Thursday, 27 December 2012

Mestre De La Riva Mini Documentary - The Evolution of the De La Riva Guard

Hey Guys!

Hope you all having a great xmas so far. Hope this mini documentary about my teacher brings you some more Xmas and new year cheer!!!

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Technique of the Month - December 2012 - Mestre Ricardo De La Riva

Hey Guys,

In celebration of the forthcoming festive season together with my promotion to 1st Degree Black Belt by my teacher Mestre De La Riva, I bring you the December technique of the month.


Monday, 10 December 2012

Master Instructor - Guro Dan Inosanto - 2012

It is a real honour to spend any time at all whatsoever with this extremely unique individual, let alone to have been a student of his on his Instructor program for approximately 13 years.

This man is legend.......

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Bi-Annual Grading/Seminar - 25.11.12 - Pics n vids...

Hey Guys,

Once again, thank you for all turning up to what was a fun day but also a very important one.

We welcomed Miad Najafi and Yousuf Nabi, joint Instructors at Element Martial arts in Brighton to our group and they are now officially CFS BJJ  Brighton. Miad has been a friend of mine for nearly 17 years and our martial arts history is connected in so many ways, so it was a pleasure to have him and Yousuf join us.

As we continue to grow from strength to strength our quality improves because of the dedication of you the students and the hard work and passion of the branch instructors who I am proud to be associated with. The quality is reflected in what I see when I visit and what the BJJ community sees when we compete.

Thanks to Darren Owen for being the camera man and as always Corey Donoghue for being my essential right hand man.

The full details of all that were promoted is already on our facebook page and there is also an excellent report by Liam Wandi the part time grappler. For those that got stripes keep up the good work and for those who didn't, your time is coming.......

Intelligent Combat

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Tatami Fightwear photoshoot......Dean Lister...Mike Fowler...Pedro Bessa and more

Hey Guys,

On Tuesday 13th November, I spent the day at London Fight Factory (the home of my good friend Luiz Ribiero) for the photoshoot arranged by Tatami Fightwear.

It was a long day but really good fun. I had the chance to train with and learn from Dean Lister, Mike Fowler and Pedro Bessa.

Mike agreed to film a couple of techniques for the blog which will be posted in the new year.

I'll put up some pics soon :)

'Intelligent Combat'

Friday, 9 November 2012

Upcoming Events 2012/2013

Hey Guys!!

Lots of new dates added at various locations. Check out what suits you

'Intelligent Combat'

Wednesday, 31 October 2012

NEW CFS BJJ Clothing....

Hey Guys,

I'm really excited as I've been working behind the scenes with my fantastic sponsors TATAMI FIGHTWEAR and their sister company ARMOURTECH to design and produce some clothing for our group

We will shortly have the following:

T shirts and

Below is the mock up design for the rashguards - all early feed back is great!!
It will have both the CFS and new De La Riva logo on it too!

The hoodies will come in 2 colours. Black and Graphite. The quality is excellent featuring:

High density waffle lined hood

-Chunky drawcord
-Fully zipped front

-Front pocket

-Ipod pocket   it will have a smaller CFS logo on the front with a larger one on the back. The look of the hoodie can be found on the tatami website hoodie section  - the red monogram hoodie.   T shirts are still being designed.   I am told that everything will be available for the seminar/grading on Sunday 25th November with Prof David Jacobs. We will also have CFS patches available. If you don't have yours already...why not?!!       Price list   Rashguards  - £30.00 - same standard as current IBJJF Tatamifightwear rashguards.   Hoodies - £30.00   T-shirts - TBC   Patches - £15 - for set of 3 - 10cm/15cm/22cm - lapel, trouser and back         Orders   All previous merchandise has always sold out and I expect the same with the new stuff. It is  available on a first come first served basis. I have tried to cater for all sizes including the ladies but numbers in all sizes are limited because I am not running a store and even though our group is expanding I cannot afford to 'over' order.   I therefore advise you to come prepared on 25.11.12 as you may not get a second chance :)

Friday, 26 October 2012

Semi-Final Fight - ABSOLUTE DIVISION - European Championships 2009 - Brown Belt - Senior 2

Whilst I am in the rare mood of posting some of my fights, below is my semi final fight in the absolute division in 2009. I fought Ake Zaar of Hilti BJJ. He was a super heavyweight who had no opponents in his division and therefore decided to cause havoc in the open class which he did.

