Most people, when they think of martial arts, they tend to think of Jackie Chan doing fancy acrobatics to win a fight. Unfortunately, there are a lot of subtle things that simply don’t translate to a visual medium such as a movie. Jimmy Pedro’s grip strategy would probably be one of them. However, I must say, after watching several of his videos, I have come to the conclusion that what he is showing is sheer genius. I thought I had a fairly decent grip game, even if it was a bit rusty. But, when I saw Jimmy Pedro demonstrating some of his strategies, I can see why he was able to help Kayla Harrison to become the first ever American gold medalist in Olympic Judo (London 2012). The way he shows how to grip the sleeve in this video helped me to fend off a rather large upper belt during sparring this morning, a blue belt who probably outweighs me by 70 or 80 pounds. After watching this video, I realized that my usual sleeve grip had way too much unnecessary slack in it. These are the kinds of subtle details that win both high level Judo and BJJ matches. To me, the artistry involved in developing and perfecting a great sleeve grip is every bit as awe-inspiring as any spinning hook kick I’ve ever seen.

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