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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

26 June 2018

26/06/2018 - Tuesday Daytime with Donal

Class #995
Artemis BJJ (MYGYM Bristol), Can Sönmez, Bristol, UK - 26/06/2018

There was a special guest star teaching today, as Donal asked to pop along to take the class. It's been a long time since I've experienced a Donal class: first trip down memory lane was Donal's love of movement drills in the warm up. I didn't take part for most of it, as I'm still nervous of my knee.

That progressed into some guard maintenance options, based around framing. This was the same kind of thing you might have seen from Jeff Rockwell or Ryan Hall's Defensive Guard. Donal prefers to frame off the neck with the web of his hand, rather than pressing higher on the head. I normally go higher on the head as I find that results in better leverage.

However, Donal finds the neck has advantages, as he feels that is tougher for them to rotate around and shift their angle. Either way, the rest of the technique is the same, relying on that back arm to support. At the same time, be ready to bring your legs up to recover guard, particularly if they are going for a heavy pressure pass with their arms wrapped around. If you are blocking their forward movement, their main back up option is to unlock their arms. That's when you can bring your leg up.

If you can't get the space to put your hand into their neck, Donal suggests turning your hip to create that space. You might even be able to block them with just your hip. Another variation comes from wrstliing. When you can't get their head at all, you can reach through to grab their leg, reaching in to wrap around their shin if necessary. They can't pass in one direction because you're holding their leg, then if they go the other way, you can flip them over your head.

I'm not sure I quite got the motion, but I think that last bit was the same thing from the single leg class at Heidelcamp last year. I'll check the videos, that should cover it. Great to see Donal teaching again! :D

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