Deep Half Entry to Trash Sweep with Matheus Diniz
The more sweeps and submissions you can add to your game plan the more well-rounded and prepared you will be for the possible reactions your opponent can present to you. Half guard is a deceptively simple and seemingly lazy position, where the bottom half guard player can lie in what looks like a passive, dormant position and launch a wide variety of sweeps and attacks.
From standard half guard, with it's strong hooks, shields and frames can expand into new territories like Z Guard, Half Butterfly, and Deep Half to name just a few. Each presents unique advantages for the player and difficult challenges for the opponent.
Z guard with it's powerful low knee driving into the hip, favored by people like Craig Jones, ensures a great deal of flexibility of attacks and sweeps, relying more on the legs than the arms. Half butterfly, favored by athletes like Tom DeBlass utilize a knee shield that ends in a butterfly hook, uniting best of both worlds in terms of being able to withstand a great deal of pressure, but also featuring the hook that provides for a great deal of lifting ability when hooked to the opponent's thigh.
In this articles featured technique, Matheus Diniz demonstrates a move that takes us from standard half guard, to deep half guard and then to a trash sweep. Take a look and then let's break it down a bit into digestible chunks.
In this series, Matheus begins with a solid and traditional half guard. The bottom hook is secured around the opponent's thigh. This prevents the opponent from progressing and simply passing the guard. The knee shield is angled towards the far shoulder. The knee shield traditionally bears the brunt of the force of the opponent's weight and gravity pushing down on the bottom player.
The legs are supported by a strong arm frame, which supports the work of the knee shield by keeping the opponent from driving with everything they have, as they will choke themselves. The framing arm can also be quite useful as a steering wheel. The bottom arm is the final line of defense that is most often utilized to control the bicep of the opponent's cross face arm.
From this traditional half guard position, Matheus makes his way into deep half by removing his knee shield to from across the opponent's body, creating enough space to reach into and around their body securing a deep under hook along the hips or belt line. Once this deep under hook is secured, the next step to this deep half guard entry is to use the free arm to dive under the opponent's near thigh to secure control on that leg.
Once the deep half position is secured, Matheus will begin to make the adjustments necessary to create the proper space for the execution of the trash sweep. First, the grip created by the initial under hook is released and that hand is brought to the nearside ribs of the opponent. By pushing and lifting, space is created for the knee to create a wedge against the opponent's thigh to allow the move to bring the bottom leg into play and place the foot against the opponent's knee to push them away.
From there we are a simple technical lift away from taking the opponent down. As you push against the knee, the opponent's weight continues to be displaced away which makes the stand up with the thigh on the shoulder that much easier. From this position, there are a number of ways to finalize the trash sweep, but in this case Matheus pulls them back to expose a back take opportunity.
From start to finish, this series serves to protect one from the heavy passing attempts, pressure and cross face of the aggressive opponent. From there it creates a dynamic opportunity to capitalize on the scooping underneath of the opponent to further minimize the effect of their weight, size and strength on one as the bottom player. With a few simple grip changes and a quick hoist, the space is created to drive them away and ultimately put them on the mat with the trash sweep.
If you'd like to learn more from Marcelo Garcia black belt and long time training partner of the likes of Bernardo Faria, you will want to check out his amazing instructional "Position to Submission" available here from BJJ Fanatics!