Which is more dangerous, strength or technique?

Which is more dangerous, strength or technique – I say technique.

Personally, I think there are three key areas to focus on in order to become as good at BJJ as possible and they are: technique, cardio and flexibility. These three areas are where I am laying my personal focus with technique being the single most important factor.

I really can’t remember where I read ‘which is more dangerous…’ – but I remember it was said by a BJJ Black Belt from Rio de Janeiro – and I will never forget the direction the statement afforded me.

Strength doesn’t last forever, but technique does. I have seen highly technical 11 stone guys ripping 15 stone men to pieces. Focusing on technique gives me everlasting hope and provides me with reward that the gains from weight training could never equal. I am nowhere near as strong as I was 20 years ago and in 10 years time I won’t be as physically strong as I am today – but I will be technically much stronger. Caio Terra, eight times world champion believes technique conquers all – there is no strength that will beat technique.

The following video is a personal favourite – Raphael Mendes is an incredible competitor, superb teacher, outstanding role model and is technically amazing – watch the video and when you’ve finished, ask yourself the question – how would strength stop that technique? Make sure you watch the second technique starting at the 9 minute mark.

A strategy for becoming an unstoppable guard passer, taught by Vitor ‘Shaolin’ Ribeiro…

Vitor ‘Shaolin’ Ribeiro is a four times World champion and 4th degree black belt – he was black belt lightweight World champion in 1999, 2000 and 2001.

I really wanted to share this video with you because it is so inspiring – it makes me feel genuinely excited about my training – I can’t wait to get back on the mat.

Everybody knows that practicing the fundamentals and principles of grappling is key to success – my thoughts are influenced by all of the great competitors – those with a simple game always tend to be the ones who win the big competitions.

Marcelo Garcia talks about how he uses the same techniques with such frequency that he knows exactly what his opponent’s options are and is prepared to counter every attempt to dominate his opponent makes. He has seen absolutely every possible technique applied against his own favored game, that nothing now is a surprise or a technique he hasn’t got an answer for. He also knows exactly what he might be faced with when an opponent is trying to stop him from advancing his position – he has seen it all before and knows how to deal with what he’s faced with.

The video I have posted is not so much about a great guard pass although it is considered by many to be one of the best – it’s about becoming so good at something through practice and repetition that you ‘own’ the move and can put it on anybody. I hope you find the video as interesting and informative as I did.

Thank you to Stephan Kesting of for allowing me to post this video. Stephan’s free e-mails and videos are very interesting and well worth receiving – sign up – there’s a wealth of information.

Felipe Costa on dealing with competition pressure and sharing his emotions

I am very grateful to Hywel Teague of BJJ Hacks who has allowed me to post his absolutely brilliant videos on the BJJ Lifestyle Team website. Of course the videos are also available on YouTube, but it’s a pleasure to put such high quality work on my site. Thanks again, Hywel – so interesting to watch your films, I really admire your work.

I love Felipe Costa’s sincerity, he’s so easy to relate to – for those that enjoy this video, there is a Felipe Costa mini series on YouTube that follows Felipe’s competition progress – the series is very inspiring and takes us on his travels – it’s a four or five-part mini documentary – watch it, it’s excellent.

The man who made a HUGE difference to my Jiu-Jitsu – Leo Negao

Introducing my teacher to BJJ Lifestyle Team, Leo Negao. Leo will be visiting us in Kingston to teach his Gi and No-Gi techniques – he has a relaxed teaching style which makes being part of his lessons a pleasure. I first met Leo in April 2009 – his Jiu-Jitsu was refreshing, exciting and captivating – I have learnt so much from him and feel very lucky to have him as my teacher…

Thank you to Aire Valley Martial Arts for letting me post this video.

Caio Terra – at under 9 stone, he often wins open weight competitions…

A huge thank you to Hywel Teague of BJJ Hacks who has allowed me to put his fantastic videos on the BJJ Lifestyle Team website. Hywel’s videos provide an invaluable insight into the minds of some of the sport’s greatest competitors. I will be posting my favourite films for the team’s enjoyment and benefit.