It was an interesting fight. I suspected he would pull guard and so adopted the appropriate strategy. I wasn't doing too badly almost passing his guard but he eventually got the mount ad choked me out with?........Wait for it.........his chest!!

His chest was so big and wide he flattened my nose until I could not breath and that was that. It was a good job I had already won my division  ;)


Tuesday, 23 October 2012

CFS BJJ - October 2012 - Video techniques of the month - Pro Leo Specterow - 4th Degree Blackbelt - De La Riva Jiujitsu

Ok Guys,

As you know, I am extremely fortunate to have trained with some of the best martial artists in the world. For some reason, these humble people always seem happy to share their knowledge with me and those interested in what we do.

Here we have 2 videos from prof Leo Specterow from Brazil. He is such a nice guy. Very humble but extremely deadly. He is a professional bodyguard and security advisor to the stars as well as teaching the gentle art of Jiujitsu.

Tune in again next month when we will have some more from Master De La Riva himself :)


Video 2

Monday, 22 October 2012

London Open & European No-Gi Championships - 20/21st October 2012

Ok guys. Update for the weekend.

 The CFS BJJ team this weekend consisted of fighters from HQ. Steve Payne took Gold (no other fighters) in his division and bronze in the absolute after 2 fights. Hamza took Gold (no other fighters) in juvenile division. They both fought in the London open yesterday.

 Today Darren Owen took Silver in the blue master division. Fought bravely but got submitted via arm bar. Corey took Silver fighting in the final with a freshly damaged rib which was just too much to overcome. I took bronze winning my first fight and then losing my second fight to a good Brazilian. I tore my hamstring on Wednesday and so I was just grateful to be able to fight. We want to thank everyone for their support and best wishes as without you it would all be meaningless. Thanks again

Sunday, 30 September 2012

CFS BJJ Bi Annual Grading - Sunday 25th November 2012

I am now very pleased to confirm that the date has now been fixed for aour next major meeting. This promises to be a big one for a number of reasons and I hope that you will all show your usual support in numbers.

Prof David just won the IBJJF Masters & Seniors Int'l championships in Brazil fot the second time, and as you all know he is a seasoned competitor, excellent  instructor and all round nice guy (except when he's fighting you :) )

He will be in a few days early and will be available for some private classes. Arrangements can be made through me. He will also be teaching a seminar on Saturday 24.11.12 at Mill Hill BJJ so in fact he will be at the same location 2 days in a row.

Please make sure you all have your patches and if you dont have any then see your branch coach/Instructor

Check out his final fight and his display of basic solid BJJ. Osss!

Recent Seminars etc - 22nd and 29th September 2012

On Saturday 22md September I travelled to CFS BJJ Manchester to catch up with the gang. I taught a split 3 hour seminar with the first half purely on MMA based striking and leg defences, and the second half concentrating on no gi guard passing.

As always it was a great pleasure but forgive me as I don't have any pics to post.

On Saturday 29th September I travelled to CFS BJJ Letchwork to coach the guys headed by Black Belt Andy Nugent. We covered guard passing strategies and techniques and also had some time for Q & As.

It was also good to see David Webb from TOKON Academy who joined us and is welcome any time.

