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This website is about Brazilian jiu jitsu (BJJ). I'm a purple belt who started in 2006, teaching and training at Artemis BJJ in Bristol, UK. All content ©2004-2016 Can Sönmez

24 June 2016

24/06/2016 - BJJ Globetrotter Camp | Leuven 2016 | No-Gi Pressing Armbar (Chad Wright)

Class #741
BJJ Globetrotter Camp (Sportoase Leuven), Chad Wright, Leuven, Belgium, 24/06/2016

The pressing armbar is an attack I'm increasingly enjoying, meaning I was sufficiently interested in what variations Chad might have that I forced myself to do a nogi class. For what Chad calls a cutting armbar (there are always loads of different names for stuff in BJJ), he started off with applying it against a triangle defence. If they tuck they arm back to try and prevent your choke, reach through behind that arm. You can then pry it loose, pulling the wrist to your neck, then moving into the usual pressing armbar.

Chad then demonstrated how you could move into the pressing armbar from underneath half guard, noting that if they posture up when you go for it, you can simply shift back to closed guard. From a closed guard, Chad showed how you can move into a 'pitstop', where you bringing your legs up over their shoulder and triangling your legs. That's definitely easier if you have long limbs like Chad. ;)

24/06/2016 - Private with Kenny Polmans | Half Guard & Side Control | Gi Chokes & Gi Tail Attacks

Class #740 - Private #024
BJJ Globetrotter Camp (Sportoase Leuven), Kenny Polmans, Leuven, Belgium, 24/06/2016

A video posted by Can (Jun) (@slideyfoot) on

My private lesson with David ‘Morcegao’ put me into a mindset of asking other black belts their prices. I liked the selection of techniques Polmans showed in his class, his teaching style suited me, plus he’s also close to my size and age. As if that wasn’t enough, his fees were incredibly reasonable too. :)

We got started immediately after his class on side control finished. I began by asking about the position we’d just done in the class, as I didn’t quite get it right. I have been playing with the breadcutter choke for a few years now, without a great deal of success. The problem I tend to have is that while I can get the grip behind the collar, I will generally then struggle to move into a submission.

Instead, I’ll get the initial grip, fail to get the second grip, then vacillate over switching to something else because I don’t want to lose position. I know three or four follow ups (i.e., these), but rarely go for them because they don’t feel tight enough.

Kenny had plenty of good advice. To begin, getting that initial grip can sometimes be tricky, as your arm gets stuck and you can’t reach far enough under their arm. Therefore you want to make enough space. With your cross facing arm, grip their far shoulder/gi material. Use that as an anchor point to lever them up with your arm. It’s then easy to reach through under their near arm, securing that near grip on the back of their collar.

Once you have that in, it’s important to wedge the knee nearest their hips underneath them slightly. That will prevent them putting their back flat, which would take away the space you need for the collar grip. Normally this point is where I have trouble getting my second grip in. In Kenny’s version, you already have it in place: rather than trying to insert your arm over their neck, you loop your arm around that far shoulder grip you secured earlier.

At this point, it’s similar to the Xande version I like, a blood choke, rather than the air choke David showed me in his private (because unlike me, David is of the Chris Paines nasty catch wrestling mindset ;D). That elbow of the shoulder arm drops down to the near side. When demonstrating, Kenny tapped his demonstration partner much earlier than that, so I’m not sure if that had some windpipe in it, or if it’s just that efficient. ;)

If they are blocking your shoulder grip by grabbing that arm, grab them back, gripping their tricep or elbow. Pull that across, so you can trap it underneath your chest. Once you’ve trapped it under your chest, bring your arm (the same one you just used to pull their arm across) under their head, like you were cross facing. You still have your original grip on the back of the collar. Grip on their shoulder, driving through them for the choke. If that doesn’t work, stretch out your leg nearest their head and drop your same side hip.

