Friday, June 03, 2005

BJJ Move #7: Breaking the Guard Open - Standard Method

Getting stuck inside someone's guard is a pain in the butt.
You can't get away. You can't effectively punch or choke or anything. And he can mess you up as soon as you start to move around.

Here's a beginner's technique for opening the legs up.
It's honestly not the best technique because it takes a lot of energy and has to be done just right, but it does work if you do it right.
After you break his legs open, there are a number of techniques you can use to "pass the guard."

WARNING! These techniques could result in serious injury or death if practiced incorrectly or even if performed correctly. They should only be practiced with the supervision of an experienced instructor.

Breaking the legs open - Standard Method:
-Reversal (setup)

First, put your hands on your opponent’s biceps and press your head against his chest to keep control of his hands and protect yourself from punches (if opponent is wearing a gi, pin his lapels over his shoulders).

Next, get good posture: you must be sitting up straight, with your shoulders back and your face pointing forward (don’t look down at your opponent).
Turn your right shoulder towards your opponent, and plant your right hand against his chest (if opponent is wearing a gi, gather his lapels together and hold them in your right fist against his chest).
Don’t put weight on this hand-—it’s only there to keep him from sitting up and doing a sweep.
Keep your right shoulder turned toward him for some protection against an armlock. Put your left hand on his right upper thigh or belt (grabbing his pants near his hip if he’s wearing a gi), with your left elbow against the inside of his knee. This controls his hips and protects you from armlocks and triangles. While his hip is trapped against the ground, he can’t do those techniques. The pressure from your left forearm / elbow against his inner thigh _may_ pop his legs apart.

Lift your right foot and put it close to your opponent’s butt/leg (keeping it close prevents him from grabbing your foot from the inside and sweeping you).

Pivot your left foot out about 30 degrees, and stand up into a squat, with your left foot at 90 degrees to your right foot. This should break the grip and create a space to put your hand through.

Turn your right knee in towards his body (counterclockwise) to help break his guard.

If you are having trouble creating space, push down on your opponent’s right knee from the top with your left elbow/arm as you push back with your body (digging your elbow into your opponent's thigh hurts, but won’t make a tough guy let go—the pushing will).

Or, use your left hand and reach behind you between his feet (not under his knee) and pull his feet apart.

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