Guard Passing: The Floating Position
The Beginnings Of A NEW Passing System...
If you’ve ever grappled against a high-level opponent, you might have realized that it is extremely difficult to pass their guard. Imagine going against some of the greatest grapplers today and what passing their guard must be like. In watching the likes of Gordon Ryan on video, it may seem easy, but it is far from that.
If you think your basic knee slice pass will work against these guys, think again. Passing the guard of skilled grapplers requires intricacy and a lot of attention. This is because passing the guards of these grapplers requires you to move between passes based off of their guard defense. This usually comes with experience but can also be practiced.
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One of the most recent innovations in guard passing seems like something a white belt would develop. But it works, really well. It is used mostly by guys like Gordon Ryan and Craig Jones but is now starting to be used by grappler’s all over. This innovation is called the floating position. The floating position allows the top player to move their legs about with a lot of ease, something that is not common in other passing positions.
To enter the floating position, the guard player must place one of their legs between the legs of the guard player, and this can be a battle on its own. After doing this, that leg must put a lot of pressure on the same side leg of the defender while you sit over the guard players other legs. This position, so far, sounds a lot like many other guard passing positions. The difference, however, is that the hands must be place above the shoulders of the guard player on the ground or in their armpits. After establishing this position, place your weight on your hands and float your hips up.
This 40-min video of Gordon Ryan is an excellent exhibit of the floating position and all the different passes and transitions you can take from there. The floating position also allows for entries to submission-based passes like guillotine passes and kimura passes, which are my personal favorite.
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