Shifting to the lapel, Kenny then went through his take on the gi tail baseball bat choke, something I first encountered on Roy Dean’s excellent Purple Belt Requirements. Pull out their far lapel, feeding that under their head to your cross facing hand. Secure the grip, then cut in your original hand, gripping on top of your other first, elbow angled in (aim to put it in the crook of your other elbow).

Put your knee on their belly to stop them escaping, then apply the choke. Your original arm stays fairly static, that’s mainly there as a wedge for pressure. If you need more leverage, you can try rotating around to a north south type position, putting your head on their chest.

You also have the armbar as an option from there. Move your original grip from under their head to pull up on their near arm. Step over their head, drop back and finish. If you have trouble with their turning into you, grip under their leg, securing their thigh.

Wrapping that far lapel over their arm works well too, especially as they’ll often try to block you feeding it by their neck. As a side note, keep your head turned towards their legs on top in side control when they are framing into your neck. That way, they can’t generate as much pressure into your throat with their forearm. Anyway, this is where the Americana comes in, same way I teach it (except that as before, Kenny likes to go to a low knee on belly for control).

I find that I try many of my favourite attacks in half guard in side control as well, so half guard gi tail attacks is what I asked about next. First thing Kenny pointed out was that you need to get the knee of your trapped leg out, in order to have the necessary mobility. He started with the gi tail ezequiel I like from there, along with the choke where you wrap the tail around, then cut in the elbow.

If they try to block your shoulder grip, as with the breadcutter, pull their arm across, cross-face and go for the pressure choke. This time, Kenny pulled on the sleeve and folded himself over the arm. Other than that, it was the same motion as before, just with your leg trapped in half guard. As ever with top half guard, you should also always keep in mind that the pass is an option too (he ran through his take on the hip switch pass as a result).

24/06/2016 - BJJ Globetrotter Camp | Leuven 2016 | Side Control Attacks (Kenny Polmans)

Class #739
BJJ Globetrotter Camp (Sportoase Leuven), Kenny Polmans, Leuven, Belgium, 24/06/2016

For his second class, Kenny focused on my favourite position, side control. As with his session on closed guard, he started off with the basics, keeping his instruction concise and clear. In order to move round from side control to north south, he suggested blocking the near hip, extending your leg nearest their head, then shifting towards the head.

However, he warned against getting greedy and trying to go straight to the head: that can mean your weight is off and you get rolled. Keep it steady, settling your weight down. Push their near arm out of the way (anybody experienced will make this a struggle, as that gives you a lot of control), shifting your leg forward then shuffling back to dislodge the elbow. You can now move into mount (grabbing your foot is an option here, though I always prefer driving the knee across, ideally into the armpit).

Next, Kenny began to set up the breadcutter choke. If they have their near arm in front of your legs, you can hook it with your arm, as you bring your knees back around into side control. I couldn’t quite see what was happening from the angle I had, but normally you then get underneath that arm with your hand, in order to reach back under for their collar. You can then grip their far collar with your other hand, swivelling your elbow back to lock in the breadcutter.

Just as I was thinking I couldn’t see the detail, Kenny psychically heard me and shifted his angle, meaning I could zoom in with my phone too. That meant I could see how Kenny pushes them up onto their side to secure his grip. He also secures the arm differently than I’ve been shown: rather than sneaking an arm under and staying sprawled, he does a quick motion with his legs to get the arm, knees staying in tight.

When you go for this choke, often they will be blocking. Just as often, you may find their gi lapels are loose. If not, it’s not normally too hard to pull them out yourself, though that does telegraph what you’re about to do. My training partners know how much I like choking people with a lapel, so get very wary once I start pulling out gi tails. ;D

For Kenny’s gi tail choke, grab their far lapel with your hand that’s nearest their legs, maintaining control of their head with your other arm. Punch it out to give yourself maximum gi tail to play with, then slide back and push it through the gap they usually create with their far arm (because that tends to be framing into your neck, head, or perhaps shoulder). You can go over the top too, like the attacks I enjoy from half guard. As Kenny said, they frequently pull their arm out if you do that, opening up the route you wanted in the first place.

