Yeah, I definitely don't qualify. The thing is, I was able to teach myself a fair bit just watching highlight videos on sherdog. It's amazing what simply knowing to go to the ground and knowing a few things to do can do for letting you beat someone who doesn't know. I suspect it actually would leave most people more competent in a fight than they were before, I think the problem is just that a BJJ blue belt used to be held on the same pedastel as a black belt in another art that people are almost looking at this as a black belt course.
Just got my "Gracie Insider" email for the month, in which they state:
I wonder how many of those are actually PAYING students?
10,000 Students in 4 Months!
Grand Master Helio Gracie once said that if everyone on earth knew Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, the world would be a better place. Even though we are far from reaching his goal, we are making notable progress. On July 16, 2009, after 4 months of going live, Gracie University student enrollment has surpassed 10,000. We knew it would grow fast, but not this fast!
Sorry, but you're missing the point. Gracie Barra teach sportive sparring - ie. rolling. The gracie academy teach gracie jiu jitsu practical self defense ie. what you need to do when attacked. There's no reason why there shouldn't be some overlap but to get a balanced result you need a balanced test. How about...
Originally Posted by mrgoshthereturn
1. Put them together to roll for 5 minutes (the GB girl will win).
2. Attack each of them in the way a random guy on the street will for 5 minutes (the GA girl will win).
Personally I don't think online testing could ever approach a real club in terms of quality of tuition, but it's worth noting that the guys at the Gracie Academy fail about 50% of the videos they receive - https://www.gracieuniversity.com/LC/...3QJ4TGT7X&n=28
The approach we have is to do the combatives programme first, then once the students have a good standard (and 4 stripes), allow them to start doing the sportive sparring so they can get balance of self defense & competition.
It'll be many years before blacks via video become an issue if at all. In the meantime Pat, Jarrod, and Jordan just got their black belts there and if anyone has a doubt about the quality of those guys, just go in & see for yourself. The standard is very high.
Originally Posted by 1point2
Just going by the videos, their self defence seems to consist of block haymaker -> pull guard. You're a GJJ guy, is this what they do?
Originally Posted by sapateiro
Not at all. The haymaker is never blocked as this would be tricky if the guy was bigger & heavier than you - it's slipped so you can get to the back for a takedown. And pulling guard (note: not jumping guard) is a last resort, only used if the alternative is going to be ending up under topmount or sidemount.
Originally Posted by CrackFox
Here's a question for the unwashed masses -- how in the world are they going to evaluate 10,000 videos every time one of their students wants to test for a stripe? Outsource it to India?
okay, so i just read 4.5 months of this thread in one day (including 2 months of self-defense legal speculation), so my reply might be a little winded and rambling.
"gracie combatives" is the intro course, designed for people to be able to survive a fight with a larger opponent with no grappling skills, although it also lays the ground work for making a martial artist. in one of the lessons, during an armbar from the guard, rener stops and says that after you have the position locked in, but before pressure is applied, you can use the position to talk business. this is an example of being a martial artist, and not a fighter, because i believe the MA keeps his or her wits, whereas the fighter lets emotion get the best of him and flips off the crowd and talks trash to a defeated opponent... oops, sorry brock. the follow-up courses deal with grap-savvy opponents, i do believe, and rener said somewhere on the site that the follow up would include both gi and no-gi training, as well as some striking.
on the perceived breadth (or lack thereof) of the course: "i fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times". and if you have a consistent training partner, you should both be learning.
video testing may be less effective, but it's not ineffective. i think rener & ryron have been teaching since they were 10 or so, so i would imagine that they know how well people are rolling, and they advise students to preface their videos with any special considerations they have that would affect performance, such as short legs, bad back, etc.
they have a grading system so that if you pass, you know where you lost points, and i say "if you pass," because the faq says that just paying $85 won't guarantee a belt, and if you do fail, you'd have to pay again.
they have a video up of the first person to fail the video eval, and added in the details of where he got deductions while the video was playing, so someone a) was watching, and b) knew what to look for.
i think the $85 belt test fee is very reasonable because joining GU.com is free, and now so is the first lesson in the series (trap and roll mount escape). so 10,000 students on the Q&A forums and watching videos puts a strain on the server. how much would training at a bjj school cost in tuition up to the time it takes to get to a blue belt?
it's been said before, but i want to re-iterate: the highest rank you can get purely by video eval is 4th stripe brown belt, not black belt. and you have to be 16 to be able to test/earn the blue belt, just like most bjj schools. and as of now, they only have tests up to either blue belt or blue belt + 1 stripe.
"why not test in person at an affiliate gym?" there's not a whole lot of gracie academy affiliates in the world, but it is possible. a lot of the currently existing ones are in southern california, although there is a method of becoming affiliated. on that note, i believe "Gracie Jiu-Jitsu" is de facto owned by Rorion, even if not de jure, while other Gracies have no problem advertising that they teach, say, "Royce Gracie Jiu Jitsu" or "Charles Gracie Jiu-Jitsu".
btw, the lessons are all as good as the free examples on GU.com. the detail of the technique and the constant considerations for punches or movement is astounding. i don't have any bjj experience, besides these videos and watching mma fights, but i really like these videos.
There is another thread on the Lockflow.com forums regarding this. I answered another users question and I feel it accurately touches on your post as well:
Originally Posted by gonzomalan
Originally Posted by datdamnmachine
i agree that you have to get the physical experience, and so do the gracies, which is why whenever anyone asks about training with a grappling dummy, a chair, their grandma, they say no, that it's best to get a live partner. live partner = levels of resistance + critique. i also believe that, as someone else said earlier in the thread, what you get out of training is what you put into it, so if your partner isn't putting in 100%, find another. remember, this series is targeted at people who for some reason or another don't think they can get bjj instruction, where it's b/c they live too far from any bjj school, or, like me, they lack funds and a regular time to commit to training.
Originally Posted by datdamnmachine
also, the black belt is only given in person, and the curriculum up to blue + 2 stripes hasn't been made available yet, so no need to worry about video black belts.
i want to add that, unless i'm not reading something, the black belt would be in gracie jiu jitsu, not "gracie combatives". i seriously doubt that they would give a black belt rank to recognize a student who can outgrapple someone who has no grappling knowledge. their philosophy in giving out blue to people who complete the program is that they have the necessary skills to defened themselves in a fight against the average joe-don't-grapple.
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