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Check out what is going on with the Arizona BJJ Scene

When many people think of high quality jiu jitsu in the United States, Southern California and New York immediately come to mind. While these places are undeniably hotbeds of jiu jitsu talent, Arizona is also home to amazingly talented instructors and competitors. What often separates one area from another in terms of the level of its jiu jitsu is the presence of high quality tournaments, as they challenge practitioners to continually strive to achieve better performance and results. The AZSBJJF and GD Events have been hosting top quality tournaments in Arizona for well over a decade. What started as a 40 person in house tournament in 2001 has expanded into annual competitions for adults, kids, and master level athletes. These tournaments include the AZ Open, The Copa Bella/Kid’s Cup, The AZ State Championships, the Southwest Classic, and the Master’s Cup. Just as the Arizona jiu jitsu scene has come a long way, so has my personal journey to the Grand Canyon State. My name is Danny O’Donnell and I moved to Arizona from Chicago in search of high level jiu jitsu instruction and competition. I will be contributing to the AZSBJJF.com blog in an effort to bring you more awareness about the instructors, athletes, brands, and tournaments that make the Arizona jiu jitsu community so unique. This will include interviews, tournament recaps, seminar reviews, and any other news or information related to Arizona jiu jitsu. These blog entries should provide you with a better understanding of how special our community is and how it fits into the bigger picture of the growth of jiu jitsu in the U.S. Stay tuned and be sure to connect on Facebook and Instagram.

Are You a Good Training Partner?

 

by Kanani Guerra

One great benefit of training BJJ is the relationships you form with your training partners. In order to attract the right type of training partner, you need to be a good partner yourself. Try this quick self-evaluation to determine if you are a great training partner or if you are that person being avoided at the gym.

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What’s Holding You Back From Starting Jiu Jitsu?

 

By Gabriella McCrossan

So, you want to try Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Maybe your friends are doing it, maybe you saw a gym advertisement, maybe you are a fan of MMA but you’re not into getting punched. However it happened, you’re here now, and you’re interested. So what’s the holdup? Why haven’t you walked through the door and tried a class yet? There could be a number of reasons, so let’s walk through some of those together.

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How Do You Train Jiu Jitsu When Your Time is Limited?

 

By Christal Montoya

There are only 24 hours in a day and that doesn’t seem like nearly enough time, especially when you’re training BJJ!  Many Jiu Jitsu practitioners wish that there were more hours during the day so they could train more. Balancing these precious 24 hours between training and other life responsibilities is a huge challenge.  Chances are you can’t train all day and eat acai. You most likely have a job and other time commitments such as school, family, and a social life. So how do you get the most out of your training when time is limited?

 

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Air Travel & Tournaments: Are You Ready to Fly High?

 

by Kanani Guerra

Preparing for a tournament can be exciting, challenging, and rewarding. But in the mix of those emotions, preparation can also be stressful- especially if an athlete is planning air travel on top of the physical, mental, and emotional readiness for the tournament. Below are a few tips and tricks to remember when getting ready to hit the skies.

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2018 AZ Kids Cup and Copa Bella Results

 

By Danny O’Donnell

 

The 2018 AZ Kids Cup and Copa Bella tournaments are in the books and they delivered a high quality of Jiu Jitsu that Arizona is known for. The kids kicked the day off followed by the women’s weight class divisions and ending with the open class divisions. The top schools in the state always bring their best competitors in chase of the first-place team trophy. Maracaba BJJ placed first in this year’s Kids Cup after finishing third at this tournament in 2017. Ares/Nava BJJ took first place in the Copa Bella after placing second in the tournament in 2017.

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How has Jiu Jitsu Changed your Life?

 

By Gabriella McCrossan

How has Jiu Jitsu changed your life? Maybe just stepping in the door was enough to change your life or maybe it snuck up on you over a period of time. Regardless of why or when you started BJJ, whether you’re brand new or have been at it for years, it can change your life in a number of positive ways.

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Arizona Kids at the IBJJF Kids Pans

 

by Kanani Guerra

 

The 2018 AZ Kid’s Cup is less than 2 days away and will showcase the state’s top youth Jiu Jitsu talent. Arizona is home to some of the best kid’s competitors in the world and they went out and proved it at this year’s IBJJF Kids Pans tournament in Long Beach, California in February. The tournament hosted over 800 competitors from all over the world. Competitors came from the US, Brazil, Australia, Japan, Russia, and more! This year the tournament was held at the Walter Pyramid at Long Beach State University. It was a tournament with top-notch competitors, non-stop action, and all-around fun. The IBJJF Kids Pans tournament had amazing displays of talent and sportsmanship and the competitors from Arizona were no exception.

 

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BJJ & Pregnancy: How Do I Train Now?

Photo by Yasmyn Castro

 

by Kanani Guerra

In a woman’s life there are ups and downs, moments of excitement and moments of disappointment, adventures and boring days. But there are a few milestones that stand-out to many women: the day you move out on your own and feel like an independent powerhouse, the day you start pursuing your dreams (travel, career, education, family, anything!), the first time you tried jiu-jitsu, and when you find out that you are expecting a little bundle of joy! Pregnancy brings about so many different emotions and thoughts. Worry, excitement, fear, glee, panic, and calmness are the first that come to mind. You may feel one or all of these at any moment in time. A woman has so many things to think about when she is expecting. Where will the baby sleep? Will I feed formula or breastfeed? Will I be a working mom or a stay-at-home mom? How will I announce to my family and friends? The list goes on and on (and keeps growing over nine months!). And then you realize: How will I train jiu-jitsu while pregnant?!

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2018 AZ Kid’s Cup With One Jiu Jitsu’s Andrew Gardineer

 

By Danny O’Donnell

 

The 2018 AZ Kid’s Cup is just days away and will showcase the top youth talent from the region. The event sold out before the registration deadline with 450 competitors representing all of the top schools in Arizona. Ares/Nava BJJ, Atos, BJJ Revolution, CTA, Carlos Farias, GD Jiu Jitsu, Gracie Barra, Maracaba BJJ, One Jiu Jitsu, and Soul Fighters all have kids signed up throughout many divisions. In 2017, One Jiu Jitsu captured the first-place team trophy with 161 total points. CTA came in second with 138 points followed by Maracaba BJJ with 133 points.

 

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How Do You Improve Your Jiu Jitsu Off the Mat?

 

By Gabriela McCrossan

Everyone learns Jiu Jitsu in their own way and at their own pace. Certain core elements, such as drilling and rolling during regular class attendance, are vital for everyone. Outside of going to class, however, many practitioners take additional steps to improve their Jiu Jitsu. This can take many forms, with books and videos being two of the most effective and widely used. I have personally benefited from both of these forms of learning, and you can benefit from them too. Whether you can’t attend class as much as you like and still want to improve, or you’re just looking to get ahead of the curve, these ideas can be beneficial regardless of how far along you are in your Jiu Jitsu journey.

 

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