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JKD UnderGround >> Review of Thorton Seminar(4-24/25)


5/2/04 9:07 PM
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Kai Tremeche
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Edited: 02-May-04
Member Since: 07/06/2000
Posts: 7931
 
Okay, this is gonna be a large post, regardless. I heard of the Seminar in Canada that Matt Thorton was running a while back on here, about a week and a half before I was to compete in a Grappling Tourney. . With how much I quote Matt Thorton to my more TMA friends in my Live Journal and how often I post on this forum, I figured I couldn't miss this seminar. I knew money was gonna be tight, but the gov was happy enough to throw some of my tax money back at me, so it was gonna all work out... That is until I re-injured my oft-injured shoulder a week before the tourney. I took a week off with the intent of healing, which helped, only to aggrevate it again on the day of the tourney. Now, I wasn't about to let an injury keep me from the seminar, but I knew that I'd be throwing punches besides just grappling so I took the full week off to heal up before I left. So I forced myself awake at 5am to scoot out the door and across the border, heading eastward. Luckily, I have some friends that I visit in the GTA so I knew the way rather easily. In fact, I overestimated the time it would take me to cross the border, for there was all but 2 cars waiting in the waxing dawn at the border crossing. So I arrived about 9:45, giving me ample time to nap in my ghetto sled until reinforcements arrived, the only car in an light industrial strip. First Mike Sweeny and his lovely Wife Rebecca arrived, even before the owners arrived and slowly others slipped in, then finally Matt, who'd make a hell of a center in street ball, and is very hard to mistake for anyone else.
5/2/04 9:23 PM
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Kai Tremeche
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Edited: 02-May-04
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Posts: 7932
So, we all filtered in, and I greeted forum members Mike Sweeny (CBK) and Jeff Duarte (Portuguese200X), who recognised me immediately from the Detroit shirt I was wearing. We all sat around and chatted for a while, before heading out onto the mats. Was a spacious training area, with full mirrors, but the mat's thickness and quality was a bit worrying... But it turned out since we really didn't start grappling on our feet much at all, it wasn't really an issue (Still not used to starting on my knees). Matt sat near a large kid's writing pad, sipping at Tim Horton's Coffee, trying to lose the Jet/Time lag and wake up... Then he started class, introducing himself and so on, then doing something I've never seen in a Seminar: Just flat out asking us what we'd like to work on. Everyone offered their suggestions, and I suggested Crazy Monkey and Clinch Striking. We then started with some light rolling to get stretched out and I soon discovered that I was odd man out... Which was unfortunate, so for most of the day I had to rotate my way into the drills and such... The seminar was amazing, we covered almost all ground the first day, worked on breaking the guard and guard passing, countering guard passes, mount escapes, holding side mount and a lot of esoterics. Almost every time, Matt would write down the basics of what we were covering. Matt really helped me understand a few basic problems I was having with passing (Safety Position) and finally got me to figure out what the hell I was doing wrong with my Elbow Escapes. Also got a chance to roll with Matt, which was crazy. Was my first real chance to roll with a BJJ blackbelt and his ground game was very solid. He got me with a Triangle and then a chest compression, and I never had him even worried at all from my submissions or even gave him any problems. He pretty much owned me from top to bottom. Despite all this, he did compliment me on my skills, saying I had a real good top game, great attributes and balance, and asked me if I was a Purple Belt. Quite the Compliment. Also, we started on the knees, which is rather unfamiliar for me, would have been fun to try to throw him (Note the emphasis on the word: Try). Also starting on the feet would have just meant I would have delayed the inevitable a few more seconds, about as futile as getting your hand up to try to stop a .50 BMG round from hitting you in the face. Also, we covered a nice chest compression, an odd Kimura/Arm-Trap that I still haven't gotten down right, a nice reverse arm-bar from the knee on stomach, a great sweep that involved grabbing the shorts near the knee (which I had to ask Matt to clarify without grabbing, since a lot of No Gi tourneys won't let you grab your opponent's clothing at all). We also clarified a few other basics to clean things up and finished up with some rolling, which is when I rolled against Matt and he freaking killed me.
5/2/04 9:35 PM
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Kai Tremeche
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Edited: 02-May-04 09:29 PM
Member Since: 07/06/2000
Posts: 7933
The next day, we all wandered in again, me a bit late due to some wonderful traffic from a toasted car on the 407... I warmed up quickly and found that we were covering a bit more ground work this day. I think I wandered in on some getting back to guard drills, but we quickly moved on to some leg locks drills (with aliveness) which was neat, because Matt taught me a real nice way to use my standard isolation I use for the footlock/achilles/straight-ankle that will avoid the re-hook. Avoiding the re-hook/lock when you train with a Sambo World Champ and his buddies is always a problem. Then we moved on to clinch work. Next we moved on to S.T.A.B. Knife defense which was a real eye opener. The explanation of awareness and how your first priority if you know there's a knife is to run... So all the training started from the idea that you've already been stabbed and you may get it again. As a wrestler and a judoka, I was amused by the fact that the best way to defend against the knife is the Two-on-One, which has always been a favorite. We worked this pretty hard and with some aliveness, and other than a teen who was working a little too hard against me and forcing me to drive him down hard against the elbow, it all worked really well. After we finished that up, me tried on the fabled Crazy Monkey Boxing defense. Now, I've boxed at University and in the past, and simply, this is the best way to teach beginners defense in boxing that I've seen so far. Hands down, it is simply amazing. We worked that for a long while and I didn't pick it up as well as I should have, but as Matt said, I may need to cut my hair to really get it down. However, the effectiveneess of it was really proved when Matt made us use our old boxing defenses in the same drill where we were using the Crazy Monkey. I already used a shell type guard before, but I was getting hit much more and I kept reverting back to the CM. Really great stuff! Then we worked some more clinch and rolled a bit more, this time with Mike Sweeny. Mike, even though I had 30 pounds on him, was slick as hell on the ground, and caught me with a triangle/contact-gouge, then a bench press armbar of all things! Really slick classical BJJ game, with good sweeps and guard passing, although he did get introduced to my no-hands leg lock and my no-gi whizzer half-guard sweep... But he still beat the crap out of me, even though we weren't going full speed he still kicked the crap out of me.
5/2/04 9:35 PM
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Kai Tremeche
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Edited: 02-May-04 10:03 PM
Member Since: 07/06/2000
Posts: 7934
Then after, Matt left the floor open to us. I asked a lot of questions that Matt was more than happy to answer, and he was a really great guy. Anyone who's into martial arts in any way shape or form, I wholeheartedly suggest going to one of his seminars. We had people from Meat heads like me, to Boxers, to Judokas to Kung Fu guys to beginners... All training in the same methods and learning the same stuff. Amazing... I'm even more of a believer in the Aliveness method. Anyways, some video... and some pics...

