EKBJJ IPHONE APP

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Eddie Kone, Royler Gracie’s only Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt in Europe has teamed up with martial arts manufacturer Atama Kimonos Europe to bring you an innovative iPhone/Android application for competition tested Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Techniques. The application entitled “Beyond Blue Belt” will be an in-depth insight into specific positions within BJJ and this is the first volume of 6 which has been filmed, directed and edited by Award winning directors the Shamisson brothers (Paul Shamission). “Volume 1” will cover all aspects of the mount position (Top and Bottom) and will include “Attacks, counters and escapes”. The App will be available from the end of March 2011 in the Apple i-store and the Android Market.

Monday, 21 March 2011

BJJ Interview: Mr James Gregory talks to the Part Time Grappler

BJJ Interview: Mr James Gregory talks to the Part Time Grappler

As promised, I give you my interview with Mr James Gregory, purple belt in BJJ and demo partner on the upcoming BJJ app for iPhone and android phones with Royler Gracie BJJ Black Belt Mr Eddie Kone. James is a tough tough roll but a very nice guy: Best combo!

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.

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

The Part Time Grappler Interviews Paul Shammasian

"When he was asked why he trains, he (Rickson Gracie) replied because I can do it, it's my time to do it"


As promised, here is my interview with BAFTA Award winning director and the man behind the scenes for EKBJJ BJJ App for the iPhone and Android phones, Mr Paul Shammasian. Enjoy.



Hello. Why don’t we start by you telling us a little about yourself?
My name is Paul Shammasian. I am 34 and I am from London (my ethnic origin is Armenian).


Are you currently working / studying? Is that Full time / Part time?
I am working full time in the film industry as a director.


You also set aside time to practice a sport. Which sport(s)?
I practice Jiu Jitsu and MMA.

How long have you done these (work and sport)?
I have always been into sport from a young age. My professional career as a director began in 2003.

Do you follow any special diet? Do you use any dietary supplements?
I try and keep my food simple and fresh. Lots of fruit and vegetables with pulses and beans. I stay away as much as possible from processed and fast food.

How do you manage to fit your training around work, study and family time?
That's a tricky one. I have found that if I give 100% to work, and 100% to family, then I find time for training. It's when i feel I have little time, and start getting anxious, that time starts to slip away and things get muddled. I have to make sure I am strict and to the point with my time in order to make it all work. Also, spending quality time at work and with family gives you clear conscience to spend some time training.


Do you compete in your sport(s)? Have you won any competitions?
I used to compete many years ago in local events when I used to train in Kung Fu. I won a few competitions


What is the greatest thrill you have gotten out of practicing your sport?
The thrills come very subtle. After trying for months (even years) to achieve a certain level, I pull off a few moves and snub a few submissions and then after a session is over, I look back and suddenly realise I have moved up a notch.


Give us your top 5 tips for time-management (to fit exercise around life)
  1. Establish a routine.
  2. Don't be lazy.
  3. Be consistent.
  4. Enjoy the exercise.
  5. Be flexible with time.

Now let’s balance that with what you consider the top 5 time-thieves.
  1. No routine.
  2. Laziness.
  3. Mismanagement.
  4. Procrastination.
  5. Don't be too flexible with time.


How did you get involved with the upcoming BJJ app for android phones with Eddie Kone?
Eddie approached me with the idea and I really liked it.


What can you tell us about the BJJ app that we don't already know?
If you've trained with Eddie, then you will know what the BJJ App involves. Very simple yet highly effective techniques taught in a friendly, clear and direct manner. Our emphasis with the App is simplicity for the user with proven techniques that will enhance anyones Jiu Jitsu game.



What do you feel sets this BJJ app apart formthe rest on the market?
Design, quality and navigation have all been well thought out to make the user experience enjoyable and simple. The quality of the film footage and audio are of a high professional standard.


Finally, why do you train? What drives you?
Training gives me so much that crosses over to all parts of my life. It keeps me healthy and sharp. It gives me the ability to dig deep when i am faced with challenges. It reminds me to be humble. Keeps my ego in check. To appreciate and respect those around me. (It) Has taught me to understand specific instincts that effect all of us on a daily basis. Has taught me to understand myself much better, thus enabling me to control my actions in a more conscious way. Has taught me the beauty of being in the moment.

