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Best Sweeps for MMA



As a Jiu Jitsu fighter that has fought in MMA, I’ve experienced firsthand how the game changes once you get locked in that cage where strikes are allowed. While being on your back in Jiu Jitsu can be a good thing, in MMA it is a little more tricky. Your guards effectiveness can go down once the punches start raining down. It is best to use your Jiu Jitsu from top positions, so if you end up on your back, you need to have a few sweeps that you excel with to get on top. Here are three of my favorite sweeps to get back on top.

Arm drag to flower sweep from full guard –

There is one of the first go to sweeps for when you fight in MMA. One of the most important aspects of this sweep is that you are able to break your opponent’s posture. By breaking the posture, you stop your opponent’s ability to strike. With this sweep, you are breaking posture, getting an angle off of the arm drag, and controlling your opponent’s upper body. Once executed, the sweep puts you right into mount which is a great place to be.

Elevator sweep with an over hook from full guard –

This sweep has saved my butt in the cage more than once. The elevator sweep is an easy to hit sweep, which is why it is so effective. When you have full guard, grab an over hook on one of your opponent’s arms and use your other arm to control the neck. The over hook controls an opponent’s ability to strike. Then with the opposite side leg, insert a butterfly hook, and use your other leg to chop your opponent’s leg. With the correct lifting and pulling motions, you’ll be able to get right into mount.

Old school sweep from half guard

As I mentioned in a previous article, half guard is actually more applicable to MMA than full guard. With half guard, your sweeps are more of a sure thing, and the ability to stand up is beneficial. My go to sweep from half guard, is a standard half guard sweep, otherwise known as the old school sweep. Once I have my half guard (either standard or lockdown), I can get an under hook on my opponent. From there, I dive under, grabbing my opponent’s free foot and bringing to his butt, and holding it with my under hooking arm. From there, I can sweep my opponent over with little effort.

Depending on what you compete in, you know the need for modification to your game. Gi to no gi, you have to work on grips and scrambles. With MMA, you work on using your Jiu Jitsu without getting hit too much and taking too much damage. Have these three sweeps in your game so you can utilize the top position as much as possible, so you can win any match in the cage.


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