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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 January 2014

30/01/2014 - Hit Fit (Maintaining Side Control)

Class #542
Hit Fit, (BJJ), Dónal Carmody, Bristol, UK - 30/01/2014

BJJ Bristol Artemis Brazilian Jiu Jitsu - Side ControlWe're instituting a 'position of the month' at Artemis BJJ, as in my opinion it's really helpful to have that focus. Gracie Barra Birmingham used to do it when I was there, which I loved. Dónal has decided that we'll also do that at Hit Fit. Currently, the BJJ at Hit Fit is technically separate from Artemis BJJ, but it will be merged together once we move to the new venue. That will mean students who pay their Artemis membership at the Longwell Green location can also train with us at Bristol Sports Centre. :)

Dónal began with a drill to transition from side to side in side control. As they turn towards you and reach for the underhook, thread your arm through theirs and reach for their head. Use that to spin through to the other side. This is something we could add into the warm-up once people get used to it, along with stuff like that continuous escaping to your knees drill I like. I'll start doing that after my lesson next week, seeing as I'll be teaching the escape to your knees.

If they turn away while you still have a standard grip (i.e., arm under the head and the other other by their far arm, like I'm doing in the pic at the top of this post), you can slide right into a seat belt grip. Should they keep turning to try and get to their knees, you can slide your knee underneath them. Roll them backwards over the top of that leg and establish your hooks for back control. A few times I forgot and was bringing my other leg over the top and hooking, then using that to roll them over, but it's less efficient as you've got to swing your leg further.

In sparring, I was doing the usual escapes from the bottom, while on top I as ever hung out and maintained, looking for mount when the opportunity arose. Gem was doing a good job of using her arms as barriers to my knees, so I shifted round to north south back and forth instead, aiming to sneak my knee in that way. I also tried that smooth switch to mount where you're swinging your legs through, but it wasn't very smooth on my part. Fun though.

My lovely girlfriend very kindly agreed to do a little photoshoot before, during and after class for the Artemis BJJ website. She took loads of snaps, so that should both help pretty up the website and give me plenty of fodder for blog posts both on and It's quite novel to be able to use pictures of myself to illustrate a technique rather than relying on screencaps from instructional DVDs. ;)

BJJ Bristol Artemis Brazilian Jiu Jitsu - Instructors Can & Donal

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