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Book/Video Mini-Reviews

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    Book/Video Mini-Reviews

    I've noticed a lot of folks asking about good MA books on this and other forums recently. I thought it'd be a good idea to have a thread with some mini-reviews of our new/best MA books and videos.

    I'll start with my two newest books.

    1) Chin Na in Groundfighting
    by Al Arsenault & Joe Faulise

    - The premise of this book is not to teach groundfighting nor to imply that chin na is or was a groundfighting system. Rather, it assumes a basic knowledge of groundfighting on the part of the reader and simply shows methods of applying the concepts of chinese chin na to groundfighting.

    The book has sections on joint locking, pressure point manipulation, and striking. All from the ground.

    The authors demonstrate a number of unorthodox locks such as toe splits, finger extensions, and some unusual leg locks.

    The how and why are thoroughly detailed in the language of modern physics complete with easy to read diagrams and photos.

    I think the pressure point manipulation is probably the most interesting portion of this book since it is a subject that hasn't had a lot of REALISTIC books written on it. In this book, the authors are very down to earth about the subject. No "eye gouge of death" type stuff.

    All in all, I think this book can be an excellent resource for those who wish to learn the self-defense aspect of ground grappling. This is the book that the highly derided "bjj self-defense" should have been.

    2) Passing The Guard
    by Tim Cartmell & Ed Benneville

    - A new book by mt favourite MA author Tim Cartmell. I cannot praise this book enough.

    If you have ever wanted to learn more about passing or attacking from someone's guard, you must get this book.

    The book is written and illustrated in a manner that makes following what is being shown easier than any other MA book I've ever seen. A mere verbal description cannot do it justice.

    The book contains 50+ guard passes as well as a section on attacking in the guard and a section on defending common attacks from another's guard.

    Well written, beatiful pictures & diagrams, useful techniques. What more could you ask for?

    See Tim's site at

    Cool. Thanks for the reviews.


      Zero to Dangerous (VIdeo) was very good if you are an absolute beginner to MMA. The website at describes exactly what's on the video and they deliver. If you have any training in BJJ or submission wrestling its probalby pretty basic for you but if you are a need this video. Great intro for fans looking to understand MMA better also.

      For the price of two large it. But buy it along with the Fighter's Notebook at the special price. And we all know how good a reference the Notebook is.


        What exactly is The Fighter's Notebook?


          Take two of these and call me in the morning:

          Or try the book and video reviews here:

          then call me...


            I see. Thanks for the links.


              I am simply aghast at the lack of participation in this thread! Don't you people read?!

              A to Z of Judo
              by Syd Hoare

              - Ahh, this is one of those rare books where you have a mighty load of techniques with very little description. Not that that's bad. I actually think it's an excellent reference for judoka to learn the names of those "miscellaneous" techniques.

              The book has a veritable slew of throws, locks, pins, and strangles, from Tama Guruma to Kani Jime, all with pics and basic descriptions. You'd spend a ton of your hard-earned loot to find all of these techniques in other books.

              However, while this book is good as a reference, it lacks the in-depth descriptions you're likely to find in other books with fewer techniques.

              All in all I'd say it's a necessity for the modern, active judoka, but not much use to anyone else.


                For any interested Australian members, I'm looking to sell my copies of Mario Sperry's BJJ Master Series volume 1 and 2.

                A$450 + shipping

                Reviewed here:
                Last edited by FingerorMoon?; 11/03/2003 10:11pm, .
                The Wastrel - So attractive he HAS to be a woman.
                - Pizdoff


                  I'll give you $50 Canadian. And whoever I can kidnap.
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                    Video Review

                    Shuai Chiao Series
                    by Daniel Chi-Hsiu Weng

                    - This series consists of four videos and a book on the fundamentals of Shuai Chiao.

                    First let me say that the production quality of the series is rather poor. The audio is atrocious and Sifu Weng hesitates and dawdles like he's afraid of the camera on numerous occasions. The editing is disorganized, sometimes showing the same sequence more than once.

                    As to the material presented, the first tape gives a nice history of Chang Tung Sheng's Shuai Chiao as well as some falling methods. The second tape starts with the "shadow practice" forms. Now, the forms in Shuai Chiao are not long forms like in other types of CMA, rather they're just the motion of a particular throw done on both right and left sides. The tape then goes on to show the rank requirements for the lower levels. This includes several throws and combinations. The viewer is also introduced to the "Poem of Shuai Chiao". It seems that Master Chang wrote a poem wherein each word is a principle to successful practice. The words are read, then the principle demonstrated.

                    The third tape adds more forms and requirements for mid level ranks. Weng goes over more of the Poem at the end of the tape.

                    The last tape has the remaining requirements to 1st Black. Weng also describes what a shuai chiao competition is like and the common rules used. He then has two of his students demonstrate their version of randori. Weng also finishes up the Poem of Shuai Chiao.

                    I believe this set can be useful in learning basic competition-style shuai chiao for those who have experience in a similar art. I cannot recommend it to a beginner however, as the disorganization of the set is rather confusing.

                    I think the most use one can get from this series is if you're a judoka, wrestler, or similar stylist who'd like to expand your arsenal a bit.


                      Skummer, submit these to the Articles/Reviews section.


                        Originally posted by Phrost
                        Skummer, submit these to the Articles/Reviews section.
                        I tried doing this, but when I preview the review it clumps all the text together into one big paragraph. I can't imagine anyone would want to read a gargantuan paragraph like that.
                        Is something wrong in the way it translates over?





                            S :

                            How would one get ahold of the Weng tapes ???


                              Originally posted by Djimbe
                              S :

                              How would one get ahold of the Weng tapes ???
                              I got them here:




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