PTSD Awareness Day

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Starting in 2010, Congress named June 27th PTSD Awareness Day (S. Res. 455).  In 2014, the Senate designated the full month of June for National PTSD Awareness (S. Res. 481).  The purpose of PTSD Awareness Month is to encourage everyone to raise public awareness of PTSD and effective treatments. We can all help those affected by PTSD.1

So yesterday was PTSD awareness day.  I am an advocate for veterans of any kind, and my wife Chandra and I have worked tirelessly with our military veterans.  Regarding PTSD, along with many fund raising groups, non profits, or some that discuss PTSD, the word ‘public awareness’ seems to be a buzz word for raising money.  That’s great, so what’s next?

PTSD treatments and rates of success

The Mayo clinic states Post-traumatic stress disorder treatment can help you regain a sense of control over your life.  The primary treatment is psychotherapy, but can also include medication.  Here are Mayo clinic solutions for PTSD:

Psychotherapy

Several types of psychotherapy, also called talk therapy, may be used to treat children and adults with PTSD.  Some types of psychotherapy used in PTSD treatment include:

  • Cognitive therapy.  This type of talk therapy helps you recognize the ways of thinking (cognitive patterns) that are keeping you stuck.
  • Exposure therapy.  This behavioral therapy helps you safely face both situations and memories that you find frightening so that you can learn to cope with them effectively.
  • Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR). EMDR combines exposure therapy with a series of guided eye movements that help you process traumatic memories and change how you react to them.

Medications

  • Antidepressants.  These medications can help symptoms of depression and anxiety. They can also help improve sleep problems and concentration.  The selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) medications sertraline (Zoloft) and paroxetine (Paxil) are approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for PTSD treatment.
  • Anti-anxiety medications.  These drugs can relieve severe anxiety and related problems.  Some anti-anxiety medications have the potential for abuse, so they are generally used only for a short time.
  • Prazosin.  If symptoms include insomnia with recurrent nightmares, a drug called prazosin (Minipress) may help. Although not specifically FDA approved for PTSD treatment, prazosin may reduce or suppress nightmares in many people with PTSD.2

The Link between PTSD and Substance Abuse/Addiction

People who suffer from PTSD are between two and four times more likely to also battle addiction than their peers who do not also struggle with PTSD, the journal Clinical Psychology publishes.

Correlation between Stress, Drug Use, and Addiction

Substance abuse, addiction, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have a complex relationship that can complicate treatment modalities.  High levels of stress can make it more likely for a person to turn to drugs or alcohol as a means of escape.  Drugs can increase pleasure, decrease anxiety, and provide a distraction from difficult emotions.

When someone feels stressed, levels of GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) are lowered, and adrenaline is increased.  GABA is a kind of natural tranquilizer produced by the brain that can also be stimulated by drugs that suppress the central nervous system, like opioids, marijuana, alcohol, and benzodiazepines. Drugs also increase the presence of dopamine in the brain, one of the brain’s chemical messengers that tells a person to feel happy.  When the substances wear off, low moods are common as dopamine levels drop.3

How common is co-occurring PTSD and SUD in Veterans?

Studies show that there is a strong relationship between PTSD and SUD, in both civilian and military populations, as well as for both men and women.

Specific to Veterans from 2016:

  • More than 2 of 10 Veterans with PTSD also have SUD.
  • War Veterans with PTSD and alcohol problems tend to be binge drinkers. Binges may be in response to bad memories of combat trauma.
  • Almost 1 out of every 3 Veterans seeking treatment for SUD also has PTSD.
  • The number of Veterans who smoke (nicotine) is almost double for those with PTSD (about 6 of 10) versus those without a PTSD diagnosis (3 of 10).
  • In the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, about 1 in 10 returning soldiers seen in VA have a problem with alcohol or other drugs.4

VA suicide rates

According to the VA, an average of 20 veterans died from suicide every day in 2014.

