7 days privates with BOLO.....

OK. I have spent last 7 days with private training under BOLO so here is my review. I hope you will enjoy it.

Last Friday, after almost 22 hours trip from Slovakia(Europe), Mike was waiting me in front of San Francisco int. airport. Right away (on our way from airport to Mike house), he said me that Marco Nascimento (3rd BJJ BB) is ready for private .....so I took it. Well -after so tiring flight, shity food during my trip ..etc. I realy did not feel so good(my body was pretty weak ,..bad stomach,)......but hey...no excuses...I was there for training. Anyway , training with Marco was awesome experience...with almost 30min straight isolation rolling,.. positional stuff, etc. Mike was there too in order to watch me in action and corrected my mystakes during live rolling. I can tell you Mike´s new training approach was pretty cool and it turbo charged my progression. During the rolling I noticed several situation which I had difficult time. Marco then showed me why and when I can do that particular stuff. I absorbed a lot of small details and timing things which definitely increases my current level. A small shoulder detail during my "rubber guard" work was outstanding too. I was pretty satisfied with that lesson and also with my performance....I really felt huge improvement ( I rolled with Maro a year ago so i can compare stuff )

Next days, we got it on. During our first lesson we isolated my guard passing. Of course Mike want to see me in action....and then we went on with teaching part. The core of our guard passing approach is based on 4 passes: hug around the chest, leg on shoulder, leg on shoulder from open guard and arm between the legs guard pass ( which MIKE actually added in our curicullum just recently). That´s it guys. Only 4 SMASHING guard passes. Nothing fancy or complicated ,no "running around" passes and such stuff - but all TOP HIGHT % stuff. I think a lot of people can tell, that they already knew that stuff. Well think again guys,...can you do that stuff and force almost everybody in to particular position which leads to pass. If yes, then I congratulate you, you are probably like JOE( Moreira) ...he can very easily do JUST LEG ON SHOULDER guard pass on RIGHT SIDE from almost every guard position against very high BB BJJ players. That is simply amazing!! Well, I just focused on 1 pass (hug around the chest) and get through all forms of resistance ...how to smash throug LAZY mans guard (LMG) ,...etc. Details of stuff which I already knew, timing stuff and creating the openings with pressure for my following move were basicily MAIN TOPICS for all 7 days stay.

Thats it. My main focus for this stay was polish my stuff, tighten it up and work on my timing.I really was not interested in to new stuff. Of course during the way I naturaly absorbed some new things here and there......but more then 60 PAGES of my notes were about timing, very small pressure details and strategical points in particular situations! I think MIKE´s training motto is about simplicity.(just like Raymond´s simplify everything) The more he trains, the more simplier all stuff becomes - which he natuaraly passes on his students:) So no 50 guard passes...etc. All simple high % stuff with many variations (of basic moves) depending on forms of resistance. Well..here things are become sometimes very confusing for people.....because they think they KNOW that particular guard pass(or another techniques) or saw MIKE DVDs ( and then guessing why it does not work)...well guys -stuff on his DVDs is JUST VERY VERY small fraction of info which he passes on his students!! That is very simple.......

The same thing was about his OMA PLATA and HOOK SWEEP system which we covered during next days. I realy am not going to do deep describtion of that stuff...but once again I was totaly blow out with variations , pressure angling, creating openings, leading his momentum ,..etc. with just 1 basic HOOK sweep (elevator) ..which of course everybody know!:) so why study it- right?:) I can tell you - all last year one of my focus areas was hook sweep....and here I once again - was amazed with NEW details. Simple outstanding stuff. I wrote down more then 10 additional pages notes about BASIC hook sweep ( and I am not talking about variations...like grabbing the leg,..etc.which btw STEPHAN KESTING covered on his DVD pretty much -I highly recomend his stuff for another references) We joked around that if Marcelo Garcia won ADCC with hook sweeps, everybody would want to learn it. But because he did not...people are not interested in to that stuff.Which is fine..... So can you force (or lead) opponent in to hook sweep and actually SWEEP HIM and not switch in to another variation or follow up move (like taking the back, X guard,.etc.)???? Hmm.. taught question I know. But that was basicaly my game plan (sorry Loyd:)) for upcoming private lessons and I can tell you Mike definitely once again amazed me. Simple very cool.I am just hoping Mike is NOT going to realise ALL this stuff on upcoming DVD project......:)

