Monday, 29 February 2016

Checkmat Wimbledon - MMA victory!

HUGE congrats to student Mehmet, who won his first MMA fight at the weekend with a BJJ arm bar :)

Takedown. Pass guard. Submit.

Old school Jiu Jitsu. You can't beat it.


Friday, 26 February 2016

Last night's class at MMARAP

Another highly enjoyable class last night in Islington with Jonathan Buffong and MMARAP, with two new members starting up this week; the classes are a mix of deaf and hearing people, transgender and young kids with anger management issues.

The sessions are really helping these young kids out who just need a little gentle guidance in their lives. Jiu Jitsu is a very powerful tool in realising people's full potential. 

Jiu Jitsu is for everyone.

To compete or not to compete??


Monday, 22 February 2016

Sunday, 21 February 2016

Fight Talk visit and interview at Checkmat London training Camp

Check out this cool video from Abjol Miah, recorded at Fightzone last weekend at the Checkmat Training Camp.

Luiz Ribeiro Charity Seminar

The Checkmat Wimbledon army were on the road once again yesterday, taking part in a charity seminar with London Fight Factory main man Luiz Ribeiro; the seminar was organised by Colin Nwadike and was held at the New Wave Academy Training Centre in SE25.

The session covered concepts concerning guard passes and started with a nice easy warm up drill to start; after this, Luiz talked about the importance of base and balance when looking to pass guard and went on to cover a number of passes and how to counter and frustrate when the person on bottom is looking to get grips established and starting to attack with sweeps.

Luiz was ably assisted by Enrique and AP, who carried on where Luiz left off and demonstrated a number of cool sweeps from the De La Riva position and once drilled, Luiz showed ways of frustrating the guy on bottom, as they attempted to get into the DLR position.

A great concept and specifics driven session from Luiz and company, lots to take in and lots to be drilled in class this coming week; huge thanks again to Colin for organising the seminar and taking us out for an all you can eat Brazilian Churrascaria, where we more than got our money's worth.  Big shout out to Eammon Madden who also attended the seminar, was great to catch up with you.


Friday, 19 February 2016

Self defence class at Ringcross for MMARAP

I was back once again to the Ringcross Community Centre in Islington last night to take a self defence class for MMARAP; thanks to Jonny Buffong's hard work, he has managed to secure a donation of Gi's for the students, so they can start to train properly and feel like real martial artists.

Everyone had fun last night and looking forward to going back next week.

Thursday, 18 February 2016

Tornado Attacks!

In the wake of Storm Imogen, here comes a triple tornado threat - time for us senior players to throw back the years and invert!


Tuesday, 16 February 2016

Stripes for the lads!

Huge congrats to Adrian and Jas, who were awarded their first stripe on their white belt last night.  Keep up the good work guys!

New student!

Checkmat Wimbledon is pleased to welcome Tom Litster to the team, who started his journey last week.  Oooss!


Monday, 15 February 2016

7 side control and guard passing counter drills from Chewjitsu

DVD review - Spider Leg Lasso by Travis Stevens

Summary – Introductory DVD into the open guard spider leg lasso position.

Renzo Gracie black belt and two time US Olympian Travis Stevens presents a DVD on the spider guard and leg lasso position; the DVD comprises of three spider guard breaks, a leg drag off the first spider guard, four spider guard passes, an overview of the lag lasso position, three lasso passes and a leg lasso counter to guard pass.

The spider guard breaks cover one break from the hip/bicep position and two double biceps positions, with a leg drag from the first spider guard break.  The spider guard passes covers a pass from the foot and biceps position, a defence from the first pass, another pass from the hip/biceps position and a pass from both biceps position.

The leg lasso chapter covers a number of details to be aware of when in this position to prevent you from being controlled, swept and submitted.  From the leg lasso position, Stevens shows a way to break the grip and three options to pass and a leg lasso counter into a pass.

The DVD is approximately fifty minutes and is well produced with clear and concise instruction from Stevens; the DVD is by no means a comprehensive and extensive release, more a basic introduction to the position, with lots of scope for future add on DVD’s covering more passes and counters and sweeps and submissions and much more.

The DVD is available from


Saturday, 13 February 2016

Team Training Day @ Fightzone!

The Checkmat family was out in force this afternoon at Marco Canha's Fightzone Academy in Bethnal Green, with over 60 students and instructors sharing the mats, putting in some serious mat time in readiment for the London Open.

