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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

11 October 2017

11/10/2017 - Teaching | Mount | Maintaining High Mount

Teaching #709
Artemis BJJ (MYGYM Bristol), Can Sönmez, Bristol, UK - 11/10/2017

Sometimes, the person underneath your mount will turn to their front, although normally this will only happen when they're still inexperienced. With a few more classes under their belt, they will only turn as far as their side, prying out your knee with an elbow: as a result, it's called the elbow escape. Either way, the same technique applies to both: shifting to what's known as technical mount. Put your hands on either side of their head, using them as your base points. Putting your weight onto your hands, twist your body, sliding the knee nearest their back up towards their head. Your other heel clamps in tight to their hip. Sit back on the heel behind them, bringing your upper body close to their head. You can then return to the mount position by grasping their opposite elbow and pulling it across their body. Alternatively you might try and take their back, but that's for another lesson.

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To attack from low mount is tricky, so you're better off climbing further up, into high mount. As with low mount, you need to be aware of their hip power. To control them, put your feet by their bum, tucking your toes underneath: Roger Gracie points this out as of particular importance. In what you might call 'middle' mount where you're still over their hips, Saulo suggests that you 'ride' their bridges, like you were on a horse. Lean back, then as they bridge, lift up: you’re aiming to move with their hips, rather than just leaving a big space. So, this takes a good understanding of timing.

He also recommends against leaning forward, as he feels that gives them more space and leverage to escape. Hence why he leans back instead. Experiment, seeing how holding the head works for you versus leaning back. I think Saulo’s method requires more experience, and personally I feel unstable there, but as ever, I want to offer students choice whenever possible.

The danger of leaning back is when you're facing somebody with flexibility and/or long limbs. They might be able reach their legs over to kick into your armpits, either sliding out through your legs or pushing your over. You must control their hips with your feet, to prevent them from bending their body. Swimming the arms through might help you out here, this time against their legs, depending on how they attack. If they do get their feet in place, I generally grab on the back of their collar, stay really low, then attempt to gradually work my hips back to flatten them out: that worked for me last time it happened.

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Teaching Notes: I tried a different split of techniques today. Most of the stuff I normally teach in high mount is about moving into the position, but I put that in its own lesson earlier this week. That left me with a few elements to choose from. Today, I went with the shift into technical mount to return back to full mount, along with swimming the arms through when they try to trap them. My reasoning was that the two main things people tend to try under mount are either prying an elbow under the leg to start escaping (which you can counter with technical mount), or trapping an arm to get the trap and roll escape (which you can stop by swimming your arm free).

I'm still not happy with the structure of that, I think I could build it more effectively. So, next time I think that the technical mount side of things belongs better in it's own lesson, where there is the switch along with the back take. The arm swim is useful, but I should bolster it by talking about maintaining the high mount, so things like posting on your forehead. I think it would be better to have more detail on driving the hips under the elbows to open them up for attack, along with things like hooking an elbow and walking your fingers up in order to attack. That might be where a simple americana could fit, although perhaps that needs more detail?

Technical mount is a lesson on its own really. Also, building some kind of sequence around having a hand in the collar. I used it to pull up into technical mount, but that would fit better as a following lesson to cover technical mount in general. It also would mean less reliance on them turning.

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