Relaxation, tension and body geometry: A huge part of your or failure in grappling will come down to your ability to control your opponent’s movements by FITTING THE GEOMETRY OF YOUR BODY INTO THE GEOMETRY OF HIS in ways that MAXIMIZE CONTACT AND CONNECTION and thus inhibit through CONNECTION RATHER THAN MUSCULAR STRENGTH. The you must gain is that THE ONLY WAY TO MOLD YOUR BODY INTO THE GEOMETRY OF YOUR OPPONENT’S BODY IS TO RELAX AND SOFTEN YOUR OWN BODY. However, the only way to KEEP yourself locked into that is to tighten yourself. Thus you must play the same delicate balancing act between relaxation and tension that a python does when it wraps around its prey. YOU MUST BE SOFT WHEN MOVING TO FIT INTO YOUR OPPONENT, THEN TIGHTEN TO SOLIDIFY YOUR POSITION ONCE THERE. Often you will have to in cycles of tension and relaxation to get the job done. Here, Gordon Ryan superb conformity to the shape of his opponent’s body – made possible by relaxation- but also tightness to hold himself once there against a very skilled opponent like Yuri Simoes as he patiently works towards a match winning strangle. Photo @banejitsu