Moving to Portugal, training continues

Next week I am going to pack it up and move to Lisbon, Portugal. It's nice to change scenery but most of all it is nice to change the weather. I will also get a nice head start to summer.

It's cool to do something different for a change and I will try to learn as much Portuguese as I possibly can. Maybe in the future, I could communicate better with Brazilian teachers during seminars etc. I will also try to keep the blog updated with all the hassles going on there.

Bottom line is, I am definetly going to keep training..This might actually be good for my training because my work moved the location of the office a little less than a year ago and I've had a longer commute ever since. Also my current gym relocated a month ago. When I come back to Finland some day, I really have to try to afford a car...

Having trained at an Alliance affiliate here in Finland, it would be great to find a local affiliate in Portugal...However, the seems to be no Alliance gyms in Lisbon. So far I have been able to find Icon BJJ, Gracie Barra, Royce Gracie and some other academies in the region.
Here are some links if someone is going to Lisbon on holiday etc. and wants to train

Vita Team: http://vitateambjj.com/

Royce Gracie Portugal: http://www.clubejiujitsulisboa.com/

Gracie Barra: http://www.alexmachado.eu/

I will probably decide what to do after I know which ones are close to my appartment...

Also, no excuses left not to go to Europeans anymore. It should be on my backyard.


Gi review: Shoyoroll the Count gi


Overall impression and fabric

The Shoyoroll gis are sold in batches and usually pre-ordered. This means once the gi is sold out (quickly) the only place you can usually get one is on eBay. Although you can not actually purchase the Shoyoroll Count anymore, it is most likely very similar to soon to be released Shoyoroll Rio Koi (Batch 12, see picture below)

The Shoyoroll Count is a white gi with grey stitching and yellow details. The name comes from Mitsuyo Maeda and his name can be found in red Japanese characters on the sleeve and below the knee. The Count has the standard SYR fabric weighing 450 grams and is considered a pearl weave gi.

The first thing I noticed about the jacket is that it is light but sturdy and comfortable on the skin. This was a very positive thing because most lightweight jackets seem to be either really coarse or feel like a t-shirt.

Some Shoyoroll batches have rip stop pants while others have cotton pants such as the Count. I have worn many rip stops and seen the shoyoroll rip stops and have to say I prefer the cotton ones. Of course, the rip stops are slightly lighter, so for a serious competitor, they might be a better choice.

These cotton pants remind of Tatami Estilo in terms of design and cut (Tatami runs a bit bigger). If possible, the Shoyoroll fabric is even more comfortable than the Tatami. I have to say, from all the kimonos I’ve tried, I’d say the SYR pant fabric and cut are the best.
The pants also have double loops for the string, and the string itself doesn’t seem to come undone as much in average gi pants. The gusset is reinforced with extra stiching and gold weave fabric.

The fit and sizing

I had heard that SYR sizes run a bit big, so I wear an A2, while my average kimono is an A3. The gi fits me nicely and the cut is slim, similar to Keiko. SYR produces size A3 slim, which I guess would be a super slim cut. The official sizing chart is below:

Measurements of my gi (5 washes in cold water only)

Key issues with fit

- Slim fit all over, pretty snug around the shoulders
- Sizes run a bit big, but not as big as the Tatami Estilo

In this review I compare the fit and size to a Gameness Pearl weave (A3). If you want to see how it compares to other kimonos, just take a look at the Gameness Pearl review.

Although SYR’s sizes are big, the A2 is clearly smaller than the A3 Gameness. The jacket is slimmer, there is less space around the shoulders and the sleeves are shorter

The size difference is not so big with the pants. The Gameness pants are considerably wider and slightly longer than the Count’s pants.  

One of the best things about the Shoyoroll Count is the collar to weight ratio. While being a light gi, the collar is sturdy and thick. Here you can see that although the Gameness pearl is heavier than the SYR, its collar is not as thick

The sleeve cuff length is 17 cm which is the same as Atama A3 that has the tightest sleeve I’ve measured. Again, SYR seems like a very good choice for a competition gi.

There are a lot of nice little details and embroideries on the gi. There is even some “rastafari” colors inside the sleeves. However, they are only sewn on top of fabric, instead of being part of it.
The basic logo:

Inside the collar:


Some character stuff..

..and Ethiopia stuff


 Key issues:

- Comfortable, light and slim jacket and pants

- Good for competition due to tight sleeve cuffs and fairly thick collar

- Nice design with a lot of cool tiny things without going over the top

- I’ve heard there were some quality issues with the Compadre and Americana gis, but couldn’t find any serious flaws on this one.

Overall grade:
10-/10 (can’t think of anything wrong with this one, but surely it could somehow be improved)


More about how to defend the berimbolo..

Carlos Esquisito shares his techniques against the berimbolo...Also see earlier post on Tanquinho defending the sweep against Rafael Mendes.


Better way to calculate team points

I just found out that I am not the only one who thinks the IBJJF way of calculating team points is weird. First of all, the belt level should have some bearing, because at least in my opinion winning a white belt division means very little when comparing with winning a brown belt division. At least if the brown belt division has a reasonable amount of competitors. I think you should also win at least one match to receive any points from third place etc.

Another important measure to look at is actually points per number of athletes. Potentially this could also be weighted according to belt level..

Additional observations:

Transworld jiu jitsu article