The VA examined over 55 million veteran records from 1979 to 2014 from every state in the nation.  The last time the VA conducted a study like this was in 2010, but that report included data from only 20 states.

In 2014, 7,403 American veterans committed suicide, out of 41,425 suicides among U.S. adults that year. That’s just under 18 percent, down from 22 percent in 2010.

Today’s report also included comparisons between civilians and veterans.  From 2001 to 2014, the VA found, suicides among U.S. adult civilians increased 23 percent while veteran suicides increased 32 percent — making the risk of suicide 21 percent greater for veterans than civilians (after controlling for age and gender).

Older veterans face a higher risk of suicide, the data showed.  In 2014 about 65 percent of veterans who died from suicide were 50 years or older.5

Something to consider

So we have an alarming rate of suicides with veterans and I believe Army is highest.  Looking at the top solutions for our Veterans, what do we have from above?

Psychotherapy

In 2015 in the Journal of the American Medical Association, reveals that go-to treatments for the disorder may not be as effective as many in the medical community may have believed or hoped. The research showed that while up to 70% of the men and women who received CPT or PE experienced symptom improvements, around two-thirds of people receiving the treatments still met the criteria for a PTSD diagnosis after treatment. 6

Medications

Here is a good one.  Let’s look at the success of medications with veterans and PTSD.

18 U.S. veterans commit suicide daily; largely due to psychiatric drugs.7

Treatment for PTSD may be killing veterans.8

There needs to be more action taken for veterans.  For veterans themselves, our research foundation the Vandry Hope Foundation works on research and time on Chronic pain, TBI, Legal blindness and PTSD.  We have been through veterans and civilians to aid, help and make a difference.  I will also note, the above quotes on alcoholism and drugs must be taken into consideration.  For PTSD, it starts with your therapy, but ultimately, if you have a toxic lifestyle it makes it worse.  Start with putting yourself back together.  My wife and I have spent so many hundreds of hours with those with PTSD, or civilians with Chronic pain, anxiety and so many other conditions.  There are times we spend hours supporting those that seek us, and many times in the end, they themselves do nothing or go to other habits.

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Veteran Joe Stone, advocate for Veterans

I met a veteran named Joe Stone.  Joe is a veteran, and has suffered from chronic pain, blood pressure issues, migraines, insomnia and many other difficulties.  Joe heads his own facebook group to support veterans with chronic pain and to support a non opioid cause.  I consulted with Joe, revised his diet, and many other adjustments in his life.  Joe is pain free, and is healthier than ever.  Why?  Because he kept fighting everything I worked with him on to overcome.  He wanted solutions and to fight.  Not to rely on staying in the past.  Joe is also my Veterans Director for our Vandry Hope Foundation non profit.  Here is a link to his facebook page if your a veteran and need to reach out to someone:

Veterans with PTSD, Depression, or Chronic Pain non-addictive options

In closing, I myself have worked with veterans, and many of you know of our Miracle oil product that relieves pain, and has worked excellent in results with veterans.  You can go to our youtube mini documentary on 7 veterans we worked on.  You can view it yourself:

References:

1.  https://www.ptsd.va.gov/about/ptsd-awareness/ptsd_awareness_month.asp

2.http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/post-traumatic-stress-disorder/diagnosis-treatment/treatment/ptc-20308558

3. http://americanaddictioncenters.org/ptsd/

4. https://www.ptsd.va.gov/public/problems/ptsd_substance_abuse_veterans.asp

5. http://abcnews.go.com/US/va-releases-results-largest-analysis-veteran-suicide-rates/story?id=40401007

6.http://time.com/3982440/ptsd-veterans/

7.https://www.cchrint.org/2011/06/04/18-u-s-veterans-commit-suicide-daily-largely-due-to-psychiatric-drugs/

8.http://warincontext.org/2010/08/31/treatment-for-ptsd-may-be-killing-veterans/

Prof. William Vandry teaches leglock seminar at RCJ Machado Farmers branch

William Vandry BJJ Black belt interviews No Comments

June 10, 2017

William and Chandra Vandry were hosted by Master Carlos Machado at RCJ Machado academy at Farmer’s branch location in Dallas, Texas.

