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Unlimited Jiu Jitsu Philippe Loubet Jiu Jitsu

    Ground fighting

   Since the re-birth of Jiu-Jitsu, numerous teachers have developed training and teaching formulas that have mutually enriched one another. The “globalization” of knowledge which was hidden before has been due in large part to the amazing interest that well-known martial artists and amateurs have given to ground fighting. The videos, seminars, and little by little, some books are quenching the thirst for knowledge that the “Gracie” effect unleashed, along with the access to the technical knowledge, provoking a multiplying of technical resources. At every new technical conquest, its counter and the counter of its counter followed… discoveries that were many times, more than new formulas, the fruit of the rescuing of ancient formulas or ones in disuse that would suddenly erupt onto the panorama through their practice in an event or by a champion. In such a tare magnum of novelties it often happens that the essential principles are lost and at times even common sense. Philippe Loubet is an old acquaintance of our readers. His work has been recognized by the experts as original and creative, but especially consolidated on a very solid base and in a sound sportive trajectory. With his second instructional video, the instructor Loubet has come to return Jiu-Jitus to its rightful place as a complete combat technique where the inclusion of strikes finds an adequate place once the adversary has been perfectly controlled. In this magnificent article, he offers us a series of reflections and some advice that no lover of combat could turn down.

   A powerful and complete Jiu-Jitsu, a Jiu-Jitsu without limits, sensible and effective.


Loubet Ju-Jitsu Ground fighting

   Ground fighting could be compared to a game of Chinese checkers. You first look for an attack strategy without thinking about defending your game. In this risky strategy, you go forward without knowing exactly how you are going to finish your game…

   In fighting, you will find yourself in a very similar situation, but at the moment you get to the ground, you already know that one of the two is going to finish the other. You can’t allow yourself to loosen up, nor can you be too rigid, and you can’t leave. It’s better to act using a strategy adapted to the fight of your adversary.

   Ground fighting has two ways of practice: the sports way, and the self-defense way.

   --The first is a very complete sport, as much on the mental level as the physical. It is an excellent aerobic workout, with many possibilities. After some months training, you will be ready to improve and personalize your work, focusing your system on what is most appropriate for you, such as: the strangulations, arm-locks, controls, and all kinds of strikes.

   It is evident that to enjoy ground fighting, one has to have a good technical base.

   In this same way, one must understand that the fight is a game and that the most important thing is to enjoy it.

   Ju-Jitsu is the mother of Judo and in this practice of fighting one can’t forget that Help and Solidarity are necessary to evolve correctly.

   --If we focus the fight on self-defense, the rules and the attitude are very different. From the first physical contact with the adversary, you must be completely involved in the fight. From there, any mistake, slip, or opportunity will have to be taken advantage of, keeping in mind that this factor is reciprocal. If you leave an opening, it will surely be filled!

     For me, the strategic key of fighting resides in one taking the initiative from the first moment, taking the initiative and never undervaluing your opponent until you have finished with him. We have seen innumerable fights lost at the last moment by supposedly invincible fighters for just such an error.

   In self-defense ground fighting, contrary to sports, there are no rules, so that physical condition acquires even greater relevance. This must be ripened with an impeccable technical base; the base is what one relies on, and a deficiency in that area can’t be resolved with anything.

    But as important as a good technical base is the skill to develop a mental force that allows you to resist the bad moments. That ability to suffer is trained on equal terms with training the muscles of the body. Helio Gracie always said that, “In ground fighting, one doesn’t win, one loses!” One must remove all doubt from the mind; on these occasions, a doubt can make the difference between life and death. 

   As far as self-defense is concerned, it is not enough to train once and a while. The fight might arise at any time and one must always be prepared. I understand that regularity is absolutely essential if we want to be truly prepared to defend ourselves.







The three ways of practicing ground fighting

   There are various ways of fighting on the ground.

   --Without judogi: looking for all the ways to control, such as: strangulations, immobilizations, or pressure holds on the arms as well as pain holds.

   --The second is the same idea as the first but we will fight with judogi.

   With the judogi, you will have more possibilities to develop your techniques. You will also have other sensations.

    --The third would be a more aggressive way, more real, adapted to self-defense.

   In this way, striking with the fists, elbows, head, knees, heels is valid, and one can disrupt one’s adversary with any pain hold.

   It is evident that to enjoy this now fashionable activity, it is indispensable to confide in your training sessions with a competent master, if not, you could seriously injure yourself.


