ZOMBIES???? Did you say you Liked ZOMBIES????
Well, This past Saturday, we were Invited to check out and compete at the only Zombie League in Downtown Toronto an event Where when You tap out you still continue fighting until time runs out, Hence the Name of this specific event. There was a big bunch of awesome Zombies from all Local Clubs and we were all there for ONE reason and ONE only, which was to TAP people out as many times as possible.
That being said, there was ONE MAJOR RULE: ABSOLUTELY NO ANIMOSITY what so ever and EGO was advised to be left at the door and not brought onto the mats… it was a pure fun and relaxed ambiance where you Cheer for people but not Coaching them as it is not a League where you take sides. IT is all in fun and games with a purpose of getting better, seeing where you stand amongst a wide list of Bjj’ers from all belts. Branca to Preta you ALL get to play.
What is OSSOME about this league is that you get to roll on a Saturday, like you would regardless if you went to the gym or open mats but you have as well the feel as if you were competing at a tournament. You get the Hype as if you were rolling in your division from Feather to Heavy. It was super nice to step on the mats and do what we do but with more excitement to it.
The LAST ZOMBIE STANDING of this August’s Event is: KOFI Taking the trophy down via Straight ankle lock vs a very talented Nihad Khan after a 40 minute long match.
CLICK THE IMAGES FOR LINK TO THE PICTURES
We have had the Pleasure to Interview a Close friend of GP.com and one of the Organizers of the Zombie Submission League, Mike Aviado aka Mr. Armbar:
GP: Hey Mike, Tell us about the true purpose of the Zombie League?
MA: The Zombie House Arte Suave Submission League started in May 2010. The initial idea of the Zombie League came from Prof Shah Franco, and was refined, and executed by Prof Marco Costa.
They planned to have this submission only tournament once every 2 to 3 months to bring in all of Prof Franco’s students who had schools of their own. The purpose is to give the athletes an inexpensive, cost effective tournament – $25 for 25 assured competitive minutes on the mat. Our mandate is to augment the competitive life of a BJJ athlete by giving them more available competitive minutes.
The unique tournament format focuses competitors on one goal and that is to submit their opponents as many times as they can within the allotted time. Tapping does not end the match, and gives an athlete the chance of “redemption.” You have to be strong-minded not to give-up. Rather than worrying about losing a match by points or advantages, you rack up submissions, which gives the opportunity to focus, be creative and experiment.
GP: Who can join and Play on the mats?
MA: The Zombie House has had an underground following, and in general the participants are jiujitsu lifers. That’s right, they are caught in the Jiu-jitsu puzzle. Who I mean by this is competitive players from the best clubs throughout the GTA. But now that there’s been a little interest, we’re open to a wider participant base. The last tournament was successful because of numerous clubs.
Any academy, or individual from a legitimate academy, willing to travel can come and participate. The format is what makes the tournament work so well, and gives participants all that they can handle.
GP: What is the format like?
MA: You are guaranteed 5 fights, 5 minutes each, where you rack up points by submitting your opponent as much as you can within that allotted time. You compete against yourself, ie. how many subs you can get in a year. The website is the online database where you track your progression, and see how you stack up against other people in your division.
Your opponents will be in the same weight class. However, their belt level will vary, and they may be a higher or lower belt than you. It borrows different aspects from different sports such as Ultimate Frisbee, where it is self-regulating. There are no referees, only “lifeguards,” who keep a safe eye on the players, and can issue yellow cards for unsportsmanlike conduct or red cards for dangerous play, as in a soccer match. So far, there have been about 16 tournaments and no yellow or red cards issued. We have a Handicap system, borrowed from golf, where par for white belt or par for a black belt are different.
The Golden Sub is eventually revealed after the top competitors from each weight division competes in a no-time limit match, eventually crowning a champion.
As the name infers, the thing about the Zombie League is your opponent keeps coming after you no matter how many times you’ve submitted them. Zombies don’t die, and if you’ve spent last amount of energy to submit your opponent, guess what? He’s going to come after you again, so have good cardio or stay home.
GP: How did the last one go in your mind?
MA: I was blown away by the energy, camaraderie and humour on the mats. At the same time, 50 matches were completed every hour, which took slightly over 3 hours to complete the tournament. This is a big part of the Zombie House philosophy, time is precious to us all, and no body likes standing around waiting, sleeping under the bleachers, kind of waiting, for the one-advantage-death-grip-hold-down-go-home-match.
Zombie League is very exciting to watch because so much is happening at every second and every minute. Someone is trying to throw a sub on someone else all the time. I would call it a huge success.
GP: How do you foresee the growth of this league?
MA: People seem to like the format, and we want to bring our style of Jiu jitsu tournament to the world. Slow and steady progression with innovative solutions to give the participants an experience that will influence their games in a positive way. This would make the league an intricate part of the evolution of the jiu-jitsu lifestyle.
For the next one Sept 29th, we are planning:
– No-GI Zombie House
– Zombie Girl League
To be held at Prof Marco’s Academy Body of Four
For now keep training because the Zombie Apocalypse is right around the corner
To find out more about the Zombie League, visit www.zombiehousebjj.com.
I’d like to thank Professor Shah Franco, Professor Marco ‘Lixo’ Costa, Prof Angelo Panoussis, Prof Fernando ‘Gringo’ Zulick, Prof Brian Beauchamp, MatadorBJJ, Open Mat BJJ, Pura Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Body of Four BJJ, Orangeville, Etobicoke, Shuhari, English’s Crew, Ruff House MMA, Beaches BJJ, Redstar Gis (THE BEST GIS in the WORLD) and GrapplersPlanet.Com and all the special volunteers, and spectators for coming to the event.