Breaking Posture with the Shakedown

Here’s a little trick, or technique, you can use to prevent your opponent from establishing posture and passing your guard when you are wrestling with the gi.

Several years ago I was training with Marcello Grosso, a Carlson Gracie Black Belt…

I was in his closed guard and was struggling to make posture in order to try to pass his guard. Finally I planted my feet, stood up and lifted him off the ground. This gave me a bit of hope, because at the time my guard passes were of the standing variety.

Marcello had an answer for me, though. He kept his guard closed, reached up, and gripped each of my lapels with his hands.

Then he started jerking the lapels so rapidly that my head was shaking back and forwards like a bobblehead doll on speed. Unable to keep my balance (and laughing out loud) I dropped back onto my knees, back at square one in my battle for posture.

Since then I have used this same technique myself when an opponent lifts me off the ground, sparring with the gi.

If you are trying to break your opponent’s posture this way make sure that you grip the gi relatively close to your opponent’s neck. The jerks are rapid, sharp movements, which disrupt your opponent’s balance and ability to remain standing.

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