As you may have gathered from my choice in username, I am a huge admirer of the career of famous Judoka, Masahiko Kimura.
Bloody Elbow have recently added him to their “Gods of War” series of articles, and I cannot recommend reading this enough. Most of you will have heard his name due to the arm lock respectfully named after him by the Gracie family, after he used the technique to break Helio Gracie’s arm in their famous grappling match. His influence on martial arts goes much deeper than this however, and many believe him to be the greatest Judoka ever to have lived
I discovered Masahiko Kimura years before being exposed to MMA, when trying to research my own families history. While he may not be a relative of mine, Kimura had always been an inspiration for me. Click here to read the article, his life and career were pretty amazing, and I’d be very surprised if you too don’t feel inspired.
Each of these articles has a load of cool pictures and videos for you to gawk at if you’re that way inclined. There’s also lots of other cool MMA history articles on there, but I can’t do all the work for you.
Ryan Hall is a highly accomplished Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Blackbelt under Felipe Costa and trains with Marcelo Garcia.
Not only is he an artist dedicated to his form, he is a straight up gentleman, as seen in the following video that was scooting around online yesterday. Maybe if Ryan had been wearing his ADCC medals this dumbass might not have decided to cause a scene whilst attempting to assault Ryan and his friends. Ryan had every right (and the ability) to smash the guy and tear his limbs off. But instead he chose to be calm, respectful and get the guy away from people who might get hurt.
When that failed he choked the bastard out ready for the police to arrive. It might have been the loss of oxygen to the brain but the man later comes back to apologise.
I went to one of Ryan’s seminars a few months ago and he blew my mind. His simple and effective teaching methods catered for a wide range of styles and competencies and left me with a handful of alterations and new techniques to instantly apply to my game. I recommend to anyone who is presented with the opportunity to train with him to do so.
After watching this I don’t think I am the only one left hoping that Ryan and Marcelo create a superhero crime busting duo set out to dispose of drunkards and scallywags.
One of our favouritest MMA sites has recently posted a couple of outstanding articles in their MMA Origins series. It is kind of one story split between two articles, telling the story of how Gracie jiu-jitsu started, and their competitive rivalries.
The first article, titled Vale Tudo and The Original MMA Rivalry, explains how the Gracie family developed their style of jiu-jitsu, and their rivalries with Judo and Luta Livre fighters. There is also an amazing video of the fight between Helio Gracie and Masahiko Kimura (unfortunately, no relation to me) from 1951.
Next is Carlson Gracie Changes Jiu-Jitsu and Vale Tudo, which details Carlson Gracie’s influence on the sport, and details his own competitive legacy. Again, there are some really cool old videos, one of Carlson’s fight with Waldemar Santana, and another showing Gracie fighters competing against a Karate school.
If you have any interest in MMA, BJJ, or martial arts history in general, these are must read articles.
Detailing how Jujitsu started on the battlefields of ancient Japan, the article tells the story of how the samurai class was formed, and how they developed Jujitsu to be used alongside their swords and spears. There are also some cool videos in there showing some of the traditional techniques in action.
Without Jujitsu, there would be no BJJ, and probably no MMA! So have a read, and maybe learn a little something about the history of our beloved sport.