Some of the guys were given stripes on their belt, and their full details are on our facebook page

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Video Technique of the month - July 2012 - Mestre Ricardo De La Riva - Video 2

Hey Guys,

Here is the second video technique in the series. Here he shows how he deals with the opponent who avoids the first sweep :)

Intelligent combat

Sunday, 10 June 2012

Video Technique of the month - June 2012 - Mestre Ricardo De La Riva

Hey Guys,

Here is the first video technique as promised. Thanks again to the Mestre for being so generous with his knowledge (I really didn't want him to show this stuff.....It's just too good :)  )

CFS BJJ - Bi-Annual Seminar/Grading - Sunday 10th June 2012

We had a good turnout today from our various academies, even though unfortunately there were some people who couldn't attend for various reasons.

Nevertheless, we had great fun with the positions being taught by Bruce lee, sorry I mean Prof Nick Brooks and myself.

Nick taught a couple of very nice sweeps from half-guard and I taught some attacks from the closed guard with the emphasis on how to set up and maintain the neck/collar control.

We then followed with a Q & A session, with questions being asked about countering the arm drag from the guard; attacks from the turtle position and attacks from side control.

We were all in high spirits following our recent competition successes:

Anna Mayne took GOLD in Purple lightweight and the absolute division at the British open a few weeks ago, and then mirrored the same results at the London open on 2nd June 2012. Oustanding!!

Other results from the London open included GOLD for Darren Owen, white belt masters and Richard Lee, Silver in the same division.
Michael Carroll took Bronze in his division in the purple belt as did Matt McGuire also in his purple belt division. Lewis Remney took Silver in his white belt division and last but not least, Purple Belt Carol Fan took GOLD in the Grapplers showdown under 60kg Division.

Great results all round and I am very proud of the group and all the instructors.


There were some very well deserved promotions today as follows

Anna Mayne - BROWN BELT
Jay Cahill -      PURPLE BELT
Darren Owen  BLUE BELT

The following received stripes on their belts and they are now as follows:

Martyn Cahill - Brown 3 stripes
Matt McGuire - Blue 4 stripes
Lewis Remney  White 3 stripes
Matt Dennis -    White 2 stripes

                                                         The Crew

                          Black Belts - David Onuma, Andy Nugent & Nick Brooks

                                                                Jay Cahill

                                                        Anna Mayne
                                                        Darren Owen
                                              Liam Wandi - The Part Time Grappler
                                                       Gary Baker

                                                 The Chosen Ones :)
                                        The Crew again.........and Bruce :)

See you on the mats.

'Intelligent Combat'

Andy Nugent - Promotion to Black Belt by Mestre Dela Riva - 28.5.12

A great day and fantastic achievement.

The pics are up on our facebook page but here is a short video clip

Intelligent combat

Thursday, 31 May 2012

May 2012 Round up - De La Riva Visit/Affiliation/David Jacobs & New CFS BJJ Black Belt

Hey Guys!!

Where to start? So many things happening but all good.

First of all, as most of you may know, Mestre De La Riva is currently in the UK teaching & training, sharing his knowledge with those lucky enough to get to see him. This was his second trip to the UK organised jointly by Nick Brooks of Mill Hill BJJ and myself.

De La Riva will be teaching a seminar this weekend on Sunday 3rd June at SENI and will of course be present for the De La Riva pro cup too.

On Sunday he taught a seminar at a packed Mill Hill Dojo with 11 Blackbelts in attendance including his own student Leo Specterow 4th Degree BB who travelled with thim. There was also a strong contingent from France.

 At the seminar, history was made for our growing team, when De La Riva allowed me to join him in tying the BLACK BELT round the waist of my friend, training partner and student Andy Nugent. A very well deserved promotion and in due course I propose to do a write up about him. Andy heads CFS BJJ Letchworth.

On Monday 28th May, students at HQ were treated to a master class from the master himself and all took away their own personal experiences

De La Riva also visited Arlans Siqueira's school in Edmonton and was VERY well received by them.

We will be having our bi-annual grading on Sunday 10th June and the guest instructor will be my friend and CFS BJJ Technical Director David Jacobs (Washington, USA) who will be bringing his wealth of experience to us then.