From there, you can move into an Ezequiel choke using the lapel, which again connects back to that half guard sequence I’ve taught in the past. Keep it loose enough that you can insert your hand through. A big advantage of side control over the same attack from half guard is you can go to knee on belly, adding much more leverage. Look up, to engage the muscles of your whole body.

That was followed by another gi feed attack. This time, feed the gi collar over the arm, trapping their limb in the bent position. Bring your elbow underneath their elbow, then grab the gi tail with that hand (like the one I’ve taught from top half guard). Keep feeding it until you are gripping that gi tail close to their wrist, to lock their arm in tight. Put your knee on their stomach. Take the arm you have behind their head out, instead gripping their far wrist. Now just pull up their elbow as you push on the wrist for an Americana.

I didn't get a good angle on that last one, so couldn't see what was happening too well (thanks to Chris Paines, when I wrote this up in Madrid a few weeks later, I had access to his video from the other side), which also made me think I wanted more detail on everything. This was all stuff I like to use, so I decided to check with Kenny what he charged for private lessons. They were MUCH cheaper than I expected, meaning I immediately booked one there and there. Keep your eyes peeled for the class write-up, it will be the next post I upload on here. ;)

23 June 2016

23/06/2016 - BJJ Globetrotter Camp | Leuven 2016 | Open Mat

Class #738
BJJ Globetrotter Camp (Sportoase Leuven), Open Mat, Leuven, Belgium, 23/06/2016

I was very careful about pacing myself over the course of the camp. My plan was to avoid any sparring until towards the end of the week, to make sure I didn't pick up any knocks that might stop me training properly in the classes. By Thursday, I had done most of the classes I was particularly interested in, so decided I could finally begin sparring.

My initial plan was to do a kind of 'belt ladder', starting with white belts and progressing up to black. However, I didn't have much time today, so only got to blue belt. Still, it was good fun. I started off with Marthe, one of the many cool Germans in attendance. Later on, I would have a long chat with her and one of her team mates, Gina: hopefully I can visit them at their school in Hamburg next year. There is a massive German contingent at BJJ Globetrotter camps, with other cool people like Carmen over in Berlin. I've been wanting to do a proper trip around Germany for ages anyway, so this is a good excuse. With all the depressing Brexit nonsense, I can hopefully get myself a German passport too (via my German mother). Britain may be foolish enough to leave the EU, but that doesn't mean I have to. ;)

I also got in a roll with a blue belt, Lars, who I'd chatted to earlier at a meal organised through the camp. He is considerably larger than me, but didn't use lots of strength in our roll. I was surprised to get a pressing armbar from mount, belly down. I didn't think that was viable, but it popped up as I went to the super high mount I like, isolating the arm. Of course, he wasn't going very hard, but still, that's an attack I could try adding in to the stuff I normally try from there.

23/06/2016 - Private with David Morcegao | Open Guard & Side Control | Stiff Arm Frame, Knee Cut Counters & Gi Tail Choke

Class #737 - Private #023
BJJ Globetrotter Camp (Sportoase Leuven), David 'Morcegao' George, Leuven, Belgium, 23/06/2016

I hadn't intended to do any privates when I was booking the camp, but David mentioned he was only charging €40 for two people, a price too good to pass up. That set me off on a private lesson spree, booking another for Friday and a third for Saturday, each with a different instructor. For anybody going to a BJJ Globetrotter camp, I would therefore recommend bringing along a 'private lesson piggybank', to take advantage of affordable one-on-one attention. You can also grab black belts at open mat to ask them stuff (e.g., Christian said to do that, as he wasn't looking to do privates at this camp), but I feel better able to babble after having paid for an hour. Especially as I ask LOTS of questions. ;)

A photo posted by Can (Jun) (@slideyfoot) on

First on my list was knee cut counters. David began by suggesting you grab the foot from a reverse de la Riva position. If you mess up and they have gotten a knee through, you're in trouble. They want their balance centered, you want to disrupt that. Bump them with your knee, with the intention of swivelling up behind them. It could be either knee, depending on the position.

