Artemis BJJ (Easton Road), Can Sönmez, Bristol, UK - 09/05/2022
- From your frame, bridge and shrimp
- Put your shin on their hip, knee pointing down, then extend your leg
- Frame against their shoulder and bicep with your arms
- Bring your near leg under their arm, into their shoulder
- Use those base points to move into open guard
Full Version: First thing to note is that they will want to kill your near arm. This is bad for you, because it means you can't stop them shifting up towards your head. From there, they can make as much space as they want and pass to mount. So, you need to get your arm inside, the forearm pressing against their hip: this is more reliable than using your hand, as they can potentially still bring their body onto your hand and collapse it, especially if you're grabbing the gi (given the loose material). The forearm into the hip will help block their movement, and initiate your attempts to create some space. It should also help you block them moving to north south, as if you clamp your arm by their side, your body will move with them if they try to switch position. Be sure to also keep your elbow inside their knee.
Be aware that having your forearm by their hip like that does leave you more open to the cross-face. So, you could potentially block inside their cross-facing arm instead, which will prevent their shoulder pressure. This is the Saulo method from his book, which has advantages, but personally I prefer to block the hip.
With your other hand, grab the gi material by their shoulder, close to their neck, then pull down. You're aiming to use the lower part of your forearm. Twist that arm up into their neck, keeping your elbow in: you need to be tight here, as otherwise they will go for a figure four on that arm. Once you've got the forearm into their neck, they can't press down into you, as they'll essentially be choking themselves. Note that this is a block: you don't want to start pushing and reaching, as that may leave you vulnerable. Reach too far and they can shove your arm to one side and set up an arm triangle.
Next I moved on to the legs. Your legs have two main purposes here: first, blocking your opponent getting to mount. Raise your near knee and drive it into their side. The idea is to wedge them between your knee and the arm you have by their hip. Personally, I like to keep my knee floating, glued to their side.
That makes it easier to slip my knee under as soon as they give me any space, which is something I learned from Roger. Many people prefer to cross their foot over their knee, which is something I used to do in the past as well. However, as this long Sherdog thread discusses, that can leave you open to a footlock, and also limit your mobility. Then again, you can see it used at the highest levels, like here at the Mundials.
The second use for your legs is bridging. Marcelo Garcia has a handy tip for this (although the escape he is doing there is slightly different), related to increasing the power of your bridge. To do that, bring your heels right to your bum, then push up on your toes. That increases your range of motion, so you can really drive into them.
Make sure you turn into them as you bridge, rather than just straight up. This will help the next part, which is to shrimp out as you come back down. That's why you've created space in the first place: if you simply plopped back down, then you've wasted the opportunity. As soon as you shrimp out, slip the knee pressing into their side underneath. Note you aren't trying to lift them with your arms. Instead, you want to push off them, moving your body away rather than pushing theirs higher up. When your shin is over their stomach, you can use that to square your body up, pushing through your leg to move your head in line with theirs.
This is where the Lachlan Giles version differs from what I've always taught. Rather than bringing your knee across the stomach, your shin goes to their hip, with your knee angled downwards. Giles argues that having the shin across the stomach is less effective, as it's too easy for them to squish that down with their weight. Extend your leg to create space, then frame against their arm with both of yours. It becomes reminiscent of half guard at this point, in terms of what you're doing with your upper body (specifically the longer range half guard, where they haven't managed to get a cross face).
Your other leg can now move inside their arm, with your foot near their hip (so, also near your other foot). That should give you enough base to swivel into open guard. You could potentially go all the way to closed guard, though that feels a bit redundant at this point. If you do, Giles suggests moving your hips away, counter-intuitively. I'll have to remember to check the video to remember why. ;) ______________________
Teaching Notes: I've been enjoying the trial month on Lachlan Giles new Submeta site, which has so far delivered exactly what I want from an instructional. I.e., stuff I already know, but with interesting variations and new details. I think Giles' version may be simpler than the one I've taught up until now, less moving parts. I'll keep experimenting.