What drives me to train can best be summed up by a comment that Rickson Gracie made. When he was asked why he trains, he replied because I can do it, it's my time to do it. Those of us who train are blessed with a healthy, strong body. It's great to use it and experience its power and agility.

When I am much older, i am happy i can look back at what my body was capable of when pushed. Part of my training, movement through sport and using my body is just another way of discovering an aspect of life. It's a shame if that is neglected.



I thank Paul for taking the time from his hectic schedule to talk to me and wish him all the best in all his endeavours.

Atama Europe's Mr Pedro Barcellos Talks to The Part Time Grappler

As previously promised, here is my interview with Mr Pedro Barcellos from Atama Europe, the man behind the collaboration between Royler Gracie black belt Eddie Kone and Atama Europe in the upcoming iPhone and android phone BJJ app:Beyond Blue belt.

I must stress here that Eddie advises me that the App will be suitable for android phones too, not just iPhones. Check out the new blog dedicated to the app.


Hello. Why don’t we start by you telling us a little about yourself?
Hello, my name is Pedro Barcellos. I'm 36 years old and I am from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Are you currently working / studying? Is that Full time / Part time?
After graduating in Business Administration and Computer Programing I am now a full time worker, running 3 companies and dedicating myself to a new project which is developing the Atama Kimonos brand in Europe.


Pedro to the right

You also set aside time to practice a sport. Which sport(s)?
Sure, it's very important to save a couple of hours of your day to invest in your health, I am a BJJ Black Belt since 2005, completely addicted to the sport and still training a lot. I also a surf and work out.

How long have you done that?
I started training in 1995 and since then I never stopped. I used to compete a lot but had to stop when I started going to college and working at the same time, I had no time left to train and prepare myself for competition level.




What do you feel the ATAMA gi brand stands for?
I think Atama stands for tradition, quality and performance. Backed up by more than 20 years of experience, always innovating and leading the industry.


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?
Yes, Eddie contacted us a while ago and gave us the honor to participate in his new project, a revolutionary I-Phone App showing competition tested Jiu Jitsu positions. Being a Jiu Jitsu practitioner and an I-Phone user I immediately joined Eddie on the project and tried to support as much as I could. The idea itself was already great but when I looked at the quality of the project I got totally stoked, this is something I've never seen before and I'm sure it will be a huge success.


Finally, why do you train and do what you do? What drives you?
Good question. I believe that in life we need to keep a good balance between 3 aspects, the physical, the professional and the spiritual. What makes Jiu Jitsu an amazing sport is that it will help you get this balance on all 3 aspects.


You'll get in the best shape of your life (physical).


You can make a good living of Jiu Jitsu like myself or if you work in another area the self confidence acquired will help you a lot pursuing your goals and dealing with stress situations (Professional)


You'll get the peace of mind that that will help a lot on your spiritual.


Not to mention all the fun you'll have, the good friends for life you'll make, the adrenaline, that good feeling after training, so many good things, honor, respect and persistence, values you'll take for life and pass along to your kids.


Jiu Jitsu is the key to a good life!

Thank you Pedro for being generous with your time.

(pics courtesy of Pedro Barcellos)

Sunday, 13 March 2011

Liam Wandi Aka (The part time Grappler) Interview EK

As promised earlier (well, half a day late but still!) I have big, huge, ginormus news!

As soon as I posted on the Part Time Grappler and on Facebook that I was disappointed with the lack of BJJ apps for the iPhone or iPod touch, my phone started ringing! Literally within half an hour of hitting "Publish Post" I got a call from none other than Mr Eddie Kone, BJJ black belt under Royler Gracie and a frequent feature on this blog.

Eddie and the EKBJJ Association had great news to tell me about a project he's been working on. He is soon to release his first BJJ app for the iPhone: The Mount. I asked Eddie for some time to prepare an interview and called him back later and this is what was said: (are you at the edge of your goddam seat yet?!)


"Where's my money man?"



Hi Eddie. It’s great to have you back on the Part Time Grappler.

Hi Liam, thanks very much for inviting me back, to feature on one of the UK's best BJJ blogs (laughs)


Last time we spoke was at your seminar in Rotherham. What have you been up to since then?

Well a lot has happened since then, I have continued teaching seminars around Europe, My MMA Fight team Bloodline have been competing and winning on some major shows in the UK, Our European BJJ association has 2 European BJJ champions from the event in Portugal, we had Rafael Lovato Jr. teach a 2 day seminar at EKBJJ headquarters and I have spread the EKBJJ brand of BJJ to Brazil, Porto Alegre to be exact under one of my Brazilian purple belts "Jonas de Almeida" who is currently helping MMA fighter Bobby Lashley in Colorado, USA prepare for his upcoming MMA fight in Strikeforce.


Not to forget that I opened 2 more UK academies: one in Whitstable, Kent and one in Chelmsford, Essex


So I have been doing the same as always, keeping busy busy busy! (laughs)


Yesterday I posted on the blog about my disappointment in the availability of good Brazilian Jiu Jitsu / Grappling App for the iPhone (or lack thereof) which is when you contacted me with some exceptional news. Please tell.

Well after reading your blog which I regularly do, I felt I should let you and the BJJ Community know what we have been developing in the way of iPhone Learning tools and apps.

The EKBJJ Association is releasing a BJJ iPhone app at the end of this month (March). The applications will be entitled “Beyond Blue Belt” and will offer an in depth insight into specific positions within BJJ, offer BJJ problem solving techniques and easy-to-follow grappling drills to help build and reinforce your game from each position.


This is the first volume of 6 which has been filmed, directed and edited by BAFTA award winning director Paul Shammasian of the Shammasian brothers, and also sponsored by leading BJJ gi brand Atama Europe.


“Volume 1” will cover all aspects of the mount position (Mount Top and Mount Bottom) and will include mount attacks, counters and escapes. This app has been specifically designed as a learning tool to help martial artists of all backgrounds (BJJ / Grappling / MMA / Muay Thai / Boxing…etc.) with what we feel are the most common situations to be caught in when competing or sparring and will not only offer you the attacks but also the counters and escapes to those moves so it will assist anyone from white belt to black belt.

The techniques within this iPhone App (suitable for iPod touch too) have been used by competitors from around the world and form part of the curriculum we teach at our BJJ association.


We thoroughly researched the market and found that a lot of BJJ apps were not only very poorly made but also did not offer the clarity and / or instruction to detail that we put together within this interactive BJJ learning tool. I also found that a lot of the apps available had extra fees involved when you purchased the app so we wanted to be specific hence why we labelled the apps after the position e.g. the mount etc so consumers know exactly what they are getting when they buy it with no additional costs.


How did you get involved with such big names such as Atama and the Shamassian brothers?

Well the Atama brand came about by complete fluke! After we had completed filming the first volume we noticed by complete chance both James and I wearing Atama Kimons. I have to add Atama Kimonos are by far one of the best made gis / Kimonos I have ever owned, and also one of my favorite kimonos, so I wrote to Pedro who is the head of Atama Europe explaining what we were doing and our vision with the app amongst other things and how I would like to work with him and the Atama Europe Brand.


After some conversations; Pedro (who is a really nice guy) & I were able between us to find a way that we could work with each other to achieve what we see is the potential for this series of apps, and who better to team up with then the best kimono manufacturer in the industry (laughs).


The Shamassian connection is also another blessing*, both brothers train at my main BJJ academy and both are extremely creative and talented individuals within there own right.


Paul Shamassian who I have become very close friends with has produced some great video documentaries (Liam's note: One of which I featured in :)) for my BJJ association and has taken some great photos for me.

I had the concept / idea for creating an app for over a year. I mentioned this to Paul to get his creative opinion about it at which point Paul said maybe he could help me out with the filming etc.
Of course I jumped at the chance; having seen his BAFTA winning work in the film Romans 1220.


His creative side has just taken this app to a complete new level because Paul is the type of guy who is never satisfied with the product (laughs) and he has done so much work on this app we decided to form a partnership which I know I am truly blessed to have both Atama Europe and Paul Shamassian with me. This partnership continues to set the bar for quality on the BJJ apps.



Wow that’s a great undertaking. Who do you have in mind when you were designing and filming this App? Who is it best suited for?

This app is geared towards martial artists in general but more specifically the BJJ practitioner who’s interested in raising his or her game with techniques that have been tested in the advanced divisions: blue, purple, brown and black belt. Learn mount attacks, defence and escapes from a Royler Gracie Jiu Jitsu black belt.


