BRAZILIAN JIU JITSU
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) was developed after Mitsuyo Maeda brought Judo to Brazil in 1914. Maeda agreed to teach the art to Carlos Gracie, son of his friend, Businessman and politician Gastão Gracie. After Carlos learned the art from Maeda, he passed his knowledge to his brothers Oswaldo, Gastão Jr., George, and Hélio. At the time, Judo was still often commonly referred to as Kano “Jiu-Jitsu” (from its founder Kano Jigoro), which explains why this derivative of judo is called Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu rather than Brazilian Judo. Its emphasis gradually shifted towards ground grappling.
Carlos Gracie established the first Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Academy in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1925. At the time, Carlos and his brothers were teaching Japanese Jiu-Jitsu techniques which were taught to Carlos by Japanese immigrant Mitsuyo Maeda. Carlos’ youngest brother, Helio, was physically small in size and fragile so was restricted from practicing the techniques. Helio would spend most of his time observing his older brothers teach.
In 1928 the art that we refer to as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) or Gracie Jiu-Jitsu was refined and developed into the art we know today by Carlos’ brother, Helio Gracie. This occurred when Helio, due to his smaller stature and lack of strength, wasn’t able to successfully apply the Japanese Jiu-Jitsu techniques which he had memorized from years of observing his brother’s instruction. At this point Helio sought out ways of making the techniques work by employing leverage, timing, and coordinated body movements instead of relying on athletic ability or strength.
Although Helio proved the art’s effectiveness many times over in several No Holds Barred fights, it wasn’t until the emergence of Royce Gracie in the first UFC that the art was brought into the mainstream. Royce’s ability to subdue and submit all of his opponents was an eye opener for many in the martial arts world. BJJ dominated the first large modern mixed martial arts competitions, causing the emerging field to adopt many of its practices. Fast forward to present day and you will find the art of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is an integral part of any well rounded mixed martial artist’s game.
The Art of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
In order to get a better understanding of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu we need to examine what distinguishes BJJ from other martial arts. Often referred to as the “ground game” the main focus of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is what happens after a match or altercation is taken to the ground. The techniques of BJJ focus on the principles of leverage, balance, and timing allowing someone of smaller stature or limited athletic ability to defend them self against a larger and stronger opponent. The art of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is comprised of many sweeps, reversals, chokes, arm locks, and leg locks.
Another major benefit of training in BJJ is the live sparring which the student gets to participate in every class. This allows the student to practice the techniques they’ve learned with near 100% resistance without “pulling any punches” so to speak. If a student is caught in a choke, arm lock, or leg lock they simply tap out and continue training injury free. This allows the student to practice the techniques in a life like situation so they never have to question whether or not they’d be able to recall a technique in a real self defense situation on the street.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in Competition
Although the main focus of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is self defense, the style has also grown into an extremely 4000 competitors. The competitions are often referred to as “Sport BJJ” tournaments and should not be confused with Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) events. Sport BJJ matches start similar to a Wrestling or Judo match with both competitors standing and working for the takedown or a variety of other ways to get the match to the ground. As with many other sports there is a set of rules in place to keep the athletes safe. There is also a point system, though the ultimate victory is to force your opponent to submit which is often referred to as “tapping out” using a variety of submission holds.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is also an integral part of a modern day MMA competitor’s skill set. BJJ for Mixed Martial Arts differs slightly from Sport BJJ because of the addition of strikes and the lack of a uniform. However, the fundamental escapes, submissions, counters, and reversals comprise a large part of most of the top MMA athlete’s ground game today. It’s important to note that the modern day MMA athlete needs to be well versed in all areas, and there is no single style that is the best for all situations.
HISTORY OF LOTUS CLUB
Founded on February 19th 1989, by brothers Moisés, Elias and Ali in a time when Jiu Jitsu was not as well known as it is today. Lotus Club always maintained its traditions; where quality of life and respect are priorities.
The competition teams of Lotus Club are well known in São Paulo, boasting the largest number of titles. Today Lotus Club has broken boundaries and developed in other states as well as countries all over the world, such as the United States (Florida, Arizona, Washington, New York…), Japan and New Zealand, among others.
