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Archive for the ‘Eddie Bravo techniques’ Category

Old School Sweep

Posted by forlogos on July 21, 2008

I’ve been having trouble with the Eddie Bravo Old School sweep since returning back to the mat.  This used to be my bread and butter half-guard technique, but with so many months in between – I’ve forgotten more than a few key details.  Moreso, I’ve just kept experimenting and trying variations on the technique without consulting my Eddie Bravo book.  But that’s mostly because I left the book somewhere I can’t remember…

Anyway, thanks to the power of Web 2.0, here’s a nice instructional on my long lost sweep:

Some key points I’ve been missing:

  • lockdown is with the outside leg bending inside to triangle my legs (that doesn’t sound like it makes sense, but it does)
  • grab the foot with just one arm
  • grab the toes, not the ankle
  • the other arm keeps the deep underhook
  • I have to go on my knees

Ok, let’s hope I can remember this on the mat…


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BJJ Class 78

Posted by forlogos on June 2, 2007

Good gi class. I arrived at the academy a bit later then my usual so I wasn’t able to stretch before the warm-ups started. I really should’ve because the warm-ups were killer. Push-ups, sit-ups, squats, and several variations of each that left you feeling too tired. It was the first time since I thought I had grown strong enough to be able to do all the push-ups that I wasn’t able to do all the push-ups. I’m going to revise my once weekly home work-out…

We did a very cool technical sweep from guard and a variation. It is so technical and uses leverage so well, that doing it uses no strength, it just flows and feels so smooth – I really like it! So yes, expect it to be demonstrated by my Snowboard Instructors soon. We did a variation for when your opponent gets an underhook on a leg and attempts to pass. Cool, a guard offense/defense move!!

After the sweep, there was one ten-minute round of rolling. I really felt like rolling, so even though I became more alert and aggressive when I was working on my goals, guard passing and guard offense, I kept going for a sub even after obtaining a more advantageous position (side control and mount). I rolled against a guy that’s been back for a few weeks after a three-month or was it more lay-off from an injury. I managed several subs including an armbar and a keylock from mount – even an ezekiel, which I’ve never done successfully before. Old School and Plan B are still my most reliable half-guard sweeps. I did knee-on belly for the first time, and managed to stay on for about 5 seconds.

What really helped me get the knee-on-belly was browsing through a BJJ book the other day. It basically said that after passing and attempting to get side control, if you’re opponent straightens both arms out at you making it difficult to secure side control, you should be able to go for knee-on-belly.

Guard passing. Did several and made sure to watch my hand placement when attempting the pass which I got great pointers for on the last class, BJJ Class 77. That pass and the slide-your-knee-inside-the-guard pass are quickly becoming my favorites.

Guard offense. Think my scissor sweep is getting better. Hope the sweep learned today can be incorporated into my game quickly. Attempted another omoplata but didn’t get it. Is this a low percentage sub? I mean, as a white belt, is this a technique worth pursuing?

Names. Didn’t name too many people. Think I knew half of the names of everyone there today.

Weight. I dunno, it’s really settled around 195. I really should try to loose some.

Might be competing in a NAGA event with some guys from my school in the summer…

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BJJ Class 77

Posted by forlogos on May 25, 2007

No-gi class. I feel like its been a while since I went to one. It’s really nice to mix it up.

After warm ups we were taught the anaconda choke that Marcelo Garcia kept doing at ADCC. My instructor mentioned Rani Yahira using it a lot, but I don’t remember. I do remember him going up to where we were seated to greet my instructors. He beat Leo Vieira but I didn’t recognize him up close. Anyway, the choke uses the shoulder and arm to put the pressure on the neck, trapping the arm isn’t necessary as it isn’t an arm triangle variation. It also isn’t a neck crank.  I don’t really know how I feel regarding the move, it doesn’t feel so comfortable to me. So no illustrations on the technique, just text:

Start in side control and switch an arm so you have a scarf hold. Pivot your whole body with your shoulder over your opponents throat until you are at north-south. As you are turning, secure the choke by grabbing your hands together. Keep your base very low as though sprawling on the floor. Adjust your position so that it is your shoulder that is putting pressure on the throat. Squeeze.  To see it in action, watch my ADCC clips.

