By Carl Fisher
Eddie Kone was delivering a BJJ masterclass at the Northern HQ in Rotherham, held on the sunniest and warmest day of the year thus far. After braving Arctic conditions in one of the harshest winters for many a year, it was a pleasure to get out of bed and drive over to Rotherham in glorious weather and give the legs an airing at the same time.
Sunny weather equals sunny disposition and when I arrived at the gym, EKBJJ North’s main man, Mark ‘Monkey’ Bottom, greeted me at the door with a large smile and a firm handshake as I stepped into the gym, which was packed with students from Mark’s gym and members from other EKBJJ affiliated clubs in the region. With the door of the gym wide open and sunshine streaming through, it was time to change and hit the mats and after catching up with Eddie, the seminar commenced.
After a quick warm up, Eddie showed a number of takedowns, including Royler’s trademark deep ouchi gari and a number of options for when the opponent avoids the first attack; Eddie showed a number of details most people miss when using this attack and after sorting out the errors, Eddie showed a couple of variations on the ouchi gari and ended the stand up portion with a nice ko ouchi gari entry and takedown.
Once on the ground, the main part of the afternoon was dedicated to guard passing. I have had the pleasure of attending many of Eddie’s seminars and like many of the UK black belts, Eddie travels the world to train with the best, so he can return and pass this knowledge on to his students. When at these training sessions, Eddie tells the students that the top guys are constantly looking at ways to improve the techniques they already have at their disposal, ways of reducing the time and steps needed to execute these techniques, to make them more economical when rolling.
With this in mind, Eddie returns to techniques, moves, and positions shown on past visits and then shows them the new and improved ways to do the techniques and this applied to the guard passing section of the seminar. Passes most are familiar with were given the updated treatment by Eddie and this newly acquired info can easily be integrated into anyone’s game, which is how it should be.
From the fun and games that is guard passing, Eddie went on to cover a few moves and discuss concepts on the mount position and showed some new ways to gain the mount, which drew appreciation from everyone on the mats, from white to purple belt. The concepts behind gaining the mount and the submissions from s-mount were so simple, as they usually tend to be, that most people, myself included were left thinking ‘why didn’t I see that before?’
As usual, time flew by way too fast and all that remained was a few rounds of rolling and a chance to put into practice what Eddie had shown on the day and I had a most enjoyable end to a fine afternoon’s tuition, rolling with the guys with the sun still out.
The session ended with a number of well deserved promotions, so congratulations to Luke Ager and Dan Konecke on their promotion to blue belt and for Charlie Farley, Doug Mc Graghan and Stephen Lee (Def), the target on their backs are now much bigger, as they step up to purple belt. Eddie concluded the seminar with a small speech on the responsibilities that come with belt promotions and to thank everyone for attending the day and giving up their Sunday afternoon to train jiu jitsu.
Thanks to Eddie and Mark for inviting me up to join in the fun and games and to all the students who always make me feel welcome every time I come over. Eddie is on the road once again and will be touring Romania in the not too distant future, keeping an eye on his ever-expanding association and I’ll be there to cover things for Jiu Jitsu Style.
You can follow Eddie on Facebook –http://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=1077747415