Bas’ Rules

Follow these rules to training for optimum performance! Bas tells you some of the most important things to consider when training.  But first, here is a video clip of Bas teaching a class at his gym in California:

And for those that have missed it, I often get asked what I think of PED’s.  Here is my answer.

And now, here are my top 10 rules to always follow, in no particular order:

Covering Your Cuts

When you have a cut and need to wear a plaster to cover your boo boo, ensure that after applying the plaster to your wound you, tape over it as well. The reason being is that no plaster can withstand the majesty of rolling and on many occasions I’ve had to peel someone else’s blood/puss filled plaster of all areas of my body, sometimes not even realising the plaster is stuck to me until I get home! #Nasty

Gym Etiquette

This is an etiquette existent at every gym I’ve ever trained at so pay attention as this can save you a good telling off! When not on the mats, make sure you wear some kind of footwear and also ensure when on the mats your footwear is close by. Ok let’s break this down, you come in from outside and bring in to the gym all sorts of nasty germs on your shoes, so these shoes need to be a decent distance away from the mats to ensure they are kept hygienic. They also need to be close enough so when you need to take a leak you can pop them on and go to the toilet/John, NEVER GO TO RELEAVE YOUR SELF WITHOUT WEARING FOOTWEAR, you may as well pull down your shorts and groin guard and take a piss on the mats and everyone present because your bringing that stuff back here and we’re going to roll all over it.

Hygiene !

I know your busy but try and shower before and after training. Pretty self explanatory, but I’ll explain for the hygienically challenged. Clinching up with someone who smells is not very nice, if this person then proceeds to take north south position you’re in a whole world of stinky discomfort, if you don’t know what north south position is…GO TRAIN BJJ NOW! If you do…you’ve got a rather disgusted look on your face recalling the previous notion put forth.

Know What MMA Is !

DO NOT REFER TO MMA AS CAGE FIGHTING AND DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRMCUMSTANCES REFER TO YOURSELF AS A CAGE FIGHTER. Among MMA practitioners and avid fans this automatically makes you a complete idiot. Preferable options would include MMA fighter (only applicable if you’ve actually fought MMA believe it or not!), Mixed Martial Artist, Jedi or Ninja.

Training Equipment

I know MMA has become a bit of a culture as well as a sport but try not to overdo it with all the new equipment before you even start! You don’t know if you’re going to stick this thing out! For starting out I would recommend as follows: Joggers or shorts any design will do, any tight fitting t-shirt or rash guard, a grown guard and some boxing gloves (no crappy bag gloves, proper 14-16oz boxing gloves for pad & bag work). Nothing else is really needed for a new comer as you shouldn’t be sparring yet because you’re new and should firstly accumulate the appropriate skills to efficiently protect yourself. On a final note try not to wear anything with skulls on it, no explanation necessary.

Always Show Respect

A more one serious now, put simply…be nice, Show respect to each other. For example, before you spar Muay Thai or Kickboxing/Boxing you should touch gloves, give each other a nod of respect. Similarly before you roll shake hands, “knuckle touch”, shake hands and knuckle touch! Whatever is customary in that gym.  This is a concept that I personally think makes MMA such a fantastic sport to participate in. 99% of the time people are super friendly, extremely respectful, and just overall nice, if you’re scared about going to a gym to start training MMA or BJJ, don’t be. If it is a good gym all the people there will be super nice and helpful towards you, and you’ll be started off slowly in order to bring the best out of you. If you’re training at a gym and this is not the case, you’re at the wrong gym…move. Remember nothing can replace a good coach and good training partners.


BJJ is not gay if you avoid eye contact. Although I personally enjoy staring lovingly into my partners eyes while rolling.

Learn To Relax

DONT RESIST! When practicing technique some people just need to relax. And believe it or not this can be a hard concept to grasp for a beginner, it’s something I believe just comes with time but I’m going to give you a heads up because I’m super nice. When drilling you need to try and be a relaxed and maintain good posture. If you resist a technique someone is trying to learn (Emphasis on the word LEARN!) by proceeding to squeeze them or try and escape…you are a douche bag. Similarly if someone is practicing a technique on you and you roll round like a wet cloth, you need more practice with your posturing and overall movement, this is the more positive option of the two as you are not a douche bag.  What you need to do is find the common ground between wet cloth and douche bag i.e. compliant with good posture. A wet douche if it helps you remember!

Cut Your Nails !

Ensure all your fingernails and toes nails are cut short and filed down to reduce the risk of cutting your partner. Something sometimes took for granted but in a fast paced grapple long nails are like razors! Also if you do either cut your partner or end up being cut yourself, after you’ve covered and taped the wound (see etiquette 1 for details) go and clean up your mess! Around the matted area there will most likely be some disinfectant and kitchen towel, go and give it a spray and a wipe…we don’t know where you’ve been!

Philosophy of Training

Finally not really etiquette but rather a philosophy and probably the most important nugget of knowledge you will get from this list! Enjoy yourself!!! Enjoy your training, strive to learn as much as possible, enjoy your training partners company, ask any guy in the gym training who’s now an official bad ass due to vigorous commitment if he enjoys his training, he will most likely tell you he loves it. Enjoyment + Commitment = Development. Makes sense right?

Bonus Tip!

A little nugget that I decided to put on the end which is pretty important – a Tap means you immediately stop whatever your doing and you let go. simple right? Sometimes people can have problems grasping this concept so be careful. Legitimate forms of “tapping” or “Submitting” are the hand tap (repeatedly on the person not the mat), if your hands are trapped you can tap with your legs or feet. You can also tap verbally, some people may let out some indecipherable noise but I prefer to shout tap. Be clear with your verbal tap otherwise things may get confused and your partner could carry on.