Posts Tagged ‘practice’

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Learning the Critical Skill of Guard Passing in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu At Dragon Within, We teach a unique style to our Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. We keep in mind everyones safety and ability. Making sure everyone is working to their full potential while keeping in mind they have limits.  

Guard passing remains one of the most important skills to develop in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

The guard is a significant part of the Jiu Jitsu game since it offers both offense and defense on the ground even while situated on your back. The ability to pass the guard gives a Jiu Jitsu player an edge as well. Through being able to consistently pass the guard, the offensive and defensive capabilities of an opposing Jiu Jitsu player become less effective. Becoming talented at guard passing does not refer to learning a ton of different guard passes and merely memorizing them. Good guard passing skill is based on understanding a number of basic principles and being able to effectively execute them.

In order to pass the guard, you must go over or under the legs.

This is not always safe. At Dragon Within, we understand that without decent control of an opponent and good posture on your part, a weak guard pass leaves you vulnerable for sweeps and submissions. The process of passing the guard the properly begins with establishing good base and posture. Base refers to maintaining both stability and a low center of gravity, two traits critical to prevent from being off balanced or swept. Posture means your positioning protects the neck, arms, and legs from attacks. Once your posture and base are solid, the time comes to control the legs and, if the guard is closed, uncross the ankles.

Opening up the closed guard requires putting some level of pressure on the legs to force the ankles to uncross. Again, without good base and posture, this is not going to be easy at all. Once you have opened up the legs, you must control them along with the hips. With the open guard, you do not have to uncross the ankles. You simply go right into controlling the hips and legs, although this can sometimes be difficult based on the positioning certain open guard present.

Whether you choose to go over or under the legs, you positively must put pressure on your opponent. Controlling the hips is important to prevent an opponent from putting you back in the guard, although focusing solely on the hips while ignoring the importance of pinning him can make a guard pass weaker. The finishing positions of a guard pass is a pin be it side control, the scarf hold, or even the North/South position. To make a pin work effectively, you have to really anchor your weight down. This process has to start during the guard pass because, quite simply, a loose guard pass is not going to help keep anyone in place for a pin.

Developing these skills can take time.

Among the best ways to become better at guard passing is to drill. Your training partner can put you in a number of different guards. While the partner offers moderate resistance, you work on guard passing and pinning. Correct your flaws and mistakes and try to improve with each training session. Your guard passing skills might increase immensely as a result. And great improvement could come far quicker than you ever imagined.

Elbows In! Protecting Yourself When Pinned

No one likes to be pinned down in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Pinning and holding is a large part of the game so anyone interested in learning Jiu Jitsu must learn how to deal with pins. The various top positions such as mount, side mount, north/south, scarf hold, and even knee on stomach are all designed to keep someone in place so in order to be submitted. Escape is the goal when you are pinned, but escaping is not always easy to do. You could end up being pinned for several minutes. To help reduce the chances of being submitted, your posture has to solidly defensive while also creating the best leverage for escaping.

Keeping the elbows close to the body would be among the most important of all posture considerations. There are two major problems present when the elbows are too far from the core of the body. The first is the arms are very vulnerable to submissions. An opponent can easily wrap under the elbow and go into a spinning armlock. The reason it is so easy to wrap the arm is the distance from the elbow and the body presents a significant amount of space.

The second problems is the arms lose a great deal of strength since supporting muscle groups cease to be involved. As a result, forcing the arm down to execute a bent shoulder lock is not all that tough. An opponent on top has a lot of leverage. Having weak arm posture further reduces the ability to defend the arms. Pulling the arms and elbows in towards the body makes attacking them dramatically more difficult.

In order to escape from the bottom, your elbows must press into points on the opponent’s body in order to create space. This is very difficult to achieve when the elbows are even slightly out of position. When they are too far from the body, they can offer no effective leverage at all.

Does this mean all hope is lost when your elbows are out of position. No, it just means you must make it a priority to bring them back in. Performing a simple short bridge to bump an opponent up can create enough space for just enough time to return the elbows to their correct position.

All of this takes practice and experience, but that is what training is for. As long as you continue to focus on good posture on the bottom, the chances are likely you will improve in no time.

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