Why a Fundamentals Class?

I wanted to write a post answering some of the (many) questions that I’ve gotten regarding the implementation of our Fundamentals Class.

The primary goal of this class is to give the brand new student a starting point, and the more experienced students a degree of separation.  Toddlers need space to learn to walk, but at some point, the big kids are ready to play.

In an interview, 8th Degree Red and White Belt, and jiu-jitsu legend, Mauricio Gomes was asked what he felt was the most important thing that you could do in a jiu-jitsu school, and he said “The separation between the classes.” The more I thought about this, the more I had to agree with Mr Gomes. 

Tell me about this class...

We’ve picked 18 basic jiu-jitsu positions, transitions, and submissions to make up our fundamentals curriculum.  That list may grow or shrink based on the needs of the program.  The goal is to give the new student a look at the most common places that we teach from in our Academies, so that when they graduate to the All Levels or even Advanced classes, they already have a grasp of the language and positions that we’ll be looking at.

There will be a test to get into the All Levels class.  Test days will be held once a month, and the test will be over randomly selected techniques from the curriculum list, not all 18.  The test is pass or fail.  You will receive your first stripe on your white belt when you pass the test.

There is no set amount of time that a student has to be in the Fundamentals class. But, to gain access to the All Levels class, they have to pass our test.

The class will be roughly 45 min long and following a warm-up we’ll be covering 2-3 techniques.  This class is going to hit the ground running, so that email you get when you sign up with a link to videos describing our warm-ups?  I’d *highly* recommend watching them and practicing at home, so you’re able to fall-in on your first day.

There’ll be NO grappling/sparring in this class.  Brand new students don’t know how to grapple, so there’s not much point in cutting them loose to go live.  Most students who quit jiu-jitsu early-on tend to cite some form of injury from grappling.  This is an attempt to curb that, and give people who might be a little more averse to live pressure a bit more time to get comfortable with what we’re doing.  These are the people who need this stuff the most, anyway and I want them to have space to grow.

There’s a WHOLE lot more thought that has gone into why I’m sold that this will be a positive thing for our students, but I wanted to put the bigger points in a post for reference.  If you have questions, as always, feel free to drop me a line. – Scott

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