Team Pedro Sauer UK

Professor Allan Manganello Gracie Jiu Jitsu Seminar – September 2017

Robin French and Peter Squire with Professor Allan Manganello - September 2017

A wise man once said… ‘The closer you are to the source, the purer the water’.

And luckily for Pete and I (as well as our guys over at Team Pedro Sauer UK), the water we drink could not be much purer, having Professor Allan Manganello as our mentor.

Having received half of his grades from Master Rickson Gracie, the other half from Master Pedro Sauer, as well as being a Gracie Academy certified instructor, Professor Allan really ‘knows’ Gracie Jiu Jitsu.

The Friday morning of his visit started early for me; with me leaving home at just after 5am to collect Professor Allan from Heathrow Airport.

Later in the day, after first spending some time on the mats polishing some moves with Professor Allan, Pete and I sat on the sidelines to watch our latest batch of blue belt hopefuls test for their blue belts. Unlike many associations and schools, the PSBJJA has a fixed syllabus that must be demonstrated; assessed both from a technical aspect, as well as from a ‘can they apply it in a live situation?’ application.

As we hoped, they all did great, and all passed with flying colours! (Well done guys). And we celebrated in the best way possible; with chicken and good times at Nando’s.

Saturday morning saw Professor Allan’s first seminar session; Guard Passing Mastery. As is always the case with his seminars, Professor Allan gave a very structured system; this time in passing the standing open guard. All whilst also discussing the fundamental concepts of passing the guard in general. I found this very interesting, and will start to use it as my ‘go to’ when I find myself it that position.

After a short lunch break, the second session focussed on Back Mount Mastery, more specifically maintaining the position, ‘strong side’ attacks, and the Triple Threat system from the ‘weak side’. Whilst not all new material to me, the big thing that I took away from the session was how it all fit together; a big ‘if-else’ statement, that appeals to my coding-centric thinking.

Both seminar sessions were well received; from those more experienced in Jiu Jitsu, as well as those with only a month or two’s experience on the mat. Everyone seemed eager and hungry for the next one!

The Saturday evening saw a bunch of us head out for more good food and company in Chelmsford.

After an extended Sunday breakfast, over which we discussed the more business aspects of the club, Professor Allan spent some more time with Pete and I on the mats; covering some great fundamental drills that we can add in to classes and our own training.

Rounding out the weekend, we watched the opening weekend of the NFL, again in Chelmsford. I’m still not sure I understand the rules, but it was a fun night nonetheless.

And then, just as quick as the weekend started, it was over; with Pete dropping Professor Allan back at Heathrow on Monday lunchtime.

An indebted thank you to Professor Allan for leaving his home and family to make the journey, and for the continual mentorship. I’m already super psyched for his next visit in early 2018!

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