Saturday, January 30, 2010
Today I went to a No-gi seminar with Jeff 'the snowman' Monson. The seminar was hosted by Ivan Salaverry, and was great.
Besides making the finals of the prestgious ADCC tournement 3 times, fighting for the UFC title once, (among literally dozens of other athletic successes) Monson is a local guy, well educated, and very politically active. Personal opinions of his politics aside (those who know me know where I stand) I really appreciate a professional athlete that is active politically at the grass-roots level, and genuinely taking a stand. It is very easy for someone to say nothing, do nothing, and just train, compete, and retire.
There are a bunch of internet keyboard heros that slag on Monson (just check the comments on any video of him on youtube) but the guy has been very successful, was a great instructor today, and is the most physically impressive human being I've ever seen in person. Unless you've won Abu Dhabis, or fought for a UFC title I'm pretty sure your opinion on him should be: he's better than me.
The seminar focused on fundamentals: control points, space (when to create it, and how when to take it away) . He covered a couple of guard passes, a great drill, a great way to recover guard from side control, a bunch of half guard stuff and the north-south choke (most people call it the Monson choke). My head is still trying to keep tabs on all of the details. I am sure I'll lose a few, but there were so many good points I can honestly say "My jiu-jitsu got better today."