After the move, it was all rolling.

Guard Passing. I feel much better with my passes, especially with the butterfly guard. One of my mistakes was spotted and remedied. I usually use one hand to bring both legs together and smash them to the mat before passing (overhook one knee and push on the other), but this had the adverse effect of trapping my hand between my opponent’s legs if I grip the knee too deep. This also greatly exposes my neck when I pass and makes any headlocks/neck cranks difficult to escape based on the resulting positions of my arms. When I lock the legs together I should watch my hand placement carefully or use two arms instead to bring the knees together.

Guard offense. Although I managed a few sweeps, my guard game (what little I have) disappears with no-gi as everything is too slippery, and I can’t maintain a grip.

Names. I did so bad, couldn’t name anyone.

Weight. Stuck at 197. It did go to 195 a few days ago, but how do you refuse ice cream in the summer?

I had real difficulty doing sweeps from the lockdown (Eddie Bravo’s halfguard) with someone much shorter than me. I kept him in halfguard but neither of us had the upper-hand and the roll stalled.  Then I rolled with a guy that fights a lot of MMA. We started from standing and I think I did all right. Sprawled a few times and learned two take-downs for when you’ve attacked the back and your opponent starts to get stand up.

Enjoy your long weekend!

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BJJ Class 76

Posted by forlogos on May 22, 2007

Gi Class. I felt very good this whole day, including BJJ. I’m not sure exactly why, but about a dozen different things contributed to making today a good day. Even my stamina/endurance in class felt great, for which I have AG’s elliptical to thank. I finally completed assembling it and used it this weekend. Based on how I felt today, I am now making it a goal to use that exercise machine of hers every time I find myself at her place.

Back to BJJ…there was a very short warm-up, then the white belts were divided from the color belts. We (white belts) did this open-guard to Knee on belly to armbar move that we did a long time ago. I really like these moves, so expect to see them illustrated with my snowboard instructors soon. I noticed that we’re repeating moves that we did last summer – not that am complaining, it’s great to work on the basics. I just noticed that now, months after I first did these moves, I’m noticing other details that I never concentrated on or thought of before. I wonder what sort of details I’ll pick when we do this again several months from now.

Anyway, after drilling the technique the rest of the time was spent on rolling. Went against all white belts and had a great time. I tapped a few of them with americanas and I think I was able to dominate most of the rolls. On one roll, I went for an Americana from side control on the same side arm that I was on. I really thought I could do it, but couldn’t. Not sure how, but I was able to jump to the other side of side control without letting go of the arm and finished the sub. Additionally, I was about to have my first omoplata, but my opponent tapped before I even got to finish. From half-guard, I did a surprising number of old-school and Plan B sweeps from Eddie Bravo’s half-guard. I’m finding it really difficult to find the openings for (and to remember to try) the other EB half-guard sweeps. Also, I noticed that when I’m trying to control my opponent from the top of half-guard, I’m starting to use my head, literally. I use it to post my weight on their shoulder or chest. Wonder when I started doing this and I wonder if posting my head on higher belts will be effective or if it will just make me tap to them sooner…

My last roll of the day felt kinda different. AG showed up, and just knowing that she was there (and likely watching me) made me tense up and feel pressured. That must be how competing must be like. You’re just going for your grips and you feel all tensed. Anyway, once the roll transitioned from the knees (starting position) I kinda forgot that AG was there and I rolled normally. I’m a year into BJJ and I haven’t competed yet. I really want to.

Ok, regarding my goals:

Guard Passing. I was able to do a lot of guard passes. All different kinds. It was great, I managed to do just about all the guard pass techniques I know of. When passing to one side, I’m getting better at judging when I should quickly go for the other side and at controlling both legs.

Guard attacks. Didn’t try much of an offense submission-wise. But I managed to scissor sweep just about everyone I pulled guard on, which I rarely did since I was in a guard passing mood. I don’t feel like my sweeps are getting better. Maybe in the next class I’ll keep pulling guard so I can work on my sweeps.

