You're Never Too Advanced for the Fundamentals
Many BJJ academies offer different classes for all levels of practitioners. Often times there are "Fundamental" classes and classes labeled as "Advanced" and as a student, we are striving to be considered advanced as soon as humanly possible. But in our rush to get to the rarefied air of the elite level classes, are we ultimately hampering our development? Like children wishing to be older, we seemingly rush from class to class, not coming away with the most complete understanding of the moves and techniques we're exposed to early on and this is a problem that can haunt a practitioner along the road to black belt.
Fundamentals Aren't Less Important
There are literally thousands of jiu jitsu techniques and more variations being created each day. It would probably take multiple life times to even begin to gain a slight understanding of the entire landscape of BJJ moves and techniques. This can be both overwhelming and create an almost never-ending anxiety as we scramble to learn more and more.
A position like half guard for instance, was first utilized as a last ditch effort to someone passing the guard. It has now developed into a multi-faceted and varied position that in the hands of practitioners has developed into a full-fledged system of positions, sweeps, and submissions.
As we take classes and get exposed to new positions, submissions, styles of guard or sweeps, it can get very easy to rush from move to move "checking off" moves and having a sense that we've "mastered" those particular techniques, when really we haven't.
Because we're all eager to acquire as much knowledge as possible to somehow gain advantages over our training partners and opponents in BJJ competition, this sense of rushing can make us overlook some of the techniques that we should have spent more time on. These techniques often get referred to as the "Fundamentals".
Fundamentals Will Always Work
The "Fundamentals" are sometimes looked down upon as "too basic", "too simple", "too easy to counter", and not effective against someone who has alleged "fancier" techniques. But the truth is, that the fundamentals are the moves that have stood the test of time and having a solid background and knowledge of those techniques ensures that you have a good foundation upon which to build your BJJ game.
It is true that the fundamentals might not be the flashiest or the cool new techniques, but at the end of the day, if you are able to take down, pass the guard, achieve a dominant position and submit every person you train or compete with, who cares how flashy the technique is. The goal of jiu jitsu is to efficiently and completely dominate and submit your opponents, not get awarded style points from the Russian judges like a figure skater or competitive diving athlete.
Bernardo Faria has just released over 5 hours of what he considers the most important techniques in BJJ. In his six volume "Fundamentals of BJJ" he delivers an entire course of techniques that will give you a complete game if you are a newer student, and just as importantly, fill in any gaps that you may have as an experienced practitioner.
Bernardo will often tell the story of his journey from his home to Sao Paolo to train under Fabio Gurgel and how he spent hundreds and hundreds of hours taking fundamental classes. This was after he had already achieved the black belt! For him, it was important to understand the fundamental curriculum that made up the core of Fabio Gurgel's BJJ philosophy. For Bernardo, there are always more details to learn and to incorporate into the execution of your techniques.
Bernardo is going to start you from standing where BJJ matches start to show you a variety of ways to get your opponent to the ground. From there he is going to share all of the key submission and sweeps from positions like closed guard, half guard, mount and side control. You will also get Bernardo's introduction to more advanced positions, like De La Riva guard, Spider guard and Lasso Guard just to name a few.
In the video below, Bernardo Faria demonstrates a double leg take down from standing. Pay close attention to an important principle that runs through all of Bernardo's teaching, namely, the importance of teaching positions and skills that EVERYONE can accomplish. The double leg for Bernardo is exactly this kind of position. As he says in the video, it is a position that can be learned the first day of class and be used for an entire jiu jitsu career.
Never work take downs? Start all of your training matches on the knees? Bernardo will show you in this series all of the easiest to learn and implement game changing take down techniques to give you exactly what you need if you're competing in your first tournament, or you want to have the necessary confidence in self defense scenarios.
In the next video, Bernardo shares his thoughts on the knee shield in half guard. Long considered one of the foremost experts on half guard, notice again his approach to how he teaches half guard. This simple, yet important perspective that he shares will revolutionize how you learn half guard or in many cases, re-learn half guard.
Whether you are on day one or day one million of your BJJ journey, the fundamental techniques are the ones that you must stay in touch with. New styles and techniques come and go, but the fundamentals are the moves that should be so ingrained in our psyche and muscle memory, because they have been tried and true by so many athletes over their careers. These are the moves that can be performed by everyone, regardless of their physical characteristics.
Thanks to Bernardo Faria, you now have access to over five hours of his favorite fundamental techniques that will fill holes in your game, polish up techniques you thought you knew, and open your eyes to details you may have missed over the years. Get your copy of "Fundamentals of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu" today!