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Escaping Side Control
Being under someone that has really tight and strong side control can be a horrible and uncomfortable (to say the least) experience. Besides having a ton of pressure and weight on you which can wear you down, you always have to worry about all of the submissions and chokes that your opponent will undoubtedly go after. There are preventative methods such as shrimping and framing, but when those fail, you will need a couple of go to escapes. When it comes to escaping side control, the more simple the method, the better escape. It should be quick, and get you back up, or to your guard, depending on where you want to go. Here are two effective escapes from side control.
Jail Break Escape
The jail break escape is my number one escape once I am put in side control. The key to this escape is to get your inside arm to the mat. To achieve this, you can do a few quick in succession bridges to get your arm down. From there, you grab your far ankle/foot, and start to move it. You must place your foot inside of your opponent’s thigh and apply pressure up and begin to sit up. This can be easier if you place your other arm under the opponent’s chin and neck, by also applying pressure up. By the end of this escape, you will end up in butterfly guard which will give you the chance to stand up, or go for a sweep. For those of you who are not as flexible as me, this can be modified. Instead of doing this flat off of your back, you can turn your hips in towards your opponent. This should make this escape much easier and take the pressure off of your own hips and allow you to do the escape successfully.
Bridge Escape To Underhook
This is another awesome, yet simple escape that should be in every Jiu Jitsu student’s arsenal. As same with the jail break escape, you must do a few in succession bridges to get your arms from being shut down. After these bridges, you can get your arms inside and under your opponent’s neck/chin. You can apply some pressure upwards, and then do a big bridge. Once you create some space from the bridge, you have to scoot your hips away. Quickly, put your inside arm on your head and scoot away once more. By then, you will have plenty of space, and you can take advantage of the space to grab an underhook on your opponent. Once the underhook is achieved, you can use it to stand up, or do a simple double leg takedown from the knees.
Having a couple of go to escapes is important to your success in Jiu Jitsu. You do not want to end up in a position, and not know how to escape from it. Be able to get out, apply your strong points, and improve. These two particular escapes will aide you in not getting stuck on the bottom anymore. But there are plenty more escapes. If you need to improve this part of your games, then pick up a copy of Escapes from Everywhere by Bernardo Faria. It is an encyclopedia of useable escapes.