Mike (Shorter guy) and Matt Thorton work offense and Defense from the Crazy Monkey guard.


And some random pics:

Matt Demonstrates some side control points of interest.


Matt Explains his philosophy of training while others look on.

Part of the Class.

Matt showing the Lat-Choke from Head and Arm.
Matt dealing with two punks! (j/k)
The notepad with notes clarified.
Group Photo, that's me on the far back left, Matt Thorton in front in the green with the Towel around his neck. I have more pics and more movies, so if people want to see them, or if even the SBG guys (Matt included) want them to see if anything's worth using, just ask.
5/2/04 9:52 PM
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CBK
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Edited: 02-May-04
Member Since: 01/01/2001
Posts: 602
Great review and pics, Kai. I think the word "killed" when describing our rolling is definitely a bit strong though. If you have some more pics, etc. I would love to see them. If you don't want to post them, please email them to me: sensei@canadas-best.com Mike www.SBGi.ca PS: I don't know if your nice review will save you from Matt's wrath over that nunchaku pic:)
5/2/04 9:52 PM
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Kevin Curtis
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Edited: 02-May-04
Member Since: 07/17/2001
Posts: 2428
Kai... thanks for the review, pics and video!
5/2/04 10:04 PM
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Kai Tremeche
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Edited: 02-May-04
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Mike: Hey, how much space do you have on that email account? Do you want the videos as well. As far as the rolling, gods, I haven't been hit with an armbar that deep in a long long while, caught me just as I completed a pass and didn't even see it coming! Real damn techinical, that's for sure! And yeah, I think I'm gonna be dead. I know Matt's seen the pic by now and the rest of the SBG guys have been rather silent about it all.
5/2/04 10:11 PM
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Kai Tremeche
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Edited: 02-May-04 10:02 PM
Member Since: 07/06/2000
Posts: 7936

