Category Archives: BJJ

44: Kurt Osiander on Good and Evil, Force and Diplomacy, and the Key to a Happy Marriage

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Kurt Osiander is a jiu jitsu black belt and the head instructor of Ralph Gracie Academy in San Francisco. He is one of the most unique personalities in the BJJ community and is well respected for his teaching style and his tough-as-nails approach to training. While in San Francisco on Valentine’s day, I stopped by his school for a quick conversation.

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Full Video Interview on YouTube

Kurt Osiander Quotes

On what Kurt learned from his dad:

“Never ever give up. I never quit on anything. If it’s difficult I’ll go after it even more.”

Diplomacy or force:

“You can always try diplomacy, but some people are hammerheads. They won’t accept diplomacy. So then you have to take it to them.”

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43: Adapt and Overcome: Jared Weiner on Brain Injury, Team, Family, and the High and Lows of Philly Streets

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Jared Weiner, a long-time black belt competitor and head instructor of BJJ United, talks to me about his struggle with post concussion syndrome, depression, fear, doubt, drawing strength from his family, his friends, and his team, losing a friend to cancer, his philosophy of training and competing, his evolution as a coach in preparing his students for competition, the darker parts of Philadelphia, uncovering the reality of poverty and desperation, and more.

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Full Video Interview on YouTube

Jared Weiner Quotes and Photos

Advice to those suffering through post concussion syndrome:

“Don’t be afraid to reach out for help. I was too afraid to reach out. I didn’t want to tell people what I was going through because I’m supposed to be the leader here. I have students looking up to me. I didn’t want them to see me in  my weaker state. You have to throw that bullshit to the side. Maybe my weaker state is a state they need to see so that if they’re going through the same thing, they’re going  to go get the proper help needed. If you smack your head around and you’re not feeling right, go see a doctor, take the rest you need, reach out to the right  people.”

On leading by example:

“It is what it is. I’m not the ‘elite’ jiu jitsu athlete. I’m not the best dude in the world, but I’m on the mat with the guys every day. I try to put myself there with them and help with what I can help with. So maybe it’s important for them to see me in this state too, and see me fight through it, and lead by example in that way. I’m still being a teacher… but in a different form.”

On never quitting in a match:

“You have to finish the fight no matter what. That’s just my mentality. I would never stop a match unless there was a limb hanging off. That’s just what we do. We train hard in here. We fight hard in here. We smack heads in here all the time. Get cuts, bleed, we keep going. That’s what we do.”

One of Jared’s favorite  shots that he talks about in the episode:

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38: Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, Creontes, Mat Fees, and Facebook Miscommunication with Marco Perazzo and Tim Carpenter

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Marco, Tim, and I talk about birthdays, holidays, the passing of time, the Tim Spriggs article on creontes, Lloyd Irvin, loyalty, mat fees, Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the two-state solution, facebook miscommunication and much more.

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Quotes

Tim on holidays:

“Every holiday is my favorite holiday.”

Tim on me not liking $40 mat fees:

“Don’t complain about the price, just have more money.”

Links

37: Andre Terencio, IBJJF Referee, on New Rules, Leg Reaping, Advantages, Mistakes and Sport Jiu Jitsu vs Self Defense

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Andre Terencio is an IBJJF referee, 3rd degree black belt in BJJ with more than 20 years of training, competing, coaching, and refereeing; we talk about the value of competition, how new rules are enacted, what makes a good competitor, what makes a good referee, the goal of a good rule set, advantages, leg reaping rule, new rule forbidding sumi gaeshi as counter against head-outside single leg, Eduardo Telles turtle guard, Keenan Cornelius DQ at Worlds, submission-only tournaments, and more.

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Full Audio of Interview on YouTube

Quotes

Andre on the value of competition:

“I believe that every jiu jitsu practitioner should at least once in his life or her life step on the competition mat. It’s a great experience. It’s not just about the goal of winning a medal, but to prove to yourself that you are able to step on the mat and beat your own fears.”

Andre on the relationship between referee and competitor:

“As a referee, people might not like you but they still respect you, because in the back of their head they know that it’s a tough job.”

Links

 

36: Dan Severn, UFC Hall of Famer, on Fighting, Wrestling, and Beating a Man He Couldn’t Beat

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Dan Severn is a UFC Hall of Famer, a legend in combat sports with more than 4 decades of wrestling and fighting under his belt; we talk about fighting, kids, competition, technology, amateur wrestling, Leri Khabelov, beating a man he couldn’t beat, UFC, Royce Gracie, no holds barred fighting, etc.