Names. Managed to name about 80% of everyone there. At least before the class started. All in all, I don’t think I even know a fifth of everyone’s names yet.

Weight. Dunno. In the weekend, my weight dropped one pound a day. I prolly gained it all back since I had a full lunch and ice cream today. And a nice heavy korean meal with AG post-BJJ.

Can’t wait for the next class, hope I will feel as good as I did today…

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BJJ Class 75

Posted by forlogos on May 17, 2007

This was a great gi class!

Even though I was tired and was dozing off at work, I felt great once I left work for BJJ. We did an intense warm-up with hundreds of sit-ups and lots of push-ups…for the first time ever, I was able to keep up with the count when doing push-ups. Awesome, my once-a-week gym workout is paying off!

After the warm-ups we all paired off for some unique rolling. Rolls were three one-minute rounds, with no breaks in between…After every roll (three minutes) we switched partners. What made this class unique was that in the first two rounds, you could only use one hand – you had to put your hand through your belt, then grab the loose ends. Also, the first two rounds were guard passing/open guard defending drills. Meaning one guy had to pass the guard and if he did, the roll was reset back to the starting position. The other person had to maintain open guard, no closing or face a push-up penalty, and defend the open guard (sweeps allowed). So the first round had one guy defending open-guard with the other passing, the second round was switched positions (both using just one hand), and the third round was regular rolling, with full use of all limbs.

One-minute rounds seem short, but when you both have just one arm, it seems to last way longer than just 60 seconds. You spend so much time strategizing and wishing you could use both arms… Anyway, in line with my previous post on BJJ goals, here’s how the rolling went:

Guard passing. With the use of only one arm, I wasn’t worried about getting choked or triangled as much, so I pulled off passes with underhooking a leg with my free arm. Usually, I would get to pass within the first 15 seconds, then spend the rest of the round trying to pass again. A few times, time ran out as I was completing a second pass. None of these second passes were underhook techniques, but involved trapping one or both legs and hopping or walking around the trapped legs into side control. I managed to pass a few blue belt’s guards and had a few of those almost-there-but-time-ran-out second passes with them too. Same with the white belts. I basically just need to get more confidence and be more aware of my posture as I underhook one (or two, with regular rolling) legs to stack or pass. All those times I got caught in chokes and armbars when single or double underhooking legs could’ve been avoided if I had postured properly.

Open Guard defending. Didn’t pull any subs when doing the regular rolls, couldn’t pull any subs with one arm and open guard either. My open guard defense is much better than I had thought. The night before, I watched a video of BJ Penn and Leo Vieira rolling (and I greatly admire their guard defense) at The Gentle Art , and I just kept thinking of the video as I kept my position. The video plus a “feet on hips” drill we did some time back made me more comfortable with planting my feet on my opponent’s hips, shoulder, arm, etc…all which contributed to me having a better defense than I thought I had. Also, I managed to sweep and mount some of the white belts and I think one blue belt. One or two blue’s managed to pass my open guard. Need to learn and be more familiar with where I can best plant my feet & legs and how to use it to set-up sweeps.

Names. I managed to remember about half of the names of the guys there, but it was kinda cheating as the rain scared out the others and there wasn’t all that much peops present.

Weight. Had 10 chicken fingers post-BJJ and I weighed in at 197 the morning after. If I continue posting about my weight, you all are going see how much my weight varies 5-10 pounds almost everyday.

During regular rolling, I notice that when I do the Old School sweep from Eddie Bravo’s half-guard I usually get caught in guillotines. Not that I have to tap to them, but it’s pretty annoying and most of them are tight! I’m either exposing my head too much when I do it and don’t go down low enough (closer to my opponent’s waist rather than shoulders) when I do it or I’m doing something else that’s really wrong.

Anyway, great class, I left it with a lot of energy, and I can’t wait for the next class next week!


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BJJ Class 73 and 74

Posted by forlogos on May 15, 2007

I went to two classes back-to-back on the same day, but since they were two different classes I’ll count them separately.

