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MBriefcase
9/19/2009 7:43pm,
I know **** all about BJJ, which is why I am posting this in Newbietown. But after lurking on this site for a few months, I realized that my chun was not, in fact, teh deadly, and my frantic chain punches would probably only work against drunk assholes or my pot head roommates, so I signed up for san shou. After more lurking and seeing the Anthony v. Rudy fight, I was finally converted by Bullshido and realized I should probably practice some sort of grappling.

The top two Cincinnati BJJ schools I could find were Jorge Gurgel's, and one instructed by James Kelly; a one hour drive and a 45 minute drive respectively. State of the economy being what it is, and me being a poor college student, neither option is all too feasible for me. So I temporarily gave up and focused on san shou.

So by sheer chance today I saw a yard sign on the side of a highway exit for U.S. Martial Arts Academy (www.usmartialartsacademy.com/ (http://www.usmartialartsacademy.com/)), which, among other things, taught TKD, Kempo Karate, MMA Fit (whatever that's supposed to mean) and BJJ. This place is much more conveniently located, about 15 minutes from me. The Web site looks legit, there are no contracts, and the instructor purports to be a brown belt in BJJ.

He does, however, teach TKD as his primary style, teach many childrens' classes, and there are no fighters that I know of coming out of his school. Because, as I stated earlier, I know dick about BJJ and what makes a good BJJ school (and I'm currently in Athens, Ohio and can't pay him a visit), I was wondering if I could get some help determining if this is legit.


Tl:Dr, I'm looking to start training BJJ, and the closest place to me is www.usmartialartsacademy.com/bjj (http://www.usmartialartsacademy.com/bjj). He provides his lineage as follows:


Jiu-Jitsu Lineage

Dave Tester is a brown belt instructor under Charles Allen at the Academy
Started training in BJJ in 2000
Received his blue belt from Pedro Sauer in 2002
Received his purple belt from Marcio Simas (gracie barra) in 2006
Received his brown belt from Charles Allen (gracie barra black belt) in 2009

Does this look like a good place to train? They have BJJ Fundamentals for beginners on Mondays, BJJ for all levels on Wednesdays, and no gi on Sundays. Any advice is much appreciated.

DSL
9/21/2009 10:44am,
Go for it, the fact that he lists his exact lineage is a good indication he's got the right approach and isn't some guy trying to sneak something past. Plus, it gives you an exact route if you wish to verify his rank.

two dogs
9/23/2009 9:39am,
Agree with DSL, go for it.

plasma
9/23/2009 5:34pm,
The fact he lists his exact lineage is a good sign that he isn't trying to hide anything. Also it isn't rude to check up on someone you plan to take classes from. If you want to be certain contact Grace Berra or if you can Charles Allen directly. A basic google search shows Charles Allen to be a legit BJJ Black Belt. Shouldn't be too hard.

Good luck with your training. You can learn A LOT about grappling from a BJJ Brown Belt. You'll enjoy it.

Petter
9/23/2009 6:15pm,
Allen is not on the official list of Gracie Barra blackbelts (here (http://onthemat.com/wiki/index.php/List_of_BJJ_Black_Belts)), though Marcio Simas is. Presumably there’s some mistake (could even be that the list is out of date; Allen is listed on Bullshido.org (http://www.bullshido.org/Charles_Allen), for what it’s worth). These people certainly seem to be connected to legit people (Pedro Sauer, Simas...), so I regard it as a glitch not a red flag.

plasma
9/23/2009 10:20pm,
Allen is not on the official list of Gracie Barra blackbelts (here (http://onthemat.com/wiki/index.php/List_of_BJJ_Black_Belts)),

Charles Allen is on the list you posted

http://onthemat.com/wiki/index.php/List_of_BJJ_Black_Belts#Black_Belt_-_A

Look under 'A' for Allen

Petter
9/23/2009 10:23pm,
Charles Allen is on the list you posted
Indeed he is! The reason is that I pasted the wrong link. It was supposed to point to http://graciebarra.com/gbcn.php?n=blackbelts, where he is not present.

I will go sit in the corner now.

slideyfoot
9/25/2009 5:43am,
Welcome to Bullshido!


I was finally converted by Bullshido and realized I should probably practice some sort of grappling. [...]

Any advice is much appreciated.


You might find this BJJ Beginner FAQ (http://www.slideyfoot.com/2006/10/bjj-beginner-faq.html) useful, as a new student in BJJ.

As I mention in that FAQ, for further reading on BJJ, I'd recommend the following threads:

Training, Stagnation and Tapping (http://www.bullshido.net/forums/showpost.php?p=974042)

Maximizing what you get out of rolling (http://www.bullshido.net/forums/showpost.php?p=1253088)

Protecting Yourself During Sparring (http://www.bullshido.net/forums/showthread.php?p=1234198)

BJJ Rolling Guide for Beginners (http://www.sherdog.net/forums/f12/bjj-rolling-guide-beginners-926678/#post29020042)
Grappling Basic Principles (http://www.bullshido.net/forums/showthread.php?t=20609)

Advice for Noobs (http://www.bullshido.net/forums/showpost.php?p=1776425&postcount=1)

10 Quick Tips for White Belts (http://www.aesopian.com/353/10-quick-tips-for-white-belts/)

First Day Lesson (http://www.bullshido.net/forums/showpost.php?p=1232603)

Fundamental 5 (http://www.bullshido.net/forums/showpost.php?p=1019474)

Obvious Epiphanies (http://www.bullshido.net/forums/showthread.php?t=62601)

And the following articles:

Starting BJJ Classes (http://www.grapplearts.com/Starting-BJJ-Classes.htm)
Nuggets of Advice (http://www.aesopian.com/127/nuggets-of-advice/)
Beginning BJJ (http://www.beginningbjj.com/index.html) (free e-course and e-book)
The Journey to Blue Belt (http://www.aesopian.com/112/the-blue-belt/)
Getting Started (http://www.mastersdivision.com/blog/2009/05/getting-started.html)


Charles Allen is on the list you posted

http://onthemat.com/wiki/index.php/List_of_BJJ_Black_Belts#Black_Belt_-_A

Look under 'A' for Allen

Although the OTM wiki isn't an especially reliable source either way: as far as I'm aware, there isn't any quality control, so anyone can enter their name. Petter's list (http://graciebarra.com/gbcn.php?n=blackbelts) is probably more reliable, if less comprehensive.

MBriefcase
9/25/2009 1:26pm,
Thanks for all the advice, and slideyfoot, thanks for the links.

EASTCOASTBJJ
4/13/2010 3:31pm,
i am a purple belt under Mr.Allen, he is one of the best instructors i have come in contact with.


chad