Posted: February 27th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under:, , | Tags:, , , , , |
My journey to Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. This is my journal in bits and pieces of what led me to BJJ. Hope you enjoy.
You see, I had begged my mom, who was estranged from my father at the time, to let me take “Karate.” (Of course back then, we Americans pretty much thought it was all the same. Karate, Kung Fu, etc., all the same.)
In any event, I was upset that I could not fly through the air and strike/kick my opponent like in the Bruce Lee movies. But Sensei assured me and others that Judo was a superior martial art. I did one competition as a yellow against an orange belt. It resulted in a stalemate.
After moving away, Judo ended for me and my father enrolled me in Okinawan Karate. That lasted about 6 months. I learned horse stance and striking and kicking, but we moved again.
Back living with mom, my mom enrolled me at the YMCA for this new martial art in the states that supposedly billed itself as having the most powerful kick in the world. We wore karate gis, and learned a mild version of Thai Kick Boxing. This had to have been circa 1978-79.
There was an interval of several years where I no longer trained at a do jo, but instead would work the heavy bags, stretch, and lift weights. But that was it till the Marines.
MARINE MARTIAL ARTS
After that, I learned basic boxing techniques for a year and then trained along doing heavy bags and shadow boxing after that. I would always combine kicks I had learned in Muay Thai with my boxing.
UFC CHANGES EVERYTHING
I was working 9-12 hour days in sales and paralegal fields and pretty much just lifted weights when I could after that. This went on till:
So after getting married, finishing law school and five years in a successful law practice, I was burned out on lifting weights, under a lot of pressure, gaining weight, 40 years old, and needing the feeling I had when I was young; of combat and battle. Martial arts were calling me again, but I also wanted to lose weight and improve my cardio. A pro boxer at my gym suggested I train with him.
I did, and lost a lot of weight and really sharpened my “American” boxing skills.
BRAZILIAN JIU JITSU
A former Army Ranger who trains there confirmed this. He drives from San Diego to Los Angeles just to train with him. It was further verified by an Austrian and several Englishmen who came to California just to train with Rey. They had the choice of traveling to Brasil and training at the BJJ Mecca there.