2 BJJ Techniques From Purple Belt World Champ Matheus Gonzaga
Matheus Gonzaga Is A Rising Star In The BJJ Community! Get Access To His Greatest Secrets Exclusively On BJJFanatics.com!
by Matt Bryers, February 27, 2019
Matheus Gonzaga is a Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt under Daniel Gazoni and an instructor and competitor at the Bernardo Faria branch of the Alliance Academy the sport’s international competitive circuit. Matheus became widely recognized as one of the rising stars of BJJ while grappling in the lower belt divisions where he conquered an IBJJF world title and several Rio de Janeiro state championships. The list of Matheus Gonzaga’s achievements in jiu jitsu is impressive, including IBJJF Boston Summer Int. Champion, Fight 2 Win Pro Superfight Winner, IBJJF New York Spring Int. Open 2nd Place, IBJJF Boston Spring Int. Open 2nd Place, and IBJJF Pan American No Gi 3rd Place.
The Cross Choke is an old-school mount choke that is typically ignored after a BJJ students first week of class. But it is one of those old school fundamentals techniques that just work. Too many students (especially blue belts) focus on the new fancy techniques, guard sweeps, etc. But don't ignore the old school fundamental jiu jitsu that just works.
Today we are going to check out 2 of Matheus Gonzaga’s favorite techniques. If you did not already know, Matheus is known for his amazing guard game that as a smaller guy he uses to gain an advantage on nearly anyone. Gonzaga has a great instructional series called “The Lightweight Guard” available exclusively on BJJFanatics.com. Let’s check out some of the amazing instructions you can find on this series. Here are two BJJ techniques from Purple Belt world champ Matheus Gonzaga.
#1: Cross Choke From Mount
The top mount position can be a very powerful position to hit chokes from. To prevent his opponent from escaping, Matheus Gonzaga pinches his knees as opposed to posting on the mats with his hands and crossing his feet underneath. This is a technique Matheus uses because he knows it works against bigger and stronger guys, making it a very efficient way to control a difficult grappler. From here Matheus feeds his hand inside his training partner’s gi collar for a deep grip. He uses his hand like a blade, slicing across his training partner’s artery, cutting off circulation to his brain. He adds additional pressure by posting with his hand on the ground. Matheus Gonzaga emphasizes that your elbow should be positioned on your training partner’s chest.
There are several different ways to hit the submission. You can go underneath your training partner’s head and submit him from the pressure. Or you can adjust your hips and bring your arm all the way across to the other side of your training partner’s body to secure the cross choke. Most of the time you will see the guy on bottom use his hand and try to block the choke. To get around this, Matheus force his opponent’s head to one side which creates space to grab the collar for the cross choke.
#2: Killing The Spider Guard
The first thing Matheus Gonzaga focuses on when killing the spider guard is establishing his grips. He grips his opponent’s gi around the ankles. A good spider guard player will be able to extend their legs and control where your body moves with their feet. So what you want to do to counter this is stand up and control the distance. Lift your elbow up to break the guard and try to keep your opponent’s legs away from you. After you break your training partner’s guard you should be looking to control him at the knees. From here you can pass the guard by stepping around to the side, or even going all the way to north south. If you stay too close to your opponent it is very easy for them to set up all different types of sweeps and submissions. The key is to control the distance, creating the space necessary for you to clear the feet. Once your opponent’s guard is broken you are in a good position to pass. Use this one the next time you are caught in spider guard, it is a great pass to have in your arsenal!
If there is one thing Matheus Gonzaga is most well known for it is his incredibly powerful and lightweight guard. As you can tell, Matheus is not the biggest guy. But his guard is so effective that even the strongest guys struggle to do anything against him. So if you liked these two techniques then be sure to check out Matheus’ instructional series, “The Lightweight Guard” available exclusively right here on BJJFanatics.com!