In next days we polished my guard passes, LMG, 1/2 guard stuff,..etc..the stuff which everybody know ...very very boring for majority guys:) - no flashy stuff - Just kidding........hehe.....simple the same approach like I described earlier. Sparring during privates or during group classes then isolating mistakes and refine all stuff once again, over and over.


But there is one area which made my trip REALLY memorable! Guess what is it? Well, who knows me can find out immediately.........yeah baby - PIN ESCAPES - you are right! Guys - I have been working really hard on my pin escpes from beginning of my BJJ journey (almost 7,5 years ).....you know in the beginning - the stuff from Mike´s pin escapes DVDs (tapes),..then more privates,...then BENCH PRESS STYLE of ESCAPES - 3 years ago.I can tell you - now I use probably 90 % just bench press escapes with great success.Mike probably uses close to 100 % just BENCH press style. That is evolution. But I have not had enough of bench press style of escapes! So we covered more details and variations and also MOUNT bench press escapes! I can tell you that system is very simple but on the other side very complex and intuitive and based on feeling (just like everything in BJJ) Now, here I want to go a little deeper with Mike system. When people feel power of bench press style (BPS) of escapes for the very first time, they think ..this is just strenght and attributed based stuff ( and I am talking about higher level guys who actually felt that stuff first hand) , because they see that arms do "pushing motions". Well, they really do not see MANY variations of very , very "slight" body movements ( walking with legs, tilting, crunching,sitting up with crunching.......and many many more) which leads BPS player in to upper body movements where he gets arms in to mini power zone and then in to FULL POWER ZONE.......and then there is escape - which is just piece of cake!!! Like I said BPS escapes are very komplex but principles are so sipmle. For example, there is "clearing the head " series which can be (depending on opponent pin position) basicaly the beginning of pin escape.I already has been working on it for 3 years....but when Mike got in to VERY DEEP datails I quickly found out how much deeper this topic is! 5 more page just on clearing the head series! But real testament of my pin escaping ability was during group classes. One of Mike training partner...Mario (purple belt 220-225 lb!!) is working with Mike on pin escapes and naturaly knows -how to smash through BPE from very beginning. So he naturaly knows how to counter our stuff. His personal game is about top game , breaking the postures and attacks from top...which is pretty obvious based on his size. But anyway - Mike said lets isolate my BPS escapes. So I started FLAT BACK ..laying down and get Mario in to side m. position with hard DEEP cross face WITHOU ANY POSTURE. My goal was work on my BPE (and escape)and Mario could follow up with any other pin depending on my reaction. So no posture , no tilting on side...nothing like that.Totaly FLAT BACK, with out any form arm position with guy who outweighted me by more then 30 lb! Now, the very hard part for me was that every time I tried to create some opening for my first move( and get arms in to mini power tone and full power zone(POSTURE)) ...he exactly knew what to do ..so it was even harder.

