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MGinAction.com

I’m a huge fan of Marcelo Garcia’s game, and watching his success in competition helped develop my love of the sport.  I own all of his instructional videos, gone to one of his seminar’s, and also have taken a private with him.  I would scour the internet for videos of him training to dissect his technique.  That being said I was very excited to hear about www.mginaction.com.

What is it?

For those not familiar with the website,MGinAction is a online subscription BJJ training website., similar to Vinicius Draculino’s BJJ Training.  The program is designed by Josh Wautzkin, who was the kid the film Searching for Bobby Fischer was about.  He is a national chess champion, BJJ Brown Belt, and author of The Art of Learning.

The website includes instructional videos, which show Marcelo teaching technique in class.  Most of the instructional videos are multi-part techniques, that include counters or additional options.  The instructional videos are split up into main categories, Fundamentals and Advanced.  In addition to these instructional videos, there are videos unedited with Marcelo sparring, short technique videos cut from Marcelo sparring, and just recently added were discussions where you hear Marcelo explain theory, strategy, and concepts rather then straight forward technique.  The discussion videos have potential to be very good, although many of them are difficult to hear and I have to make the volume loud or listen to few times.

Probably the most ambitious part of the website is how things are cataloged.  Every instructional video includes tags consisting of Control, Counter, Escape, Guard pass, Position, Submission, Sweep, Takedown, and/or Transition.  These tags are fully searchable.  In addition, you can filter by GI or No-Gi.  What all this means is that you can watch any video, whether its instructional or sparring and immediately find other videos with the same technique.  I found this to be very useful, for instance I was studying the ‘Standing Step Pass’ and searched by this tag.  This resulted in 3 Advanced instructional clips, 28 edited clips of Marcelo doing the technique live, and 30 unedited sparring sessions where Marcelo uses this technique.  There is also a My page tab that allows you to save and organize videos for future reference which is useful.  The video player itself is sufficient and they recently added a option to watch the videos at 25%, 50%, and 75% speed.  This is very helpful when trying to look for details in the sparring videos.

The Rundown:

Generally the website is updated every weekday afternoon.  However this isn’t set in stone and varies.  Below are the total number of videos by type:

Fundamental Instructional: 52
Advanced Instructional: 82
Techniques(Very short clips cut from sparring matches): 554
Sparring: 171
Discussion: 12
Total Videos: 871

Other Features:

You can rate and comment videos, but there doesn’t seem to be comments on many videos. There is a forum on the website but its not very active.  Its unfortunate there isn’t much discussion on the website.  I’ve seen very detailed discussion on Marcelo’s techniques on other forums.  There does seem to be good responsiveness to viewer requests though.  I’ve seen people request techniques and shortly after an update will be on exactly what they requested.  The website also contains a link for a Store, but it is currently returning the error ‘Store Offline for Temporary.’  As far as I’m aware this has never been active.

How much does it cost?

You can subscribe on the website.  Currently they offer a Monthly $25 subscription and a $250 yearly subscription($50 savings over a year of monthly payments).  I was able to sign up my first year for $150 due to a 72-hour promo during the websites launch.  In addition this 72-hour promo also included a free week of training at his NYC Academy for any week in 2010.

This service definitely is it a bit pricey, but for me this definitely is a value.  When compared to the prices of other BJJ instructional DVDs.   Any one of Marcelo’s four DVD sets are still going to cost you $150 a pop.

The Bottom Line:

Marcelo’s Game is definitely unique, and this website gives you all the tools to see his style.  I would highly recommend this service those who study Marcelo’s game and are looking for the deepest insight possible.  You get what you put into this website.  It makes everything very accessible and I feel there is little being held back.  I do however feel that the technique on the website is often very advanced, and I’m not so sure the site is worth it for a beginner.  If your looking to learn basics in BJJ, you can find videos else where for free, or are hopefully taught these regularly in your academy.  Lastly its worth stating the obvious that most of the technique is straight from Marcelo’s game, but this does have a disadvantage.  For instance, there aren’t many Kimura or Triangle techniques, as these aren’t a big part of his game.  If your game is similar to Marcelo’s favoring butterfly guard, xguard, guillotines, and back control this site will be very helpful for you.

Pros:

  • Instruction from Marcelo Garcia
  • Updated Frequently
  • Tons of sparring footage.
  • Tagging and Categorization makes it easy to find the videos you are looking for.

Cons:

  • Monthly $25 subscription or a $250 yearly fee
  • May not be most useful resource for a beginner
  • Not much detail on techniques outside of Marcelo’s game