Unless you are financially secure and can spend every waking minute at the dojo or gym with a qualified Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) instructor going over technique and training you need to do some homework. But I don’t have any one to work or roll with you say. How am I going to train at home? I thought the same thing. I first tired using my wife as my grappling partner. That didn’t work. First of all if she got bruised, which is common in Jiu-Jitsu, what were people going to think. “Hey did you see that bruise on his wife?!” You can only imagine where that would lead in peoples minds. So I got a few books to read. One of them was Jiu-Jitsu University by Saulo Ribeiro (Click it). I was so impressed by the way he taught and what he taught I began searching for more from Saulo. I soon found his DVD instructional series starting with Saulo Ribeiro Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Revolution Series One. Six Volume DVD Instructional Series for Grappling and Mixed Martial Arts (Click It). It was just what I needed for training at home. I could watch it, ponder it, and be ready to maximize my time when training. I still couldn’t get the same level of physical training at home as I did at the dojo but now I felt like I could make progress outside of my two classes a week. I think it is starting to show in my training too. I’m remembering what I see on the DVD during a match and I’m starting to have success because of it. The next thing I need is a Grappling Dummy (Click it) and some mats. I think that will take me to the next level of solo training at home. I’ve also been considering a subscription to Gracie University online.
I blog a lot about Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. I like to add to my blogs items from JiuJitsuProGear.com. It was a pain having to create affiliate link using their nebular look up page. So I created a Windows Live Plugin that does it for you. It downloads the items from JiuJitsuProGear.com and cleans them up. You can sort and filter the items to find the one you want. It even saves your affiliate id for you. The first time it loads it does take some time to download the items and create the appropriate files. You must have read/Write privileges to your Windows Live Writer plug-in directory.
If you need help or have feed back I will respond to this post.
- Download and unzip the plug-in into your Windows Live Writer Plugin file.
- Open Windows Live Writer and try it. It will take a minute to load the first time.
After hard work and time I have achieved blue belt. I was awarded a Ki belt at the test. It was a little small for me. It gave me the look of Baby Huey when I had it on. It was thin and flimsy. I decide there had to be something better. I had just bought my first real Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Kimono (Koral MKM Urban Camo Kimono) and decided that I should get a belt from Koral (click to see). I was a little skeptical about the Koral belts at first. As you can see in the picture it doesn’t give much detail. Koral belts were going for roughly $20 plus shipping where as the Ki sold for $5 plus shipping. I didn’t want to have another flimsy belt with a know brand name on it. Koral is made in Brazil and Ki is made in China. I decided to take a chance and get a blue Koral but now how to pick the right size? There was no belt size chart to help me. I finally decided to go with the same size as my kimono or gi. In short order my belt arrived in the mail. I quickly took it out and compared it to my Ki and old HSU white belt. My new Koral was longer then my Ki, to my relief, but shorter then my old HSU white belt. I tried it on with my gi and it looked good. The quality of the belt is much better too. It is thicker and has the black ends for strips. I guess you get what you pay for. I recommend the Koral belt over Ki.
Our Kenmore 6010 garbage disposal died this week. How do I know it died and wasn’t just jammed? You unplug the disposal. On the bottom of the disposal is a hex head or nut. You stick a hex screw driver or allen wrench in it and you can turn the motor in the garbage disposal from outside. This way you avoid putting precious finger in it. When I turned it on it sounded like it was bound up. I manually turned the motor and something thing dropped inside. I thought it might be a fork or spoon so I uninstalled or removed the disposal from the sink. I checked inside with it unplugged. Nothing was in there. I think a brush had worn out on the electric motor.
I went shopping for a new garbage disposal at my local Home Depot. I couldn’t wait for a better deal to ship from online. If you can wait you can get it for less at Amazon.com – Insinkerator Evolution Essential (click to see it). I’m getting ahead of my self. I picked the Insinkerator Evolution Essential. Why? There were only two brands offered at Home Depot. The Badger (click to see it), which had horrible reviews and the Evolution which had great reviews. Of the models offered I picked the Essential because for the money it had the best features. To go up to the Excel (click to see it) I didn’t feel I was getting that much more, only the triple grinding (Multi-grind Plus) for $100 more dollars and shiny stainless steel no one would ever see. The unit I picked has double grinding (Multi-grind) and was far more quite then my old disposal.
How did the install go? Very smooth! The instructions were a little hard to follow but I had researched online how to do it ahead of time and that helped. The two things that didn’t come with the disposal where the power cord and plumber putty. I salvaged the cord from my old Kenmore. I think it was a good Green idea (reuse, recycle, reduce) to reuse the others power cord. You can also buy the cord on line, InSinkErator CRD-00 Power Cord Kit (click to see it). I picked up the plumber putty at Home Depot when I picked up the new garbage disposal.
Uninstalling the old unit proved difficult. It hadn’t been installed correctly and had rusted around the locking ring. The new Insinkerator went on fine when I realized I needed to take the snap ring off so I could disassemble the parts to separate the sink flange for mounting. I did have to shorten the discharge tube or pipe to get it to fit. The Evolution has rubber couplings that help keep the vibration down. I made sure they were free to take the vibrations.
