2/25/16 - Focused on my De La Riva Passes, specifically. Also, working on my guard for Nogi.
1st Training Session- Gi - Passing DLR Guard
So I came into my first training session of the day knowing I wanted to work DLR guard passes due to my poor performance/execution of passes against DLR on the previous day. Today, I started by focusing on back step passes against DLR. With my right leg ensnared, I would reach down with my right hand and grab his cross side lapeland be posted on his chest. I would step my left leg back in a counterclockwise direction, half turning my back to my opponent and post my left foot on the mat (not falling to my butt). From here I would try to kick my right leg free and pull it back trough so that I could face my opponent and I'd be passed the guard. If I couldn't get my foot free like this or if he reached for my belt, I would let go of the lapel with my right hand and drop to my butt as a simultaneously drop my right armd into his opposite side armpit to secure the underhook position. From here I could use my left foot to kick off is legs to free my fight leg. I'd then thread the needle and secure a top North South position.
This was working well, however with some experimentation, I found a much stronger way to pass the DLR and this will likely be my "go to" pass from that position. With my right leg entangled. I would drop my left leg straight back behind me as thought I was going to attempt to do the splits (front and back). This stretched out my right leg making it hard for him to keep the DLR hook. Then I would drop my right knee straight sideways (to the right) and try to go over his shin. As I did this, I keep my left hand inside of my opponent's right knee and below his leg. As let my right knee fall to the ground, this would force my opponent to roll onto his left hip. This would make his right leg very light and I used my left arm to simultaneously scoop underneath his right leg, jack it up onto my shoulder, and this would set me up beautifully to go right into the single underhook stack pass. Even if you don't get the pass, this whole motion was super usefully in breaking the DLR hook so I could start to work my passes. This was very effective for me during live rolling and situationals.
2nd Training Session - Nogi - Single leg X guard sweep
During my 2nd training session today, I decided that since it was Nogi, it would be great to work something that would help me with my nogi problems I have been having from guard, namely trying to get a hold of and sweep somebody who is playing far back and is hesitant to engage.
I started from sitting guard against a standing opponent. I grab one of his wrists (in this case, his right wrist) with both of my hands and I pull him toward me. This forces him to step forward with his same side (right) leg in order to keep his balance. With his right leg very close to me, I place my left shin against his right shin (with my knee outside his leg and my foot inside) and I hug around his leg with my left arm. Now I have attached myself to him to keep him from being able to back away again. From here, I know it's important to keep my head tight against his thigh to prevent him from being able to wrap up my head. Now from here I have several different options. The two I worked included stand up in base to work my single leg takedown which is a great option. The other technique I worked was transitioning into Single Leg X guard (1 leg x). From hugging his leg, I would roll to by back and use my left leg to kick his foot out, I would then pull his leg toward me, let my left leg go behind his leg, and I would swing it around his leg and rest my left heel on his hip. My right leg would clamp onto his same leg, placing my shin against his inner thigh.
Now while I was working my 1 leg x sweep, I found a nuance which made it so much stronger. From 1 leg x, I have always pressed my right leg against his inner thing, and pushed hard against his leg to get his knee to open up so he would lose his balance, but I realized that by dropping my right leg down so that my right shin was right against his knee, I could use my shin directly against his knee joint for a much stronger push and his knee would open up twice as much making it much harder for him to keep his balance. As he fell, I would sit up and come up on top. I would try to go right into either a knee slice pass slicing my right shin across his right thigh or a single underhook stack pass using my right arm to underhook his left leg.
After drilling, we started doing live rolling. We decided to work from the feet since we are preparing for a tournament. I found a super simple takedown set up online and decided to actually give it a shot, and it worked beautifully. It started off with hand fighting in order to bait him into letting his hands / elbows come away from his body a little bit. Then from here, I would quickly shoot both of my hands underneath his arms and I was use the palms of both my hands underneath both of his forearms. I would pop both arms up very quickly and simultaneously drop my level and shoot in for a double or single leg takedown. I was able to beat his hands nearly 100% of the time using this technique. From there I would just have to committ 100% to getting the takedown whether it was by driving all the way through for the double, or snatching up the single and working the single leg dump. I've never felt so strong at takedowns in my entire Jiu Jitsu Career. I am defintely going to keep working on this.
Ever since I started my journal, I'm noticing an increase in my focusing on my weaknesses and positions I'm not so great at. This has improved my weaknesses a ton and I am becoming a more well rounded grappler. I would highly suggest you start keeping a training journal as well. Happy Training!!