Fundamentals – My Favorite GB Online Program

As a writer for Gracie Barra, I have access to all of the GB Online Advanced programs – the GB2 and GB3. There is a TON of great material there. Even as a black belt I see new variations and details from instructors like Prof. Tussa, Prof. Rodrigo, and Prof. Victor (and now the new GB3 No-Gi with Prof. Braulio Estima!) and other GB instructors. It is a wealth of information for GB students!
Have you checked out the GB Online Instagram account?
Which is my favorite of all the GB Online programs? It is the GB 1 Fundamentals. The basics that we learn as white belts in the GB Fundamentals curriculum.
Because these techniques performed with black belt level of details, timing, and precision are truly what makes your jiu-jitsu effective.
Because the core foundation of jiu-jitsu is found in these so-called “basic” techniques. The techniques are called basic but don’t think that means that they are only for beginners or are not effective at the higher belt levels.
Perhaps Master Carlos Gracie himself puts it best: “I’ve always been a fan of the basics. After you have a good solid foundation of jiu-jitsu, the rest comes by instinct. You create, invent. The rest is easy. The difficult part is the beginning.”
This set of techniques are proven over decades and thousands of jiu-jitsu students to be the most effective and most commonly used in rolling. Watching video of rolling at all belt levels, we observe certain techniques and situations come up again and again (ex. Replacing the guard from side mount bottom or opening the closed guard). These are the most important techniques that we will use EVERY TIME that we roll and thus, are important for all students to master. Now there are certainly more advanced, useful techniques in jiu-jitsu, but they must be built on top of a solid foundation and mastery of these basic techniques.
Prof. Marcio Feitosa, a 6th-degree black belt himself, explains the thinking behind the GB 1.
Master Carlos could have done a curriculum with a very advanced theme…he made a decision to make a basic, a Fundamentals curriculum. Sometimes I ask myself ‘Why is that?’ My thinking is, the way his mind works – he always tries to work at the roots of the challenge, the roots of the problem. He always thinks long-term.
Prof. Marcio Feitosa
Prof. Marcio goes on “This was the reason why he thought to himselfYou know what? I want to put work, I want to dedicate time to create the strongest fundamentals curriculum that we can for our students. Because from that foundation, everything else will follow. All of the other curriculums will build on top of this one. All of the higher belts will just get better and better.”
In fact, many Gracie Barra black belts will confess that the longer they train, the more they find their games being centered around these basic techniques. I recall rolling with some blue belts and asking them if I used any techniques in the roll that they had never seen before? “No, I saw what you were doing…but I couldn’t stop it.”
The key to a sound and complete jiu-jitsu is mastery of the fundamentals.
Writer: Mark Mullen, Gracie Barra Black Belt