before a competition Tricks to use and mistakes to avoid when cutting weight Preventing overtraining by modulating the intensity and volume of your training sessions How dieting and cardio prevented him from actually training correctly How he prepared specifically to face a leglock expert in the UFC The crazy treatments he did to repair his detached retina And really quite a  bit more!

To listen to or watch this interview you have a couple of different options!  You can either

Click here to subscribe to the Grapplearts Podcast in iTunes (or Google Play, or Stitcher) – the Alan Belcher episode is number 63! Or you can click play on the Youtube video below

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BJJ Rib Injuries and How to Deal With Them

Let’s talk about rib injuries in BJJ.

This will probably only apply to a small percentage of people, but if you’re one of those people then you might be about to get some important information.

I’m being pretty general here and not differentiating between all the different ways you can bang up your ribcage: I’m including bruised ribs, broken ribs, damage to the sternum and damage at the intersection of the bone and the cartilage all in the same bucket…

In a BJJ context I’ve seen injuries to the ribs coming from throws, takedowns, guard passes and even leglocks gone bad (a hard heel to the ribs, that one).

Damage to the ribs generally shows itself as:

Pain and bruising right at the site of injury and/or Pain when you take a deep breath, cough, sneeze, laugh or lift something heavy and/or Creaky sounds at the injury site when it gets moved or touched and/or Obvious deformity at the site of injury (typically a pointy bit poking out that wasn’t there before) and/or Difficulty breathing.

The goal of this article is NOT to help you diagnose a rib injury – that’s what your health professionals are for.

If you even think you’ve broken a rib go get an X ray and discuss what to do with your doctor.

What I’m talking about is the recovery stage.  The getting back to training part…

You can either watch the video I filmed about BJJ rib injuries, or read on for a partial text summary below.

The first bit of bad news is that rib injuries take a long time to heal.  

You typically won’t need surgery, but in my experience it often takes about 4 to 6 weeks of rest for things to improve.

Note that I said ‘improve’ and not ‘heal completely’.  This is an important distinction and brings me to my second bit of bad news..

ALMOST EVERYONE RETURNS TO TRAINING TOO EARY AFTER A RIB INJURY AND REINJURES THEMSELVES.

I’ve seen this happen so many times it’s not even funny.  Someone injures a rib, starts feeling a bit better after 2 or 3 weeks, wants to be a tough guy, comes in to class and immediately makes the injury much worse.

Now they’re typically gone for 2 more months, which is way longer than the rest they would have needed if they had just let the damn thing heal properly in the » Continue Reading.

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Kurt Osiander Interview – the Barbarian of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

I’ve just released the latest podcast (episode 35), featuring an interview with Mr Kurt Osiander.

Kurt is an old-school BJJ black belt under Ralph Gracie.  He’s known for his no BS communication style, his informative Youtube instructional videos, and his swearing (this interview is definitely not for the ears of little children or the overly sensitive).

The topics we cover include…

Old school Ralph Gracie training tactics The attributes that make a champion Gi vs no gi training for MMA The role of talent in jiu-jitsu Can anyone become a black belt? Physical preparation and conditioning for competition Tattoos, art, European sword fighting and other things Kurt Developing mental toughness in BJJ The effect of modern competition techniques on street self defense skills

Here are 3 ways to enjoy this interview…

Click here to go to the Grapplearts Radio Podcast in iTunes and subscribe (recommended) Click here to directly download the mp3 file of this interview Watch on Youtube and/or click play on the embedded Youtube video below…

P.S.  If you want to be notified of future interviews, articles, tips and techniques then make sure you sign up for my free email newsletter.  If you don’t like what I send out then you can always unsubscribe with a single click on the link at the bottom of each email!

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11 Short MMA Conditioning Workouts by Chuck Liddell’s Coach John Hackleman

John Hackleman is a friend of Grapplearts and a very successful MMA coach.  He runs The Pit Gym and guided Chuck Liddell to UFC Lightweight Champion status and has coached many other MMA fighters.

As an MMA trainer he is keenly aware of the importance of conditioning for fighters, but also for ‘regular’ people training martial arts for self defense.

Hackleman is also a very direct individual.  You get a sense of this when he says, “The most frequently used bullshit excuse I hear from people that don’t work out is, ‘I don’t have the time.’  Nobody doesn’t have the time…”

Don’t tell him that you’re ‘too busy’ to do conditioning, because here are 11 workouts that average 11 minutes in length.  

These are the very same workouts he gets his pro fighters to do, so now you can train like an elite fighter and still have time left over for all the things you need to do in a day.

You can watch Hackleman break down these 11 workouts in the video below, and then scroll down to the bottom of the page to see each workout written down and explained further.

Here are the workouts in more detail…

Short Workout 1 – Tabatas x 4 minutes

A Tabata session is a 4 minute blitz workout in which you do 8 x 20 second sprint intervals interspersed with 10 second breaks.

So you’ll be doing the following eight times…

20 seconds of going all out 10 seconds of rest

You can use almost any taxing exercise for a Tabata workout.  Hackleman suggests trying the following:

Jumping rope doing double unders for 20 seconds followed by regular rope jumps for 10 seconds Doing sprints on a treadmill set at 10 mph and a 10% incline (almost impossible except for elite athletes, so start at a lower speed and incline) Running on a track all out for 20 seconds, followed by 10 seconds of rest

Here’s a video of what Tabata sprints might look like on the treadmill.  The only difference is that you’d be doing this for 8 sets or 4 minutes in total…

Short Workout 2 – Man Makers x 5 minutes

This exercise is done for 5 minutes and is a whole body challenge.  It’ll condition your muscles, your heart and your lungs.

At the Pit they do Manmakers with 45 lb dumbbells – you may need to start with lighter » Continue Reading.

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Perspectives on BJJ Drilling – An Interview with SBG’s Steve Whittier

Steve Whittier from SBG East Coast is a cool guy. He manages to combine both thoughtful analyses and controversial opinions into one eloquent package. In this interview we talked about lots of different BJJ and MMA related topics, but the main emphasis and recurring theme was functional drilling and the efficacy of different types of […]

What’s the Best Conditioning for BJJ?

I often get asked about the best kind of conditioning for BJJ and MMA. People want to know what’s better: running vs swimming, circuit training vs powerlifting, crossfit vs bodybuilding, sprints vs extended cardio, kettlebells vs dumbbells, bodyweight exercises vs barbells.. Having done quite a bit of strength and conditioning over the last 20 years […]

Adam Singer on Modern MMA Training and Competition

Stephan: I’m here today with my friend, Adam Singer, who runs The HardCore Gym in Athens, Georgia.  He is probably best known for being Forrest Griffin’s MMA coach during the formative years of Forrest’s career. He’s also a jiu-jitsu black belt and has trained tons of fighters. I’m really looking forward to picking his brain about […]