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RN Chandra discusses chronic pain in her Got Pain? lecture

Chandra led with her annual Got pain? clinic, lecturing on chronic pain diseases, nutrition, insomnia and many other points regarding concerns for health.  Chandra discussed the St. Jude’s Miracle oilTM product she and William co-invented.  The Vandry’s also sampled the Miracle oil to many of the RCJ Machado students in chronic pain to 100% success in relief.

Prof. William Vandry taught his reputable leglock seminar, educating on basic setups to ankle locks, heelhooks and displayed counters or escapes to heelhooks.

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Master Carlos Machado and Prof. William Vandry

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Prof. Vandry teaching leglocks

 

 

William Vandry and boxing legend Leon Spinks for veterans

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Veterans Suicide Prevention Channel presents A Conversation With William Vandry “Alternatives to Opioids Series”

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Glenn Towery of Veterans Suicide Prevention Channel interviews William Vandry, Co-inventor of St. Judes Miracle Oil® essential oil product.  Glenn discussed nutrition, chronic pain, PTSD, and the work William and Chandra Vandry do with their non profit, the Vandry Hope Foundation, and work they do to inform the public more on Chronic pain, Legal blindness, PTSD, and poverty.

Miracle oil serves community at Austin Diagnostic Clinic Health Fair

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William Vandry with new friend and consumer

Vandry hope foundation attended the Austin Diagnostic clinic fair at the North Medical Center.  We brought the Miracle oil product, and our Vandry BJJ academy.  We were able to sample the Miracle oil product with these consumers:

Consumer 1, Elaine

11:34AM, Elaine has arthritis in her knees, and can only squat about an inch.  We applied the oil, and at 11:39AM, Elaine was smiling, feeling better and able to do a full rock bottom squat.  I then asked her to stand up on one leg, one at a time.  I then had her doing jumping jacks, and playing boxing drills to show her mobility and relief of pain.  Elena said she tried cortisone shots, and tried everything before.

Consumer 2, Barbara

12:04PM, Barbara has bad arthritis in both knees, and she cannot grip very well.  I have her test a coconut water bottle, which she cannot squeeze.  She has pain.  Two minutes later, Elaine had pain relief, and squeezes the coconut water bottle, then grabs her friends hand, then grabs the table no pain.

Consumer 3, Ginger

12:50 Ginger stated she has arthritis.  We applied to hand, and she felt relief within a minute, and states her arthritis “Is gone!”

Consumer 4,

12:32PM, she has chronic arthritis, and her arthritis is in the knee due to knee surgery on both knees.  We apply the oil and 12:37PM she walks without her cane.

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You can go to our Vandry Hope website at www.vandryhope.org, and for more information on St. Jude’s Miracle oilTM product, go to www.stjudesmiracleoil.com.  In addition, you can also go to our facebook pages

https://www.facebook.com/Vandry-Brazilian-Jiu-Jitsu-120961547918783/

https://www.facebook.com/vandryhope/

And to view video of our consumers, you can go to Miracle oil at facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/132501736829734/

Overcoming disabilities

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Professor William Vandry with autistic student Kaleb

I wrote this article for a variety of reasons.  I have worked with the disabled for many years.  I understand overcoming disabilities myself.  I have taught Martial arts to adults and children with disabilities such as:

  • Down syndrome
  • Autism
  • ADHD or ADD
  • Legally blind
  • MS
  • Cerebral Palsy

And of course many others such as cardiovascular diseases, osteoporosis, etc., but I wanted to focus more on disabilities here due to birth defects or trauma.

