Recently the BJJ and MMA super coach – John Danaher, came to Sydney for the first time to run a few seminars. Credited for being the mastermind of UFC champions George St Pierre and Matt Weidman, as well as grappling phenoms Garry Tonon, Eddie Cummins and Gordon Ryan, I knew I couldn’t pass on an opportunity to have a private with John. A small group of my BJJ and MMA students Alex, Aaron and Edward (who are purple, blue and white belts respectively) also joined me for the private session. Our goal from the private was to ask John to provide us with the necessary tools to enable us to fish rather than having the fish handed to us. John did not disappoint – in that one private session, he gave us the full fishing tackle and showed us what to do with it.
Prior to the session, my students and I had to decide what we wanted from our session with John. We ended up asking him, “Given our diverse experience, what can we learn from you in this hour that we can then take away and practice on moving forward to improve our game?” The question was very vague and it was my intention to do so to allow as much creative direction for him to answer.
John chose to highlight to us the difference between positional control versus limb control. He explained that positional control is great for scoring points in a sporting scenario, but the ultimate goal in any grappling art such as BJJ or in an MMA bout, is to break our opponent’s will by making them submit rather than outscoring them. That is, in positional control, one is under no real threat or danger from being injured or hurt. But it is exactly these points which that are necessary in order to create fear and doubt in our opponent’s head to break their spirit. The concept of limb control does this brilliantly as it eliminates your opponent’s ability to move freely, which is the objective of positional control, and it adds the extra element of offence, allowing you to achieve the end goal faster – the submission!
In BJJ and to some extent MMA we are often told the cliché, “position before submission”. But with this new limb control approach you are almost doing both at the same time. John explained that the limbs of the human body work in unison, i.e. when your left arm is being attacked, you use your right arm to defend it; and that as much as 90% of all defences will come from the complimentary limb.
Once we understood the logic and mechanics of one’s reactions and defences, for the remainder of the private he addressed this problem by showing us the concept of ‘wedging’ to separate the opponent’s arms with your legs in order to isolate your opponents arm from one another to prevent them from escaping. We practised different ways to isolate limbs from different positions, with drills and sequences that would chain together into 3-5 hit combinations. John believed that 3-5 is the optimal number for efficiency, less than that and you are not diverse enough, but more than that and your submission attempts are too loose and not tight enough to get them earlier.
John Danaher’s trip to Sydney for me was a glimpse of his expertise to be able to institutionalize an art that had endless paths leading down a deep rabbit whole to a series of systems, theories and approaches. Overall I found his methodology and approach to coaching, MMA and BJJ refreshing, giving me a new sense of rejuvenation and excitement about another aspect of the art. I have always believed that it is so important to keep furthering your skills and having a passion for the pursuit of knowledge, because I believe that without this you will not have the chance to be humbled by how much more there is to learn out there.
Give our BJJ program a go and experience the improvements to all of these fields. It is considered to be an excellent first style where the skills are easily transferable.
"My kids have been training for three months now at ICC and I have been really impressed with the instructors and the level of professionalism with which they run their club. Not only are they superb martial artists in their own right but they are also great with children which was a big factor in my decision to enroll them at ICC. Having trained for many years as a younger man I knew what I was after and ICC was daylights ahead of other clubs/styles in our area of Sydney."
"ICC is such a fantastic martial arts centre. It provides the kids with such a caring environment and a place where they feel truly excepted no matter what their ability. My eldest son is autistic and the instructors have all
gone out of their way to help him and make him feel included. They also have a wide variety of different classes and for all ages. I would highly recommend this centre to anyone that wants to give martial arts a go."
"An exceptional mixed martial arts centre led by a team of dedicated, highly-experienced, qualified and friendly martial artists, who are extremely passionate about teaching their students to embrace the form of martial arts.Their support and guidance has helped their students grow both personally and professionally. It has allowed them to build confidence, show respect towards others and themselves and most importantly to have fun doing what they love most.I highlighy recommend this centre if you’re looking for a family-orientated centre that prides themselves for continuous improvement, encourages their students to reach their full potential and is guided by
highly-motivated, skilled martial artists."
"ICC has been a wonderful place for my child to learn and develop skills in jujitsu while in a safe environment. The instructors are brilliant and make learning fun and exciting for the children while instilling the importance of the art and using the techniques correctly. We have and will continue to enjoy being apart of ICC community."
"I normally don't give reviews but my experience at ICC has been exceptional. I would strongly recommend anyone thinking of doing self defence classes or anyone wanting to learn BJJ to come down and give ICC a shot. David and Steven are highly skilled and do a great job of taking the time to teach all their students the most intricate detail of every move they learn."