Gracie Combatives

Posted: July 23, 2009 in All Eli's BJJ Posts
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For years I thought the challenge was to take complex techniques and see how sinply I could teach them…still sounds like it makes sense. But, then I got a hold of these Combatives DVDs and saw how Rener and Ryron can take “basic” techniques and concepts and explode them with a billion details that make them all but flawless if you execute them according to the explanation.

This program is the most incredible thing I have ever seen in the way of video training for BJJ. Rener and Ryron Gracie have masterfully put things together on this set. They are truly amazing teachers. Want proof? Sit down to watch a segment of a technique on one of these Combatives DVDs, and see how they explain things. You will walk away with something either new or fixed.

I don’t mean to turn this into an ad for the Gracie Combatives. I plan to praise good stuff I find, as well as politely bash crap that I come across: see my future posts about why Mark Hatmaker sucks so hard! But once and a while I get a wake-up call to polish and polish and polish the basics some more, and this series is the perfect vehicle. I can pick up on new details each viewing – and that is awesome.

So, if you are looking to invest in a supplemental training method, I can recommend books later, but I would get the Combatives DVDs before anything.

  1. slideyfoot says:

    I’d agree that the Gracie Combatives DVDs are excellent, but I wouldn’t recommend them to the average BJJ beginner, only those interested purely in self defence. That’s because they teach numerous habits which in a ‘sport’ jiu jitsu context (to use their contentious terminology) would be detrimental to your progress: e.g., leaving your arm vulnerable during mount escapes and not protecting your neck against chokes.

    For the average BJJ student, Roy Dean’s Blue Belt Requirements remains the gold standard, but for self defence, Gracie Combatives are the best I’ve seen to date.

  2. Sir Emeth Mimetes says:


    I agree with both Slideyfoot and Eli that the Gracie’s level of detail and excellence in teaching is superb. They are simply amazing in what they do.

    I would like to point out that Slideyfoot displays a very perceptive attitude towards the GJJ vs. BJJ controversy (if you want to call it that). The difference between GJJ and BJJ is their focus and the environment that they are designed for. As distinct martial arts, GJJ is designed and adapted for a no-rules, street fight situation, whereas BJJ was adapted for tournament situations.

    Slideyfoot also correctly pointed out that while BJJ is generally better in tournaments (although GJJ still wins quite a bit when it is in tournaments), GJJ is greatly superior to BJJ in street self defense. This is pointed out by the Gracies themselves on several occasions.

    I just wanted to point out that.

    With joy and peace in Christ,
    Sir Emeth Mimetes

  3. slideyfoot says:

    Hmm. I wouldn’t say there is quite so great a gap as that, though the Gracie Academy certainly likes to present itself as “greatly superior” in street self defence (whether it actually is…that’s an interesting question). Rorion has been looking to push the ‘self defence’ angle for a long time, but in the past couple of years, his marketing machine has really gone into overdrive.

    If you want to see exactly what I said, I go into copious detail on the sport vs self defence question here.

  4. CheebaHawk From New York says:

    Eh yo, I copped the Gracie Combatives DVD’s because I wanted to have something else other than boxing/street fighting in my arsenal. Coming from somone who has never practiced Jiu Jitsu, the Gracie Combatives Program is straight! The detail is unrivaled and broken down for even the most green of Martial Artist hopefuls for a Self Defense or as I like to say a “Combat Environment”. I was raised in the streets and had no problem aimlessly directing rage at my opponent in a fight…no discipline or format. The Gracie Combatives DVDs really ad something to work with. Now I dont feel so primal and I can say that the rise of brothers realizing that Jiu Jitsu isnt a bunch of “Hong Kong Fooey” is truly realized!

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