How to Not Get Slammed in Your Closed Guard or Triangle Choke


Getting picked up and slammed when you’ve got your opponent in the closed guard is one of the most dangerous things that can happen to you in grappling.

It’s definitely a legitimate technique for big and strong guys to use. And in MMA and self defense slamming an opponent is one of the best ways to open the guard, or to escape a tight triangle choke.

Getting power-bombed and then and having your opponent’s weight land on you always hurts. Especially if your opponent is bigger than you are, which is usually the case if he can lift you up.

And if your head hits the ground first then you can get KO’d or pretty badly injured.

Now, as bad as getting slammed in the closed guard is, getting slammed in a triangle is way worse.

quinton-rampage-jackson-slams-ko-ricardo-aronaIf you’ve got the triangle locked on and your opponent is strong enough, then he can lift you way higher than if you had him in closed guard. You could conceivably be getting dropped 6 or 7 feet down directly onto your head.

This has caused lots of knockouts and injuries in MMA, as illustrated by the animated GIF of the brutal KO of Ricardo Arona by Quentin ‘Rampage’ Jackson in Pride back in 2004.

Now you might say, ‘I’m never going to compete in MMA, so I’m don’t have to worry about this.

But getting slammed is a concern even in BJJ…

In BJJ it’s perfectly legal for your opponent to pick you up when you’ve got him in closed guard. He’s not allowed to slam you, but 1) he might not know the rules, 2) he could ‘accidentally’ trip, or 3) he might legitimately lose his balance (he’s probably tired and has your entire squirming bodyweight hanging off of him after all).

Some competitors keep their guards closed when their opponents stand in BJJ training and competition. But this is a risk I prefer not to take, and that’s why I advocate taking immediate action if your opponent starts to lift you.

In the video below I show two easy ways to stop your opponent from picking you up in the closed guard. Then I show three methods to save you from getting slammed when you’re using the triangle choke.

For the sake of your safety and longevity in the sport, this is really important stuff to know, so check it out:

P.S. The Roadmap for BJJ book has helped thousands of new grapplers learn Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu quickly. Click here to download it right now for free.

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