Friday, 31 July 2015

Ippon of the Day!

Check this out for a quick transition!


Checkmat Wimbledon in the press!

Fame and fortune awaits!

South London Press ran an article and photo today about our competition success at the Brighton Open, a nice little slice of publicity for the club.

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Brighton Open HL Reel

Last night's class

Another busy session last night, one new starter and everyone getting down to hard training as we prepare for the Southend Open in September.  Keep up the good work everyone!


Brighton Open Superstars!

Huge congrats to Nayden, Harry and Dylan on their medal success at the Brighton Open at the weekend. 

Hard work and perserverance pays off, well done guys.

Monday, 27 July 2015

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is for everyone!

I was proud to be a part of the Brighton Open at the weekend, which featured a student of my friend Jack Magee, Luis Coward, who had a few fights on the day.  Luis uses a wheelchair and started his fights from the ground and showed true warrior spirit, which was greeted to a huge round of applause and repsect from everyone at the event.  It really was very emotional and spine tingling to say the least and a truly great moment for Jack and Luis and just shows that BJJ really is for everyone, regardless of size and ability.
Photo from BJJ 24/7
Look forward to seeing Luis at future events, you're an inspiration to us all.

Medal success at the Brighton Open!

This was the clubs first BJJ competition, with four of us competing on the day and we managed to bag one gold, two silvers and a bronze medal, pretty good going at our first attempt.

It was a very well run event, six mats running throughout the day and it was good to be back on the competition circuit, seeing a lot of familiar faces and making new friends, it's what it's all about. I've been away from competing for quite some time through work and injury and I was back in there, up against a superheavyweight, as we were the only two poeple in the old timers section.  Where are all the brown belts?!  The fight didn't go my way, he was far too strong for me, but I didn't get injured and my back was fine the next day. Now it's time to prepare for the Southend Open and hope there's someone in my weight division.

The standard of BJJ was very high, especially the kids matches, some really talented athletes out there on the mats.  It was also very inspiring to see Jack Magee's student Luis Coward on the mats, who received a huge round of applause from everyone at the event, a truly inspirational guy, I look forward to seeing him compete again soon.

Huge congrats to Nayden, Dylan and Harry who have broken their competition cherries and all had a great time and to Billy, Emily and Adrian for coming down to support the lads and to Emily for making awesome protein spiders and to Adrian for driving us there and back.  

To all the students that didn't compete but helped the lads prepare for the event, huge thanks to you all, it's a team effort and everyone's Jiu Jitsu has improved and now it's time to get ready for the next event, so more improvement is guaranteed.

Thanks to Lawrence Dutton and his team for organising the event, you all did a great job and to all the referees for giving up their time to make sure the event was such a success. 

It was a pleasure to see familiar faces Pippa Granger, Gus Oliveira, Jack Magee and Monstro at the event and to all the Checkmat competitors from various clubs, looking forward to Southend!

Friday, 24 July 2015

The Brighton Open fight team!

All the hard work has been done by everyone at the club, helping the lads prepare for our first BJJ competition down in Brighton tomorrow.  I'm very excited to be competing again, my last comp was in Abu Dhabi back in 2012; the only Senior brown belt at the competition is a Superheavy weight, so it's in at the deep end once again.  

Huge thanks to everyone at the club in helping the lads prepare for the event, everyone improves whether you compete or not and it really is a team effort.  We will give it 100% and leave everything on the mats.


Thursday, 23 July 2015

New members!

Checkmat Wimbledon welcomes two new students Jan (left in photo) and Lewis, who are now armed with brand new gi's, ready to join in the fun every week.


Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Tips from the Masters

Words of wisodm from three Jiu Jitsu masters for all you white belts out there.

Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Last night's class

Another busy class last night, with two new starters thrown in for good measure; making the last few classes count, as we get ready for our first BJJ event down in sunny Brighton on Saturday.

Really pleased with everyone's progress and excited for the coming weekend, as my students step put into the middle for the first time, I don't know who will be more nervous, the students or myself!

Monday, 20 July 2015

Move of the week with Jeremy Arel

Here's a neat video to kick start your Monday morning....................


Friday, 17 July 2015

Maggie Moo's sweet potato shepherd's pie recipe

Looks like my post on post training food yesterday really sparked some interest in the BJJ community, which can only be a good thing; first to contribute was purple belt Ben Sulston with his You Tube channel and browsing the Underground forum a few minutes ago, Maggie Moo has kindly posted her recipe on there, so I thought I'd share it on here, as sweep potato is one of my favourite foods.

Maggie is a blue belt with Ribeiro BJJ and is currently in Virginia training and enjoying the good life that is BJJ.  Thanks for posting the recipe Maggie, Shepherd's pie is usually a Winter warmer over here, but I'm sure I'll be trying this out before it gets too cold.


