Fight Classics: Marcelo Garcia vs Kron Gracie (ADCC 2009)

In classes at the St. Albert Dojo, Professor Tyson can often be heard speaking about “splitting the focus”. This is a common concept in martial arts, but is especially important in Jiu-Jitsu. In any roll or tournament match, you must consistently try to improve your position, submit or otherwise threaten their opponent from every position. The reason is that if you and your opponent are easily matched and they are trying to pass your guard, they will likely be successful if they can dedicate 100% of their energy and focus to that task. If you threaten with a sweep or submission, they will be forced to split their focus between passing your guard and defending themselves, doing neither to the best of their ability. The idea be applied to any situation, offensive or defensive. At the elite level, this match between Marcelo Garcia and Kron Gracie is perhaps one of the best examples of this concept in action. Even though Marcelo spends the majority of the fight in the bottom position, Kron never gets a chance to fully apply himself to a pass or submission attempt because Marcelo doesn’t give him an inch of breathing room. There is never a time in the course of the 14-minute match where he isn’t working a sweep, takedown, pass or submission. Kron displays excellent base, posture and threatens with attacks of his own, and ultimately the match ends in a spectacular submission. Watch and see for yourself, and see you in class tomorrow!

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Great Day at Spar Wars for ADMA St. Albert!!!

This weekend was Arashi-Do Martial Arts’ in-house tournament ‘Spar Wars’. In-house tournaments are usually humble affairs, but not when your organization spans 17 dojos in 11 cities! There were a ton of kids, all the divisions were packed with talent and very competitive, and while St. Albert is the newest member of the Arashi-Do family we could not be prouder of both our competitor turnout and their efforts. We brought a team of six mini monkeys and three juniors, and took home nine medals including six golds! Honorable mention as well to Pablo, who divides his time between St. Albert and the south location and took home some nice hardware himself. Even the students who didn’t come out with the results they were hoping for demonstrated great technique and fought their hearts out right to the bell. No one stays undefeated in Jiu-Jitsu and at the end of the day it is these qualities that determine long term success, not any one particular medal or tournament. Check out some of the pictures from the tournament here, and look for more to come on the Arashi-Do St. Albert Facebook page. In-house events like these are a great place to gain experience for those looking to compete in major tournaments like Mind Body Soul, and also provide opportunities to connect with our amazing community within the Arashi-Do network. We can’t wait to come back next time with an even bigger team!

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Give us a call at 780-217-0059 or send us an e-mail at for more information on joining our team and see the life-changing benefits of training in jiu-jitsu for yourself!

Arashi-Do Behring Symposium Oct 2017

Our school represented well at a whirlwind of a grading this weekend with the head of our organization, 8th degree black belt Mestre Sylvio Behring! It began with the instructor symposium, where Professor Tyson was awarded the first degree on his black belt, which represents four years of dedication and hard work on the mats since he first received his black belt in 2013.

Then came the Juniors grading, where nine of our Junior BJJ students showed their skills for Mestre Behring and earned their Gray/White belts.

Finally, Mike and Stephanie did a fantastic job in the adult grading, earning their first stripes and taking the first big step toward blue belt!

In and amongst the gradings were also several packed seminars in which Mestre Behring’s immense knowledge was on full display for us, as it is every April and October. It truly can’t be overstated how special these events are and we can’t wait for the next one when we’ll be bringing an even bigger group. OSS!

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Give us a call at 780-217-0059 or send us an e-mail at for more information on joining our team and see the life-changing benefits of training in jiu-jitsu for yourself!

Why BJJ for Women is So Important

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“Woman must not depend upon the protection of man, but must be taught to protect herself.” – Susan B. Anthony

I started training in martial arts about fifteen years ago, and right from the beginning self-defense has been a priority for me. Not only is it comforting to know that I can defend myself and my family if necessary, the training is also fun and interesting to me. That said, I know that odds are on my side that I’m not going to have to use it. According to Statistics Canada, in all reported cases of violent crime against men, 84% of attackers were acquaintances of the victim and nearly all were involved in some form of criminal relationship or activity. There are still many benefits for men to train their self-defense, and it’s not that random attacks are completely unheard of. The world can absolutely be a dangerous place but the average law-abiding man, it would seem, doesn’t have as much to worry about if they don’t go looking for trouble.

The statistics of violence against women tell a different, darker story. In the majority of cases of violence against women the attackers were not strangers or acquaintances known from criminal activity, but family members or intimate partners – current and former. One study found that half of Canadian women had experienced physical or sexual violence since the age of 16, and 67% of Canadians said they personally knew at least one woman who had been a victim of violence. These statistics cover extreme examples, but they don’t even touch on the countless everyday encounters that aren’t ‘attacks’ per-say but violate personal space or comfort in public. Faced with these truths, self-defense training becomes much less hypothetical.