More updates to follow soon and will there be De La Riva techniques of the month??? Hell yeah!!!

Intelligent combat

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

CFS BJJ - Technique of the month - May 2012 - Prof Alan 'Finfou' Nascimento

Hey Guys,

This month's techniques are brought to you by none other than World, European and Brazilian champion Alan 'Finfou' Nascimento. It is always a pleasure to have Finfou at HQ and this time was no exception!
I thank him once again for sharing his techniques with us :)

The techniques that he teaches are hot off the press and apply to the current competition scene.

Video 1

Video 2


Intelligent Combat

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

CFS BJJ Manchester - MMA success - 22.4.12

Congrats to Oliver and Neil who entered the amatuer MMA arena and were both successful

Below are their fights

Well done guys!

CFS BJJ Manchester Rocks at the Manchester No-Gi interclub - 1.4.12

My apologies for the late reporting but well done to the guys coached by Brown Belt Martyn Cahill. The lab rats put it on the line and came up trumps.


Over 95kg - Gold - Richard Hurst

Under 87kg - Gold - Neil Kirwan; Silver - Dominic Kinsey

Under 73kg - Gold - Oliver Von Herder; Silver - Andy Lorne

Under 68kg - Bronze - Adam Walsh

A large number of the videos are up on you tube. Below is a link to one fight which will guide you to all the others.

Once again well done guys........

Intelligent Combat

Filipino Martial Arts - Curriculum Update - Solo Baston - April 2012

Hey Guys,

I quickly filmed a few striking patterns to update you in relation to the Filipino Martial Arts and the CFS curriculum.

The first pattern consists of 5 strikes - angle one followed by 3 diagonal strikes and ending with the angle one power shot.

The second pattern consists 4 strikes -  a doblete strike on angle one (i.e two strikes on the same angle) followed by angle 2 and again ending in the angle one power shot.

The third and final pattern consists of 4 strikes - a backhand witik (flat of blade/stick) into a backhand upwards strike (from figure 8) then an upwards redondo ending with the power shot.

The first 2 patterns can be used offensively or immediately after you have countered an attack, whilst the last pattern is a counter to an angle 2 attack either with a stick or bladed weapon.


Intelligent Combat

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Mestre Pedro Sauer - Technique(s) of the month - April 2012

Hey Guys!

As you may be aware, Mestre Pedro Sauer, 8th Degree Red & Black Belt came to the UK for the first time in February this year and it was also the first time I had ever met him. He was extremely humble, relaxed, skillful and giving...a true master of the martial arts.

In the seminars he taught, he asked what people wanted to cover and responded accordingly. It was plain to see that his knowledge and understanding of BJJ was of the highest level and I guess it gave me an insight as to what it might be like to train with someone like his mentor and teacher Rickson Gracie.

He very kindly allowed seminar participants to film techniques and as of a result of this I am able to bring you a sample of the material that he taught.

In one of our conversations, he explained to me what it was like to train under Helio Gracie and be in the same class as all the other Gracies. He told me that he would often get submitted 40-60 times a class by all the Gracies and that because of his attitude and good nature, he would often be taught more perhaps than others. He knew all the signature moves of all the Gracies although he confessed that he could do little to stop the inevitable. His goal at that time was not to avoid being submitted but rather to reduce the amount of times that it happened...Maybe less than 40 times would be a good night.

Thank you once again Mestre!!

Video 1

Video 2

Video 3

Monday, 23 April 2012

BJJ Seminar/Workshop @ Crawley BJJ - 15.4.12 - Guard Passing

On Sunday 15th April I had the pleasure of attending the home of Crawley BJJ where the BJJ is taught by Black Belt Keith McKenzie.

It was a pleasure to be invited by my long time friend and training partner to teach a workshop on guard passing as the first BJJ workshop to be taught there. It was great fun and he has a dedicated training group.