Pulling on the collar can help you with that too. You will end up in a scramble, like Haueter said, meaning that a wrestling approach will pay dividends. You're spinning through behind the leg, looking for the back or possibly moving into a single leg off that position.

If you can get some kind of purchase on their leg, you can turn, rolling them over. Securing a collar and grabbing their knee will help with this too, stiff arming to stop them recovering their position. If they don't fall over (e.g., you end up with their leg, but they still have some base), hook the leg as you turn, then stand to complete the single leg. If they are on their knee, you can tap that knee and drive through.

A late option is to try and spin through, your arm going underneath their body. Your other arm loops over their head, ending up in a brabo choke type thing (anaconda? I get confused as to which is which). To complete the choke, you're curling your body around their head.

Along with knee cut counters, I more generally want to improve my open guard, particularly the sitting guard frames I've been playing with from Ryan Hall. Rather than curling your arm in when you have it behind their head, make sure you're redirecting that head. That's a great point, as like David said, just curling the arm ends up using triceps. In a related point (which applies to side control frames too), you can reach for their shoulder, getting the lower part of your forearm into the throat.

I'm keen on improving my chokes from side control too, as I go for those a lot. David had a nifty little tweak on my favoured gi tail choke. If you can't get the basic gi tail to work, bring your other hand through to grip on top of your first grip, similar to a baseball bat grip, but on the side. Lever their head up for the choke (David described it as a steering wheel), being careful not to put your forearm through too deeply.

23/06/2016 - BJJ Globetrotter Camp | Leuven 2016 | North South Choke (Robson Barbosa)

Class #736
BJJ Globetrotter Camp (Sportoase Leuven), Robson Barbosa, Leuven, Belgium, 23/06/2016

I remember Robson and Bruno's classes from last year as being rather acrobatic, but as this one was side control attacks, I was intrigued. That's my most comfortable position, therefore some acrobatics would (hopefully!) be less confusing. As it turned out, Robson did indeed manage to come up with something that looked cool and flashy, but fortunately I had seen something vaguely similar before.

He began by switching around to the other side, hooking their arm as you spin around. That leads into a way of moving into technical mount, bringing your knee in close to their head, stepping your other foot through. Another option is to move into a north south choke. Pin their arm with your hand, your other arm going under their head. Switch to north south, still pinning that arm. Your other hand then releases that hand, linking with your other hand to apply the choke as you slide your weight back.

I find this one is tough to get, as there seems to be a lot of finesse in getting your body in just the right spot to close off the choke. It is also difficult to demonstrate, because it's hard to see the pressure unless the instructor is transparent. As ever I struggled to get the position, but at least now I have a video I can refer back to. :)

Robson finished off with a helicopter armbar, a suitably flashy finale. Not something I'll be trying in sparring any time soon, but again, handy to have a video. It's fun to bring that one out if you want to show something impressive and have a small person handy to demonstrate it with. :D

23/06/2016 - BJJ Globetrotter Camp | Leuven 2016 | Armbars from Closed Guard (Chris Haueter)

Class #735
BJJ Globetrotter Camp (Sportoase Leuven), Chris Haueter, Leuven, Belgium, 23/06/2016

Haueter's second class was a considerable contrast to the first. Lots of technique, tightly focused with cool details. That was particularly useful for me today, as I was going to miss most of Thursday's lessons due to an art gallery trip. He kicked off once again by emphasising the importance of controlling the hands, head and hips.

