Itsy Bitsy Spider

Mauricio 'Tinguinha' Mariano & Greg LawsonYou know, I thought I knew a little something about spider guard (mostly from random videos), and then along came Gregory Lawson, and I found out I didn’t really know much about spider guard at all! You see, in 2011 Greg received his BJJ black belt from Mauricio ‘Tinguinha’ Mariano, the man who made spider guard what it is today! While I’m name-dropping, I’ll add that Greg started his BJJ training in 2001 with Saulo Ribeiro, before moving to California in 2005 and studying with Tinguinha.

Greg taught Jiu-Jitsu class yesterday, and it was all about the spider. His understanding of the technique, and his attention to detail, is starting to open my eyes to a whole new world of possibilities. I don’t always easily grasp new concepts, but Greg seems to be able to figure out how to explain things so that they make sense to me. Of course, his knowledge extends far beyond just spider guard…and I want to soak up every bit of it!

Besides the obvious excitement of being able to learn from someone who is as talented and knowledgeable as Greg, I think the reason I’m so happy he joined our family is because when I see him grapple I think to myself “I could do that!” (not anytime remotely soon, but maybe someday). I feel like what Greg does, what Tinguinha does, is custom-made for someone like me. Neither of them are big guys, and watching them effortlessly controlling those who are, I can see a vision of what I hope my game will eventually be. Right now this itsy bitsy spider is still getting washed out by the rain, but one day I will make it to the top of the water spout!

“I didn’t find the spider guard, the spider guard found me.” -Mauricio ‘Tinguinha’ Mariano

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