I had only briefly read different articles and watched some youtube videos of Master Relson since starting Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu a year ago. Never did I think I would get the chance to train with such a legend. So when Ben Rhodes, Owner/Instructor, CrossRhodes BJJ invited me to the event, I knew this maybe my only chance to learn from such a legend and innovator. My friend Mark and I took the two-hour trek to Bluffton, SC to attend this seminar.
The seminar started at 6:00pm, and I believe all thirty attendees were eager to begin at 5:30. We were waiting for Relson to arrive at the academy, and suddenly he arrived in the parking lot. My heart was pounding; I have never met anyone of his caliper, much less trained with them. It would only get better….
Master Relson began his seminar by choosing me to be his training partner. I was nervous and immediately broke out in a sweat. He took us through his philosophies on Street Jiu-Jitsu versus Competition Jiu Jitsu. Since his Jiu-Jitsu is deeply rooted in self-defense, he began the seminar with the basics of defending from attacking opponent and then moved into some counters. The instructions of the techniques were so simple, that the moves were easily repeatable during drilling. We covered sweeps and throws, because like Relson said, “When someone gets thrown to the ground it can break bones and end the fight earlier.” All the standing techniques were done individually with one motion, but when strung together it could end badly for an attacker.
Moving to attacks and defense for a grounded opponent was rather interesting; I had trouble with one technique he was showing so he grabbed another partner. He showed us how to block and attack, with head butts and strikes, while in the guard. This was a little more technical to me than the standup. Wrapping up the self-defense portion of the seminar, Relson stated, “That if we apply those techniques, effectively and efficiently, that no one could beat us on the street.”
The competition based techniques revolved around knee-on-belly defense; this was interesting to see how he defended knee on belly attacks and his counter moves.He showed some technical errors on why you should not use the collar has a grip for knee on belly. He also demonstrated a series of chokes to use on an opponent that is defending against the knee on belly mount.
A Total Summary:
This was a two-hour seminar, on a Wednesday night, two hours from my house. I debated for a month on whether not I should go, I decided to attend, and I am glad I did. This seminar opened up my mind to the difference and effectiveness of Street Jiu jitsu and Competition Jiu jits. Master Relson’s instruction of techniques is amazing he breaks down the moves and explains it with such detail it becomes easy. Once you realize the simplicity of the technique, you then realize how effective it can be when used. Also, if Master Relson uses you as a training partner, do not be as nervous as I was. I was so nervous I could not even hardly perform the instruction he was given.
Relson stated that he had 23 seminars in 22 days. If you can make it to any of these seminars to learn from a master instructor and practitioner of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, I would advise you do so. You will never forget the experience!