   Advice for correct training

   For its unique characteristics, it is completely indispensable to have specific teaching for the practice of ground fighting. The complete description of this would force us to go further than we can here; however, I don’t want to leave unmentioned some pieces of practical advice that I believe can offer some light on this matter to those interested.

    Good warm-up is more than necessary, especially the neck and joints, most of all, the little ones.

   Agility, flexibility, and strengthening exercises for the neck are indispensable since this area of the body requires very little use in other activities.

   Use gloves and elbow pads if you want to practice strikes. Start the strikes once you have control. In training, when the partner gives up, stop striking him and continue fighting.

   You always have to look for various ways to get to where you want, or where your work takes you. Don’t close any doors.

   You have to change your way of finishing your fight often, and if the level of your partner is inferior to yours, give him a chance to work, if not, you will wind up alone.

   If the level of your partner is superior to yours, relax, think about what you have learned, try to disrupt him, and don’t stop moving until you find a way out. In that case, think that you are fortunate, for you are learning more than he is!    

   Ground fighting is difficult and you can’t learn it in ten classes. Be patient and persevere.

   If you want to improve your fight, you have to change partners very often and “roll around” on the ground for many hours, always trying to evolve.

   Only by taking risks will you be able to find new techniques, so don’t sleep with what comes easy to you.

   Fighting is for everyone. You must adapt yourself to any kind of partner, whether young or old, child or woman, heavyweight or light-weight, and treat each one with the respect they deserve.

   Ground fighting opens its doors to everyone, but you mustn’t ever forget that it is especially a method of adaptability to the opponent. You must understand that there are no perfect techniques. The ability to adapt yourself to the situation will be your victory.




The kata

   The study of the “kata meno kata” is very important in order to evolve.

   From it you will learn first how to obtain the capacity to move correctly with balance and force, you will learn how to position your body.

   In the first series of this kata, you can improve your controls and you will learn the correct ways of getting out of situations.

   In the second series, you will practice various strangulations, and with your practice you will get accustomed to withstanding them.

   The third series is focused on arm-locks.

   To understand and enjoy this kata it is necessary to have an advanced level.

   We must never forget that the kata is a basis of study; its techniques can’t be utilized in real combat without first looking for a correct adaptation to the specific situation.


   The structure

   This is, in my opinion, the great secret of fighting. The structure of your body is the base of any kind of fighting, and many masters forget to explain this particular matter to their students.

   The case might arise in which the practitioner discovers this secret by himself; we would then be talking about a good fighter. The case might also be that it is discovered after some years of fighting, but in that case, a lot of time would have been lost… but the most frequent case is that he never discovers it…

   To have good structure is to keep the trunk straight and balanced facing the pressure of a grip or facing an attack with strikes. Our body should be neither too rigid nor too relaxed to counter-attack with maximum efficiency, taking advantage of the adversary’s force.


   The importance of the basic exercises

   Comparing ground fighting to music, we see that the basic agility exercises are to fighting what the sol-fa is to music. Without sol-fa, the use of a musical instrument would always be limited.

   In fighting, the same thing  happens; without the base, you will have a system of fighting that will be limited.

   If you fighting is like that, in your work you will have to resort to a more aggressive system, for instance, with strikes, but in that way, you will become too tense and you won’t be able to evolve correctly. Strikes have to intervene in fights when the adversary is controlled, or when your defensive posture allows you to strike.

   To develop your training correctly, you have to give due importance to the simplest and most fundamental aspects.

   In this sense, the strengthening exercises for the neck, as I’ve already mentioned, are essential. There is some advice I want to offer you in this regard.

   At the beginning, you can do neck exercises individually, without being in any hurry, without tension or force, always using the resistance of your body weight, focusing the work on flexibility.

   Once your neck is accustomed to these kinds of exercises, you can begin the strengthening exercises. For that, it would be convenient to look for a fighting partner who has your level, and more or less your weight.

   Working in pairs, one should never block the movements, rather one must allow the partner to reach the end of his exercise.

   Doing from four to eight series and from twelve to twenty repetitions, take time to rest superior to the time of effort. Finish the session with ten minutes of relaxation and stretching.

   You shouldn’t do more than three sessions a week, and have a rest day between each one.

   It is convenient to train the neck after a good, general warm-up, or after a training session.

   I hope that if you are interested in ground work, this article has served you and that my second video with Budo International in which I can talk at greater length offers you more keys in this matter in which one never ceases to learn. Train well!