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Guard Offense – Flower Sweeps

Over time the BJJ student learns to perform techniques which turn their torso perpendicular to their opponent’s kneeling posture while in Closed Guard. By doing this one begins to understand how to utilize dynamic momentum to enact a sweep. One of the first sweeps the student learns which uses this principle is the Flower Sweep.

Here are some details which can be useful when developing this sweep:

· Get same side arm control. This can vary per the user, however, a reverse pistol grip tends to work very well.

· Once you have the grip on their sleeve, work on getting their elbow as close to centerline as possible.

· Your foot should be on the opponent’s hip on the same side as the arm control, with your knee pressing into their shoulder.

· Now use the foot on the hip to move your torso the opposite way getting perpendicular, and either grab their pant at the knee or lower, or underhook the opponent’s leg.

· Remove your foot from their opposite hip, swing the leg around the opponent’s head, and then swing it back down the way it came from. Chop your opposite leg into the armpit. Then scissor your legs undercutting their body getting the sweep.

The look of the Flower Sweep is very distinct, and when done properly it appears effortless. Ideally, the sweep should be considered a subtle attack or counter to the opponent trying to open your Guard. However, what many students miss about the Flower Sweep is just how closely related it is to the Scissor Sweep. Very similar mechanics are at play with both, just different structures.

In the hands of an expert, this sweep can set up many different submission attempts such as Triangle Chokes, Armbars, Omoplatas and Leg attacks. However, achieving the Mount should be at the forefront when considering the sporting aspect, especially since this sweep combined with the dominate position gets the player big points.

A few more tips to help the student optimize this technique:

1. Focus on tilting the opponent towards their head/shoulder and not their side (remember the “table” analogy)

2. Once the opponent is leaning use a straight arm to push their leg up (when using the pant grab version)

3. The closer their head gets to their knee the better

4. Utilize your legs to pull the opponent up off of their base

Finally, a sneaky variation with the Flower Sweep is to reach under and cross grab the inside of their opposite leg with a cuff grip. They won’t know how they ended up on their back.

Learn. Drill. Roll. TRANSFORM!

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