You know how, when you start to roll and either you or your training partner end up down on the mats, that person stays down? That is to say, how they accept playing the bottom game… Well, what if they didn’t have to do this?
There’s actually no reason to stay on bottom. Rather than playing Open Guard, you can shoot for a takedown and reverse position (quite unexpectedly for your training partners and opponents, with that).
Here’s what John Danaher has to say about the issue:
There is an odd gentleman’s agreement in Jiu-Jitsu that there is a top player who passes guard and a bottom player who works from guard to sweep or submit his opponent.
Typically the bottom player stays on bottom until he either sweeps or submits the other fellow. THERE IS NOTHING IN THE RULE BOOK THAT SAYS IF YOU START ON BOTTOM YOU HAVE TO STAY ON BOTTOM.
If you start threatening your opponents with takedowns, you won’t just get to, well, take them down… But you’ll have an easier time setting up sweeps and Leg Lock entries, too:
You add a whole new dimension to your bottom game when you constantly threaten to rise up from bottom and threaten takedowns and hip heists to top position. Ironically, this will force your opponent to close distance and pass with more pressure – which makes it easier to apply a conventional submissions and sweep guard game.
Next time you’re playing from guard – make sure you threaten to come up into takedowns and snaps to front head lock – you’ll be amazed at how it benefits your bottom game.
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