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Our first BJJ Intensive Camp in the USA was held in Lake Arrowhead from March 31st to April 2nd and it was a great hit. With a Brown Belt & 3 black belts teaching, Prof. Renato Migliaccio, Prof. Martin Guggi, Prof. Nathan Basseto & Coach Richar. Most attendees participated in this camp where from Sampa BJJ Academy & we also have one student from Temecula.
This BJJ intensive camp was great & we have learned a lot in this camp. We had our accommodation at Paliretreat.com in the San Bernardino Mountains. They offer us with lots of perks in the facility.
Our team members stayed in Pali retreat cabins which were shared with 3 other camp buddies. The cabins were a perfect escape from the city life. There was an option for the people that don’t want to share rooms with other men or women to be in private rooms. Besides all these facilities their food was great, they have offered us all types of food including vegetarian & vegan. Everyone there was really happy with what they were offering.
On Friday (31st March), we reached there & after dinner, we started our training on that same night with some Ginastica Natural, which is an amazing Brazilian method of movement for training BJJ without a partner to work on strength & coordination. For this, we had our Prof. Martin Guggi with us, he taught his high-level Ginastica Natural techniques to the students. Martin has a master’s degree in physical education & he is a Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Prof. Renato Migliaccio, Prof. Martin is teaching greatly & motivating the students in Austria. He is also first high level certified Ginastica Natural Instructor in Austria.
After the Ginastica Natural, we opened a session for some Question/Answer, so people could give an idea of what they want to learn at this camp. Then we answered their questions. And after Question/Answer session we got with some guidelines on what to teach in the following days of the camp.
After that, we did a little sparring session & ended up Friday night training session with that. Then we got back to living room, the room was really very nice with fireplace we hang out there & talk a little bit about the upcoming sessions for a while.
And on Saturday morning, we woke up early, had an amazing breakfast, a little break & get straight to our first session of Ginastica Natural warm-up in the morning. Then we had some Judo, Wrestling & BJJ training. After that, our Coach Richar taught some sweeps & the fundamentals of the Lasso Guard techniques. Then we ended up the session with some Lasso guard resistance training. We got an excellent overview of possible choices in this open Lasso guard variation.
Then we took a break to have lunch & have some rest. And at night, we grouped back before dinner for another session. Where we had another Ginastica Natural warms up & take down session taught by prof. Renato Migliaccio
After these sessions, Prof Martin showed some of his favorite techniques & students got an opportunity to learn from him. We then ended the class with some Question/Answer session followed by some sparring session, which was a little longer this time.
Then after the tough training session, we went out to the Lake Arrowhead village, the city on the lake to have some time together but outside of the mat. It was amazing to have some social activities & to know each other more. We sat together there at a pizza parlor, had a cup of coffee some had some beers and talk about BJJ & other things. Then we went back to our place because the next day we had a longer training session.
On Sunday morning, we again woke up early & had breakfast. And after that, we started our classes with another training session of Ginastica Natural. Then we started with the last takedown session followed up with an MMA sequence and a catch wrestling sequence. After that, we open another Q/A session. The funny part about this Q/A unit was that students & people over there comes up with lots & lots of questions that we have answered one by one. Then our training session came to an end & we finish this training session with the Berimbolo (a BJJ technique)
We then quickly roll the mats, packed them up & were all set to get back home. The students really had a blast in this intensive camp. We are very thankful & happy for the facilities that Pali Retreat has offered us. This time in our camp, we have two vegan athletes with us. They too have got everything for their special needs. They had a blast they said the food was really amazing.
It was really an outstanding camp with great coaches, great atmosphere & a matchless price. We are now looking forward to hosting an another camp in California soon.
by Prof. Martin Guggi
When you start improving in your BJJ/Grappling journey you will have to answer one question for sure: “which BJJ-Style I am going to fight”.
Let´s clarify the word “Style”:
Like always you need to understand and master the basics concepts first. In Grappling you cannot be great at guard passing but you do not know how to hold your guard. You need to have at least some knowledge in each area of the game. But of course we prefer some areas.
Mastering the basics need 2 – 4 years, or up to your blue or purple belt. Then you can see that students start to develop their own game and style of fighting. Some are getting better in guard passing, some focus more on takedowns, some more (hopefully not only) on leglocks ….
So which styles are there? In the end nobody can say how many styles exist, probably as much as people who train Jiu Jitsu. Everybody is developing somehow their own style and game. But I think we can summarize them to a few, to give an overview.
1. Takedowns and Top Game
2. Guardpuller and open Guard game
1. Pressure Pass Style
2. Loose and quick passing Style
1. Open Guard Styles with less control but a lot of movement
2. Close and Half Guard Style with more control but less movement
The most important fact about styles is – you should not choose your style! Your anatomy is the first reason why one style fits you better then another. I have long legs and I am skinny. Applying some Judostyle takedowns was always harder for me. I still keep on training them because I like to improve in all areas but if I can choose I feel much safer on the ground playing some kind of open guard where I can use my long legs better.
Today the Submission only tournaments are getting much more popular and this also improved BJJ. Leglocks are getting more and more into the focus of grapplers. The reason is simple: If you do not get points for passing, then why waste your energy if the legs of your opponent are right in front of you. The downside is that a lot of newcomers of the art tend to start only working on leg locks and they forget to take a look at their leg anatomy first. If your legs are not very flexible, you are tapping on foot locks very easily you should start to think again – if you really should start to develop a game only based on food locks. If you start to attack the legs of the other person, your legs are going to be exposed too….
