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

30 November 2010

30/11/2010 - BJJ (Advanced)

Class #365
RGA High Wycombe, (BJJ), Kev Capel, High Wycombe, UK - 30/11/2010

I'm not sure I've posted these up before, but there is a series on YouTube called 'Ask A Black Belt'. The idea is pretty simple, as a guy just gets a bunch of black belts together, asks them all the same questions, then edits them together into clumps. The unnecessarily long intro is a bit annoying, but the content is excellent: lots of great answers from the various black belts, with some big names like Kurt Osiander and Dave Camarillo. Also, there is some random competition footage which doesn't seem necessarily related, and it was beginning to feel a bit tiresome...until this awesome move by Sean Roberts. Definitely want to try that next time I'm in half guard, though I'm guessing there is way more to it than simply rolling to the back.

Kev continued class with a couple of De La Riva passes. For the first one, turn your trapped knee outwards, which should either loosen their grip or pop it off completely. Put both hands on the trouser leg of the foot pushing into your hip, and drive that hip forward slightly. You can then bring it back while at the same time bringing that leg across your body. Switching your grips, push that leg down to the floor on your hooked leg side. Maintaining a grip on the bottom of their trousers and clamping it to the ground, move around behind them to settle into side control.

The second De La Riva pass begins by grabbing both their collars high on their chest, then driving the knee of your hook leg through to meet that hand. You want to get as much weight going through that knee as possible, so they're pinned to the floor. Take a big step forward with your other leg, while pushing their leg underneath it.

You can then move into a pass, with two options. Either you can underhook their far armpit, to help settle into a tight side control, or alternatively, you can slide that hand into their near collar. This means you're threatening a choke, and it also makes it more difficult for them to try and slip under the arm in an attempt to scupper the pass.

Sparring began with Callum, from inside the guard. Once again I was looking for that running escape, to see if I could get into a strong defensive position. I then somehow ended up in position to attempt a double underhooks pass, I think (unless that was from a different position). Either way, something went wrong, as I got stuck in a triangle. I tried to move into the escape Kev showed us, but my base had been knocked flat, so I couldn't get my knee across.

With my next partner, the same injured blue belt I rolled with last week, something similar happened, after a long stalemate in his guard (particularly as I had the excuse of his injury, I was being even more passive and defensive than usual). At some point he moved to side control, and I immediately went for the running escape. Like Drazen, he tried to take my back, but this time I was able to stay tight and block the hooks, spinning to try and drive through for top half guard or side control instead. Although I can't be sure that would have worked, as time ran out before I could secure anything.

I've got two more poetry seminars to teach on Thursday, so won't be back to RGA High Wycombe until Tuesday.


  1. Hey, cool post. And I don't know what the heck is up with my feed. It's probably because I have not set them up properly, I'll mess with the settings again.

  2. Cheers!

    Joshkie mentioned over on your blog that it might be one of two settings:

    1. Add your blog to our listings
    2. Let search engines find your blog

    Although I don't see those on my dashboard, but presumably they are hiding somewhere in there.

    You could also try using FeedBurner or something like that? Means you can stick bells and whistles on the feed too. ;)

  3. I've struggled with that running escape--avoiding my opponent from getting a hook in, and once turned all the way around, avoiding getting caught in side control...timing is everything with a lot of techniques, but it seems it's particularly important for that one.

  4. Handily, Kev went through that yesterday, so I had lots of time to play with the running escape.

    Out of interest, are you trying the version where you swing right through, or Saulo's update, where he takes a break in the middle by curling up?

    The first one seems more active and is what Kev went for, whereas the second one means I can be lazy and passive (not necessarily a good thing, but it fits nicely with my very, very defensive sparring style at the mo).