Because this particular feature falls towards the beginning of the New Year, the general vibe of our society tends to focus on resolutions and commitments, which brings us directly to our cover feature of Nicky Ryan. To see what Nicky has been doing on the competition scene is really the easy part. There’s no denying that what we are witnessing is something along the lines of a “prodigy” or phenom. Or is there denying it? If I were to tell you that in order to succeed in anything you would have to sacrifice something out of your life and commit to that, strong chance is that many of us would agree with that statement. So, if we delve a little deeper into the word “prodigy” or “phenom”, the onus is on us to come to our own conclusion of what we feel the definition of those words mean when we acknowledge the context of how they’re being used in conjunction with the word “sacrifice” and to one Nicky Ryan. When presenting this question to Nicky, he will simply state that he is no different than anyone else. Although he realizes that he is pretty good at jiu-jitsu, he chalks it up to his total commitment to learning and training the art. He also explained that when he first started jiu-jitsu, he was actually overweight and looked far from anything resembling prodigal athletic ability. Now, his day starts in the early morning with a commute from Jersey and make it to RGA’s famed “Blue Basement” to begin his training at the 7:30 am session. After that, Nicky will take a short break and resume his training at the 12:30 session. From there, Nicky returns back to New Jersey to “wind down” with, yes, you guessed it, another training/teaching session in the evening to end his typical day. According to John Danaher, Nicky repeats this format every day of the week and has been for the past few years. Now that’s what we would consider some serious commitment blended in with some sacrifice. We had the honor of linking up with Nicky in the “Blue Basement” and he was nice enough to share with us a few nuggets\ from all of his labor and time spent honing his craft. So with all of that said, feel free to be your own “prodigal” self with whatever you place as your goals of self-improvement. If you need a little inspiration or help, just watch how Nicky does it. Maybe people will start referring to you as a prodigy in your chosen field once you adopt this young man’s approach. Bom treino!
Entry to the Triangle
Nicky has many methods of initiating attacks on his opponents. Nicky considers the triangle one of his favorite methods of those attacks. In this sequence, Nicky shares with us how he is able to set up his triangle attack to either secure the submission or transition to other viable options of demise on his opponents.
X-Guard Transition to Inside Sankaku (Heel Hook)
This next technique can be considered the counter to the counter of the last technique. It is one of the multiple natural progressions that is available if your opponent recognizes and effectively stifles the initial triangle attack as explained in the previous technique.
X-Guard Transition to Outside Heel Hook
In this sequence, Nicky presents another option that is available to him using the same X-Guard setup as previously explained. However, instead of going for an inside heel hook attack, Nicky will go for an outside attack.
Pass to Kimura
This is a pass that Nicky likes to use because it not only sets up a Kimura but also opportunities to improve his position.
In part two of this series, Nicky will show us one of his go-to methods for taking his opponent’s back, an arm trap triangle and how he creates opportunities for his vaunted triangles.