What To Do When Your Guard Attacks Fail
It’s my very favorite quote from the movie ‘The Avengers’ which I saw last night:
Captain America: We need a plan of attack!
Iron man: I have a plan… Attack!!
It’s a funny moment in the movie, but there’s a lot of truth to that statement.
For example, wouldn’t having an continuous, irresistible and relentless offense from the guard would be great in BJJ? In an ideal world you’d be such a Tasmanian Devil on the bottom that you’d never even have to worry about how to defend guard passes. Instead you’d be attacking with submission after submission, sweep after sweep…
Your opponent would be so busy defending that he’d never get his own offense started. As a result you’d never have to worry about your guard getting passed.
But if you’ve seen The Avengers then you know that even the best laid plans of superheroes don’t always work out…
And the same is true for your guard.
No matter how slick or aggressive your guard attacks are, the sad truth is that sometimes your opponent will get his bearings long enough to start passing your guard.
So let’s say that your opponent has shut down your offense and is halfway through his own guard pass. What do you do now?
Well, you can either:
- Defend during the guard pass using a transitional escape, or
- Do nothing and then work on escaping once he’s fully past your guard and has established a strong pinning position.
Trust me , option 1 – escaping in the transition – is MUCH easier!!
I’ve previously talked about the concept of transitional defenses and techniques. If you haven’t already taken a look at that article and the sample techniques then go check out that article.
But now I’ve got one MORE on training transitional escapes…
My good friend and training partner Ritchie Yip shot a short video covering some repetition drills for defending against the guard pass.
I’m in the video as a demo partner, so I know that these are really good drills. One person gets to train his guard passing. The other gets practice at shutting down the guard pass. Check this 4:48 video out below: