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Completing the Pass – Dealing with Opponent Bail-Outs (Part 4 of 4)


You’re working the Guard pass like a boss. As you get to the side, your opponent anticipates the movement, firing their far arm under your armpit, and they try to get to their knees. But you’re ready for that response. You’ve trained that hundreds of times. Planting your hand next to the opponent’s belly you rapidly spin around their head ending up behind them, ready to insert the knee under their body to take their back. Let’s examine this scenario in more detail.


After a redirection, the go-to move is sliding your bottom leg under their body. For whatever reason the timing is off, you don’t get the leg inserted, and the opponent goes to Turtle. Try this: Come up next to your opponent and insert your rear knee between their arm and thigh. Get your chest across their back with heavy pressure. Slip your far arm over their back and under their armpit. Your near arm moves over their shoulder then connect your hands getting a seat belt grip. Now, pull the opponent towards you into a sliding Back Take.


Another option from that same kneeling seat belt position is to utilize your leg to hook the opponent’s near arm, getting a semi-Crucifix position. This lock-up can come in real handy with applying chokes, armlocks and rollover attacks. The idea is to constantly attack the opponent while in that dominate position.


Let’s say while completing the pass, the opponent goes to Turtle, and you obtain the Back Mount. However, you’re way too high on their back, and the opponent knows it. So they reach up, grabbing your head and they pop their hips up, and you drop right in front of them (this actually happened to me in a match once). Don’t let this happen to you. If you feel or sense this going happening, plant both of your hands onto the mat and drop your legs to the side, or get out in front of the opponent. Better to do that instead of ending up on your back with your opponent now looking down at you.


These last four blogs have been some solid strategies to help you get better at finishing the Guard pass. It won’t always go the way you want it to, or the way you think it will, but try implementing some of these concepts and techniques into your game. You’ll definitely improve your odds for success.


Learn. Drill. Roll. TRANSFORM!

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