If you are local to the area, there is no where else you would want to go to. It was also great catching up with Miad Najafi and Yousef of Alliance Brighton and LFF Black Belt, Andre 'Portuga' Borges.

Below is a short video clip of some of the techniques I taught and I think some other clips can also be found on you tube too.


Intelligent combat

Friday, 9 March 2012

Upcoming events update - 9.3.12

The schedule has now been updated. It includes the first quarterly JKD/KALI camp. Please check the schedule regularly

Intelligent Combat

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

NEWS UPDATE - 7th March 2012 - JKD, FMA, BJJ etc

Hey Guys!,

I hope that you are all well and in good shape. It's been a busy period for me and CFS as a whole but one packed full of good things.

Please check out the schedule of events as there may be things that affect or interest you.

In the next few days, I will upload a short writeup, photos and technique of the month courtesy of Mestre Pedro Sauer.

This weekend gone I had the opportunity to spend two days training in Italy with Master Instructor extraordinaire Guro Dan Inosanto. He never fails to amaze and inspire me. He ran through his regular training schedule with me and he trains BJJ more or less 5 days a week, and on Monday's he has three seperate sessions with 3 different BJJ Instructors. Bear in mind he is in his mid seventies.

I intend to start running quarterly JKD/FMA camps to replace the monthly camps I used to put on a long time ago. They are much needed as there is so much material to share and train. This is geared to anyone training within the CFS group particularly those serious about developing their training and teaching skills. The workshops will run for 3 hours and will be held at CFS Hertford/Gary Hoptroff's Herts martial arts. The cost will be £30 and dates will become avaialable within the next couple of weeks so watch this space.

On the weekend of the ADCC trials in Birmingham, we had a workshop at HQ with Alan Nasciemento...Finfou to his fans. The Champion Blackbelt taught us his famous half spider game which he learnt from Ricardinho Vieira but has developed in his own unique way. We had great fun. He also filmed some techniques for the blog which will feature with pics in April

Associate Instructor Carl Jackson flies out to train with Guro Dan at the Instructors conference in LA. It is his first time there and he is one of 5 CFS Instructors to have been accepted by Guro Dan on his program. When he returns, I'll ask him to do a report for the blog to sharewith you all...Enjoy buddy.

We will be holding the first bi-annual grading of the year in June. This will be a big affair as the seminar on the day will be taught by Mestre Ricardo De La Riva himself. The seminar/grading is only open to our group. The actual date is being clarified as he will be in town for the london open and the pro De la Riva cup for Black belts only but it is likely to be on either saturday/sunday 9th/10th June at Mil Hill BJJ. I promise you that numbers will be limited to 50 people max and at the last grading we had over 43 people on the mat. It will be on a first come first served basis and payment arrangements will be sorted out through your instructors. The likely cost is £45 for the day

Last but not least, the CFS BJJ Gi, developed especially for us by my sponsors TATAMI FIGHTWEAR ( is almost ready to go into production. All the instructors have now been sent the images of the gi which looks great. I am making the order soon and it is likely to be the only order for the year. Anyone interested can initially see their instructor who now has all the info or can contact me. Don't leave it too late and cry later. This is urgent, so get on the case guys.

That's it for now

Intelligent combat!

Thursday, 23 February 2012

22.2.12 - HMA anniversary, workshop & Promotion

Last night I had the honour of teaching a one hour BJJ Class at Gary's school which is a fully affiliated CFS centre across the range of Martial arts I teach. The BJJ classes there are taught by my Purple belt Corey 'Doninho' Donoghue.

Following that I taught a 2 hour workshop covering trapping techniques, drills and methodologies drawn from Wing Chun, Jun Fan arts, and the FMA.

Part of the reason for the timing of the workshop was to mark the exact 2 year opening of Herts Martial Arts academy at their current location in Barnet.

