Thursday, August 5, 2010

Ye of Little Faith

I have been running into a frustration lately when guys hold onto my arms while I have them in my guard. Whether they are pinning my arms down to the mat, or simply grabbing and holding on wherever my arms happen to be, it's a really frustrating thing.

Ninety percent of the time, said guys are stronger than me. So just yanking my arms free is not an option. Sometimes moving them at all is not an option. I try to do the thing where you turn your wrist around in a circle to break their grips, but sometimes I can't even get my arms off the mat to turn my wrists.

I was talking to Fabio about it this afternoon and I told him I tried and it didn't work. He told me I was trying and giving up. I need to not only turn my wrist one way, but if they resist that way, turn them the other way.

I said, "But they're too strong."

And he shrugged and said, "Ok. Then Jiu-jitsu doesn't work."

That got me back peddling. He has explained to me before that, if someone has my arms pinned, fine. I can still move the rest of my body. If their weight is forward in my guard enough to pin my arms to the mat, I should be able to use my legs against them. I should be able to move my hips.

I can't move them. They are too strong. But I can move myself around them. That's what I have to try to remember.

Technique Today:

We worked on a sweep from butterfly guard. You have your opponent in butterfly guard and you hip out diagonally to one side, keeping your hooks in, but letting your bottom leg be flat against the mat. At the same time, on the same side that you hipped out, you swim the under hook and hold across the person's back. If they post out with their other hand, grab them at the wrist and pull their arm to your hip. This will make them fall on their shoulder. You drop onto your shoulder and onto the trapped arm. Hip into them, using your feet-hooks to bring them over.

Variation: If they sprawl when you hip out diagonally, take their back.


Dev said...

If they are pinning your arms to the ground, then they're not doing anything to get out of your legs.

Point #1: It is incumbent on the TOP person to attack. If it's a tournament, the other guy is going to get called for stalling. If it's a self-defense situation, he's not hitting/choking/attacking you, he's just holding you. And he's in YOUR guard. You're not in his.

Point #2: You can wait them out, or you can bait them. I guarantee if you open your guard, even just a little, his hands are coming off your arms. At which point, if you've already thought about where you're going, you're ahead.

Liam H Wandi said...

Always remember the reason BJJ was invented: to give the smaller person a chance to defend themselves against the bigger using technique and leverage.

If they are holding you, it's because they fear what your hands can allow you to do and they are not hitting you.

The choice becomes yours. Do you want to wait them out? you can if you want to and it would be sound BJJ strategy.

Do you want to play? Open your guard and use the inside or the outside or your strongest knee to collapse their elbow outwards or inwards as you move your hips.

Carlson Gracie demonstrates this but not against strong wrist grip, but rather against the more common gi-grip: (I think this is the right clip)

Julia Johansen said...

I had a dream about you. Dreamed I was talking to a gal I knew in high school named Allison. In this dream she was telling me that she was doing bjj but had decided not to take a belt, which is why she started her blog: Allie the Clear Belt. heh.

You're in my brain, lady!

A.D. McClish said...

@ Dev and Liam: Normally, the waiting game is the method I take. They do eventually get bored. But I feel like I need to learn how to deal with it in a more offensive way, you know? I asked Ben about it last night after class and he said I need to use hip movement and use my legs to break them down and force them off balance. Then, if they hold on, it actually helps me sweep. They have to let go or else they go over.

@Julia: HAHAHAHA that is hilarious! I wonder if that girl from your high school looks anything like me. That would be weird if she did! lol