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This weekend was crazy busy!

On Saturday I had World BJJ champ Caio Terra at my martial arts school to teach a seminar. He showed some slick technique from the 50/50 guard which was cool because I never use that guard when I roll. I will now though *evil laugh*…well maybe just sometimes.

As soon as the seminar was done, I rushed downtown with my fighter Ryan Dickson to the Hamilton Place Theatre where the Score Fighting Series –a pro MMA event– was set to go down that night. Ryan was all set to fight against a tough opponent from Ottawa and we ended up being the 4th fight of the night on the card.

When all was said and done, Ryan won in the first round by a KO that ended up being chosen as “KO of the night” by the show. No cash bonus for that though :(. He’s really putting together a good record: 10 wins, no losses with all wins being by sub or KO.

Here’s a rough video of the fight from the crowd. The official fight video –which will without a doubt be much better quality– should be up online soon.

Ryan Dickson (Team Joslin) vs. Chris St. Jean – Score Fighting Series – Handheld Videos

Preparing for the fight, we worked many techniques specifically for the southpaw opponent that Ryan -who is a right handed fighter–would be facing. I’m going to share with you a couple of those concepts/techniques so you can try them out on any southpaw–which means they have their right leg forward and are generally left handed– opponents that step to you in training/competition.

Tips when fighting a Southpaw

1) Try to finish punching combinations with your lead hook so that you can easily move your body in that direction after completing your last punch of the combo. Moving to the side that’ll put you behind your opponent’s back will keep you away from getting knocked the hell out by their power hand or power kick –like Crocop’s head kick!. The good thing is that you’ll still be able to attack them as you move behind them so throw crisp jabs repeatedly as you step to that side.

2) When throwing your jab, your cross or your jab/cross combination try to step your lead leg slightly outwards –and forwards– so that it lies just outside the line of your opponent’s lead foot. This will keep your head off the line of fire, lessen the chance of eating their straight left and will make it easier to land your lead hand hook if you decide to throw it.

3) Try to throw many right side techniques as they will be very hard to block your southpaw opponent. The straight right hand will be a huge weapon for you, the right knee to the body is also very useful at close range and the right leg body kick is always a great option that hurts so bad. Remember that you on the other hand can be open for their left side attacks so be ready to counter those attacks or move away from power side at all times.

Hope these tips help you dominate some southpaws and I hope all your training is going well!


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I just got back from coaching at the Flawless Fighting Championship in Chicago.

One of my fighters, Ryan Dickson won his fight in the first round via rear naked choke. Ryan’s been on a tear and has built up an overall 9-0 record (3-0 pro) in the last two years.

The cool part is that he’s finished every one of his opponent’s via TKO or submission.

Since the fight only lasted a minute and forty seconds I don’t really have much to share in terms of the techniques he used. He caught a kick to score a take down, passed the 1/2 guard to mount and forced
his opponent to give his back. From there it was all rear naked choke for the win.

Instead I want to share with you some of the mindset stuff I’ve used throughout my own career and again now as a coach to Ryan and the many other fighters on our team.

Here are some of the things I said to Ryan during our warm-up, on the way to the cage and during those very exciting moments before the fight starts.

#1 -“You’ve trained harder than ever before!”
It was true! It has to be true or his subconscious mind would have never accepted it. I told him this because knowing that he’s done all that he could have to prepare will keep him very calm.

#2 – “This is your reward bro!”
This statement reminds him of how hard he’s trained for this moment; That the fifteen minutes –or less– ahead of him is going to be so much fun because of the hundreds of hours he’s put in at the gym to prepare.

#3 – “Showcase your skills, the crowd is going to love you!”
I’ve always prided myself on being a very technical fighter. Ryan is the exact same way. The fifteen minute fight is not a scary thing for him, it’s a chance for him to excite the crowd with clean, precise striking, slick
wrestling and grappling skills. The fight is his time to shine! We let the other guy be nervous!

These are three of the many other things I repeated over and over to Ryan on Saturdaynight. I could see that he was accepting and absorbing every word and knew that he was ready to rock as soon as he stepped inside the cage.

A minute and forty seconds later his hand was raised in the center of the cage and I was jumping around like a wild man! It feels so awesome when I see my fighters win! Even better than when I won my fights.

When it comes to training, fights, grappling tournaments or everyday life activities, the same phrases –or similar ones– can help out a lot.

1) Fully prepare for whatever you’re doing

2) Think of performance time as a reward for all of the time you’ve spent preparing.

3) Show your skills proudly and aim to excite and impress all who witness you do yourthing.



P.S I just created a forum on my site where you can ask questions, share knowledge or keep up to date on what’s going on with other fight crew members. Sign up and let’s get it rockin!


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This past weekend three of my fighters battled it out inside the cage against three totally different types of

I’m happy to say all our guys won their scraps and even better was that they all scored their victories in
the first round. One by TKO and two by submissions due to strikes.

The guys made my job easy as I didn’t even have to go into the cage once during the fights 🙂

I didn’t know much about our opponents beforehand but I did make a few guesses after finding tiny details about them on the net.

I want to share with you my approach to preparing each of my fighters for what I gathered was their
opponents strengths. You should be able to use some of these strategies against people in the cage or at the gym in sparring.

Opponent #1 

A taller, long armed fighter that probably was skilled on the ground with average striking ability.

Our Preparation Strategy:

1)Constantly drill straight punches and quick forward movement to close the distance against the taller opponent and also to increase punching power.

2)Use smooth head movement to present a difficult target for the opponent to hit

3)Drill single leg double leg take downs away from and against the cage since our fighter would be probably be
the stronger of the two.

Opponent #2 

A short, very strong, muscular type fighter that can box

Our Preparation Strategy:

1)Work on fighting from the outside from a stationary position and while moving backwards. Keeping the opponent at the end
of our punches at all times!

2)Drill the crap out of single and double leg take downs while using punching combinations to set them up

3)Heavy conditioning work to prevent fatigue and give our fighter the ability to withstand the initial aggressive attack we knew this
guy would bring (we were right!)

Opponent #3

A shorter fighter that was mainly a jiu-jitsu guy

Our Preparation Strategy:

1) Work lots of counter wrestling

2) Hone a number of ways to get off the bottom from the buttefly
guard, 1/2 guard and closed guard positions

3) Drill multiple punch boxing combinations especially those leading with the cross because we anticipated the opponent holding his hands up in the wrong places.

If you like this type of strategy stuff let me know and I’ll be sure to put together an article covering these in greater detail and other types of fighters as well.


P.S I’ll be making first add-on to the MMA QuickStart Training
Program available for purchase very soon. It’s called “Uppercuts!”
and will build upon everything that’s taught in the original program
and give you a kick-ass uppercut game. If you haven’t picked up the
MMA Quickstart 12-week program, grab it here –->
 so you’ll be ready for “Uppercuts” and the other future add-ons I plan
to create this year.

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