There was also some unexpected good news for head Instructor Gary Hoptroff who became only the Fifth person that I have promoted to the level of ASSOCIATE instuctor in the FMA and the Jun Fan arts. He has been training with me consistently for many years now and has just completed 5 years at the Apprentice stage having prior to that been a Trainee.

He is an excellent martial artist devloping steadily and has the respect of his teachers, students and friends alike. I am very proud to play some part in his development. Well done G!!!

Sunday, 19 February 2012

CFS BJJ - Technique of the month - February 2012 - Professor David 'The Rock' Jacobs - 2nd Degree BB

Hey Guys!

This long overdue technique of the month is brought to you all the way from Washington DC via CFS BJJ HQ in London.

Professor David was over in london in November 2011 to teach a seminar at Mill Hill BJJ and was a guest at my house. He is first off a really nice guy, humble (in keeping with most of the best) and was happy to share his favourite techniques, positions and strategies in the seminar he taught and when we trained privately together.

I am very grateful to him for agreeing to put some techniques together for this blog. I must say, that David is a really good teacher. I can honestly say that I was immediately able to add as much as 95% of what he taught straight into my game and I have had similar feedback from others. I can't wait for him to return sometime again this year

Check out the vids and his resume below - Impressive to say the least!!

David "Rock" Jacobs
Black Belt - Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

2011 No-Gi Pan Jiu Jitsu Championship Gold Medalist - Black Belt Featherweight
2011 International Masters Seniors Gold Medalist - Black Belt Featherweight
2009 International Masters Seniors Bronze Medalist - Black Belt Featherweight
2008 No-Gi Pan Ams - Black Belt Adult Featherweight Bronze Medalist
2008 Grapplers Quest US Nationals - Advanced No-Gi Featherweight Champion
2007 Men's #1 Rated Grappler - Overall World Rankings -
2007 US Grappling Copa NOVA - Advanced No-Gi Featherweight Champion
2007 Copa Atlantica - Advanced No-Gi Featherweight Champion
2007 Grapplers Quest North American Championships - Advanced No-Gi Featherweight Champion
2007 Grapplers Quest North American Championships - Black Belt Featherweight Champion
2007 North American Combat Sports Championships - Advanced lightweight gold medalist
2007 International Masters Seniors Silver Medalist - Black Belt Featherweight
2006 WKA East Coast Grappling Championships - Advanced lightweight gold medalist
2006 Abu Dhabi Trials Competitor
2005 International Masters Seniors Bronze Medalist - Black Belt Featherweight
2005 Pan American Bronze Medalist - Brown Belt Adult Featherweight
2005 Grapplers Quest Beast of the East - Brown Belt Lightweight Champion
2005 Grapplers Quest USA Team Trials Tournament Silver Medalist - Pro Division Lightweight
2004 Grapplers Quest USA Team Trials Tournament Bronze Medalist - Pro Division Lightweight
2000 Pan American Silver Medalist - Blue Belt Master Lightweight
1999 Pan American Silver Medalist - Blue Belt Master Lightweight
5X Grapplers Quest Advanced Division No Gi Champion
Referee of numerous submission wrestling and jiu-jitsu tournaments including multiple CBJJ Pan AMs, and Grapplers Quests
Division I wrestler

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

CFS BJJ Manchester - 4.2.12

Another day of great Bjj with the Manchester crew. The standard continues to improve which led to some well deserved promotions.

New belts:
Carol Fan - Purple belt...
Don Barr - Blue belt
Paul McGillon - Blue belt
Mike Thomas - Blue belt

New Stripes:

Anna Mayne - Purple 4 stripes
Liam Wandi - Purple 2 stripes
Graeme Kidd - Purple 2 stripes
Michael Carroll - Purple 1 stripe
Andy Rhind - White 4 stripes
Damien Roberts - White 4 stripes
Tim Bowden - White 4 stripes
Lucas Gradecki - White 4 stripes
Tamas Kavak - white 4 stripes
Sam Wandi - White 2 stripes

Well done guys!!