Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Wise words for white belts!

Check out this article from the BJJEE.com website, essential info for white belts and I so wish I had this to read when I first started.  All the senior belts on the mats all started at the same place, as white belts and went through all the pains and traumas white belts are facing today, we've all been there, so read the article and man up and hit those mats hard!

Club rash guards!

The club rash guards arrived over the weekend and last night the lucky ones that turned up gave them their first test run; the lads faces when they had them on were priceless, things like these really help to strengthen team cohesion and we're really looking like a proper club and team and the lads are really looking forward to competing in July and wearing the rash guards at the event, I'm sure we'll not go unnoticed.

A huge thanks to Gareth Baxendale (Gartista) and Paul from Subguards.com, who between them, help made an idea I had in my become a reality.  From pen to paper at the start, to see the rash guards in my hands and then on our backs was something really special last night, so many thanks again guys.

Monday, 29 June 2015

Be explosive!

Make these three simple changes in your training routine and see your performance go through the roof!


Keep 'em clean!

Here's a very interesting article regards keeping clean when training, very apt during the warm weather we're experiencing.......



Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Saturday, 6 June 2015

Training today @ London Fight Factory!

Enjoyed a hardcore session at LFF this afternoon with Luiz and the rest of the LFF posse; it was sparring only, gi or no gi, the choice was yours.  Every roll was tough and I was pushed to the limit and I'm glad to say my poor old back survived the session and is as strong as it's ever going to be.

Together with a recent order for sports tape, I can get back on the mats and start getting sharp again, it's been the longest period of time away from training, but as you get older injuries take longer to overcome and coming back too early is a recipe for disaster.

To all the Seniors out there that read this, take your time getting over injuries and do as much rehab exercises as you can and you'll stay on the mats longer.  These days for myself it's not having the stamina to do three sessions a day like I was able to ten years ago.  It's having the stamina to train once four of five times per week for the next ten years.  Leave the crazy training routines for the young guns and concentrate on staying on the mats longer and as injury free as you can.

Huge thanks to Luiz for an awesome session as always and to all the guys I rolled with today, thanks for pushing me hard and making me step out of my comfort zone for ninety minutes.


Friday, 5 June 2015


I am pleased and highly honoured to be involved in a new and exciting programme, delivering martial arts classes to young kids and adults, which was set up by a good friend of mine Jonathon Buffong.  In addition to this project, Jonathan has a book published on the early days of MMA in the UK, so expect a review very soon.

According to Jonathan, 'Mixed Martial Arts for Reform and Progression (MMARAP) is a Community Interest Company, whose aim and objective is to motivate, empower and support young people (15-25) through Mixed Martial Arts, self development, careers and educational advice and life skills. The company is geared towards helping give young people a focus away from a life of crime and violence.  We also have a strong focus on those with learning disabilities, partially sighted, those who are deaf and amputees.  We use mixed martial arts (MMA) as a tool to make a positive contribution to ddeveloping essential life skills such as team building, camaraderie, discipline and confidence,  This is taught alongside IT, numeracy, literacy, careers advice, education and communication skills.'

The more you look into yourself, the greater you will become.  Just believe and stay positive.'

I answered an advert from Jonathan who was looking for coaches to help him deliver after school sessions at Central Foundation Boys School in Central London and after all the checks were done, I was on a twelve week test run together with a Karate instructor.  One week was to be a Karate session, the other week a grappling session with my good self

The sessions are based around no gi Jiu Jitsu, together with all kinds of general fitness training, strength and conditioning and learning high amplitude throws (as they are described in the FILA grappling rules book) as the gym have some awesome crash mats and I think the crash mats were the deal clincher in these sessions.  They really enjoyed being picked up and dumped into the mats, after all being a young teenager, who doesn't like larking about on crash mats? Especially when being shown how to lark about correctly without injuring each other?

So far I have had four sessions with the students and they have picked up the things I've shown them very quickly and all show promise should they wish to carry on training martial arts when these sessions end at the end of term.  They are a pleasure to teach and really listen to what Jonathan and myself are telling them, whether it be martial arts based or giving them a few lessons about life in general and how their training can help them in and out of school.

The photo shows a few of the young warriors that were at the session yesterday and when all the students hand their consent forms in, we'll have more photos to show in the future.

After reading this, if you're interested in following MMARAP you can join at https://www.facebook.com/groups/211287415587502/?fref=ts.

If you're a coach with DBS clearance and a checkable martial arts background, please email Jonathan at jonathan@mmarap.co.uk or myself at checkmatwimbledon@yahoo.co.uk

Thursday, 4 June 2015

Happy Birthday Checkmat Wimbledon!

How time flies!

One year ago, Checkmat Wimbledon opened its doors for the very first time at Holistic Fitness Studios in Wimbledon town centre; one year on and the club has grown in numbers and some of the students have already tasted success in competition and are busy preparing for the Brighton Open later in July.

The club now has a solid of core of regular members, some of whom where present at the very first class last year and there have been many that have just dropped in for the odd session and a few people that have strayed from their secure units to sample the delights of the Arte Suave.

Huge thanks to Steve Dixon at Holistic Studios for all his help and continuing support down at the club and to my coach Luiz Ribeiro at London Fight Factory for all his help and guidance too.  Thanks to all the people I've met and rolled with at LFF and to my students at the club who turn up week in week out and support the club and keep it going.

Massive thanks also to my partner Emma for all her support and encouragement this past year, as well as supporting the lads when they compete and her sterling work as club photographer.

I've had a great time this past year building up a club from scratch and seeing all the hard work paying off with good regular numbers and winning medals at competitions and am really looking to the next twelve months and beyond.


Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Training tonight!

Back on the mats this evening at Checkmat Wimbledon, time to burn off the holiday excesses and prepare the club and myself for the Brighton Open in July.  This will be the first proper BJJ event for the students and I'm really looking forward to preparing them for battle in the white belt division.


Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Club patches ordered!

Checkmat Wimbledon patches are in the process of being ordered, very excited indeed to say the least; with the new rash guards and patches on order, the club is really heading in the right direction and I'm looking forward to seeing the rashguards and patches on the mats and out there on the UK competition circuit.


Back in the UK!

Back to a wet and windy London, after a week in the sun, all nicely burnt like a true British holiday maker.

Back on the mats tomorrow night, getting ready for the Brighton Open!!