Seven black belts were on the mats and main man Chico Mendes oversaw the competition training session and within a few minutes the room was filled with a murky heat haze; lots of drills, specifics and sparring made the two hours fly by and everyone was soaked with sweat when Chico called time at the end of the session.
With John Kelly
Myself and my students thoroughly enjoyed the session and it was a much needed boost and kick up the behind for yours truly, after having a bad year, injury wise in 2015. This year marks the return of Old Man Jiu Jitsu, getting back to full fitness and I was really pumped to finish the whole class without dying and picking up any new injuries, nor inflaming old ones.  As per usual with us seniors, the acid test is always the day after and whether or not I can get my socks on unaided in the morning.
With Neto and Marco
Massive thanks to all the black belts for taking time out to arrange the session, Chico Mendes for the coaching and Marco Canha for allowing us the use of the gym gratis.  
Wimbledon posse with the coaches
Really looking forward to the next session. Ooss! 

Friday, 12 February 2016

Jiu Jitsu & Self Defence session with MMARAP!

I had a great evening last night, returning to the Ringcross Community Centre in Islington to teach a class for able and deaf people for MMARAP, which is run by Johnathan Buffong; regular readers will know of my long running involvement with Jonny and his organisation, which is now picking up momentum and branching out across London, delivering a wide range of combat sports to young able and disabled people.

After taking an after school class in Central London for Jonny, we went over to Ringcross and I had the honour of taking a session that mixed BJJ and Traditional Jiu Jitsu; after a quick warm up, we covered the upa escape from mount and I showed a few disengagements from collar grabs and neck grabs and ended the session with a few bouts of ground wrassling.

Jonny and myself thoroughly enjoyed the session and I received positive feedback from Jonny the next day off the students and I've been invited back next week to take another class.  

When the scheme first started, as you would expect, numbers were low, but they are now slowly picking up with a core of regular students coming every week, taking part in Jiu Jitsu, Karate and Boxing sessions.  A number of deaf and Downs regularly attend the sessions, who were absent yesterday, but things are heading in the right direction, a testament to Jonny's hard work, dedication and vision towards the future.

For more info visit

Famous Jiu Jitsu Quotes


Thursday, 11 February 2016

Last night's class

Last night was Vaporizer Wednesday, going old school with a few none IBJJF friendly techniques with the students; rolling knee bars, calf slicers and Vaporizers were enjoyed by everyone and a chance to put theory into practice rounded off another fun and enjoyable session.


Bon voyage Sakuraba!

Typing this message today with a little sadness in my heart, as I and my students say goodbye to one of my students Jong Hee Kim (first left in photo) who heads back to South Korea on Saturday. Kim has been here with his family for about a year and was living in Wimbledon and joined the gym when numbers were low and stayed with us throughout his stay, training every week. 

I am very honoured and humbled that Kim decided to stay and train during this time when there are more established gyms in the area. Anyone that rolled with Kim will agree that he has one of the strongest grips, once he had your collar you were toast! We are all going to miss you, the place won't be the same without you.

We all had a lot of fun training and joking and learning about his home country and it shows that Jiu Jitsu is for everyone and as Genki Sudo says, 'we are all one.' 

Safe journey home Sakuraba and keep in touch. Ooosss!

Checkmat Training Camp!

Looking forward to a team training session this coming Saturday over at Fightzone in Bethnal Green, where Marco Canha will be opening the doors to his gym to the Checkmat family.

I'll be there of course with a handful of my students to train hard and above all have lots of fun and make lots of new friends too, which is what it's all about.


Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Tonon v Palhares - Fighter Analysis

An in depth analysis of both fighters from BJJ Heroes.  Who's your money on?? 

Tips For Being A BJJ Spaz And Dealing With A BJJ Spaz

Another illuminating article from Chewjitsu................. 


Tonon v Palhares at Polaris 3

The guys at Polaris have pulled off a major coup with one of the most hotly anticipated grappling matches, between two serious leg lock specialists on April 2nd this year. 

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Last night's class

Lots of fun and of course, hard work from everyone last night in class; over the last few days, a video has been doing the rounds from a Korean BJJ team, where a group of students are linked together and all perform a shoulder roll at the room, looks pretty cool.

It was brought to my attention from one of my students, so I thought we'd try it out in the warm up last night and fair play to them, after five attempts they managed a full roll, which I managed to catch on film.

We then gave it a go for two full rolls, almost made it, so next class for sure we'll nail it.

Sunday, 7 February 2016

5 De La Riva sweeps

10 guard passing drills

Cool video on securing those three points from Chewjitsu on their You Tube channel!


Jiu Jitsu v The World

Here's the awesome news feature length film from EAT Films!


Thursday, 4 February 2016

Last night's class

Another highly enjoyable class last night, going old school with a session that ended up No Gi in technical content.  After a thorough warm up and showing a new open guard retention drill, I went over a kimura and Amerciana set up from side control and mount, before showing a couple of figure eight compression subs, that can be used when the first two subs were defended.

With the compression subs, you can attack with these on their own, or use them as set ups for the kimura and Americana, giving options for getting the tap from these dominant positions.

Also had the pleasure of having a new female member, Caitlin, joining in the class last night and getting stuck in with the submissions. Wecome aboard!