Eddie Bravo Origins

Eddie Bravo

Despite being considered “wacky” by some for his unorthodox approach to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and a tendency to give unusual opinions on various topics, Eddie Bravo is undoubtedly a legend in the sport of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.  The controversial figure and founder of the 10th Planet franchise of gyms, Eddie’s outlook to the art of Jiu-Jitsu is considered unorthodox for its emphasis on the use of rubber guard and other non-traditional techniques.

Bravo first began learning Brazilian jiu-jitsu in the early 90s and received his black belt from the legendary Jean-Jacques Machado in 2003. Eddie rapidly became renowned in the jiu-jitsu world for his novel system, which he named “10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu”. This system, which he started teaching in 2004, stresses the utilization of rubber guard and other unorthodox moves that are not normally taught in standard Brazilian jiu-jitsu dojos.

10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu puts an enormous amount of focus on the ability to make use of flexibility and leverage in order to gain command of a foe and submit them instead of depending solely on power. Many of Bravo’s pupils have obtained accomplishments in Brazilian jiu-jitsu and mixed martial arts (MMA) contests on the most elevated levels and as consequently, 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu is held in great regard by both BJJ and MMA fighters around the world. 

1. Rubber Guard

The rubber guard system is built around the principle of utilizing a flexible guard, giving the practitioner the ability to employ their legs in a highly active and dynamic manner.  It is a style that requires great flexibility and dexterity and involves using the legs to control the opponent’s posture and movements, making it difficult for them to pass the guard or escape from submissions.

The system includes several key techniques, such as the rubber guard itself, the lockdown, the tornado guard, the truck, the worm guard, and others. The sweeps and submissions related to rubber guard are not commonly taught in traditional BJJ, making it a demanding system for practitioners to learn.

Not all members of the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu community embrace the rubber guard style, as it is relatively new and unconventional compared to traditional BJJ. It is not widely taught or utilized in traditional BJJ systems. The system heavily relies on the use of hooks to control the opponent’s upper body and posture, which is not a common technique in traditional BJJ.

Additionally, the techniques used in rubber guard, such as the tornado guard, the truck, and the worm guard, are not frequently seen in traditional BJJ competitions, making it a unique and unorthodox approach.

2. Eddie Bravo’s Influence

Eddie Bravo has made a significant impact in the mixed martial arts (MMA) community as a trainer and coach to notable fighters, including several Eddie Bravo Invitational (EBI) champions such as Eddie Cummings, Garry Tonon, and Geo Martinez.

He is also the founder of the Eddie Bravo Invitational, a submission-only grappling competition that he established in 2014. The event has become a platform for grapplers to display their skills and compete in various weight categories. Despite his controversial views on various issues, such as conspiracy theories and the use of performance-enhancing drugs in combat sports, he remains a highly respected figure in the jiu-jitsu communit

3. The Eddie Bravo and the invention of Combat Jiu Jitsu

For many years, Eddy Bravo was of the opinion that rules-based Brazilian Jiu Jitsu tournaments had become too filled with stall strategies and impractical techniques.

In 2013, he unveiled the plan for combat Jiu Jitsu and was initially met with derision from some of the more experienced Brazilian Jiu Jitsu participants. Despite this criticism, Bravo remained convinced that the rules of tournaments like the IBJJF had gone away from the original intent of the martial arts and could become less useful as a way to defend oneself. 

He sought to create a more accurate representation of real-life fights by introducing open-handed strikes into the ground-based grappling.

CJJ has similarities to the Japanese hybrid wrestling promotions, such as Pancrase, which was popular in the beginning of the 2000s. However, it has more of a connection to the Kodokan Judo Mitsuyo Maeda taught Carlos Gracie in the early 1900s. In fact, video recordings from the 1980s and 1990s demonstrate the Gracies using slaps and punches to progress their position.

After establishing CBJJ, Bravo arranged competitive matches at his tournaments. At EB11, Chad George, JM Holland, Sheridan Moran, and Nick Honstein fought for the bantamweight championship. The 135 lbs battles were the most thrilling ones for the spectators, with the powerful slaps generating applause from the people present.

Concurrently, both top-tier MMA and BJJ athletes have lent credibility to the matches through their posts on social networks, even though a few likened the competitions to Russian slapping tournaments. The invitationals have served to arouse more interest in Combat Jiu Jitsu, prompting more Jiu Jitsu athletes to give the slapping and grappling sport a try. Subsequently, Bravo began organizing Combat Jiu Jitsu Worlds events, with the inaugural one held in 2018.

4. 10th Planet and Eddie’s Lineage

There are several Eddie Bravo students who have started their own gyms and are now teaching the 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu system. Some notable examples include:

  • Denny Prokopos: Prokopos is one of Bravo’s earliest students and has been running his own 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu academy in California since 2005.
  • Richie Martinez: Martinez is a black belt under Bravo and runs 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu gyms in Arizona and California.
  • Jean-Paul Lebosnoyani: Lebosnoyani is a black belt under Bravo and runs 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu gyms in France and Belgium.
  • Zack Kirkham: Kirkham is a black belt under Bravo and runs 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu gym in California.
  • Josh Hinger: Hinger is a black belt under Bravo and runs 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu gym in California.
  • Lachlan Giles: Giles is a black belt under Bravo and runs 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu gym in Australia.
  • Andy Wang: Wang is a black belt under Bravo and runs 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu gym in California.
  • Matt Secor: Secor is a black belt under Bravo and runs 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu gym in New York.

These are just a few examples of Eddie Bravo’s students who have started their own gyms and are now teaching the 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu system.  There are currently over 50 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu gyms worldwide, operated independently by certified instructors who have trained under Bravo and received permission to open their own locations. 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu has gyms all around the globe, including in America, Canada, Mexico, Europe, Australia, and Asia. To receive the affiliation of 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu, a person needs to have trained and met a specific standard in the system.

5. 10th Planet Affiliation

To become affiliated with 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu, an individual must first train and achieve a certain level of proficiency in the system. The individual should seek out a certified 10th Planet instructor and train under their guidance to learn the techniques and principles of the system. Once the individual feels they have a solid understanding of the system, they can then approach Eddie Bravo or one of the certified instructors about becoming an affiliate.

To become a certified member of the 10th Planet network, a person must pass an assessment to demonstrate they are qualified to instruct the program. Additionally, they must meet various criteria such as having a suitable classroom, plus maintain sufficient insurance and abide by other legal obligations.

If a prospecting coach has fulfilled all the conditions, they will be given authorization to open their own 10th Planet fitness centre and will be a member of the 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu organization. As an associate, they will gain access to the organization’s assets, such as educational materials and assistance from other trainers, as well as the ability to use the 10th Planet brand and image. It is important to remember that the process may vary based on the area and the presence of recognized instructors.

Table of Contents