Archive for: ‘February 2013’

John Frankl Seminar @ SBG Toronto (Feb 2013)

February 6, 2013 Posted by School of Thought

After being exposed to Coach John Frankl’s seminar last year for a mere three hours and having him have a significant effect on the way I view jiujitsu (everything is a position), I was really excited to see how much of an effect ten hours with the man would have. During a short conversation, with him over a beer on Friday, he said “Let’s do it right.” Wow. We did it right that’s for sure!

Over the following weekend Coach Frankl broke down what is usually taught in a basic jiujitsu class on self defense. How to escape a headlock. However, he did not teach us how to escape, he gave us the tools and thought processes to start identifying what makes each jiujitsu move work..dropping more than a few knowledge bombs that resonated with all of the students regardless of their experience level …. from a student who had been with the gym for only one week, to multiple coaches from the SBG tribe who have been with the gym for over ten years. Everyone left with new tools in their belt.

The theme of the weekend’s seminar was “ space management”. Space Management is vital for achieving success in jiujitsu. John is a crossfit beast, however he is also smarter than your average bear and knows not to use muscles when a perfectly good bone structure (FRAMES) will use less energy and will work on a wide variety of opponents not just smaller white belts. ” You can’t rely on moving your opponent but you can always move yourself”. Leading directly to sweeps, “you must make a hole for them to fall into.” These were a few of the simple concepts that John drilled into us throughout the seminar.

Put simply, the man has a special skill with words. With nineteen years of experience he was able simplify jiujitsu concepts like no one I’ve ever seen. Most jiujitsu websites or dvds rarely touch base on the fundamentals of why moves work; they normally just show how the individual does the move. (left hand right sleeve, feed the other hand for a cross grip at the lapel, right foot on the hip… blah blah blah.) His uncomplicated style of teaching allowed all of us to really understand the basics of jiujitsu.

Coach Frankl left us with many knowledgeable lessons that we will be digesting until the next time he drops by the SBG Toronto gym…here are just a few of them:

1. The concept of repeatability. Much like science, the sweep, submission or tactic should work multiple times, on a variety of different opponents. If you can only do a sweep twice without burning out, it is not repeatable.

2. Believe in the technique, its going to take some time.

3. The art of being a good training partner, checking your opponent’s base and correcting his mistakes.

4. Slow and steady is vital for process. Don’t train too hard for six months, get injured and not training for six months. ([+6] + [-6] = 0)

Thank you John Frankl for answering all our questions and rolling with us and exposing us to your years of experience. Thanks to Coach Jason Lancucki for bringing down another legend of the game to help influence and inspire us to be better. The experience was definitely a game changer in the way I view jiujitsu.

Viva la SBGi!

PK