Felt tired today, I was gassed just after 3 minutes of warming up, I don’t know if it was because I was tired (as usual) or because of my seasonal allergies. Fortunately, compared to the past few weeks, today’s warm-up wasn’t bad. After warm-ups we drilled elbow locks from side control.

I had the technique down, but I don’t really see myself adding this to my game, so I won’t illustrate them with my snowboard instructors. Basically, from tight side control, you go to knee-on-belly, trap the far arm and do a shoulder lock. If you have no base, then fall back, reposition your arms and do a variation of the shoulder lock. You’ll also be in a prime position for the armbar.

There was some rolling after the drill. Didn’t get to practice what I wanted to practice (guard passing and bottom half-guard). I did manage to finish an arm-bar from the guard. When I was doing the armbar and was being stacked, I remembered the blog post 20 Fundamental Moves of Jiu-Jitsu from Smash Pass. Particularly:

“Now let’s analyze some shortcomings you might encounter and some tips that will help. The armbar from the guard makes you vulnerable to a pass of the guard; make sure you always adjust your hips after any missed armbar attempt. You are exposed to the slam; develop the habit of hooking the inside of your opponent’s leg with your arm so you don’t get picked up and slammed. Especially in the armbar from the guard, because your opponent is on top, gravity is working against you. Whenever someone tries to stack me, I like to turn belly down to use gravity against my opponent’s arm.”

…so as soon as I was being stacked, I rolled and managed to finish the belly-down armbar. Cool!!

The second class was very laid back. Warm-ups was easy!! We drilled the basic triangle and four options that you can do from that position. This was way cool, expect to see me illustrate this with my snowboard instructors soon. Basically, if you can’t sink the triangle there are four options that you can go for – 1. triangle with simultaneous elbow lock – 2. Elbow lock with the opponent’s hand under your armpit – 3. figure-four elbow lock – 4. Gogoplata choke (I might have the name wrong, put it’s the choke where you use your shin and instep against the throat.

There was rolling after the drills, but it was very laid back and relaxed. Taught someone the Eddie Bravo half-guard, other wise rolling was uneventful…

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BJJ Class 64

Posted by forlogos on April 6, 2007

Gi class.  The school’s owner taught the class, not the usual professor.  He just came back from the Pan-Ams and got 2nd place in his weight division.  Hurrah!!

I was very tired from the weekend at Utah and late nights prepping myself for interviews and stuff – so I just wanted to relax in class.  I really wanted to roll – even though the last class taught me not to relax while rolling.  Not that we actually rolled.

Anyway, we did some warm-ups and stuff, which wasn’t too difficult, surprisingly.  Then we did a spider guard pass, which will be illustrated soon, thanks to my snowboard instructors.

Then there was, as Slideyfoot puts it, specific sparring.  It’s been a long time since any of this was done in class.  It was sparring with one person on open-guard.  This person’s goal was to sweep his opponent, while the other person’s goal was to pass the guard.  Whoever looses, leaves, goes back to join the line to wait for their next turn at whoever frees up to try to pass their guard.  Fun!!

I passed a few (even blue belts) and swept a few too.  I remember months ago when we last did something like this – I couldn’t pass anyone’s guard or sweep anyone at all back then.  It’s really nice to see that in the last 9 or 10 months, I actually did learn a few things and I’m so much better now.  It’s really nice that we can have things like this, real things of substance, that we can use to measure our performance.  It’s not just the color of the belt on your waist.

When I was active in TKD a lifetime ago, I saw too many people promoted to black belt that didn’t deserve it (“undeserving black belts” I called them).  They fought like blue belts and couldn’t perform kicks they should’ve “mastered” two or three belt colors ago.  You could actually get a backbelt without getting better, learning anything, or putting in any hard work.  You just needed to pay the testing fees and show up.

But that’s a rant for another day….

For now, Ous!

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BJJ Class 58

Posted by forlogos on March 10, 2007

Went to a no-gi class today.

Haven’t been to too many…

Anyway, for the first time in a long while, we had a regular class. Lately the classes consisted of open mat rolling. All rolling. Not a complaint, but it did have me wonder whether there might be a competition coming up. I dunno.