Of course the rule set you are fighting in is important too. And if you start to enter IBJJF Tournament, NAGA, ADCC or Submission only Tournament your style and game is going to change and adapt a little bit too. Did you realize that some high level BJJ athletes you only see in events with the same rule set? Some submission only specialist you will never see in an IBJJF Tournament because Heel Hooks are forbidden and you get disqualified for knee reaping. If this are your go to weapons than you have a problem to fight under all rules. The other way around is the same – you see grapplers who fight every year at the IBJJF World Championship but you have not seen them a lot in submission only events. Of course there are some guys you will find in all tournaments. For me these are the real role models in BJJ/Grappling/NoGi I look up to.
Do not make the mistake to choose your style!!! Ask yourselves first which anatomy advantages and disadvantages you have! Like everybody you will have both. My advantage is for sure my long legs but I have a long neck too and my wrists are weak too. Do not stop because you do not see any advantages in your own anatomy. Look at the great BJJ Guys out there: Marcelo Garcia, Roger Gracie, Jeff Glover, Rafael Mendes … they all are good in certain areas. Some fight only under a special rule set… but they all found something in their game where they got famous for. Accept what you have and work on your advantages. Perhaps you also look which Bjj champion is more similar to your body and your anatomy. Please like who every you prefer but if you want to have the same game like a smaller quick quy but you are heavy and not so fast yourself… you perhaps should keep looking from which bjj champion you can copy and use more!
Do not make the mistakes saying I want to be a speed passing guy if you are heavy and not so quick. Accept what you have and start working on your strong areas first and also work on your weak areas. In the end you should be able to fight against lighter, heavier, stronger, weaker, faster, slower opponents and not only against one kind of fighter.
Incorporate the following rolling style into your training:
….and you are going to find out in which areas you feel more natural than other areas and then you are going to find out which style, which areas of the game fit your anatomy better than others!
by Prof. Martin Guggi
Our first BJJ Camp in California/USA took place from 31.March to 2. April 2017. After our success in Europe we wanted to go one step further and start with the first camp across the big ocean.
Finding a spot in the USA where you do not know places by yourself was not easy. We spent a lot of times on the computer searching for the right spot, but finally we found it. The Pali Retreat Center in Running Springs – 5 miles away from the beautiful, cold Lake Arrowhead was the right choice.
When you are starting with something you always have to start with the first small step before you can do bigger steps. On this first US Camp we started with a smale group of participants and three instructors. Together we were around 10 people ready for an intensive weekend full of high quality bjj training!
The BJJ intensive Camp Team with Prof. Renato Migliaccio and Prof. Martin Guggi got supported from Richar Nogueira. Richar is a BJJ brown belt under Cicero Costa and lives and trains in Brasil, Sao Paulo. His hole live is dedicated to BJJ and he had the opportunity to stay and compete in California for a few weeks. For us this was a great chance to learn from a completive BJJ Youngstar.
We all met in front of Prof. Renatos school – Sampa BJJ and Fitness – in Glendora and together with a van we drove up to the San Bernadino Mountains. When you leave the highway it is a beautiful drive in the mountains and you leaving be big city of LA behind you.
We could stay in nice capins at the Pali Retreat Center in between the nature. The rooms where for simple but perfect for what you are looking at such a place. The food was perfect. Every time we could choose form a few different meals and everyone was really happy with the offers there. Even the vegetarians got something special for their needs.
Training started after dinner with some nice takedowns from the back. Prof. Renato showed some nice ways from Judo, Wrestling and BJJ how to take someone down as soon as you got his back. We continued with a Question and Answer unit. Everybody could ask how about any BJJ problem and Prof. Renato, Prof. Martin and Coach Richar tried to answer the questions. The first question was about the Lasso Guard – how to set it up and how to pass it. The rest of the first day we drilled these techniques and got a good overview of possible options in this open guard variation.
After a good night and an amazing breakfast class started with some Ginastica Natural warm-up. This brazilian method of moving is an amazing way for training bjj if you do not have a partner to train with. You stretch your body by different moves and at the same time start to work your coordination and strength. We finished the warm-up with the repetition of the techniques form the last day and then the instructors continued with answering more questions from the students, always having enough time to practice the moves.
Here you can see the techniques and drills witch where showed and trained at the camp:
For Videos from the techniques click here!
3 Take downs from the Back
1. Grab under the hip a throw him over you
2. To leg drag
3. Wrestling takedown + backtake Holding on his Back
1. Basic Lasso sweeps
2. Lasso de la riva sweep
1. Lasso Pass duck under the leg
2. Lasso Pass to leg drag to Kimura
Level 1: trough legs
Level 2: underhook – knee on belly Switch
Level 3: hips escape – Switch over legs
Right way to mount – monkey mount
1. Papercut Choke
Getting the Back if someone mounts you from ushiro kesa gatame
Kesa gatame Sequenz to z mount to mount to Back for MMA
Hon kesa gatame Submission Sequenz
After the morning class, lunch and a good time to rest and sleep we trained 3 more hours in the afternoon. Combined with resistance training and sparring!
After dinner we always had time to hang out together and talk about bjj, live and got to know each other. This a very nice time with everybody. On the second day we drove to Lake Arrowhead to spend some time there. The city at the lake is very small and even on Saturday there was not a lot going on. But we had more to me at local pup so sit together and talk. After the hard and longtime of training we really enjoyed the time outside of the mat. Everybody wanted to train intensive and did not want to waste the time partying but it was great to have some social activities as well.
Three days go by very fast, even more if you enjoy what you are doing.
We are looking forward to the next camp in California. Prof. Renato and Prof. Martin are already planning to find a good place for the next camp. For sure there will be a BJJ intensive Camp again in this location close to Lake Arrowhead but perhaps one more in Palm Springs or one day in Las Vegas.
What the participants say about the camp: