I wish I could say that I was announcing this prior to it actually happening but it's just one of those things that got past me. Vince Choo from KDT (Malaysia) submitted a report on the time spent with both Rodney King and Rigan Machado. -Luke

report by: Vince Choo

I recently attended a
week long retreat with Rodney King and Rigan Machado in Singapore with members from KDT Academy (Malaysia). This year participants came in from Malaysia, Singapore, USA, France, Japan and the UK.

The martial arts retreat was held from 3 - 7 November at the Budo Academy under the Crazy Monkey Defense Program's Annual retreat.

Leading the retreat was Mr. Rodney King, and presenting the BJJ component, Mr. Rigan Machado with Mr. Steve Boyd presenting a small segment on basic clinch/grip fighting.

If you are unsure of what the Crazy Monkey Program is about you can learn more about it at www.crazymonkeydefense.com

The retreat was held from 3-7 November and the workout sessions were between 5-6 hours daily depending on which program chosen. This afforded the participants to learn directly from Rodney, RIgan and Steve. Mr. Machado conducted BJJ gi and no-gi sessions for an hour everyday, presenting his specialty techniques in "cross-sides/side control" position with the gi, fund
amental drills that everyone should know, and guillotine chokes and the "Anaconda" choke in the no-gi sessions.

In addition to learning the techniques, Mr. Machado "tested" all the participants by asking pairs to present the materials in front of the whole group. Needless to say it was nervous for some while for others it was a little easier. There were people with no BJJ experience to people who have been training for 4+ years who all learnt many new things from this master.

One very interesting quote from Mr. Machado who said right at the start of the seminar, "Jiu Jitsu is a very simple thing. It is the people who complicate it." Indeed, the way in which Mr. Machado presented the techniques and the way he advocated the manner in which they should be practiced was simplified and was without fluff. He carefully explained how and why each limb should be used, which parts of the body which should be locked, or space opened or closed down.

In addition to the techniques, Mr. Machado got the participants to play some jiu jitsu games, and even conducted a mini in-house competition. It was challenging for some as this was their first exposure to this sport while others with more experience did much better.

At the conclusion of the final workshop, Mr. Machado awarded Rodney with a BJJ black belt (previously awarded by Mr. Chris Haueter) and announced that the CMD program is affiliated directly with Mr. Machado's organization for the techniques and values the CMD program represents.

In addition, Mr. Machado announced his intention to organize a new BJJ organization next year which will provide support for the top athletes, providing BJJ instruction in key locations around the world (N.America , Brazil, Europe and Asia) with Singapore (Budo Academy) representing this new group.

Naturally many people asked Mr. Machado to autograph their belts and uniforms, the mandatory photo taking sessions and to roll. It is no wonder to see the high level skills that Mr. Machado has developed over the years and his undefeated 30-year record still holds strong.

On a more personal level, Mr. Machado is a very likeable and approachable person, excellent sense of humour and a great resource of stories about his past, his experiences and activities outside of BJJ. After all, life is not just about BJJ and he is the living example of how a balanced approach to training will lead to a better lifestyle. The next time you meet him, remember to ask him about his Singapore Python experience!

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