Celebrity Chef, author, and BJJ Blue Belt Anthony Bourdain will be exploring the city of San Francisco on the next episode of his CNN show Parts Unknown which debuts on Sunday, October 18th at 9 PM EST. In addition to exploring the city’s food and culture, Bourdain also made a visit to Ralph Gracie’s San Francisco Academy which is led by tattoo artist and BJJ Black Belt Kurt Osiander. Bourdain recently penned a piece for Medium.com where he spoke about his love of BJJ and his experience training under Osiander who is known for his physically demanding warm-ups and conditioning drills.
An excerpt from the article speaks about the grueling training at Ralph Gracie’s academy:
It wasn’t a casual decision. Ralph Gracie (Renzo’s brother) is notorious for his grueling warm-ups. Back in New York it had taken me six months to get up to speed enough physically to be able to keep up with the pre-instruction calisthenics in white belt classes. But Ralph’s, everybody I spoke to told me, was worse. Black belts at Renzo’s would smile pityingly when I told them I’d be going out to train there for a week.
“You are not going to enjoy the warm ups,” they’d say, describing a near half hour regime of jumping jacks, squats, burpees, sprawls, push-ups, crunches, sprints, fireman carries, forward and backward rolls , monkey and bear crawls, leg lifts, and other fiendish strategies to thoroughly exhaust the human body — before live training involving six 6 minute rounds — with 30 second breaks in between. (Ralph, armed with a kendo practice sword, has been known during these short breaks to demand “Give me twenty!” of his students, requiring a quick 20 push-ups before continued sparring).
Remember to program your DVRs to record Parts Unknown which airs this Sunday on CNN at 9 PM EST.