I have an autistic child in my children’s Jiu-jitsu class (Actually I have two).  His father spoke to me about him and his autism, and we both discussed his improvement from day one.  He was very antisocial at first, which is very common with children with autism and other types such as Autism Spectrum Disorder.   According to the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (5thedition), “Autism Spectrum Disorders” are characterized by “impairments in communication and social interaction,” by deficits in “social-emotional reciprocity,” and by “restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, or activities.”  The DSM notes, “Only a minority of individuals with autism spectrum disorder live and work independently in adulthood.”

I believe many disabilities can be overcome, and all can be overcome in different ways.  My student Kaleb’s mother posted on facebook about disabled children that get rejected or mocked:

“It would be great to teach our children to be kind and to accept all their classmates.  Kids with special needs want what every kid wants: to be accepted!  And they suffer greatly when they are rejected or mocked.”

My student Kaleb did a video about Autism, and he made a point I believe was referring to respecting people, although these were his words:

“Now you know about autism, so be nice and care show care for people with autism.”

I see this all the time.  I have worked with the legally blind, and I sit and talk to each of them and their challenges.  I have had blind children at my clinics break down and cry about bullying or mocked by so many in schools, or neighborhoods.  This is appalling to me.  And I label it right there with cowardice, and moreso the person’s own low self esteem from what they endured from their own childhood or their own parents.

I have always taken the time to talk to any of my students that needed to talk to someone.  Children endure bullying and mockery, but many adults do at work, or community areas as well.  Although only 10 U.S. studies have been conducted on the connection between bullying and developmental disabilities, all of these studies found that children with disabilities were two to three times more likely to be bullied than their non-disabled peers.1

I remember my first class I taught to the legally blind.  I had a 20 year old woman who was totally blind from birth.  She disrupted every moment of the adult self defense class for the blind.  I reprimanded her, and it was very embarassing for her.  Since I was invited to this non profit for the blind, I didn’t charge a cent and paid for my own transportation there, this was on my time and dime.  She ended up being the best student at the class.  Why?  For one, that was obviously the first time someone treated her like an adult and not a handicapped person.  I remember her hugging me after.  Disabilities are challenges, but sometimes there are people who have disabilities you cannot cure.

There is a 1968 Braille Monitor for the legally blind that discussed discrimination and hostility:

“From the beginnings of recorded history the blind have been the victims of unreasonable and detrimental classification.  Today these discriminations are being recognized for what they are, and the blind and their friends are insisting with growing success upon justice and equal treatment.  No matter how moderately it may be done this resistance to discrimination will inevitably bring a certain amount of hostility.”2

I hate bullies.  I despise them so much.  Children are not the source of bullies.  Bullies learn from bullying parents or relatives.  Here are instances of bullying disabled statistics:

  • 2011 An 11-year-old boy with muscular dystrophy committed suicide by suffocating himself months after being bullied and robbed of an iPhone.  Mitchell Wilson, of Pickering in Ontario, Canada, was out walking when his face and teeth were smashed into the pavement by a boy from his school.  A 12-year-old was arrested and removed from the school, but Mitchell’s father said his disabled boy was ‘never the same’ after the attack.3
  • A teen with learning disabilities and “a heart too big for this world” committed suicide after he suffered two years of persistent bullying, according to a lawsuit against his school district.4

Self defense with women

I have also worked with women, and I have had women students who have been molested, raped, assaulted, and I remember having a special women’s class for them.  All of them ended up training with men in the regular classes, which was my graduating goal for all of them.  It took me three years, but I did it.  I still teach women’s self defense clinics during the year:

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Photo: Vandry BJJ women’s MMA/self defense clinic

I work with the legally blind, and my goal is to graduate them to overcoming bullies, society, financial dependency and eventually becoming an independent person.

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Photo: My wife Chandra and teaching blind students at TSBVI

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Photo: 2016 Chandra working with blind student

My wife and I also work with Military Veterans, PTSD, disabled and blind.  If any of them just need to talk, we are always there if they need us.  Same for the disabled.  There are worse handicaps.  I know there are people that mock, attack, belittle, disrespect and many other low self esteem expressions via actions by people.

