Company: Michael DePasquale Jr. Enterprises
Tape Name: Upright Street to Ground Grappling Self Defense
Tape Cost: $34.95
Length of Tape: 50 min.
Number of Moves/Techniques: 18
Return Policy: Unknown
Experiences in dealing with this company: Excellent
The Instructor: Michael DePasquale Jr.
Company’s Address: 187 River Vale Road River Vale, NJ 07675
Company’s Phone Number: (201) 666-7100
Web Page:

Primary Grading Criteria:

1. Production/Tape Quality: 9
2. Instructors demonstrated skill level: 8
3. Comprehension Score/Immediate Understanding: 8
4. Degree to which this will make someone a better Martial Artist: 8
5. Score on delivery vs. Hype: 8
6. Degree to which we would recommend this product: 8
7. Wasted time (The higher the number, the less “fluff”/repetition: 8
8. Playback Score/Watching it over and over again: 8
9. Would I purchase more of this company’s product: 8
10. Overall grade based on cost vs. Value: 8

Grand Total: 81% (Poor)(.25 stars on a 5 star scale)

Secondary Grading Criteria:

1. Beginners benefit: Good
2. Intermediate benefit: None
3. Advanced benefit: None
4. Time to benefit: Some Immediate, greatest benefit with practice
5. The need to buy additional tapes to understand this one: None

Written Summary:

Michael DePasquale Jr. literally grew up learning the Martial Arts. His father is Michael DePasquale Sr. who is considered to be one of the original pioneers of traditional Jiu Jitsu in the United States. Michael DePasquale Jr. is also the editor of the well known Martial Arts magazine Karate International and has a series of video tapes on the market. This is the first Instructional video tape by Michael DePasquale Jr. that MAVR has had the opportunity to view.

Mr. DePasquale begins this video by explaining that he doesn’t believe in grappling on the street as you will injure yourself. He explains that you need to limit your grappling in the street as it is much different grappling on asphalt than it is on mats in the dojo. Mr. DePasquale goes on to explain that what he is showing is Combat Jiu Jitsu and not for sport etc etc. There are several references throughout the video made to bar situations that people could encounter. After watching this video I came to the conclusion that what Mr. DePasquale is showing could only work on two types of people. The first being someone who is very intoxicated and the second type of person would have to be someone who knows nothing about fighting in the street. Some of the techniques presented could work in the street BUT anyone who has any clue about fighting would easily be able to counter any of the movements shown. The most annoying part of the whole tape was Michael’s constant bantering about how this is not sport and how dangerous the techniques presented were. I had to ask myself, dangerous to who? Probably more dangerous to the practioner if he tried any of this against a skilled opponent. Michael really wastes a lot of tape time talking saying the same things over and over. He began to sound like a broken record.

Now that I have that out of my system let’s talk about what was on the tape. Michael demonstrates how a person can fall without injuring themselves. Michael really doesn’t explain this, he just demonstrates how to do it using a standard breakfall. Anyone past the beginner level will know how to fall. Michael shows several ways to deal with the sucker type punch. The punches thrown are long looping roundhouse type punches. This type of punch can be fairly common in the street from the average person. Michael shows how to intercept the punch with a deadarm block which leads into a outer reaping throw. This defense could work on the street and I thought was one of the better defenses that was shown. Another defense to the looping roundhouse punch shown was the hip throw. Michael stresses that speed is of the utmost importance in executing this technique because the other punch is coming. This would really take a lot of practice to become good at this and even at that I don’t believe this will work on anyone except possibly the two types of people mentioned above. Michael shows a few submissions when you get the person on the ground. Very basic material complete with several technical errors.

The next section deals with defending the tackle. The first defense was against a high tackle which leads into a neck compression. This technique could work and is quite painful. The majority of the tackle defenses on this video wouldn’t work in a real confrontation. The problem with the defenses shown for both the punches and the defense to the tackle is that the attacker will throw a punch/attempt a tackle then stop in midstream while Michael applies the techniques. Very few people that I know throw a punch and leave it hanging out in mid air to wait for someone to defend
against it. The tackles were also very unrealistic as the attacker stops midstream while a technique is applied. This works fine in the dojo but NOT in the street. Another problem is that Michael leaves out a lot of the finer details that could of make this video better. If the minor details would of been shown then this video would of been of more benefit to the beginner. It was also never shown how the defender could take someone down if he needed to initiate a tackle in response to a attack. I could go on and on about the video but I think that it is clear that I did not think much of this tape. There is some benefit for the beginner however there are A LOT of better videos available for a beginner. This video has nothing to offer the Intermediate or advanced practitioner.

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