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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

23 December 2015

23/12/2015 - Teaching | Open Guard | Butterfly Sweep (Shoulder Clamp)

Teaching #441
Artemis BJJ (MYGYM Bristol), Can Sönmez, Bristol, UK - 23/12/2015

As tonight was the last class before xmas, it meant more silly xmas games! Last year, I split the room into two teams, with Team Santa Hat and Team Belt. The idea was to try and get people from the other team to join yours by taking their belt. This time round, I changed it a bit. Now, one team defended the 'reindeer', while the other team tried to capture it. Again, you could get members of the other team to join yours by taking their belt. To get the reindeer, you had to both get its belt and pull off the head. Which isn't as gruesome as it sounds, this was just a reindeer hat. ;)

Check the Artemis BJJ Instagram for a vid, if you're confused by the above garbled description. After class, we went out for very tasty pie at Pieminister, in what I've been trying to make into an Artemis BJJ tradition (this is the second time we've done it, though last time it was just me and Laura after her last class). More pie in the New Year!

A video posted by Artemis BJJ (@artemisbjj) on



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The orthodox version of the butterfly sweep relies on a deep underhook, then you angle out. With the shoulder clamp, which Carlos Machado refers to as the 'shoulder and chin' grip (IIRC), you can be more versatile. That's because it allows you to not only sweep with both your butterfly hooks in, but to either side as well. It also means you can sweep with both of your butterfly hooks in, rather than with one hook as you angle out to the side.

So, you have both butterfly hooks. Get your underhook as usual, but bring the other arm around their head. Lock your hands together in a gable grip (palm to palm), clamping that by their shoulder. From here, you may be able to get the sweep already, depending on their reaction. Using the elbow/upper arm of the arm behind their head, press down on the back of their head (Machado refers to this as 'swallowing' their head with your arm), simultaneously lifting with your underhook. You can then use you butterfly hook on the underhook side to flip them.

If you're not able to do that as they manage to dislodge your arm, bring the elbow underneath their head instead, into the neck. You can now lift underneath their head with your arm, while also raising your butterfly hook on the non-underhook side. That means you can flip them to the other side. A common problem in both situations is that they slip their arm out of your shoulder clamp. To tighten it up, you're going to adjust the hand that you're facing (so, the one where your knuckles are pointing at your face). From your gable grip, slide that down to your forearm and grip, while the other hand grips the other forearm. It should now be tough for your partner to free their arm.

This adjustment often happens when you've been flattened out, meaning you will need to sit back up. Also, it is hard to sweep from the forearm grip, because you lose the ability to easily press down with the elbow/upper arm or circle it under their head. Kick forward with your butterfly hooks and use that space to sit back up. You can then slide the hand back up into the gable grip and go for the sweep. Be aware that this whole process will probably tighten up the pressure on their shoulder, meaning that you need to be careful as you sweep.
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Teaching Notes: This should work well with next month, as the shoulder clamp applies to closed guard too (that's the more common guard to get it from). Also, it's important to emphasise being careful of the neck on the 'swallowing' one, as you are essentially flipping them over it. I annoyingly deleted the pictures of the forearm grip that I got for this one, which is a pain: I'll remember next time.

For the xmas 'Hunt the Reindeer' game next year, I think I will have people pull off socks rather than belts. Getting the belt off is a bit too hard. Also means everybody can wear silly xmas themed socks, which sounds like fun. Or just silly socks. I have some great squirrel ones, for example. :D

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