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Photo: 2014 William and Chandra lecture to Blind Veterans association, San Antonio

In Martial arts schools, there are good students and bad ones.  The bad ones you try to work with, but eventually you will either excuse them or they usually they are not the alpha male and this napoleon complex is usually the destiny of their life.  I remember a past student of mine that I expelled from my school years ago.  I was told that this person made a statement about handicapped people by stating if  someone was retarded, they’re still retarded.  I think a person like that has more disabilities than a handicapped diagnosis.  Or those that bully the handicapped, such as schools, and work environments.  I have a friend who used to be a programmer at Dell, and he started losing his sight years ago due to glaucoma.  When he walked by with his cane, he used to tell me rude fellow employees came up to him and would ask: “Are you blind, or not blind?”  This was a man in his 40’s.  Most disabled children endure way worse, but like I said, the real disability is the ignorant of those who mock them.  If you have an autistic child, or disabled child, or you are a disabled adult, contact me.  You can find me on facebook.   https://www.facebook.com/william.vandry

I would like you to come by my academy and see disabilities do not matter, I know personally you can develop potential over disabilities.

Happy Easter,

Prof. William Vandry

References:

1. Disabilities: Insights from Across Fields and Around the World; Marshall, Kendall, Banks & Gover (Eds.), 2009 )

2. June, 1968 issue of the Braille Monitor

3. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2043480/Disabled-Mitchell-Wilson-11-commits-suicide-thug-punched-iPhone.html

4. http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/montana-teen-bullying-victim-committed-suicide-article-1.2545931

William and Chandra helping veterans with chronic pain

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https://youtu.be/vO99S2AqH1k

Jiu-jitsu and nutrition for self defense and health

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What is Jiu-jitsu for?  There are a number of reasons, but let’s go through a few:

1. Self defense

Martial arts first and primary goal is to learn how to defend yourself.  It is not for competition, or even fitness, although those are goals on a secondary level.  You have to learn how to deal with stronger opponents, or those that can possibly bully or pick on children.  Most parents bring children for something of an outlet.  Usually this can be a parent that wants his or her child to be less introverted.  I have worked with children with Autism, Asperger syndrome (AS), also known as Asperger’s, is a developmental disorder characterized by significant difficulties in social interaction and nonverbal communication, along with restricted and repetitive patterns of behavior and interests.1  As a milder autism spectrum disorder (ASD), it differs from other ASDs by relatively normal language and intelligence.2

I have been very successful with those children, and working around those conditions.  My top children’s coach has worked with autistic children as well.  I have also worked with legally blind children at my academy, and one did well in a competition of BJJ years ago.  My wife and I work with the legally blind year around, and we do projects for the Texas School of the Blind, and have worked with the Blind Veterans Association.3

For average students, most also want some type of self defense course.  Despite what some schools promote training 7 days a week, or competition is their main promotion, they miss the point.  Most students do not compete unless it is a small club or group.  Some may compete once in a while, but the goal is not to force students to compete as a primary goal of their learning.  For my students that do compete, if they are children I emphasize their school grades first, and although rare, school instructor’s should pay attention to a parent’s goal with their child.

Children’s parents are usually attentive to watch classes, or attend ranking ceremonies.  They are very supportive to their children.  I have experienced in the past parents looking for schools to enroll their child that can be quite the opposite.

Here are two experiences I had that show different types of parents.  One was a Father who moved in from the Dallas area, and his child was about 12.  I change into my gi to teach the kid’s class.  I come out of my changing room and there is a child I do not know in a gi sitting on my mat.  I asked him could I help him.  He shrugged his shoulders.  I walked into the lobby and it was a parent there.  I asked him could I help him, and he told me he wanted his son to try my class.  He said his son had trained a year, and was the most talented child in the world.  Usually parents call or make appointments through email when bringing a child or if an adult plans to attend or try a class.

I was right about to start, so I explained to him waivers for a class, brief rules.  He had no problem, and kept expressing how great his child was.

