1. Karel Gietelink (6th degree Judo). My first and only judo master. Trained with him since age 5 or 6. The only person in the world that I would call "sensei". Taught me loyalty, humility and respect. And also how to toss people on their backs and crush them in ne waza. He has the most sadistic non-bjj ground game I've ever seen. But, a great human being...
2. Mike Yanez (Team Popovitch BJJ / Highlander Fight Team) - My first BJJ teacher. I was one of his first blue belts. Amazing ability to bring out the fight in everyone. Taught me all the basics of flowing, crushing and pressure that make the foundation of my progression in BJJ...
3. Marcos Flexa Neves (Carlson Gracie) - My professor. Gave me my top game and polished all the little mistakes. Trusted me to be his assistant instructor, and to carry the Carlson Gracie flag. Can correct all the small details that you think you know, but really need to be improved. VAST encyclopedia of bjj knowledge, gained from years of furious competition. When you ask him the right questions, he can teach you anything...
4. Roberto Atalla (Rio Grappling Club). Atalla has the most subtile, smooth and sneaky jiu jitsu game I've ever experienced. You think you're doing something right, and then you're sleeping. Like trying to wrestle a cobra. He gave me knowledge on attacking the back with the clock choke, and it's been one of my most high percentage subs ever since...
5. Aaron Karels. My trainingpartner in the BJJ lab. Always ready to train, experiment with new moves and concepts, analyse the game and willing to share the knowledge we gain about life and jiu jitsu. By choking and locking the ever living jesus out of me over a period of many years, he also gave me an insane leglock and choke defense...
Ricado Liborio & John Danaher. Both in their own right the closest you can come to being a bjj NINJA
Lovely, Yet Evil
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Although Im not in the same league as the guys who have posted on this thread I thought I would chip in.
Back in the day the most important to me was:
My bro and the guys at Royce Gracie BJJ in Glasgow. I used to annoy the crap out of everyone by making people who beat me show me how they did it and set it up.
McVeigh/ kav had a massive impact on my no-gi/ wrestling techniques that I still seem to remember and use (Shoulder of Justice for example). If I didn't leave Scotland I would have been like a ninja or something by now.
The Dinky Ninjas were very important as I got to spar with big, tough and athletic mofos. You quickly found out what did and didn't work! Also that cardio wasn't a good idea, it was a requirement!
I have recently joined a new club and look forward to adding them to the list!
Blow job is better than no job
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