The origin of the academy is in the district of Santana, in the northern region of São Paulo, a region that harbors a large number of branches in the central region as well south, east, and west and in other cities in the state of São Paulo, Mato Grosso, Ampá, Santa Catarina and so on. There are now over 100 black belts promoted by Master Moisés Muradi, a Fifth Degree Black Belt.
Born in NY, Arvin “Ace” Panlasigui quickly became involved in martial arts. At age 12 he earned his 2nd degree black belt in Tung Soo Do. At age 13, his family moved to Seattle, WA where he participated in tennis, wrestling and Judo. In 1993, the first UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) aired on TV. Ace immediately saw the value in Brazillian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) but there were no schools in WA at the time. In 1998, Ace was referred by a friend to check out a Jiu-Jitsu class with Marcello Alonso (Black Belt under Carlson Gracie). Unfortunately that school changed locations the very next day.
Later that year, he was contacted and invited to attend a BJJ seminar with (at the time) 8th degree black belt and UFC veteran Joe “The Gorilla” Moeira and (at the time) Lotus Club black belt Juliano Prado. Joe Moeira is now a Red Belt in BJJ and Juliano is now a 4th degree Black Belt. After over a year of training, at age 20, Ace competed in one of the first No Holds Barred events in WA. This competition was called “The rumble in the valley” which took place in Aug 1999, held at the Muckleshoot Indian Reservation. The term Mixed Martial Arts (MMA)did not exist at the time, the Brazilians referred to it as No Holds Barred (NHB) or Vale Tudo. With Carlson Gracie and Carlson Gracie Jr. in attendance, Ace dominated a much larger opponent in 7 min by arm bar. With that victory along with other fellow team mates, Lotus Club Jiu-Jitsu was growing in the Seattle area. After 3 years, head coach Juliano Prado, made a decision to move back to California.
Ace continued his training with fellow team mate Tony Smith. With Tonys vision and the following of Ace and others, Lotus Club continues to grow in the North West. Check out www.lotusclubjiujitsu.com for links to Lotus Clubs all around the world. After 12 years of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and a few years of Mixed Martial Arts, on Dec 1st 2009, Ace earned his black belt in BJJ becoming the first Filipino Black Belt under Lotus Club.
Moving to Miami FL, Ace carried the tradition and opened the 2nd Lotus Club Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in Florida. Lotus Club Miami was established on Jan 2, 2011. Ace continues to teach, train and compete full time. His Dream is to compete in the UFC and to continue teaching and uplifting fellow team mates and students.
Pablo is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt graduated by Master Ricardo De La Riva; he is an active competitor in the worlds biggest federations, achieving accolades as World Champion in 2016. He is a lifelong martial artist, having practiced kung fu, tai chi, karate, kickboxing. He is also a Level 1 Kettlebell Latin America certified instructor.
· Started training Jiu Jitsu in 2007
· Jiu Jitsu Black Belt under Ricardo De La Riva
· De La Riva Argentina Director – 2014 – Set up Argentina Branch of De La Riva academy
· Positive Jiu Jitsu Founder – 2018 – Set up independent academy with long time partners Walter Alamo and Francisco Cuneo
· Bronze Medal London Grand Slam 2020, AJP Tour, Master 1 Black Belt, London, UK
· Silver Medal Europe Continental Pro 2020, AJP Tour, Master 1 Black Belt, Rome, Italy
· Silver Medal Almere International Pro 2020, AJP Tour, Master 1 Black Belt, Almere, Netherlands
· Gold Medal BJJ Pro 2018, IBJJF, Master 1 Black Belt, Sao Paulo, Brazil
· Gold Medal Argentina Open 2017, CBJJE, Adult Black Belt, Buenos Aires, Argentina
· Gold Medal Mundial 2016, CBJJE, Master 1 Brown Belt, Sao Paulo, Brazil
· Gold Medal Mecosur Cup 2014, CBJJE, Adult Purple Belt, Buenos Aires, Argentina