Matt covering something that was a real problem when I first started
: Teaching Whitebelts so that they get beat by higher belts.
Why people say that their arts are too deadly to spar with.
I get this excuse far too much from those around me who do TMAs.
5/2/04 10:14 PM
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CBK
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Edited: 02-May-04
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The email account should be fine. I would love the videos too. I watched that last video and my elbows are WAY too wide. No wonder I have trouble with uppercuts! I just posted two of the above pics on my site: http://www.canadas-best.com/mmagallery.html Thanks again, Mike
5/2/04 10:20 PM
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Kai Tremeche
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Edited: 02-May-04
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No problem mike, Files are inbound. Yeah, that's my only question we didn't get covered, how to guard against body shots and uppercuts.
5/2/04 10:31 PM
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CBK
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Edited: 02-May-04
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Posts: 604
Body shots are dealt with via a slight level change, without removing the hands from the head. It is dependent upon working from the proper "hunchback" stance though. If you are standing too upright, without the hollow posture, the required level change would be too great. Uppercuts are dealt with by slightly turning the body and covering them with the elbow (usually the lead). If your elbows are too wide, as mine are in that video, you tend to eat them:( Mike
5/2/04 10:45 PM
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Kai Tremeche
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Edited: 02-May-04
Member Since: 07/06/2000
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Thanks for the tip, I'll try to take that into account. Email's giving me some fits, I'll have to send them to you in pieces... first all the pics, then the videos in 2-3 files each.
5/2/04 10:55 PM
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CBK
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Edited: 02-May-04
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If you are still having problems, email me and I will set you up an ftp account so you can upload them. Mike
5/2/04 11:08 PM
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Kai Tremeche
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Edited: 02-May-04
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CBK: Just did email you, get back to me about the FTP, i'm down with that.
5/2/04 11:28 PM
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Eel
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Edited: 02-May-04
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Kai, "and finally got me to figure out what the hell I was doing wrong with my Elbow Escapes."---What were you doing wrong?
5/2/04 11:40 PM
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Kai Tremeche
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Edited: 02-May-04
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Eel: My friends tend to start in high mount when we drill, so I never have a chance to get them inside. Also, not bridging them over my head right.
5/3/04 2:52 AM
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kajukenbo2000
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Edited: 03-May-04
Member Since: 01/01/2001
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Kai, What is H & H in your notes.
5/3/04 7:39 AM
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Kai Tremeche
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Edited: 03-May-04
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Kajukenbo: They're not my notes, more what Matt was writing on the large notpad. So I'm not exactly sure, maybe one of the others can clear it up.
5/3/04 7:44 AM
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CBK
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Edited: 03-May-04
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H&H stands for HUNCHBACK and on 1 HIP. It is the starting position for your escapes when someone is in side control on top of you.
5/3/04 11:27 AM
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Portuguese2002
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Edited: 03-May-04
Member Since: 01/01/2001
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Great review Kai, it was great having you come down to attend.
5/3/04 10:32 PM
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spikespiegel
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Edited: 03-May-04
Member Since: 04/29/2004
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good review Kai it was fun rolling with you and everyone there, i learned a lot and Matt's a great teacher and pretty good at air hockey. tho you did miss out on Matt's nutrional information about how tomatoes are actually poison. i would like to see some more of the pics that you have.
5/3/04 11:09 PM
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CBK
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Edited: 03-May-04
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Matt's Jits is strong, but I don't buy the tomato thing!
5/3/04 11:49 PM
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Kai Tremeche
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Edited: 03-May-04
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Spike: Who were you? I only rolled with a few people so...
5/3/04 11:50 PM
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Kai Tremeche
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Edited: 04-May-04 12:18 AM
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Well if you want to see them all... http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-001.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-002.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-003.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-004.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-005.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-006.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-007.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-008.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-009.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-010.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-011.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-012.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-013.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-014.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-015.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-016.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-017.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-018.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-019.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-020.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-021.JPG http://mywebpage.netscape.com/shortstop4313/images/mtsem-022.JPG Also, CBK should be hosting the videos I took as well.
5/4/04 10:26 AM
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Portuguese2002
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Edited: 04-May-04
Member Since: 01/01/2001
Posts: 2320
So tomatos are Matt's Kryptinite, eh? Very, very interesting.

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