Name: Christian Ozbek
Affiliation: London Shootfighters/Submission Grappling Club
Years in BJJ: 7/8 and around 12 in judo
What got you started in BJJ? Frustrated with the rules of Judo, I liked mma so, I went to london shootfighters then started working so much grappling I ended up realizing there’s so much more to grappling as a whole than just Judo and seeing each martial arts flaws.
Where did you start training?
What are your earliest memories from training? Budokwai, watched Iliadis win gold in Greece 2004 and caught my eye, then an assembly happened at school where a female team GB member pinned me down in from office the school assembly as part of a demo. My stupid 7 year old self couldn’t believe that happened from a woman, I got mocked by every equally stupid 7 year old boy, but decided judo must be the way forward...then went to london shootfighters at 14 or so and tried mma then just got super into the grappling side there.
What are some of the most common mistakes you see beginners making? They don’t make a distinction between sparring harder and more intense and actually developing techniques and strategy. You’ll get tougher naturally, be as technical as possible, and both sides. No one does both sides due to ego, accept your crap for now and reap the rewards later. Also just because you watch an instructional once in one go, doesn’t mean you’ve memorized it (unless it’s my instructional. Then you def haven’t).
One piece of advice to your white belt self? Do proper research on the place you start your training at. If you get taught crap you’ll either be crap or have crap instincts and habits, and so when you go to the proper place you’ll have to spend months and years unlearning terrible tendencies. Watch instructionals and fights
Rapid Fire Questions
1) Describe your style of BJJ - offensive, fast paced, big throws with leglocks
2) Current competition goals? Win Adcc trials in February, and then Euros IBJJF.
3) Best moment in competition? Jumping scissors off a single leg in Denmark sub only
tournament and again in london.
4) One person you would want to face from any generation of BJJ athletes? Royce Gracie,
just to see how much jiu jitsu has evolved since then.
5) What is your current training schedule? 2 times a day plus weights 3x a
6) One piece of advice for current white/blue belts for competition - Enjoy it and let loose! Pull the trigger when you see it and be confident in your offense. Fight to win, not to avoid losing. Be arrogant in your offense,‘don’t just try to survive.
1) Ideal victory meal? A box of krispy Kremes, guilt free.
2) Favorite activities outside of BJJ? Football, mma, documentaries and podcasts, some
occasional cooking depending on if I can be bothered, reading about History, politics
and economy (I sound like a complete posh prick but it’s interesting)
3) Favorite place to travel to? Greece
4) Favorite sport outside of BJJ? Football
5) The last movie you watched? Favorite movie? Last film/tv show, WW2 From the Frontlines. (in colour), fav movie is Karate Kid 1 or Die Hard 1. Don’t judge. Titanic also bloody good.
6) Favorite song on your playlist right now? Light - Allegra
Thanks so much Chris for answering our questions! Welcome to the team. Can’t wait to see what this year has in store for you on and off the mats.