Haueter then described his perfect armbar, where he pointed out that as you bring your heels down, your hips should extend, not collapse (a common white belt problem). He also angled out his leg by the head, like that old DVD from Adam Adshead (thighmaster style, to use Haueter's analogy). You also want to cling on, as if you were climbing a tall pole, where letting go would mean you fall to your doom.

In his lesson plan, he had four variations in mind. First, the step by step, method armbar. Control the wrists (harking back to the hands, head, hips approach). Reach over the arms, keeping your arm pressing into theirs arms. Hook their elbow, pulling the hand to your ear, also bringing your ear to their hand. Next, hook your opposite hand around their shoulder to anchor into their armpit. Pull them down. Then, climb your legs up, quickly, getting a leg over the shoulder. Maintaining the tension (so they can't pull their arm free), reach your leg over their head. This was then perfectly condensed into pull, hook, climb, reach, armbar.

A video posted by Can (Jun) (@slideyfoot) on

Second up, he began by commenting on three different postures: passing (upright), neutral (slightly forward) and safety (head in stomach), in order to determine how to drill. We were to go from neutral posture, for the purposes of practicing that technique. He also talked about the 'ABC' of closed guard, which is 'always be choking'. A second armbar followed, referred to as the 'look ma, no hands' armbar. Just keep climbing until you get to the armbar position. Again, cling on like it's a tall pole you can't afford to fall off.

That leads into the swinging armbar, intended as a drill. Simply swing yourself around to go into an armbar from side to side. It might happen in sparring, but it's unlikely. Up next was the 'flash armbar', that goes from zero straight into the armbar. That's like the one Rickson showed at his Glasgow seminar several years ago. You lift directly into the armbar, grabbing the arm, then using that to help swing your legs right up into place.

Then there was the cool one, which I've since been calling the Humiliation Armbar. For this one, from a double sleeve grip you cross their arms over, then fling your legs up by their shoulders to clamp in place. Squeeze your legs really right, then you can armbar by pushing/pulling on either wrist.

22 June 2016

22/06/2016 - BJJ Globetrotter Camp | Leuven 2016 | Pocket Guard (Chad Wright)

Class #734
BJJ Globetrotter Camp (Sportoase Leuven), Chad Wright, Leuven, Belgium, 22/06/2016

This was one of the more complex classes at the camp. It connected to what Haueter was talking about in his class in terms of lapel stuff, used a little differently. The entry starts with a collar grip, also pulling out their lapel on the collar grip side. Switch your body over to the side, switching your grip from the collar onto the lapel you've pulled out. Their arm should now be pinned to your chest.

A video posted by Can (Jun) (@slideyfoot) on

To get the slack out of the lapel, you're pulling it behind them, rather than sideways. Moving into pocket guard itself, you bring your bring up high on their back, getting onto your side. The grip you have on the arm is the 'romantic walk in the park' grip, arm in arm. Your free arm reaches over their head, grabbing all the way over to their lat. Sometimes you might end up crossing your feet, but initially at least, you're pressing your knee down, like you would when moving into a pressing armbar.

Now you have the pocket guard. If they stay there, you'll look to take their back. Due to your 'romantic walk in the park' arm-clasp, you might be able to get an armlock by securing the arm by gable gripping your hands, then thrusting your hips into their armpit. Chad had a rather more colourful way of describing that, I'm going to stick with 'thrust your hips'. ;)

For a choke, pass that loose gi tail under their neck, gripping it with the arm you have around the back of their head. To close off the choke, again thrust your hips into their armpit. Chad calls this the 'infinity choke' or 'figure 8', due to the figure described by the gi tail and arm as you pass it through.

If you can't get that choke, you may find they posture up and drive into you. Reach under their leg, lift your opposite leg, then roll them past your shoulder. You can now move into a sort of ezequiel choke, as you've maintained your grip on the collar. It would be possible to switch into an armbar too, due to that 'romantic walk in the park' clasp on the arm.

