Bloody Elbow DVD Review – Flower Power by Malachy Friedman

American Top Team Brazilian Jiu Jitsu coach Malachy Friedman released his D’Arce Killer DVD some time ago, and the results were great. It was…

By: Victor Rodriguez | 5 years ago
Bloody Elbow DVD Review – Flower Power by Malachy Friedman
Bloody Elbow 2.0 | Anton Tabuena

American Top Team Brazilian Jiu Jitsu coach Malachy Friedman released his D’Arce Killer DVD some time ago, and the results were great. It was focused on a particular scenario and expanded with the purpose of being useful for both submission grappling and MMA.

Now, his attention to detail and focus is brought to his new DVD, Flower Power. As the name indicates, it’s all about building a system around the flower sweep. Long recognized and respected in BJJ for being one of the most effective and powerful techniques in the game, Friedman accomplishes something interesting here. Beginning with the basics and minutae of the basic form of the sweep, he works past the fundamentals to set up various variations and attacks entirely based on contingency plans.

The result is pretty great. It’s much more applicable and open than his last DVD, and it doesn’t rely on beginning from a defensive position. This instantly makes this more open and accessible than his previous release, and should have plenty to offer for any BJJ practitioner regardless of skill level or rank.

The production quality of the instructional is on par with any high-end item available today. The videos are shot with a high resolution, and the audio is perfect. The angle setups for the camera work are very basic, and there’s not a lot of “cameraman walking around and making things shaky“ happening here. The low angles for the details for initiating the sweep with lapel grips and hand positioning are a good fit, capturing absolutely everything.

As for the actual content, Friedman is once again fantastic. His instructions are clear, his ability to explain the order and sequence of techniques is solid. The most important thing is that he’s great at explaining why you’re doing what you’re doing. Very few good instructors neglect this, but it’s a phenomenon that still exists out there in some videos. Not here, though. Everything is done with a very tight game that limits space between opponents, as the grappler utilizing the guard position takes the lead and doesn’t let up at any point.

Athleticism is not a priority, either. Everything here can be done regardless of age or flexibility. From the base setup of the sweep, to the transitions to sneaky triangle chokes off of it and ending up in X-guard sequences and inverted armbars, nothing here is daunting or intimidating due to complexity or physical ability. Everything clicks together and works well.

Since this is exclusively tailored for the gi, there’s not much for the no-gi crowd. That’s not to say that adjustments aren’t possible for that purpose, it’s just not the main concern. That means there’s no real attempt to pore over them in the video, so you’ll have to find those workarounds yourself. For those looking to engage a more active guard game, this could be a great starting point – the worst case scenario in a lot of these is that you end up on top and establish control immediately.

Here’s a sample:

I already highly recommended Friedman’s previous work because of the effectiveness and approach, despite having some reservations about the limitations inherent to starting in a specific submission scenario. Yet what we have here is something much more approachable that allows anyone to get in on the ground level and immediately begin to work towards revamping their game. Where the previous one felt a bit esoteric and confined, this is more open and more readily applicable during sparring. It’s a clever thing, as Friedman’s basically built a small system around an already effective but somewhat overlooked technique, filling in gaps along the way.

All of this means I would absolutely recommend this one as well, and to a much wider amount of people. After all, you’ll probably be able to dig into 2-3 techniques and use them that same day in your sparring sessions.

Malachy Friedman’s Flower Power is available for digital purchase over at Digitsu for $29.99, and can be bundled with his previous instructional as well. DVD copies will be available for purchase at a later date.

**Note: Review was conducted with a DVD copy provided to BE for review purposes.

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About the author
Victor Rodriguez
Victor Rodriguez

Victor Rodriguez has been a writer and podcaster for Bloody Elbow since 2015. He started his way as a lowly commenter and moderator to become the miscreant he is now. He often does weekly bits on fringe martial arts items across the globe, oddball street combat pieces, previews, analysis, and some behind-the-scenes support. He has trained in wrestling, Karate, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and the occasional Muay Thai and Judo lesson here and there. Victor has also been involved with acting and audio editing projects. He lives in Pennsylvania where he plays way too many video games and is an S-rank dad.

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