To sum it up my wife and I are very happy with our new garbage disposal and its installation.
Things to remember:
- Purchase Plumber Putty.
- Salvage from the old unit the power cord or buy the InSinkErator CRD-00 Power Cord Kit (click to see it)
- Take the snap ring off to disassemble mounting pieces.
- Flip the rubber sink baffle before installation.
- Pop out the dishwasher inlet tab if you are hooking it to a dishwasher.
My first gi was a HSU Kodokan blue, size 6. It was a good deal for a beginner like me. What I didn’t realize at the time is what a good gi was. I didn’t know anything about Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu or Judo. I was just starting out in BJJ. Now I know the error of my ways. Please note gi and kimono are two words for the same thing. Brazilians say kimono and Americans gi.
A simple search for “Kodokan” on Google brings up Judo related links. HSU sells Jiu-Jitsu gi’s. Then why does there Jiu-Jitsu gi say Kodokan on it? The URL to there site is www.hsujudo.com. When you visit there site you will see that there Judo gi’s have a different picture but look the same as those for Jiu-Jitsu. Are you starting to see a pattern here? My first gi is a Judo gi which was marketed as a Jiu-Jitsu gi. It doesn’t have the smaller cuffs or pants legs. The whole of it is baggier. I had a black belt comment on the “extra large cuffs” while instructing my partner on how to get a good hold on them. My size 6 will fit some one between 6’0” to 6’4”. The collar is very thick. After washing I can’t get it to dry out. This has caused it to smell and I had to figure out how to clean it (see my post on “How to Clean your Gi”). The pants were too long. I had them altered to fit.
My new gi is a Koral MKM Urban Camo Kimono size A3. It is sized differently by height 5’11”-6’2″ and weight 190-220 lbs. It doesn’t have the large cuffs and the pants fit right off in every aspect. The collar is half as think and the jacket is light weight. Great for hot summers! It has vulcanized rubber inside of the collar. It is preshrunk, so when you put it on you know that is the size it will stay. You should have seen how big my HSU was before it shrunk! The patches on the Koral MKM Urban Camo are cool. Ok, so I paid a good deal more for it. But it is worth it by far! My game has changed too. I can move better in it and I don’t have tons of cloth for my opponent to grab. I’ll never go back. Koral makes a quality Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu kimono. Hands down they win this comparison.
HSU Kodokan Gi
- HSU does not sell Jiu-Jitsu gi’s. They market Judo gi’s as Jiu-Jitsu gi’s.
- HSU gi’s are made in China.
- Collar of gi is not easy to dry out after washing. Gets smelly and needs more care to keep it clean.
- HSU gi comes in broader size making for a bagger fit. It is more of a Judo cut.
- Jacket is heavy and there is a good chance the pants won’t fit you right off. The Jacket is two piece.
Koral MKM Urban Camo Kimono (click to see it)
- Koral Kimonos are made in Brazil, home of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
- Collar isn’t too thick. It dries all the way through in half the time.
- The jacket is one piece. No seams around the waist.
- The Kimono fit out of the box like a dream and after washing.
- It is lighter and has more reinforcement.
- It was make by Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practitioners for Jiu-Jitsu!
Did you know you can get up to a brown belt in Gracie Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu online? I didn’t until today. At GracieUniversity.com you watch videos of everything you need to learn. You video tape your self doing the techniques with some one and mail it in. What a revolutionary idea. My questions are, what kind of quality of brown belt will you get in the end? Does it really substitute for in person training? I like the chat room that is enabled with each video clip so that you can chat with others about what you are working on. It also has a online instructor to ask questions about what you are working on. These are both great ideas. I wonder if they would accept your submission or test video if you don’t have anyone to work with and only use a grappling dummy?
Please let me know your experience with Gracie University. I would especially like to hear from some one who has tested for a belt through this system.
Saturday, July 11th 2009 I passed my blue belt test at Unified Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu – Pedro Sauer Team. The test lasted 3 hours in the heat of July. Shawn Weaver and James Gardner, black belts, conducted the test. There were 12 of us taking the test that day. The test consisted of 88 techniques. We divided up into 2 lines of 6, each with a partner. Shawn would then ask us to do a technique from the list. He would demonstrate the starting position of the technique with James. We would all then begin doing the technique we thought he wanted. He and James would then walk around observing and in some cases instructing. He would then stop all of us and demonstrate the technique on James that he expected to have seen. He would point out the finer points and the street application of the technique. After the test was finished we paid our testing fee of $50 and waited for the results. Shawn and James came out with belts and we lined up. The belts were awarded for those who passed and each was given a congratulatory throw. All 12 of us passed. Shawn spoke to the group after the test and said he had been looking at our “movements”. That is how he decided if we understood enough to pass.
My Tips for a successful test:
- Have your testing fee in cash. Waiting after a long hot test for someone to write a check can be aggravating.