Anyway, after warm-ups we drilled two moves from open guard with the top player standing trying to pass the guard. The first move was a sweep where you eventually get both hooks in from behind your opponent and sweep them to get their back. The second was a plan B for the sweep which leads to a kneebar. It’s the second time I learned a move with a leg lock (white belts aren’t permitted to attack the legs in my academy) but I didn’t enjoy it too much. The sweep was difficult for me to pull off, even though I kinda got it eventually, it was still very difficult and I didn’t like it at all. I felt very weak and had great difficulty getting the proper technique – even muscling the move didn’t make it work. The moves took most of the class, and there was barely enough time left for rolling.

I went against a former wrestler and the guy I drilled the techniques with. The Guy I drilled with was huge and has improved so much since our last roll. He got me in a kimura 3 times or so and totally dominated. After the first 3 subs, I felt my body get warmer and was able to defend and fight for position but there wasn’t enough time for the roll. The former highschool wrestler has been learning BJJ for about 4 months now and when we started rolling, he had the upper hand. Actually, I think he had it for most of the roll, but I managed to score points on him and I don’t think he scored any. I swept him a few times (twice or thrice from the EB half-guard) and got to mount for a few minutes. Anyway, no subs but I was coming close to one when the time ended.

I hurt my wrist previously, I don’t remember when or how, but I know it was from BJJ. I hurt it even more today when I was avoiding the wrestler’s guard pass, even had to take a short breather just to shake and stretch it a bit.

Anyway, I’m glad I got to go to BJJ twice this week. Good week. Plus am snowboarding tomorrow. Hehehe.

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BJJ Class 57

Posted by forlogos on March 9, 2007

I read this post from Jits at The Daily Jits. He discussed how annoying it is to miss BJJ and how your game level is affected as a result. I was thinking about it when I started rolling last night. It was another all-rolling class.

I missed a class last week and it felt like I had lost some skill at that short a time. A noob arm-barred me, my guard was getting passed like nothing, and I was out of breath!

Then it happened, I got my game back. It might have happened the first time I did the EB half-guard or when I was hit in the head. Whatever it was, I was on. I guess it was because my body was fully warmed up and I stopped feeling so sluggish, I didn’t warm up much and I was tired even before class.

I successfully defended against a white belt that has done nothing but own me the last few weeks. I’m also seeing more success with the EB half-guard. I keep mentioning Eddie Bravo’s techniques I’m gonna have to create an ‘Eddie Bravo’s techniques’ or something like that as a category for this blog. EB is more known for his rubber guard, I think, but there’s more than just the rubber guard to his techniques. Anyway, the class turned out to be pretty good, even if there was too many people that one rolling pair often collided with another rolling pair, or the wall.

The kimura/americana move is still my highest percentage sub, the armbar has the highest in failed attempts, and my side control is getting better but my side control escapes are getting worse.

I need to train more!!

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BJJ class 56

Posted by forlogos on March 6, 2007

I went to BJJ class last week. I should’ve blogged right away. I know there was something I wanted to share. Now I barely remember what happened.

It was a gi-class – all rolling. I got to use Eddie Bravo’s half guard a lot. It is very effective. Except against some people, I can’t seem to get low enough so I can sweep them. Against this one person, he got so annoyed that he couldn’t pass the half-guard and I couldn’t get low enough to sweep him – he just started planting his elbow on my neck making me tap. I have to figure out how to maintain the double underhooks and get low enough.

I did manage to sweep a few people with the EB half-guard – including this guy that had over 50lbs on me – I was surprised that he went over and flipped when I made him – it was so effortless on my part. I’ve never swept anyone so effortlessly before

My game is getting better. I feel that the “constant offense” mindset (and the EB half-guard) I’ve been trying has really worked very well and seems like I have no equal in class anymore. I don’t mean that I’m the best in my school, far from it – what I mean is that if I’m not winning the roll by a margin, I’m losing the roll by a margin. It’s like in all the rounds of rolling lately, someone has always been dominating the roll – whether it be me or whoever I’m against.

Guess I did remember some of what I wanted to say….

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