Ben Sulston - BJJ Masterchef

Yesterday I posted a photo of my post training meal, both here and on the UK BJJ Underground forum on Facebook; the Facebook post turned out be well received and had other BJJ'ers posting up photos of their post training feeds, with some rather excellent dishes on offer, with a mega ten egg white and gluten free bread feast from Wilson Junior.  Wilson promised everyone that he would post a video up on how he makes a breakfast smoothie with egg whites, banana and protein and when he does I'll post it on here.
Wilson's eggtastic meal
Diet and nutrition can be a stumbling block for many BJJ'ers and athletes of any sport, so it's always helpful to discuss these topics on the relevant forums and share ideas and tips on all kinds of meal preparation. 

Without going into all the cliches about diet and training, this is one area of your training, that with a little imagination and preparation (remember, if you read my post yesterday, prep and cooking time was only twenty five minutes) can really help boost your performance on the mats, so what have you go to lose? The founder of Kyokushin Karate, Mas Oyama, once said back in the 70's,  'a sickly body is of use to no one.'  So if it's good enough for the Kyokushin fighters who trained for the legendary 100 man Kumite events, it's good enough for us who have to endure a handful of 5,6,7,8 and 10 minute rounds of rolling around on the floor.
Sweet potato shepherd's pie from Maggie Moo
Carlson Gracie Tonbridge purple belt Ben Sulston added his two pennerth into the online debate yesterday with a collection of mouth watering dishes of his own and in a seperate thread, shared a link to his You Tube channel, Sulston's Kitchen.
Ben's take on steak
I took a look on there last night and came away with some mouthwatering recipes and a take on my favourite vegetable, the sweet potato, something which I am going to try out tonight.

I also know what freekeh is as of yesterday too, so I consider myself more educated yesterday than I was the day before.

Check out Rob's YT channel -

Rolling while injured

Here's a great article on an inevitable part of our training, rolling while injured, especially for us Seniors who are usually training every week with at least one niggling injury on their body; many people quit Jiu Jitsu after an injury, which is a crying shame, considering all the time, momney and effort one invests in the sport.

Unless it's a serious injury like a limb break, most injuries are not that severe and a short time of initial rest from the injury, with a little imagination, one can hit the mats and roll with a partner that knows the deal with you and can with hold on the usual intensity and it's a win-win situation for both involved.

Thursday, 16 July 2015

Ditch the Donner!

From this....................

To this...............................

Prepped and cooked in 25 minutes!

There's no excuses for not eating healthy, especially when you're training; people say they haven't got time to cook a good meal, that's rubbish.

This was quicker to prepare and cook than ordering a pizza or a curry and if you're too tired to cook, go out and start exercising, you'll soon get your energy levels back up! 

Ditch the Donner and start eating fresh!

Beware the BJJ Cult Academy!!

Read this article and recognise the signs before it's too late..................... 

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Roger Gracie v Comprido

Roger Gracie was back on the mats after a five year lay off and competed in Las Vegas last weekend against Comprido.  It looked like he hadn't been away at all.  You can watch the fight and see a breakdown of the Pocket sweep by my good friend Jeremey Arel. This is one of my favourite sweeps, one I learned at white belt and Roger shows just how effective old school can be at the highest level.

As always, thanks to the guys at for the footage.


Technique breakdown here -

Monday, 13 July 2015

Kettlebell blaster!

If you're pushed for time for a quick workout, try this awesome ten minute routine from Funk Roberts.  I tried this yesterday at the gym after a cardio session and boy does it kick ass! 

Sunday, 12 July 2015

The Art of Shrimping

BJJ is constantly evolving and coming up with more effective techniques and getting from one place to another in the shortest time possible.  In this video, we see old school v new school on the art of shrimping.  

Do you agree with Ryan Hall?


Friday, 10 July 2015


The sun is out in force today and that means only one thing - The Invasion of the Tapout Crew! Fat guys. REALLY fat guys. Skinny guys. REALLY skinny guys. Goths. Rockers. Emo's. Skinheads. Skinheads with staffies. Not one toned lean athletic body or cauliflower ear between the lot of 'em!!

Single leg defence with Leo Vieira

Thursday, 9 July 2015

Pesky wrestlers!

Some helpful tips on dealing with wrestlers, well worth a watch.... 

Last night's class

It was a rather quiet class last night, due to the Tube strike (grrr) but for those that managed to attend, it was well worth the hassle.  After a quick warm up, one of the students asked me about escaping a side headlock, which changed the course of the whole evening and I spent the rest of the session teaching self defence.

