This week Olympian Rhadi Ferguson released a new training course called “The cross gripping blueprint.” As soon as I saw he was releasing it I had already made a decision that I was going to buy it….and so I did.
First off, I had read and watched literally everything Rhadi has ever produced. I have bought all of his eBooks on amazon and read them back to front and I agree with so much of what he says and how we need to approach Judo. Often coaches just say to do “more randori, more randori and more randori,” but I agree with Rhadi and saying that we need more than just randori to win Judo matches – we need systems and step-by-step game plans to guide our path. But I think that is for a different blog post. But what I can say is that the Cross Grip blueprint is taught in a sequence manner. Rhadi goes step by step from positioning, posture, angles and more to teach the cross grip.
The second reason why I bought it was the fact that the IJF just released new grip fighting rules and I reckon the cross grip is perfect for the new rules. in 2016 and earlier you could only grip cross grip for 3 seconds before you had to attack. noe you can grip for up to 45 seconds!! which means you can use the crossgrip for a long long time to setup your attacks (like seoi, taiotoshi, ouchi) and control your opponents power hand at the same time.
The third reason why I bought this DVD was the fact that about a year ago I was watching one of Rhadi’s videos and fast-forwarded to about the 20 minute mark. And just as the video restarted he was teaching his son Rufus the idea of keeping your elbow high when gripping the cross grip, this is so your opponent cannot easily grab your sleeve and killing your power hand. But instead, as they are fumbling for the sleeve you begin moving and start your sequence of attacks.
Now if you are reading this you might be like, “well Matt I knew that already,” but for me, I was like, “whoa I’m goig to try this out,” and it worked straight away. So for me that little side comment he made to his son was a gem that helped my cross gripping go from ok, to a heck of a lot better. So I knew this package would contain more gems like that, and if it did, then I would be keen to grab a copy. Especially in the first 3 days while it was on sale.
So what is included in the package:
The blueprint has 13 videos in it totalling over at least 60 minutes of footage. Which is a fair amount compared to other grip fighting videos. And this is 60 minutes on the cross grip only!! Which I thought was very impressive. Like I said before, Rhadi teaches a systematic approach, so you aren’t clicking around trying to find what is going on. You just watch one video after the next. What I do love (and recommended) is to take notes. Rhadi is big on taking notes because when we are watching Judo, we aren’t watching, we should be studying. So take notes!
First off Rhadi talks about the importance of grip fighting. I can attest to the fact that for a long long long time I was never taught grip fighting explicitly. People used to just say “get your grip and throw,” but they never taught me HOW to get me grip. I even made super silly mistakes like giving my opponent my power hand over and over again, and no one told me I was doing anything wrong. But Rhadi talks about how when you dominate the grips you can really dominate the match.This package is video only. His other programs Underground Grip fighting Secrets and Grip to win all had ebook components but this is straight video which is great. Cos when it comes to grip fighting I much rather watch videos.
After the intro Rhadi slowly progresses his way through the sequence. Starting with the correct way to grip and HOW to grip the cross lapel. I learnt a really nice detail here about how to angle your body to get the cross lapel. Like I said before, this video will have tons of Gems to help yo get better. I have trained with heaps of top coaches and athletes and it’s the little details that make your technique go from good to great. Same with this cross lapel stuff.
Here is a video from the program:
He then goes onto talking about your body positioning, footwork, problems with hand placement, movement, elbow angles and movement, solo drills for practice by yourself angles, throwing setups and more. Like I said before I use the cross lapel mainly to setup an Ippon seoi nage and as a way to get my traditional lapel and sleeve grip but Rhadi shows a kouchi gari that is fairly simple and I’ll definitely start adding that to my sequence.
Included are some competition breakdowns as well as his son Rufus using this exact sequence in competition (which is pretty impressive to see a young kid with some grip fighting knowledge. Like I said before, I didn’t get taught grip fighting for a long long time and already Rufus is further ahead of the game then I was back then, so that’s awesome.
So all in all it’s a really good package. I learnt a ton of small details that will definitely add to my judo game. I highly recommend his product for all Judoka who do seoi nage, tai otoshi and kouchi as well as judoka looking at ways to dominate their opponents power hand to not only get the grip they want, but to setup a powerful winning technique.
As a special to people reading my blog I am offering a special. If you buy a copy of Rhadi’s Cross Grip Blueprint through THIS LINK, then I will email you these 3 dvd’s free of charge.
- Grip fighting basics (39 minutes of grip fighting techniques)
- Everything sumi gaeshi (33 minute DVD download with multiple entries and setups into sumi gaeshi)
- Competition Analysis DVD (35 minutes of ippon analysis from top level competition)