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Excerpt: Beating a Man He Couldn’t Beat

Full Audio of Interview on YouTube

Quotes

Dan on staying healthy through a long career of 150+ fights:

“I believe in the theory of duck. I’ve had young guys tell me: ‘Mr. Severn, I like to stand there and trade.’ Really? Trading means I’m going to give you some, and then I’m going to take some. I don’t believe in trading. I believe in guerilla warfare. Get in, get out. It’s called peace work. “

Dan on the mechanics of wrestling:

“In wrestling, I’m using principles of leverage to turn you on your back. What’s another word for leverage? Pain. I have to induce you into pain to make you do things for me.”

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35: Ryan Hall on Moral Victory, the Underlying Principles of Jiu Jitsu, Self-Defense, and the Value of Competition

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Ryan Hall is a BJJ black belt, head instructor of 50/50 BJJ, an ADCC bronze medalist with a long career in high level competition throughout which he has beaten many of the top grapplers in the world; we talked about moral victory, maintaining a stoic expression, a unified theory of grappling, the value of competition, a lifelong pursuit of a singular goal, best martial art for self defense, cultivating ego, and much more.

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Excerpt: Value of Competition

Excerpt: Moral Victory

Excerpt: Best Martial Art for Self Defense

Excerpt: Principles of Jiu Jitsu

Full Audio of Interview on YouTube

Quotes

Ryan referencing Frank Herbert’s Dune in discussing the value of pursuing a singular goal for a long time:

“If you search for freedom, you become a slave to your own desires, ironically. But if you search for discipline, you find liberty, in the long-run.”

Ryan on the courage of giving 100%:

“It takes courage and heart to properly prepare (for competition), because you’re risking horrible dissapointment. I’ve prepared so hard, tried so hard before and I won. And other times, I’ve prepared so hard, tried so hard and I lost. It hurts. It really hurts. It doesn’t hurt nearly as much if you half ass it, because you didn’t put that much into it. But that’s a cowardly approach. The right way is to prepare properly, you train hard, and then win, lose, or draw you deal with the results.”

Ryan discussing that most people are not honest with themselves about how hard they work:

“Most people would rather look like the thing, than be the thing.”

Ryan on what is involved in working hard:

“Trying hard doesn’t just mean having to be carried off the mat. It means thinking, reassessing, reevaluating, asking ‘how can I be better?’ It takes honest self analysis.”

Ryan on the cost of excellence:

“You show me someone who is well adjusted, and I will show you someone who is probably not a high achiever.”

Ryan on removing extraneous details:

“A principle-based approach to grappling is incredibly important. What I try to do is block out the extraneous nonsense. Talking about 55 details and reasons for something that’s going on is only clouding your thought process.”

Ryan on moral victory versus actual victory:

“If Fedor slaps your mother, you have to hit him. You have to. And he’s going to kick the shit out of you, almost certainly. But you have to hit him. Trying your best and losing would be the honorable thing to do.”

Ryan on the importance of ego (grounded in reality) in progress:

“Most progress over the course of human history has been made by unreasonable people that said: ‘fuck you, I’m going to win.'”

Links

 

33: Marco Perazzo and Tim Carpenter on the Ideal Life, Loss, Expansion of the Universe, Gambling, and the 48 Laws of Power

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Marco and Tim return to talk about the ideal life, challenging yourself, philosophy of Thor, competition, retirement, dealing with loss, fatherhood, battleline strategy game, Philip K. Dick, accelerating expansion of the universe, Big Freeze and Big Crunch, addictions, gambling, 48 laws of power, Wham’s Careless Whisper, etc.

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Quotes

Marco on the ideal life:

“Where is the fun in the easy life?”

Tim Carpenter on gambling:

“Scared money don’t make money, bro.”

“One of the good things about putting all your money on the table and losing it is that it teaches you that you can lose everything and still come back.”

Links

31: Kyle Cerminara and Tim Carpenter on Wrestling, Fighting, Relationships, Honesty, and Selfies

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In episode 31, Tim and I talk with Kyle Cerminara, NCAA All-American wrestler, former wrestling coach at Edinboro University and University of Pennsylvania, professional MMA fighter about training at the Olympic Training Center, Steve Mocco, MySpace, maintaining a relationship while training and competing, Cael Sanderson, what makes an athlete world-class, world championships in jiu jitsu, physical prime, selfies, motivation, extremist personality: all or nothing, oreo cookies, cars, women, chiropractic, acupuncture, sauna, love, physical attraction, jealousy, honesty, etc.

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Quotes

Kyle on training intensity at the Olympic Training Center:

“The word ‘break’ and the word ‘overtraining’ are two things I absolutely hate.”

Tim Carpenter on what “love” is not:

“Love is not obsession, insecurity, possession. None of that is love.”

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Linda and David Story

The following moral dilemma is discussed on the podcast:

Linda and David love each other very much and wish to see each other.  But they have a problem.  A wide river separates them, David on one side and Linda on the other.

