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Old 10-25-2009, 01:52 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by SurfNinja View Post
Sometimes I roll with stronger guys who have extremely tight guards and passing seems either a) nearly impossible, or b) like a waste of energy.

So what I'm looking for are other things that I can do before I attempt the guard pass; things that can distract or grief my opponent so he/she might do something that I can exploit.

And just a final note: please don't give me anything too dirty like nut shots or eye-gouges, because I'm the smallest guy in my gym and I'm not trying to get my ass kicked.
It's gotta be about posture first, then opening the legs.

Firstly, make sure you get the posture, then start looking for ways to open the guard. There are a lot of ways to pop the guard but none of them work without good posture.

Now to actually opening the guard:

The first way to open the guard is to use your palm on the inside of the knee to open it up, forcing it open. When you watch people do it, this looks like a complicated pass. It's really not. There are a lot of ways to position your legs to make this pop more effective (and you'll need them for guys with the tight guard) but I really like to focus on opening the knee up, keeping both elbows in and working to pop the guard.

The second is the stand up pass. This is pretty common. If you don't know it, I'm happy to get into detail.

The third, which I really like, is just to keep the hands on the belt, keep the elbows in and move back until you pop the guard open or create enough space in front of you to pop a knee in and really force the guard open. This is incredibly effective and ends in a pass much more often than the other two, because driving the knee through and over one leg makes it really easy for me to control the legs and secure side control.

There are a few other really good passes once you open the guard (double underhooks pass, sumo step pass, etc.), but these are the three basic ways to open a guard, from my experience.


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Are you rolling with a gi on or no-gi?
Jeff, you got any good passes I missed for the gi? You're the blackbelt, so I figured I'd ask.
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Old 11-02-2009, 06:02 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I forgot about this thread for a while, but I really appreciate the comments everyone left.

It's been a month since I made this thread and I've gotten a little better at passing, but I still have some problems. Here's the one that annoys me the most:

Getting thrown off balance when I stick my knee in.

Let's say I stick my right knee in between my opponent in order to pop his guard. I widen my left leg in order to try and compensate for my right side, but I still feel like my balance is teetering. The better opponents realize this and can sometimes buck hard to the right and throw me over. I don't see this happening very often to other people, so it makes me feel like I'm doing something wrong.
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Old 11-02-2009, 06:15 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Halfraq9 View Post
I have the same problem sometimes. I've had some success with a move called a canopener. Basically you put both hands on the back/crown of their head and your elbows as close as possible together on their chest, and pull. In order to relieve the pressure on their neck muscles they need to sit up. This causes them to open their guard. From there I begin to work my pass.

This doesn't work all the time but it does give you an option to try when you get stuck or serve as a distraction. Good luck.
Sometimes when I roll around with my brother who has about 50 pounds on me I use the canopener most of the time it works pretty well..
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Old 11-02-2009, 06:24 PM   #14 (permalink)
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^ Yeah but as some posters mentioned on the previous page and as I learned the hard way because I didn't read this thread until today, doing the can opener puts you at risk for getting submitted. If you use it too often people will begin to catch on and all the sudden you're gonna find yourself balls deep in an armbar.
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Old 11-03-2009, 01:20 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FiReMaN11d7 View Post
Sometimes when I roll around with my brother who has about 50 pounds on me I use the canopener most of the time it works pretty well..
Can opener only works on someone who doesn't have a good guard. Someone with a good active guard would give you the can opener to submit you.

Not to mention it's borderline neck crank so I would not use it in competition.
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Old 11-03-2009, 01:26 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SurfNinja View Post
I forgot about this thread for a while, but I really appreciate the comments everyone left.

It's been a month since I made this thread and I've gotten a little better at passing, but I still have some problems. Here's the one that annoys me the most:

Getting thrown off balance when I stick my knee in.

Let's say I stick my right knee in between my opponent in order to pop his guard. I widen my left leg in order to try and compensate for my right side, but I still feel like my balance is teetering. The better opponents realize this and can sometimes buck hard to the right and throw me over. I don't see this happening very often to other people, so it makes me feel like I'm doing something wrong.
What is likely happening is you aren't getting low enough. When you get to combat base you need to have a low center of gravity. Lots of people sit up a bit and that doesn't give you a good base and it's easy to sweep.

When you make combat base, let's just say for example your right knee is going up...your right knee should be up, through the guard, and your right foot should be flat footed almost under your opponents butt...real tight to limit how they can move their hips. Your left leg should be making an "L" with the right leg. It should be on a 90 degree angle. You should be sitting on the left leg...all the way down. If you are up off that left leg at all your base is going to be weaker and it will be possible to sweep you.
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Old 11-03-2009, 02:35 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlacklistShaun View Post
Can opener only works on someone who doesn't have a good guard. Someone with a good active guard would give you the can opener to submit you.

Not to mention it's borderline neck crank so I would not use it in competition.
Shaun, I think you're drastically overlooking the power of the can opener, especially when used by somebody powerful.

Apart from the fact that the can opener is generally just used to open the guard (which is does with damn near 100% efficiency), its potential use as a submission has gotten it banned in a lot of competitions.

Guys with powerful upper bodies and short arms (i.e. Jeff Monson) can finish with it.

Yes, a fighter with a good guard will just open the guard up, sit out and play open guard, but there are ways to finish with the can opener even as the guard opens (most include preventing the sit out).
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Old 11-03-2009, 03:23 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by IronMan View Post
Shaun, I think you're drastically overlooking the power of the can opener, especially when used by somebody powerful.

Apart from the fact that the can opener is generally just used to open the guard (which is does with damn near 100% efficiency), its potential use as a submission has gotten it banned in a lot of competitions.

Guys with powerful upper bodies and short arms (i.e. Jeff Monson) can finish with it.

Yes, a fighter with a good guard will just open the guard up, sit out and play open guard, but there are ways to finish with the can opener even as the guard opens (most include preventing the sit out).
Granted if Jeff Monson tried to do the can opener to me I'd simply give up.

On a side note we have a lot of big boys at our gym that are very strong. I guess I'm a bigger guy myself at 205lbs. and 14% body fat, but a lot of them try to use the can opener on me and it never works. They use it so much I'm expecting them to try it and I'll normally catch an arm on the way to reach for it. If they do get the neck I try to sit up and sit out and take position on them or at least get to neutral position.

I admit it can be an effective weapon or pass to the right person, but there are some pretty severe downfalls to the technique IMO. That's just my 2 cents though.
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Old 11-03-2009, 03:53 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Aside from the opener there is also a cross face or breathing obstruction (i.e. hand over the mouth + nose)

then there is always the **** choak while you posture up... but that could get ya beat up i guess. or get yoru arm caught. so maybe dont listen to me.
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Old 11-04-2009, 04:30 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlacklistShaun View Post
What is likely happening is you aren't getting low enough. When you get to combat base you need to have a low center of gravity. Lots of people sit up a bit and that doesn't give you a good base and it's easy to sweep.

When you make combat base, let's just say for example your right knee is going up...your right knee should be up, through the guard, and your right foot should be flat footed almost under your opponents butt...real tight to limit how they can move their hips. Your left leg should be making an "L" with the right leg. It should be on a 90 degree angle. You should be sitting on the left leg...all the way down. If you are up off that left leg at all your base is going to be weaker and it will be possible to sweep you.
That is really good advice. I'll try that out when I go to BJJ tomorrow and I'll post the results. Thanks man.
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