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Change Your Game With This Hip Heist By The Legendary Tom DeBlass

Change Your Game With This Hip Heist By The Legendary Tom DeBlass


Hip Heist Series by Tom DeBlass 

Who is Tom DeBlass? Tom DeBlass is many things. He is one of the most sought after instructors in the grappling world right now.  He is a world class grappler and former mixed martial artist. He is an exceptional instructor. He has a huge social media following from his technique breakdowns and advice on relationships, transformation, adversity and training.  Tom DeBlass is many things and world class in all of them.

Tom has many accomplishments in grappling and mixed martial arts. He has fought in both the UFC and Bellator. He is a 3x ADCC veteran, Fight To Win Pro Main Event Winner, 2016 ADCC North American Champion,2016 ADCC American Nationals Absolute Champion, ADCC NY Super Fight Champion,2015 Black Belt World No Gi Masters and Absolute Champion, 2014 ADCC North American Champion, 2013 Black Belt No Gi Pan American Champion, 2013 Black Belt No Gi Worlds Bronze Medal, 2009 ADCC North American Champion, 2009 Black Belt No Gi Worlds Bronze Medal, 2007 Brown Belt No Gi Worlds Champion, 2007 Brown Belt Pan American Champion, 2007 Brown Belt American Nationals Champion, 6X Grappler’s Quest Expert Champion and member of the New Jersey Martial Artist Hall of Fame.

DeBlass’ education and teaching ability is also exceptional. Tom earned his black belt from legendary ADCC and MMA veteran Ricardo Almeida in just over six years. There are many testaments to his exceptional teaching ability. His first black belt is the great Garry Tonon. Gordon Ryan is Tonon’s first black belt. Tom is a former elementary school special education teacher. This experience has honed his ability to take complex concepts and make them understandable to even the novice grapplers. Another testament to his teaching ability is his academy Ocean County Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. He has over 350 students and 20 black belts. Additionally he has an empire of affiliates around the world.

It is also worth noting the Tao of Tom’s social media presence. He has many great quotes from training to adversity, transformation and life.  Here is a great quote from Tom on transformation, “The last 4 weeks I have dedicated to changing myself. Every day I have been praying, asking God to help me in the areas of life where I struggle. Regardless how successful you may think you are, there is always so much room for improvement, always. I am nowhere close to where I want to be, but every day I am getting better. It is a conscious effort that I must put in, but I feel myself becoming a better person.”

Want to learn more about how effective the Half Butterfly can be for your game?  Click Learn More below to find out how!




In this video Tom explores what to do if your opponent is stalling. DeBlass starts off in half guard with a butterfly hook. Before he starts on technique, he explores some important principles. First, it is of paramount importance for your opponent not to be comfortable. You do not want to give him an opportunity to set up an attack on you. He should be reacting to you. A second key idea is if we have the ability to stand up we should take it. Certainly there is the old adage in Jiu Jitsu that the ground is our ocean, however if our opponent is kneeling in front of us there is no requirement that we have to play off our back. So instead of staying in half guard and allowing your opponent to dictate the action, Tom advocates sitting out to a hip heist. His arm frames on his opponents shoulder on the same side as the butterfly hook. The butterfly hook comes out. He goes to his knees in a modified combat stance. This forces their reaction. It creates a dilemma for them.  If your opponent stands up all the way, DeBlass suggests that there are two beautiful options. First, you can play the leg game. There are a variety of entries for single leg x, x guard, reverse x guard and other entries for ashi. There is also an option for a low single. If your opponent comes into you and grabs a knee for a takedown, Tom is quick to stuff his opponents head. From here there are several options. He takes a Kimura grip on the far side arm. This Kimura grip is an easy access to a Kimura Trap system of back takes, arm bars and kimura finishes. From the stuffed knee, there are also many head lock options available.

Personally I love this series. There are several reasons for this. One he discusses the principles behind the technique. These principles will not only pay dividend with the sequence but also with your grappling game as a whole. Beyond that, a hip heist is easy to implement and adds another dimension to your half guard game. In my own experience, there are moves I learn today but I know it will take a month or two of repetitions before I catch those moves in a live roll. After watching the hip heist video last night I was consistently catching submissions off it today. This will definitely be a staple of my half guard game. Thank you Tom DeBlass.

This video is a fine example of Tom’s ability to breakdown technique and principles in a manner that is applicable to everyone from the white belt to black belt. Without a doubt, we can all refine our game with the information provided. Tom DeBlass is certainly many things. Beyond Jiu Jitsu technique, he sets an example on how to run an academy and our mindset for training, transformation, adversity and life in general. The Jiu Jitsu community is lucky to have people like Tom DeBlass.

For more from Tom DeBlass' BRAND NEW series The Half Butterfly Guard, head over to BJJ Fanatics and get yourself a copy now!  You can get it here!




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