Steven owns the one and only boat that is capable of crossing the river.  Linda goes to him and tells of her plight.  She asks Steven if he will take her across the river in h is boat so she can see her love.  He says that he is willing, but only if she will sleep with him.  Initially, Linda says no, however, later seeing no alternative, she consents.

When Linda arrives at David’s house, she is wracked with guilt, so she tells him all that has happened.  He becomes enraged and throws Linda out of the house.

Linda happens to have a very good friend who also lives on that side of the river and goes to that friend for help, but the friend says, “I’m sorry but I don’t want to get involved,” and sends Linda on her way.

Finally, Linda tells an acquaintance, Michael, what has happened.  He gets angry and returns to David’s house with Linda.  Michael gives David a sound beating.

30: Brad Court and Tim Carpenter on the Big Bang Theory, Mental Toughness, Steroids, Injury and Health Insurance

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In episode 30, I talk with Brad Court and Tim Carpenter about injury, surgery, health insurance, steroids in combat sports, witch burning, a one-legged wrestler, science, Neil deGrasse Tyson, the Big Bang theory, evolution, Louis CK, God, Kron Gracie, Scotty Nelson, Open Mat Radio, the Save Jiu Jitsu movement, Paramount BJJ, coaching, fear, competition mindset, and more.

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Quotes

Tim Carpenter showing a bit of skepticism about the overly simplistic theory of the Big Bang:

“The problem with science is that it’s done by people. There’s no way around that. So it’s all got a little bias in there.”

Tim Carpenter on sport jiu jitsu:

“I like berimbolo. I like doing that stuff when I’m training. The problem is: those moves don’t work on an unskilled opponent. You try to do the berimbolo on a white belt, it probably won’t work. It only works on guys that will give you a high level reaction. You can practice berimbolo all you want, but what are you going to do when a guy just punches you in the face. Next thing you know you have a guy in your half guard, and he is biting your cheek.”

Brad on submission-only tournaments:

“A lot of people are afraid to get submitted. I don’t know how else to explain why all these submission-only tournaments are so small.  Because that’s the most prestigious thing to me. If you submit everyone in your weight division, that’s the ultimate.”

Brad on self-defense and street jiu jitsu:

“The problem is there are people starting jiu jitsu with their foundation being berimbolo. The foundation has to be in self defense.”

Brad on cornering Tim’s first fight:

“He said that one of the first things he thought when he was in there is: ‘Why am I doing this?'”

Tim on a part of him wanting to enforce the requirement of fighting for receiving a black belt:

“If I’m ever going to give a black belt out, the person has to go out and get into a fight.”

Tim on giving good book recommendations to Brad:

“All the great things in Brad’s life have come from me.”

Brad on a way to approach competition that removes some of the pressure of winning:

“I try to remind my students and myself is that getting better is more important than winning, especially when you’re at white belt, blue belt, purple belt, brown belt.”

Brad on being realistic, but doing everything with conviction:

“Do everything you do with conviction. If you’re going to shoot a double leg, shoot a double leg, blast through them. Don’t think ‘watch out for the guillotine. That’s different than being over-confident. To me ‘over-confident’ is a guy who didn’t train properly.”

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27: Chris Round on Climate Change Science and Policy, Balancing Sport and Study

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In episode 27, I talk with Chris Round about judo, balancing sport and study, the science and policy of climate change, his work at the School for Public and Environmental Affairs (SPEA) at Indiana University, growing up with asperger syndrome, training under Jimmy Pedro, conditioning, groundwork, harai goshi, Team Force, the science of global warming, scientific consensus and public opinion on climate change, Naomi Oreskes, evolution in schools debate, industry funded doubt, China, fossil fuel consumption, the motivation of the scientific community, empathetic messaging, being open to the possibility of being wrong, etc.

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Quotes

Chris talks about focusing on being prepared:

“If you do everything right leading up to a tournament. You handled your weight correctly. You trained hard. You did everything right. If you go out there and you lose, and you did everything right to get there, then how the hell can you be a loser?”

Chris on balancing judo and study:

“I’ve managed to finally strike a balance through a lot of practice at striking a balance, a lot trial and error.”

Chris’s advice on putting a lot of effort into building a habit of study and training:

“It’s really easy at the end of a long day to say: ‘Alright, I’m taking practice off.’ The first three weeks are key. It’s establishing habits more than anything. First three weeks of a semester or first three weeks of getting back on the horse in training, you have to chuck a lot of mental energy at making sure you go to everything.”

Chris on why climate change is often such a device topic of conversation:

“I think a lot of people fuse (political issues) with their identity and what makes them a good person. And when you attack an idea related to that issue they are not taking it as a rational discussion. They are taking it as: ‘You’re attacking me as a person. You’re attacking my identity.'”

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