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

16 July 2019

16/07/2019 - Tuesday daytime, more dogfight follow-up techniques

Class #1165
Artemis BJJ (Easton Road), Can Sönmez, Bristol, UK - 16/07/2019

Continuing with those dogfight follow-ups, as I'm teaching them on Wednesday. The focus is the drive down and roll under sweep, I also mentioned that third option Lucas Leite shows on his video, when they post. Need to rewatch that vid though, not sure I did it right.

But yeah, more than enough material for Wednesday, especially as there are usually quite a few beginners. I had some great rolls with Paulina today too, useful to practice open guard some more. I was particularly finding it handy to move into the unstoppable sweep when she was trying to drive her knee through on top (made sure to show her what I did, and as she's an awesome student she immediately adjusted meaning I wasn't getting that later on :D), along with swivelling to dogfight and sweep when I was getting squished on the bottom during knee cuts.

15 July 2019

15/07/2019 - Teaching | Quarter Guard | Dogfight to the back

Teaching #888
Artemis BJJ (Easton Road), Can Sönmez, Bristol, UK - 15/07/2019

As they either start to free themselves from your half guard, or possibly they are just going for a knee cut and are most of the way through, hook the bottom of their leg. You can get this tighter by bringing your top leg under theirs. In other words, your outside leg goes over, then you hook underneath their leg, your knee to the ground. If you can, try for a 'mini lockdown' by also hooking your other leg under their foot, but this isn't always viable (depends on your leg length relative to theirs).

You are now in what's called quarter guard, as you've basically got half of half guard (the bottom part of their leg, as opposed to above the knee, which is much more secure). Heather Raftery taught an excellent lesson on this at the 2018 Heidelcamp (you'll see me pop up behind her during the teaching ;D), which I've been drawing on for when I teach quarter guard.

You must get the underhook, or you will get passed. Swivel to your knees, into the dogfight position (essentially, side by side turtle with a leg hooked). The simple option is to shuck their arm forward, popping out to attack their turtle. To fully take their back, you can move your knee forward, chop it into their knee and roll.

You've got a few other options too, which I'll to cover in future classes: e.g., driving them down by grabbing the knee, or you can also roll under (like you do against a whizzer). If their whizzer is weak, you may be able to 'limp arm' it free: in other words, fully relax your arm and then whip it free. With a proper whizzer, particularly in the gi, the friction will make that difficult.

Teaching Notes: The main part people got confused on was leg position. I'll keep emphasising that, go through it a few more times. Hooking over and under, ideally mini lockdown if leg length allows. Also, it might be worth talking a moment about what a whizzer is, as the uke doesn't always immediately recognise it when I say.

Somebody on instagram was also asking about headlocks when you're coming up to the dogfight from quarter guard, so that might be worth considering. Hasn't cropped up in sparring yet, but I'll keep an eye out. I guess you'd want to stay on your side, posting solidly with an elbow/hand, plus making sure your head is in tight to their body.

14 July 2019

14/07/2019 - Teaching | Half Guard | Toe Grab Sweep (NoGi)

Teaching #887
Artemis BJJ (Easton Road), Can Sönmez, Bristol, UK - 14/07/2019

Short Version:
  • Get underhook, scooting down towards their legs
  • Reach under their non-trapped leg, grab their toes
  • Bring your other arm around their bum, transfer grip
  • Using your outside leg, drag their leg out
  • Turn and post on your elbow, drive, still holding toes, then move to side control

Full Version: I call this one the toe grab sweep, like Indrek Reiland does in his classic 'Functional Half Guard' video. Eddie Bravo's name for it - 'old school' - is common too, but his version is slightly less effective in my opinion, though it is similar. I prefer the way Jason Scully teaches it, over on the Grapplers Guide. I've also been taught it in the past, back when I was training at RGA High Wycombe with Kev.

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So, the Scully version begins from the basic half guard position I taught earlier, where you're on your side using the kickstand leg positioning, with an underhook. Use your underhook to bump yourself down closer to their legs, curling your head into towards their far knee. You want to get your underhook arm shoulder to their hipbone on that side, also getting your head to their same side hipbone.

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With your non-underhooking arm, reach for their far toes. Grab them and then shove their heel into their thigh. Make sure you are grabbing their toes: if you grip their ankle or higher, they will find it easier to kick their leg back and scupper your sweep. Bring your underhook arm down past their bum, then switch the toe grab grip from your non-underhook hand to your underhook hand.

Bring your non-underhook elbow and then hand out for base, also turning to slide out your inside leg. Your outside leg tweaks their lower leg to further disrupt their base, then drive with your head and shoulder to move on top. Keep hold of the toes until you're past to side control. If they stay on their hands and knees, you can also just take their back instead.

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Keep in mind that it is possible to get this sweep with various leg configurations. I find it easiest from the kickstand, as I think that provides the best base for getting on your side, but it's certainly not the only option.

Teaching Notes: All good, I think. Head to hipbone and underhook shoulder to hipbone helps. Make sure to come up on your elbow to drive, also don't let go of the toes. I added in the Kenny Polmans big step when you start going behind for side control, that is worth playing with some more.