Starting with the side headlock, I went through a number of disengagements from a double collar grab, showing the good old kota gaeshi, nykkyo and advanced nykkyo, a little bit of sankyo and a smaettering of shiho nage for good measure.  Showing how to nip properly went down a treat and my triceps are covered in little bruises, so the students were actually listening and absorbing the info.

Even though it's a BJJ club, I always like to throw in some self defence work in the classes, the students really enjoy themselves and I really enjoy teaching them these techniques, it's good to mix things up, avoids becoming a boring and predicatble session.

As always, huge thanks to Professor Trevor Roberts for teaching me all this awesome Jiu Jitsu all those years ago, it's great to be able to pass on his immense knowledge to my students. 


Wednesday, 8 July 2015

King of the Streets!

What martial art do you think is king of the street?  Watch this video and find out!


Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Injuries suck!

Here's a great article that everyone should read about training and injuries.

Injuries happen, it goes hand in hand with training and it's a great excuse to stop training, which is a crime, considering all the time and money one spends training Jiu Jitsu.  I've had numerous injuries over the years, yet I've either turned up at the gym and sat and watched a class, or turn up and teach in a limited capacity.  Either way I have not sat at home sulking and feeling sorry for myself; it's a place where you can be alone with your thoughts, most of which turn negative and the next thing you know, you've talked yourself out of training for good.

Don't be that person!  Read this article and stay positive.

Last night's class

Hard work was the order of the day last night and the mats were awash with Womble power, as we covered the two on one arm drag with takedown in fine detail and went through some Invisible Jiu Jitsu from the closed guard, ending up with a cool and high percentage guard pass.

Specific training and sparring ended a busy session and all the rash guards have been handed out, everyone is happy with their new purchases and we are now looking like a serious Jiu Jitsu club, next on the list are training shorts and tshirts.

Well done to everyone who trained last night and worked hard, pushing each other to become that little bit better than they were the day before.  I salute you all.

Monday, 6 July 2015

BJJ black belts are human too!

Here's a cool article from the website all about the mystical BJJ black belts that walk among us................. 

Saturday, 4 July 2015

Victor Estima at London Fight Factory

The Saturday afternoon class today had a very special guest, as Victor Estima honoured a long standing promise to Luiz Ribeiro to come down to the club and share the mats with his students. If that wasn't enough, Chico Mendes dropped in for a quick visit and to say hello to Victor and another three black belts graced the mats, making this a rather special training session.

I've known Victor since he was a brown belt and used to train with him with my partner in crime Chris Brown, when we were both at Uni, ducking classes to travel to Leeds and Bradford over ten years ago to train with Victor.  It was nice to both meet again and catch up and have a chat before training began and after a quick introduction, the class got underway.
The content of the class was a tiny slice of the closed guard that Victor uses, when he's on his way to a World or ADCC title and he broke the technique down into easy to understand segments, which made it easier for everyone and was on hand to help anyone who was having a little difficulty. 

There is so much to Victor's game that couldn't be passed on in one session, but what he showed can be added to anyone's game and I thoroughly enjoyed the class and will be drilling the material out in class on Monday and hopefully get to apply it in a competition one day.

Huge thanks to Victor for a great session and to Luiz for conitnually badgering Victor to come down and take the class.  Ossss

BJJ Red Belt List!

Check out this cool article from the website on the updated red belt list for Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. 

Friday, 3 July 2015

Weak Jiu Jitsu??

Interesting article doing the rounds at the minute; what do you think? 

Technique of the week - Leo Vieira!

Words of wisdom from the main man himself.............


Thursday, 2 July 2015

More kettlebell workouts??

You betcha!

Here's a great video from Joey Alvarado, whose videos I've posted on here before, demonstrating sport specific kettle bell exercises that can be added into anyone's training regime.  I like his videos, because his dog always seems to manage to get into the shot, lurking away in the background :)

These exercises are great for us over forties, provided you use a kettlebell you are comfortable with, start off with a low weight and increase weight slowly over time.  The bridge and sprawl exercise is a killer when done in timed rounds, I usually do 5x1m rounds, which is the length of a competitive match for us oldies.  

Add these exercises into your routine and get yourselves in the best shape of your life!

Don't mess with this guy!

Remember this guy, Gilberto Pauciullo? The one with the badass white belt and more stripes than a Bengal tiger?

Well, word on the street is that there is someone else badder and with more credentials than our balding Italian Super Sensei and even has TWO 10th Dan grades in MMA! 

Approach with caution!

Read it here -

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Drill time!

As we bake in the lovely warm weather, here's a great video showing twelve essential drills for your BJJ training; practice these tonight and two minutes is all you'll need to get warm!