Should they post on their arm, Chad showed how if you have long limbs (like him, he's a tal guy) you could go into a pressing armbar. Back takes may be available too, or indeed a belly down pressing armbar. Chad told us to try stuff out at this point, see what we could come up with. Interesting to have that emphasis on creativity. :)

22/06/2016 - BJJ Globetrotter Camp | Leuven 2016 | Closed Guard Two-On-1 Grip Break (Kenny Polmans)

Class #733
BJJ Globetrotter Camp (Sportoase Leuven), Kenny Polmans, Leuven, Belgium, 22/06/2016

Another Belgian black belt and more lovely closed guard, this time focusing on the two-on-one grip break. Kenny likes to stick a thumb in the sleeve to open up that sleeve first, in order to establish your grip. He also turns his body, shifting his torso towards the gripping sleeve side. That slight shift adds more power to the grip break.

From there, you have lots of options. The main ones I like are a back take or a sweep, both of which Kenny covered. He went with the windscreen wiper sweep, like Andre Anderson does on his top notch DVD about closed guard. He controls the arm by gripping around the back, pinning down his elbow to clamp their arm against him. He can then grab their knee, then kick his leg up to roll through into mount. Punching up with that knee grip finishes the motion.

He showed the back take as an option when that sweep was blocked. Similar idea, with a strong grip, shrimping away to get the space to get your hooks in. I think it's also a sequence Yas went through at that comp fundraising seminar a while back: either way, solid stuff from closed guard.

More surprisingly, Kenny showed how you could move into a bow and arrow from here, from that same position. Instead of keeping the hand grabbed around their back gripping the lat, you reach to grab their collar. You are gripping all the way around their head, gripping the collar underneath their head. That means you can roll them over like in the windscreen wiper, right into a bow and arrow.

22/06/2016 - BJJ Globetrotter Camp | Leuven 2016 | Leg Swivel Pass (David Morcegao)

Class #732
BJJ Globetrotter Camp (Sportoase Leuven), David Morcegao, Leuven, Belgium, 22/06/2016

For David's second class, he did an interesting 'leg swivel' motion to complete the pass. This was gradually built up from a drill. You start inside their open guard, where they have hooked both feet inside your knees, you're grasping their knees (though the drill was originally without the hands, to focus on that motion). Lift your leg high, cutting the knee in, then pivot. That should swivel your leg over their other shin, with the aim of ending up outside their other leg.

The hard part is stopping your leg getting caught on their foot as your twist it over, but with plenty of drilling, that should smooth those snags out. David addressed that point, emphasising that you need to get your leg high, then chop that knee down, making sure you twist your hips each time. That should give you the clearance you need. Good balance is also important, as David pointed out, meaning you would be able to do things like 'surf' over their legs if they try to knock you off.

Sometimes you won't be able to clear both legs, resulting in one leg still inside theirs. You have the options of knee cutting, or simply repeating your leg swivel to clear their other leg. X pass is another option as well. Pressing their knees down with your grips should help too, which David highlighted as he added the hands back into the drill. If they have a grip on the collar, break that off before continuing the pass. If they have one ankle, it isn't a big problem, but with two, you will need to kick one off first.

There are lots of passing options. David picked a cool one, the breakdance pass. That backstepping motion is one I've taught as a drill in the pass, from reverse knee on belly. You pivot around your knee, kicking your leg all the way over. That can lead into mount, or you continue the motion, swinging the other leg through into side control. There's also a chance you could flow into a submission, catching an arm or triangle (plus a few nastier, more catch wrestling style attacks, which I avoid because I prefer the buttercups and rainbows end of the forest, instead of the dark thorny part ;p).

