Learn to Crush the Bug


A large part of jiu-jitsu is using your weight to immobilize your opponent; “crushing the bug” as it is sometimes referred to. When done properly, the application of your body weight from the top position can be enough to submit your opponent by making it impossible for him to breath. Even if your opponent doesn’t actually tap out, one of these diaphragm chokes can take much of the wind out his sails and reduce his will to fight.

A barrier to learning the nuances of body positioning and weight distribution necessary for this level of pinning is that most people have no way to gauge the effectiveness of what they are doing. In today’s newsletter I’m going to share the ABC method of teaching weight distribution, a powerful way to get immediate feedback on the effectiveness of your pins.

Imagine being back in school and writing a test, with a teacher standing right behind you. Would you score higher on that test if your teacher were to give you encouragement, saying “yes, that’s it”, whenever you started writing down the right answer? Of course you would – getting immediate feedback always helps your performance.

So try this:

Start out by pinning your partner in side mount or knee mount – these are the two easiest positions to initially apply this in. Now get your partner to slowly recite the alphabet, saying “A, B, C, D…”, out loud. If he is able to speak easily then there is something wrong with your positioning; most likely you are putting too much weight onto the mat instead of onto your opponent.

Now adjust your position: try getting off of your knees, lifting your elbows, shifting your weight from his belly onto his diaphragm, etc. When it becomes hard for him to breathe and his recitation starts to sound labored – “A ….. gasp …. B ….. gurgle …….. c-c-c …..” – then you’ve got it right!

If you’re an instructor teaching a class then give the ABC method a try. It makes for a very effective demonstration, because it leaves no doubt in anyone’s mind that the pinning position is, in itself, an offensive weapon.

I’ve written other tips and articles on this topic, which you can check out by going to these additional resources:

If you’re interested in this topic and are at the stage in your development where you could really benefit from some high-level help, I urge you to check out my Black Belt Concepts Course.  As part of this training this training we’ll go through the exact techniques and exercises you need to make yourself heavier, and to tap people out with just your bodyweight alone.

Even if you’re not some 250 lb monster, by the end of this training you’ll feel like one!

Plus we’ll cover a TON of other concepts, tricks, drills and techniques.  And finally, it’s 100% guaranteed for an entire year – if you don’t like the material in the Black Belt Concepts Course for any reason I’ll give you all your money back, no-questions asked.

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