When we did the class, I had three children that trained with him.  All of them were very nice, didn’t go hard on him, but tapped him in a gentle way.  They were all his age as well.

At the end of the class, the child told me how impressed he was by the students, especially the two girls.  When I walked into the lobby, I began to speak to the Dad.  He then seemed eager to leave.  He stated that he wanted to talk to his son and get back to me.  I asked his son in front of him how did he like my BJJ class?  His son replied: “Wow, I have never seen this before, and those girls I don’t know what chokes they did..”

I then looked at the Dad, and stated: “Well, I think you heard it yourself, it looks like he has a desire to learn.”

The Dad replied by telling me he wants his son to be a world champion.  He then told me he has two other sons.  What he told me next summarized his entire goals in BJJ for his son.  He replied, and this is pretty much verbatim:

“Well…my goal one day is to have all three of my sons fight in the UFC…”

He then said he needed to leave, grabbed his son and left.

This is an issue with those types of parents.  Those children may in fact never learn, or develop their self defense skills because of the living vicariously through the child parent.

I have on the other hand some great parents.  One of our students and kickboxing students has two children.  He and his wife like many other parents in my kids class are very supportive, and are there at promotions, or even in tournaments.  I note when his children compete, they are very talented, but there is no pressure from him or like the parent above.  Children have to develop and grow, as I have some students in their twenties that used to be in my kids class.

Some adults may have this same persona.  I have discussed many times other school’s students asking to attend my classes, and asking for open mat days, but I refer them back to their instructor.  I think any type of solicitation may be of different factors.  If a student no longer trains at a school, then I am glad to speak with him, but never, and never should any BJJ instructor take a student from another school simply to make money or care less about his respect for other schools.

Women develop self defense and that is their primary goal at first.  We had one woman who was very shy and polite, that attended kickboxing classes at our school.  She contacted me months ago, and was frightened and excited that she defended herself against a male adult.  It was remote control for her, and a good snap kick to the person’s chest backed them off.  Good for her!

2.  Health

I have had overweight children, and adults start at my school.  My wife and I research and lecture on nutrition.  We believe in maintaining health with students.  We teach at our Got pain? clinics each year regarding nutrition, inflammation, diet, and rest.  If you have blood pressure issues, or arthritis, it can be very difficult to train with inflammation or pain.  Those you can overcome with proper training, warmups and of course learning nutrition.  I have many articles you can refer to such as some on joints and pain.4

I have had some overweight students in the 300+ range and one in the 440lb area. Children have more diabetes, and obesity and the parents do too.  I have worked with two good students who have literally changed their health.  Here is one I changed his diet, correct nutrition, and you can clearly see a huge difference in less than six months:

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275lbs.                                                   233lbs.

Here is a second student, about 440lbs. and down to around 300 in less than six months:

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Obesity and blood pressure relate with diabetes, heart disease and other conditions.  For more information on health articles, you can read about disk disease, diabetes and more.5

3. Nutrition

Nutrition is not an option.  When we have essential vitamins and minerals, remember what essential means.  You don’t have a choice.  Both of the students above had arthritis, and one had a knee that kept popping out of joint.  He doesn’t have those problems anymore, but a key component whether just for self defense, competition or fitness there is another  primary point.  If you don’t add nutrition, you will degenerate more.  A primary diet of correct mineral and vitamins along with enzymes and detoxification are paramount in today’s plague of illness, heart disease, diabetes, cancer and more.  As a student, you have to remember calcium and magnesium flex and relax muscles, along with keeping the neurological system maintained.  If minerals are depleted, you can develop other forms of osteoarthritis, osteoporosis and others.  Read other health articles for more information referencing the Pubmed medical journals.4

Keep training, and if you are a potential student looking for self defense, fitness, health or related areas, please give us a call or stop by the academy.  512-585-1289.

