Augusto “Tanquinho” Mendes – The Complete Champion
We hope you enjoy our Tanquinho DVD Review brought to you by Digitsu Online.
Digitsu Online is quickly becoming a favorite go to for BJJ instructionals. Bringing you awesome videos from Abmar Barbosa, Lucas Lepri, Gianni Grippo, and the Live to Fight seminar they’re now adding in another world champion in Augusto “Tanquinho” Mendes.
I’m not sure if you know who Augusto “Tanquinho” Mendes is, but just in case you’re new to the art or don’t quite follow the sport side of Jiu Jitsu, here is a brief intro…
Via BJJ Heroes (see his full profile here)
Augusto Mendes, also known as Tanquinho within the Jiu Jitsu community, is a Black belt under the legendary Master of BJJ, Mr Francisco Mansur. Tanquinho is also one of the most recognized referees in BJJ and an amazing professor of the sport, being one of the head instructors at the Soul Fighters camp.
In 2011 he started raising some heads his way after a successful weight drop to featherweight (was a lightweight previously) where he competed and defeated some of the biggest names in Jiu Jitsu.
On with the tanquinho dvd review!!!!
DVD Overview – 118 minutes
Digitsu has brought you a DVD that is packed with solid technique from Augusto “Tanquinho” Mendes. The price is set well at $69.95 and in my opinion is a good price for what you’re getting.
While I feel the production quality has slipped in comparison to other Digitsu products, the material at hand has not and that’s the most important part right?
I could give you a DVD filled with amazing production but if the techniques are crap, are you going to be satisfied?
The techniques themselves aren’t exactly revolutionary material, but the details in which Augusto Mendes presents them is what makes this set great in my opinion. A lot of basic maneuvers but damn are they solid. I believe that a beginner white belt could watch half of this DVD and benefit greatly from it. On the other hand, blue and above could watch this and benefit just as much.
There is a saying on the back of the DVD box that reads “Get ready for one of the most effective and highly adaptable Jiu-Jitsu instructional series to date!”. This statement is definitely true.
As with a lot of Brazilians, their English isn’t the best, Tanquinho’s speech is a little shaky and a bit muffled at times, but you can make out what he’s saying if you’re paying a attention and watch the technique a few times. (that’s what you’re supposed to do anyway yeah?)
Tanquinho is a very shy and soft spoken person. He was very uncomfortable in front of the camera.
Like I stated above, the DVD techniques are solid and make the price worth it. The production could definitely use some work (maybe go back to the way the Lucas Lepri set was filmed?) but Digitsu is producing instructional videos that you won’t be disappointed in, and at price points that are way better than other DVD sets that are out there.
Via Charlie from Digitsu about the production –
In 2014, we built a small sound proof studio that will allow us to maximize the film time rather than being under a live location’s schedule. In the past, we would rent out a live academy so we had to film around their schedule. With filming at a live location, there are various factors that we must consider or work around. For example, we have to stop every time there is noise (we filmed at Fairfax Jiu Jitsu for Abmar’s DVD, Fairfax is located 3 miles from Dulles International Airport). Sometimes a location works out (Lucas DVD lighting) for the better.
Tanquinho’s DVD was definitely a learning process for the capabilities and deficiencies of the studio. Given that the studio is small, we have to use vignette lighting. Some people prefer it, because it puts the instructor in the foreground without distraction, but the trade-off is that the footage can be a little dark.
The packaging is a step up from the last Digitsu instructional we reviewed. (Next Gen DLR with Gianni Grippo, you can see that here)
It’s a four panel box that has artwork on both sides of each panel and features photos of Tanquino in action from Preston Smith Photography.
The front cover features the main title and a photo of Augusto. When you open the box it has two live shots of Tanquinho against Rafa Mendes.
Open it up one more time and it shows two inner panels that have the plastic DVD holders, they are clear so you can see the photos of the 2013 Mundials podium where Augusto beat Rafa Mendes to win his first Gi world title.
On the inside left panel it has a statement from Tanquinho, and on the outer left panel it has quotes from friends of Tanquinho.
The back of the DVD has a brief description, technique list, and a few still pictures from the DVD.
The lighting is what kills the production in my opinion. Sometimes it’s good, but over half the time it’s dark, grainy, or over exposed.
It’s almost as if there is one spotlight in a dark room pointed directly in front/over them. The vignette effect they use also makes it darker than it should appear and when the vignette isn’t there it comes off as grainy depending on the angle they show.
I do have a couple of good things to say about the production though.
They do show quite a few angles and make sure that you get to see everything you need to know about the technique both in fast, and slow motion.
After the techniques are shown, on the last replay there is a title box with text that will show at the top of the picture giving you some tips for the move at hand. The tips are very helpful and reiterate what Augusto is saying. At first I didn’t exactly like them but now I don’t mind them after watching over and over.
I want to clarify though as I’m not giving Digitsu a pass on the lower production value, they’re trying something new obviously and I can appreciate them trying to reinvent the instructional market, but I don’t think this is the direction they should go.
25 on the first disc and 18 on the second. That’s a lot of techniques to choose from but lets be honest here, this entire set is focused on passing the guard and finishing your opponent. There are no “sweeps” really shown here but there are a few takedowns.
We shot 2 sets in one session; the first series focuses on his top game. His bottom game series will release around November, we will TRY to fix the issues you pointed out. But given that we shot everything all at once, I’m not sure if we can.
As mentioned in the overview, the techniques being shown are something that every belt level can get something from. The guard passes/control passes he shows are a great system. Most of the series of moves Augusto shows (Cross collar series, side control series, etc.) can all be used in conjunction with one another if one should fail.
Wanna learn how to pass modern guards? They have it covered. Deep Half, X Guard, 50/50.
Wanna learn to attack the turtle after you’ve attempted a pass and your opponent turtle shells you? Gotcha covered.
I’m super thrilled and very satisfied with the technique list shown.
Tanquinho DVD review, don’t forget you can purchase the DVD from Digitsu HERE