But good news is that this style is pretty unique and very very few people know it....so natuarly very very few people know how to "break" through BPE postures and shut it down. And if some people learn piece of BP escapes, in order to be proficient in it they need whole escape series and system!! and that is only possible under MIKE supervision. But anyway, it took me some time(15-20s)in order to create the very first opening (to get arms in to mini power zone which still is not full power zone(posture) - /Quick note here: majority of guys(without knowledge of BPE) in that situation can still hold the pin - because they would felt there is not REAL danger of escape - posture (boxing posture, underhook and many other TRADITIONAL ONEs)... which can very easily lead my arms in to power zone and easy escape....But Mario was defferent - he knew that stuff/ - so he had to follow up by swtiching his upper body and arm position in to another to try break my "mini" postures ....and during his transition everything was much easier for my escape.So I escaped but I felt... ..I expand way too much energy . We worked in this drill 15 min..and it was really really HELL drill!! But even it was very difficult drill ( because Mario´s goal was just pin me or switch pins and break my postures....withou ANY ATTACKs (submissions)) I quickly found out how highly effective our style is - but on the other side - how more and harder I need to work on it in order to master it. So my privates - next days were about pin escapes -once again:) During the next day group classes,...I tried that "FLAT BACK NO POSTURE" drill - once again...and I can tell you I escaped much more easier and with much less expand of energy! I felt it and was totaly surprised with effectivness of Mike explanation.......

Ok. That was my training experience - 7 days experinece with Mike.....

OK.In the end I would like to thank Mike for his awesome instruction which definitely turbo charges my BJJ progress and also his wife Rose for her incredible hospitality.

Hope to see you soon bro,


Hey Radek,

Spar Mike with the knife.........he needs some good slapping around......LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And give Rose a big hug for me :-)


how its going bro?

Actually -I just came back to Slovakia during night -
sick (some cold I think) and tired but ready to go! It seems like habit and tradition , I almost always catch something:) when I am there !! This time Bolo was on something (I think he had flu symptoms for couple of days) and naturaly....... he infected me........heheeeee biological warfare......

Anyway, I did not work knife with him but he showed me your new improvements like CANNON,..etc. Pretty good stuff. I also participated in class while he was teaching Jeanne (sp?) sword stuff. I can tell you that women could really kick a lot of asses during sparring.She is pretty good....which speaks very highly about Mike as a FFS instructor!! I gave her couple of pointers about thrusting and how to add that in to her personal combinations and it seems me it worked really great. Just ask Bolo ..hahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

Take care,


That was some of the toughest teaching I have ever done! I had a 101.4 degree fever and had to teach Radek 3 times a day. Since Radek travelled so far, I had to suck it up and teach him. On the last few days of Radek's visit, he started to get sick. At the end of our very last training session, I made him roll with me even though he was sick and I was sick. After rolling with him, Radek was awarded his purple belt! Congrats!

By the way, Radek, I'm 170 lbs. and Mario is 225lbs.. I think you weigh around the same as me so that makes him over 50 lbs. heavier.

Ray, I did not weapon spar with Radek. Besides having the fever, he would kick my ass. He loves the thrusts and I didn't want my head snapped back. He was Jeanne's "thrusting coach" as he was constantly telling her to thrust as she sparred.

Congrats on Purple

Wow! Congrats on the purple, amazing accomplishment!

And thanks for he excellent write up!


great write up, very cool. Congrats on the promotion!

congrats, cool stories. thx

Hey Radek congrats..

you need to bring Mike to eastern europe again - getting to Slovakia isnt probably terribly hard from here :)


Radek wants to get me to go out there, however, he can't pay me enough to sit in a plane that long. :)

Hey Mike

I studied your homepage a little but I didnt see any official rates for your seminars. How much would bringing you to Slovakia cost then? Or to Estonia for instance?



Congrats Radek !!!!!

Very nice review, but what I want to know is did Bolo wear white socks while teaching? :)

Thanks guys!

well - as for white socks thing...there is quite cold weather in his area - so he wears wrestling shoes most of time, but I "caught" him once with white socks...yeah!!!! hahaaaaaaaaa so old habits are still there...............


"there is quite cold weather in his area"

Cold weather?? It's under -30 celcius here with the wind chill. Gotta thicken up that blood! :)

Congrats again, Radek!

at that time when I was in BOLO ´s place, it was between 10 -15 celsius with a lot of rainy days!