- 26th January 2020
- By New School BJJ
Australian Bushfire Charity Seminar
On the 24th January 2020, New School BJJ hosted a fundraising seminar in aid of those that have been affected by the devastating bushfires in Australia. The event was organised by one of our team members, Chris Wodzinski, who is from Australia and felt passionate about doing something to help those who have been affected by this natural disaster. Chris set up the welcome table with information and photos that showed the devastation that the fires have caused, not only to humans but to wildlife as well. Rather than have the attendees pay a set fee, they were told that they could just make a small donation that would go towards those that have suffered from the fires.
We were lucky to have four great instructors to teach us some amazing techniques, ranging from self-defence, footlocks and countering footlocks.
The first part of the seminar was taken by Michael Lynch and renown MMA fighter, Tom Watson. Michael explained that he has been a police officer for over 20 years and felt that the police did not have enough self-defence training. He got into contact with Tom, whose martial arts knowledge enabled them to work on techniques that could allow a police officer to defend themselves effectively, whilst applying the techniques in a way that takes the opponent’s safety as an important consideration. The technique shown involved an arm drag to then take your opponent’s back, whilst controlling one of their arms. The next phase of the sequence was to take the opponent to the floor but, for the opponent’s safety, to ensure that you take them down on the side that their free arm can break the fall or, at least, protect their head from hitting the ground. Tom Watson pointed out that this was particularly important for both self-defence and police arresting techniques, as it avoids the risk of the opponent injuring their head on concrete.
We were next shown a set of techniques for gaining the correct position to effectively apply a heel hook submission. This was demonstrated by Jed Hue, a very successful fighter and leg lock specialist who trains under Ross Nicholls. Starting from a shin on shin position, where your opponent is standing up and you are in a seated position, Jed showed how to transition into the Single Leg X guard in order to take your opponent down and then shift your body to triangle the leg and apply the footlock. Jed also showed us a very technical move that offered another way of applying the heel hook.
So, just after everyone was getting used to being a heel hook specialist, our New School BJJ leg lock expert, Eoghan O’Flanagan, gave us a few techniques and strategies to escape the foot locks. The techniques involved a roll that would eventually lead to taking your opponent’s back and finishing off with a rear naked choke. Eoghan demonstrated techniques that can be used to free your foot and positions that will relieve the pressure that your opponent is trying to apply.
Towards the last 30 minutes of the seminar, Eoghan told everyone to get themselves a quick drink and get right back for some full sparring. Some of us are not accustomed to sparring during a seminar and this was a very welcome change, as it gave us the opportunity to attempt some of the techniques that we had learned.
All in all, it was a fantastic seminar, given by equally fantastic instructors. Let’s not forget that the whole point of the seminar was a fundraising event to raise money to alleviate the pressures suffered by both humans and animals affected by the Australian bushfires. The count, so far, of money raised stands at well over £300 and many of our members, who were not able to attend, have said that they still want to make a donation towards the cause. On behalf of New School BJJ, well done to Chris for setting this seminar up, thank you to the instructors for giving up their time and thank you to everyone that took part and donated!!!
By Jasen Vassoodaven