Professor William Vandry

References:

1. National Institute of Mental Health. September 2015. Retrieved 12 March 2016.

2. World Health Organization. 2015. Retrieved13 March 2016.

3. http://vandryhope.org/blindness/

4.http://www.williamvandry.com/category/pain-nutrition/

5.http://www.williamvandry.com/2014/04/25/obesity-diabetes-minerals-lumbar-disc-disease-collagen-ii-coconut-oil-and-the-vandry-racehorse-theory/

William Vandry BJJ Counterlock Submissions

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I just finished my third quarter association seminar.  Thank you to all my students and all RCJ Machado students from Brownsville, San Antonio, Dallas Ft. Worth area, and of course here in Central Texas.  A big question many of my students asked was an issue regarding heel hooks.  Those are the most dangerous of all foot and leglocks.  Heel hooks can twist the instep, and possibly sprain or break the ankle/instep area, the meniscus on the knee and even potentially damage the hip area if excess leverage applied.

There are good heel hook experts such as Dean Lister and others.  Going back to the main question, many asked about defending, as applying heel hooks are relatively simple.  Most heel hooks in no gi competitions you can see are quick, and usually many times the legs ‘lace’ or develop figure four type traps over a leg.

Although more applicable via speed, and especially in no gi, yes there are counters and defenses.  The main issue is most grapplers spin out, or jerk out.  I was told by a great BJJ black belt in 2001 that he doesn’t really have any counters, he just works on prevention.  I can agree in part, as many simply work on a mental note that they will escape if they just do this quick move or that move.  Not exactly.  You should always prevent moves or submissions from the beginning.  From there I personally look at counter attacks.

Counter attack

If you look how Anderson Silva fought, he is a fantastic counter puncher.  Many great boxers such as Sugar Ray Robinson, Marvin Hagler, James Toney, Sugar Ray Leonard, Floyd Mayweather Jr., and others.  The same way applies to leglocks.  A dooming strategy is reaching for any submission and literally giving the strategy way in advance.  For example, you are passing an opponent’s guard.  While passing, the opponent applies spider guard.  You cannot grab the ankle while he is in spider.  You have to break down the spider guard, get some distance, THEN setup an attack.

Same thing with counters.  You should develop counter games by looking at your techniques from beginning to end.  Then end to beginning.  You have to look at your flaws, and your lack of finishing ability.  Here on a few videos, I am applying leglocks.  Let me breakdown what I am doing regarding strategy.  There are three training sessions that display counter attacks on a video below:

1. Vandry escape to Footlock

On the first match, I play defense.  Many grapplers do not explore bad positions such as mount, side mount, back mount, letting people pass guard.  Here I have a much larger student.  When I was a white belt, side mount terrified me.  I remember my instructor Carlos Machado when we were white belts, side mount felt like a horror movie.  My good friend Marcos Santos and I were laughing one time when we talked about how Rigan used to crush us when we were white belts.  The panic, anxiety, panting.  So what did I do?  As a white belt after class, I would ask fellow students to smash me in the side mount, and I would work on escaping.  I then got so comfortable, I started wrapping my gi around my head to smother me, then worked side escapes.  This of course was a bit erratic back then, but as a white belt, Jiu-jitsu is almost like Aaron and Moses vs. sorcerers of the Pharoah when turning a cane into a snake.  It was pure magic to me, and still is in many ways today.  Ok, so here I let him get smash.  Most people when shrimping out, panic more because they get pinned or can’t escape.  What I did here was spin one way, then sort of cartwheel spin the other way.  I then apply a z type half guard to block for a moment.  As my opponent attempts to flatten, I base my back leg to sort of upa up to get to half guard.  The half guard when I am looking for footlocks is not a true tight, figure four half guard.  It is simply trapping his thigh.  From there, the opponent is attempting to apply the cutter choke, and I bait him by allowing him to.  I apply my footlock from my half guard.  Now lately, I only have received about ten million emails asking me exactly how did I do that, as many BJJ students state they don’t understand how I found the leverage.  This too is a different story, but let me say the way I play the game, the more someone smashes, the easier it is for me.