- Come and warm up ahead of time. I came a 1/2 early and was invited to join the class in progress. I took the time to warm up and get ready for the test.
- Try to be towards the front of the class during the test. You don’t want to keep repeating the technique over and over. You want them to see you right off and “check you off”.
- Know the names of the techniques on the test. It shows you have studied them. It is impressive when you are the first and only one to know what you are doing right off while the others mill around unsure. Even if you do a different variation of what they wanted it still says you are skilled and ready to pass as you show them you can do both.
- Don’t show off. Just do what they ask and ask questions only as needed. Your knowledge and skill will show forth in your technique.
- Relax and let your muscles do what you have trained them for. Don’t think just do what you have been doing.
In my previous post Creating a Windows Live Writer Plug-In with C# I created a plug-in for the Amazon Quick Linker. I didn’t include the plug-in it self. I thought It would be better to have a smaller post showing it and the download. So here is a quick tour or FAQ on it. Please feel free to post your questions and suggestion on this post. I really would like to hear back from you.
- Close Windows Live Writer it isn’t already.
- Unzip the AmazonQuickLink.zip file into your “C:\Program Files\Windows Live\Writer\Plugins” directory.
- Open Windows Live Writer and check for the lighting icon on the bottom right menu labeled “Insert”.
Please note, you need to have the Amazon Quick Linker Widget installed to use this. In my post WordPress, Windows Live Writer, and Amazon Quick Linker I talk about how I got Amazon Quick Linker working with WordPress.
I had purchased a iRobot Roomba 560 for my wife for Christmas. It turned out to be a great hit with my wife and family. When I saw a chance to get a Scooba for 60% off, I took a chance. The Scooba 5999 is the remanufactured or refurbished version of the Scooba 5800. I was a little nervous about it being reworked. I decided to spend the extra $10 and get a year warrantee with it. If it does have problems I’m covered. I purchased mine at NewEgg.com but I notice they are now sold out. You can also get one at Amazon.com but not for as good a deal.
My wife was pleasantly surprised when it arrived. Score one for the husband! She set it up in no time and it was off and cleaning.
My expectations were:
- That it would lessen the amount of work that my wife needed to do in cleaning the floor.
- That the floor would stay cleaner.
- That I would not have to dance around her Floor Steamer that she would leave out.
- That I wouldn’t have to worry about when I shouldn’t walk into the kitchen because the floor was wet.
It meet all my expectations. With kids there is always something being spilled or dropped. The Scooba can do a bi-daily cleaning without my wife and I don’t stick to the floor. I love how it suctions up the water after it mops. My wife only feels the need now to do her floor cleaning once a week. I don’t have to worry.
Like the iRobot Roomba 560 it isn’t the end all of floor cleaning. It does a nice surface job. You work less to keep things clean.
The time has come at last! My instructor (Mark) says I’m ready to test for Blue Belt. I’ll be testing July 11, 2009 at Pedro Sauer’s first school, Unified, in Sandy, Utah. I am feeling ready! I’ve notice in the past month how much easier it is to pick up new moves or techniques. I’ve also started to see how things can flow together or transition into something else.
The test covers 88 different techniques. I have tried to match up every thing on the list with what is shown in Renzo and Royler Gracie’s book: Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Theory and Technique (click to see the book). Here is what I have so far:
1. Tie The Belt (BJJ T&T pg. 30)
2. Roll Forward (BJJ T&T pg. 32)
4. Bridge (UPA) (BJJ T&T pg. 34)
7. Elbow Escape Movements (3 Options) (BJJ T&T pg. 88)
8. Stand Up in Base (BJJ T&T pg. 152) ???
9. Two-Handed Choke Defense (BJJ T&T pg. 38)
10. Same Side Wrist Grab Escape (BJJ T&T pg. 40)
11. Two-Hand Wrist Grab Escape (BJJ T&T pg. 44)
12. One-Hand Lapel Grab Defense (Straight Arm) (BJJ T&T pg. 112)
17. Front Kick Defense (BJJ T&T pg. 60)
20. T-Position Hip Throw (BJJ T&T pg. 46)
26. Upa with Choke Defense (BJJ T&T pg. 58)
28. Basic Cross Choke (BJJ T&T pg. 50)
29. Basic Cross Choke from Mount (BJJ T&T pg. 193)
34. Kimura (From Guard) (BJJ T&T pg. 96)
37. Cross Choke Defense in the Guard (Squeeze the
Bread) (BJJ T&T pg. 56) ???
39. Scissor Sweep to Mount (BJJ T&T pg. 64)
40. Armlock from Guard (BJJ T&T pg. 130)
41. Triangle from Guard (BJJ T&T pg. 124)
42. Guillotine Choke from Guard (BJJ T&T pg. 104)
I will add more as I document them. For now here is what I have of the 88. I hope this helps. I will also blog later about what the test was like. I’m a little nervous. It would have been nice to read a post from someone who had taken the test at Unified before hand.