Last Thursday – Butterfly Guard Pass

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In drill we focused on securing a number of arm-bars from the guard. However, my main goal Thursday was to work on my butterfly guard  (BFG) passes during the rolling session. I have dabbled at it before but it occurred to me in the last class that it is the guard of choice for a lot of the experienced guys at our academy. I want to be able to pass butterfly guard as easily as I can full and open guard (on some players).

I only rolled twice after class so I could only work on it with Big Josh. I’ve noticed that we tend to nullify each other’s strengths so Josh was a perfect person to try it on. Usually when someone plays BFG I maintain my posture and try not to get sucked into playing his or her game. However for me to work my passes I had to go in close and in one pass I have to actually allow my opponent to wrap me up in order for me to practice the pass.

I noticed immediately that when I took this approach (trying to pass with an actual technique) it put Josh on the defense. I placed my right hand around his neck and with my left I tried to grab his left ankle and pull it so I could twist his body around and gain side control. I think with a smaller guy it might have worked more effectively. He’s about 6 ft and 215 lbs so it wasn’t as easy to pull his leg out from under him. I was able to force him on his side and make him switch to an open guard. When I tried the guard pass where you have to be wrapped up I allowed him to get position and then tried to work the pass. I was able to break the hold but not get the pass. The next time I baited him I think he sensed I was up to something. Almost as soon as he had me wrapped up, he let me go. He must have ‘smelled’ my eagerness.  As we went back and forth I was able to pass his butterfly guard a couple of times but I couldn’t establish side control. I will try that at a later date.

I also rolled with another Josh. He’s more of an MMA guy but he often attends BJJ classes. I hadn’t rolled with him in about 5 months and since that time he has mastered the 360 guard.  When he was on the ground I spent the majority of time trying to hold him in place long enough to work an attack. I tried to hold his ankles and pin him to the ground but once he started spinning I had to let go. At one point he was able to get my back but I was able to defend and turn into his guard. Every time I tried to pass he started to spin. The most I could accomplish with Josh was two takedowns.  (I was on the ground and he was standing on both takedowns.)

An overall good practice….

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