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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

27 June 2016

27/06/2016 - Teaching | Half Guard | Knee Shield Pass with Nathan Adamson Tweaks

Teaching #520
Artemis BJJ (MYGYM Bristol), Can Sönmez, Bristol, UK - 27/06/2016

A photo posted by Artemis BJJ (@artemisbjj) on



Nathan Adamson showed me a few tweaks to the knee shield pass when I took a private lesson with him at the 2016 BJJ Globetrotter Camp in Leuven. Mainly that was in the grips, particularly his initial grip, low on the knee-shielding leg. Grab right down near the bottom of the trouser leg, knuckles down. Your other hand grips their same side collar, while you also have your free leg up and based out. From this strong base, straighten out your trouser gripping arm, until it is straight. To do that, you will probably angle your torso away from the leg: make sure you stay low as you do that. From there, you do a big twist, whacking your outside hip right into their stomach. That puts you into a standard hip switch pass position.

From here, ideally you want to apply a heavy cross-face: this will make the pass much easier. Without a solid cross face, they will be able to turn towards you, perhaps even getting a reversal. Having said that, the arm gripping their collar should already be acting as a cross-face, keeping it straight so the 'bar' of your arm prevents them turning towards you.

You will also need to be careful of your weight distribution. If you are leaning too far over their body, they can roll you over the top. If you aren't on the sides of your feet pushing into them, they could roll you backwards. You are effectively sitting down next to them, while still staying tight and pressing your weight into them. If they manage to get an underhook, you'll still need to be wary of getting rolled over: hooking an arm by their leg should block it.

To complete the pass, it will help to insert your bottom shin onto their bottom thigh. Shift back slightly, in order to make some space in front of their bottom leg. Do not raise up: that will give them space to bring their leg in for defence, perhaps even start their escape. Using either your knee or your shin, wedge that against their lower leg leg. Change your trouser grip from their shin to by their knee, then yank it towards you. This should open up enough space to free your leg. Ideally you also want to keep your head low and turned towards their legs, to make it harder for them to push into your throat.
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Teaching Notes: The hardest part is definitely getting the arm straight without compromising your balance. Fortunately I have video of Nathan Adamson doing it, so I can keep checking my posture against that. The other bit people had trouble with was the big twist. A number of students were flopping flat onto their partner, rather than turning in to face the foot, in a true hip switch pass position. I'll emphasise that even more next time. Also, it can be quite a thump into the chest, so that's worth noting too, especially for drilling when you're doing it repeatedly.

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