Not only am I a strong believer in self-defense training for women in general, but particularly in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, a martial art that not only provides tools for dealing with a larger, stronger attacker but also provides options for control, de-escalation and scaling. Very few martial arts have been tested in as many real-life situations across all walks of life, and keep things simple to maximize training time. At Arashi-Do Martial Arts, we follow the teachings of Mestre Sylvio Behring, an 8th degree black belt and one of the world’s foremost experts on self-defense. While we also love the sport of Jiu-Jitsu, self-defense is and will always continue to be a mainstay in our classes. Try 30 days of classes free with no obligation, and see for yourself what kind of impact Jiu-Jitsu can have on your life.

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What is the “Base” and Why is It So Important?



Everan demonstrates an excellent “side base” before a Mini Monkeys class

“Base.” If you’ve watched Professor Tyson teaching a BJJ class, particularly for children you’ll hear this word brought up constantly. It’s the very first thing taught in our free 30-minute introductory private lessons, and also the beginning of every single stripe test. Whenever a new self-defense technique is taught, the children are reminded that worst case scenario, even if they completely blank on the technique and can’t remember what to do, that they should at least… (this is where they all know to shout BASE! in unison).

So, what is the base and why is it central to how we teach Jiu-Jitsu? In essence, the term “Base” refers to putting your body in a position that makes it difficult for the opponent to push, pull, lift, squash or otherwise affect your body in the way they want to. With that in mind, it’s impossible to put yourself in a position that works against all pressures at once, so different situations will call for different bases. For the children, we streamline it into two main bases, one for when the opponent is beside them and one for when the opponent is in front. For adults, every position in Jiu-Jitsu can have several different iterations of a base depending on the opponent. This can seem confusing or even frustrating, but less so if you think of it less like a hundred different base positions that you have to memorize, and more like simply looking at the position you’re in and thinking “What does my opponent want in this position, and what would make that difficult for them?” Often it’s something small and simple; For example, inside the closed guard it’s better to have your hands on the opponent’s body than on the floor, and to try to be as long from front to back as possible to put stress on their legs.


Professor Tyson and Instructor Cole working in the closed guard with Professor Douglas Moura in Brazil, 2015

These aren’t huge complicated changes to make, but the effect is enormous on the opponent. Having your hands on them instead of the floor means any move they make is against resistance which means that they will be slower, more predictable and tire more easily. Putting stress on the legs means they can’t relax and hang out in the guard, pressuring them to make decisions more quickly. That’s what base is really about – the small adjustments that can be made in any position to put more and greater obstacles between your opponent and what they want. Many martial arts styles neglect this concept and instead rely on being fast, strong and flexible enough to get what you want before your opponent does. That works sometimes for some people, but there is always someone stronger, faster and more flexible out there. Pay attention to your base, and before long you’ll be making these adjustments without even having to think about it!

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Try out BJJ for 30 days FREE at our St. Albert location. Contact Professor Tyson at 780-217-0059 or e-mail at for more information.

Three Basic Armbars – Pick Your Favourite and Drill It!

This is a throwback video to before the St. Albert location, when Professor Tyson was teaching a class called Elemental Jiu-Jitsu at the North Edmonton location based on his book. The video outlines three basic armbars from the guard with three very different styles. The armbar from the closed guard is one of the most important tools to develop for white belts. Opening and passing the guard takes focus, especially against a strong opponent. By threatening the opponent with submissions from the closed guard, you can split their focus between defending the submissions and passing, making their pass less committed and effective. Also, due to the nature of the submission, opponents will often hunker down in your closed guard to avoid the arm being straightened. This makes it easier to go for sweeps and other submissions.

Deception in BJJ

Unlike most sports (and even many martial arts) there is no “best body type” for BJJ and there is also no best way to play it. Everyone learns similar fundamentals, but especially once you get to purple or even blue belt you will start to personalize your style with the techniques and approach that work for you. One of the more common approaches in Jiu-Jitsu is the approach of deception – with the goal in mind of setting up the opponent to think you’re doing one thing while planning another. This can be a very efficient method, especially when fighting opponents that are bigger, stronger or faster.

However, laying traps and deceiving the opponent requires several different skills, and in my experience there is one skill that is often neglected – the skill of selling the first attack. For example, one common pairing is the triangle choke and the armbar. When you attack with a triangle choke, the opponent is likely to try to posture up, leaving their arm vulnerable to the armbar. However, if that was always the plan then fighters will sometimes slack off on the triangle attack. Since the threat of the triangle isn’t real, they don’t panic and posture up as quickly, so the armbar isn’t there either. Even if you’re thinking a few steps ahead, there’s never a time in jiu-jitsu where it’s a good idea to be sloppy or uncommitted on a technique especially against high level opponents. Check out this video of another combination technique for when opponents stack you in the armbar!

This all may seem overwhelming if you’re a beginner, but advanced techniques in BJJ are often just layered basics. Come in and try BJJ for 30 days free, and you’ll be amazed at what you can learn in just a few classes!

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