The app will help you with easy-to-follow instruction and easy-to-follow BJJ lessons to help raise your game, so it doesn’t matter who you are or what level you are at I am very confident there is something within this app for you.



Do you see it as a problem solving tool? What issues does it address?

I’m so glad you asked this Liam. Yes I do because the way the techniques are taught in sequence from particular positions; the student can build their game and map out their attacks, counters, and defences from the common positions of dominance.


Everyone knows a way to mount, but not everyone knows how to maintain the mount. A lot of people learn a technique but can not understand why it works on some people and not on others.


Within this app we hope we can answer those grappling questions and provide solutions to those problems, but also help you develop your own solutions.



That’s excellent. Now tell people a little more about the logistics (length of segments, transferability, price…etc.)


Well the app technique segments are around 5mins per video there will be around 16 techniques give or take a few with some great bonus material which you will have to buy the app to see what it is. The bonus material on its own will be worth it this I can assure you (laughs).


This sounds great. When did you say we can expect to see it on the market?

We have a release date for the end of March or early April 2011, we want to get this right and make sure that it is a product that we would purchase and use ourselves. I have let some black belt friends** of mine have a look at parts of it and they all seem to like it so it’s looking good so far.


And if people are interested and want to find out more details where should they go?

Their best bet is to check out our blog at the moment but there will be an updated site for the iPhone app coming soon.

Many thanks for this interview Eddie and for giving me a chunk of your busy schedule at such a short notice.

Thanks for taking the time to interview me, and I will always make time and support anyone who helps grow BJJ in Europe or the world.


Also thanks to Pedro at Atama Europe , Paul Shammasian , James Gregory and my family for supporting and helping me make this dream a reality, and thanks to you Liam for taking time to talk to me.



*This is my comment. I’ve known Eddie for a relatively short while and one thing I can tell you about him that shines thru our conversations, emails, interviews…et.c. is that the man is one grateful son of a gun. He’s very, very humble. I love that about him. It makes being around him, learning BJJ from him and generally chatting with him a great pleasure. He’s so grateful you took the time to talk to him; he makes you feel like king of the world!

**Dude knows a lot of cool BJJ black belts :)

Saturday, 12 March 2011

EKBJJ I PHONE APP COMING SOON


Eddie Kone, Royler Gracie’s only Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt in Europe has teamed up with martial arts manufacturer Atama Europe to bring you an inovative iPhone/Android application for competition tested Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Techniques.

The application entitled “Beyond Blue Belt” will be an in depth insight into specific positions within BJJ and this is the first volume of 6 which has been filmed and designed by Award winning director Paul Shammasian. “Volume 1” will cover all aspects of the mount position (Top and Bottom) and will include “Attacks, counters and escapes”.

Eddie Kone is Royler's Gracie’s only Black Belt in Europe and over the past 3 years has created an association with 12 schools in Europe and one in Brazil that have produced multiple champions in both Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Submission Grappling and Mixed Martial Arts competitions.

"Beyond Blue Belt" is an iPhone/Android application geared towards the BJJ practitioner who’s interested in raising his game with techniques that have been tested in the advanced divisions: blue, purple, brown and black belt. The app will help you with easy to follow instructions and easy to follow lessons to help raise your game. These are the same techniques taught and used in Eddie’s schools, which have been proved successful in competitions.


The App will be available from the end of March 2011 in the app store and the android store.

Eddie Kone is the only European BJJ black belt under the legendary Royler Gracie, Eddie trains and teaches from his school in London, but continually travels the globe teaching seminars to both amateur and professional fighters. Over the past 3 years has created an association with 12 schools in Europe and one in Brazil.

Eddie’s system of teaching and teaching methods are spread through all of his schools and have produced multiple champions in both Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Submission Grappling and Mixed Martial Arts competitions. Europe has already seen success this year with 2 European champions in BJJ. Also the association has gathered over 50 medals last year. For instance, Romania’s school gathered over 30 medals alone in 2010.

Atama Europe offers the most complete line of Jiu Jitsu and Judo kimonos, apparel and accessories for Grappling and MMA. Since 1989, Atama seeks to satisfy the most demanding athletes and consumers. Atama products are developed and produced by specialized professionals, using nothing but top quality materials, in order to provide comfort and durability to your training and/or competing sessions.