BJJ Interview: Mr James Gregory talks to the Part Time Grappler
Why don't we start by you telling us a little about yourself?
My name is James Gregory, I'm 29 years old, and I'm from Southend-on-sea in Essex.
Are you currently working / studying? Is that Full time / Part time?
I currently work fulltime managing a small corporate gymnasium and I also study a degree in exercise physiology part time, it's a busy life! I would say that I study Jiu Jitsu part time also and it's probably as hard as my degree!
You also set aside time to practice a sport. Which sport(s)?
Well my main sporting practice is Jiu Jitsu, but I also weight train on a regular basis and enjoy kettlebell lifting which I also teach.
How long have you done that?
I have been doing martial arts since I was 12 years old I did Karate initially. I also tried my hand at kick boxing before finding Jiu Jitsu, which I have now been doing for around 4 and a half years.
It has come to my attention that you are also involved in quite a project with a friend of mine, Mr Eddie Kone. Please tell us what it is and how you got involved?
Well the project is a series of Jiu Jitsu iPhone apps called "beyond blue belt"*. The focus of each volume of the app is a specific Jiu Jitsu position the first is the Mount and will detail both top and bottom game. When Eddie who has been my instructor for nearly 2 years now and asked if I could be a demonstration partner for the app I jumped at the chance. I knew from seeing his dedication as an instructor that he would be creating something of quality.
What do you feel the EKBJJ brand stands for?
I think that the EKBJJ stands for tradition, quality and fun. The thing that struck me even from the first time I took a seminar with Eddie was the attention to detail in his teaching I'm sure that will come across in the app also.
|James with some famous dude. Oh and Royce Gracie.|
What is your take on how the app was designed, planned and filmed?
Eddie was very keen that the app was a quality production from beginning to end. To ensue this he was quite meticulous about each stage of the production, even before we started filming Eddie spent months learning about what goes into app design! One of the key stages in the planning of the app was selecting which techniques to include, although there are few iPhone Jiu Jitsu app's there is a ton of instructional DVD's out there and Eddie was very keen to have some stuff in there that wasn't being seen or done in other instructionals. Filming was taken care of by Paul Shammasian who is a BAFTA award winning director and just so happens to be a student at the academy. Having a director with Jiu Jitsu Knowledge was a great help to the overall Production.
Finally, why do you train and do what you do? What drives you?
I train Jiu Jitsu for several reasons it is in my opinion a superb form of unarmed self defence, it conditions body, but most importantly it adds something psychologically to me as an individual, whether I'm in the Gi out of the Gi on the mat or off Jiu Jitsu is on my mind in a positive way. Ultimately I think what drives me is a desire to improve and evolve myself as a person through Jiu Jitsu. There is a lot to learn from training Jiu Jitsu, and not all of it is in how to choke out your opponent there are a great number of life lessons that also come from it. I’m very glad to be on my Jiu Jitsu journey as part of the EKBJJ association.
Many thanks to my good man James for taking the time out of his busy schedule to do this interview.
*Eddie tells me that these BJJ Apps will work on android phones too.