22/06/2016 - BJJ Globetrotter Camp | Leuven 2016 | Double Under & Over Under Pass (Oli Geddes)

Class #731
BJJ Globetrotter Camp (Sportoase Leuven), Oliver Geddes , Leuven, Belgium, 22/06/2016

The double under pass has various names: I've tended to refer to it as the 'stack pass', or 'double underhook' pass, which relate to the 'single stack' and 'single underhook'. The principle is the same with all of them: elevate their hips, get a cross collar grip, crush through to side control. Looking back through my blog, I haven't been to a class on it in a long time: the most recent entry is a class from Jude back in 2007. More recently, I've taught this myself a few times, so I can cheat and use that as a skeleton to help write this class up. ;)

When I teach it, I go from closed guard. As soon as you can create enough space in their closed guard, slip your arms underneath both legs. Grasp around the outside and secure a gable grip (palm to palm), or an s-grip (four fingers clasped together). If you prefer, you can instead grip their trousers and lock your elbows, or indeed their belt: the problem with those grips is that the loose fabric may provide them with enough space that they can make room to escape.

The latter is the one Oli went with when he was teaching this, staying very tight. He also interestingly mentioned a funky elbow lock you can do to counter: writing this up some time after the actual camp, I've now been to a class at RGA Bucks which was all about countering the double unders with a whole bunch of submissions (I haven't written that up yet either, but it's on the list ;D).

Whichever grip you prefer, you now want to stack your opponent, driving forward off your toes. Before that point, Oli talked about sprawling back to recover your position if they started getting legs under, as well as doing a sort of 'hip switch' if they were able to hook your leg. To get them in position for stacking, the two basic methods are to either pull them up onto your hips using your thighs as a ramp, or move forwards so you're close behind them and they are rolled up onto their shoulders.

Oli had a third version. He steers them in a direction, pulling back and down on one side, in order to get his shoulder behind the knee. That's when he starts to stack them, getting the lower hand in the middle by their lower back. Once you've got them stacked and have reached for their opposite collar, the aim is again to push their knee right into their face. You can keep them stacked by putting your knee into their bum, while you continue to shift around.

If you can't grab the collar, your can grab the shoulder, or you could also reach behind their head. An even tighter option is to reach all the way behind their head and grab the shoulder. In that situation, be careful you don't start neck cranking with a 'can opener' (a crude technique from closed guard where you pull their head towards you), as that's illegal in most competitions for a reason.

I normally establish a wide base with my feet, Oli's version looks easier, as he stayed fairly low. Either way, it is important to keep maintaining heavy downwards pressure throughout this pass. Keep pushing until eventually you drive past their leg and transition to side control: don't raise your head, just keep pushing until you slide past, nudging with your shoulder if necessary.

Oli didn't spend much time on locking his hands together, as he pointed out that if somebody is good, they are not going to let you do that. He therefore sticks with grabbing the top of the trousers on either side, by the hips. A variation is to get both hands to the middle of their lower back, then do a powerful motion to flip them up. As Oli emphasised, this isn't going to work well on somebody bigger than you. He then used his head by the hip to move round and get the pass.

There was a weird leglock you can do too if they block with their leg, which looked a bit like the way you armbar from a crucifix when you're still attacking the turtle. You lock around their leg, then stretch your body, driving your hips down. Most of the time, this isn't to submit them, it's to get them to move their leg out of the way so you can complete the pass.

Finally, there was another variation, the over under pass. I've heard the term, but I don't think I've ever been shown it in class. You're going for the double under, but can't get the legs into position. Instead, shift your weight to isolate one of their legs. You're trying to get your arm free on that side, to bring it over their leg, gripping underneath. That also means you can drive your shoulder on that side heavy into his thigh.

Bring your hips high, using your arm to punch that same leg your were controlling away, in order to pass. Be sure they can't shrimp away, as that will mess up the pass. That's where your other arm comes in handy, driving their hip to the mat. Your head is also by that far hip, adding more control.

Don't forget, you can also go to top half guard if you can't get past their leg. Finally, be wary of the reverse triangle as you pass. Keep solid control of that leg, so they can't push your head through. I like how he described "removing options": it's a slow, steady pass, taking away their options until you've got all their escape routes covered.