2. Vandry guard defense to shoulder lock

Here I am playing a game when opponent stands to pass.  I hook his leg to do a passive sweep.  I don’t want to sweep too much because I wanted to finish from the guard.  Opponent stumbles, then comes down to my guard.  I attack the left arm, but the goal is always the right arm.  These I call red herrings.  You throw baits out to see what the opponent is going to do.  He defends the left arm, then I switch to his right to finish elbowlock.

3. Vandry Defense to footlock

Here I am training with a student who attacks back very good.  I turtle, then counter his clock choke (no comment!), then he attempts a bow and arrow variation.  I turtle up again using a similar upa assistance move.  I give him the back.  He goes for the choke, and similar to video one, baiting opponents by letting them attack is not giving them a submission.  It is a way to counter their submission or I should say not allow them to complete it while you are countering.  I then apply a favorite footlock from back mount defense.  The standard back defense is when an opponent crosses the ankles.  My opponent is a brown belt, and is way past that level.  I hook the foot in a certain way to ensure the footlock.  I did teach this at my last seminar as well.  Check them out:

4. Strategies on counters

My suggestion is to work on comfort zone regarding bad positions first.  Work with your instructor, or training partner slowly first, then build it up.  Sparring in classes are too often students concerned more with winning or dumping stressful energy out rather than work on the details, timing, techniques and strategy.  One of my purple belts drills with his training partner for weeks before classes a technique we work on to get familiar with.  In addition, countering should never be an arrogant, bored content.  It is never executed as if you are arrogant.  Counters and escapes are always a higher level of awareness, worry, and defense first.  My advice is to remember, Jiu-jitsu is a learning science of grappling, and you have to train consistently at a pace, not to do the same techniques over due to a stale reliance or comfort zone.

Professor William Vandry

5th degree BB, RCJ Machado

Vandry BJJ Associaton warriors have winning weekend!

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VBJJA teammates Chris Kirk and Danny Taki at NAGA

August 13, 2016

Competitors in Mixed martial arts, No gi grappling and Gi Jiu-jitsu competition were successful competing this weekend in Austin, Texas.

Vandry Association Lake Travis Jiu-Jitsu club’s (Lakeway) child student Seth takes Gold at NAGA!

 

Vandry Association Austin Academy students Max Lash two Gold medals, with best friend Chris Kirk, one Gold, one Silver.

Chris Kirk with Vandry Teammate Danny Taki, Danny taking Silver in No Gi, and 4th in Gi.

Vandry Association Brownsville Academy (Armas Jiu-jitsu) student Abraham Vela again dominates No gi divisions in tournaments, taking Gold at NAGA!

Chris Kirk’s best Joe Rogan imitation when someone gets put to sleep!

Congratulations to all the VBJJA students, and to coaches Jesus Armas, Elliot O’Hara, Markus Lagmannson, Justin Toler and others for helping these students in preparation!

The next event was a Mixed Martial arts event in Austin, and Lake Travis BJJ club student Ben Bourland fought a much taller opponent Travis Stanchek.  The fight was at Emo’s Austin event center with full nightclub commodities.  Ben won a split decision, and both fighters had good heart.

VBJJ Lakeway Coach Elliot O’Hara and Ben Bourland

Ben Bourland and Professor William Vandry

Opponents, and friends after fight.  Ben Bourland and Travis Stanchik

Victory after fight!

Emos MMA Honorious Fights staffer Armando Vargas and Justin Toler in VIP section!

Armando and I

Chandra, Elliot and Justin at Emos supporting Ben!

My friend and Emos MMA event promoter Nael, and good person who works with the less fortunate

Congratulations to our VBJJA schools, instructor and students for all the hard work, research, practice, study and honoring our Martial art of Jiu-jitsu and our lineage!

If you are interested in BJJ, competition, striking and developing skills, please contact a Vandry BJJ academy in your area.  Go to our associations page for more information:

Associations

William Vandry

 

 

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