How To Make Your Half Guard Top Notch
So…you have finally decided to work on your half guard. You see some of the absolute baddest dudes in Jiu Jitsu with killer half guards. Bernardo Faria, Jeff Glover and Lucas Leite all use the half guard to its best potential. And honestly, it shows. The question then comes to mind, how can you improve your half guard? There are certain ideas and concepts that you can work into your training to make sure it becomes pressure tested. It can be frustrating at first, but once you get a groove, you will see that the half guard can become one of your best weapons. Here is how you can make that true.
Keep on your hip
One of the toughest aspects that people have with the half guard, especially when they are first learning to use it, is to stay on their hip. Too many times, I see people trying half guard attacks flat on their back. Regular, good ole half guard does NOT work if you’re completely flat. You have to be up on your hip so that you can gain the under hook and work your sweeps. So practice getting up on your hip. Work on your shrimping. And when you roll, instead of pulling closed guard, pull half and make sure you stay strong on your hip.
Get used to the pressure
Another aspect of half guard that turns people off instantly is the amount of pressure that they feel there. It isn’t like closed guard where you can work from a distance. You need to be up close and personal with your opponent to get all of those awesome sweeps that work so well. Get your breathing regulated to start. Then make sure that you know what pressure is normal and which is not so that you can avoid counter attacks from the top.
Always block the cross face
This one is pretty simple. You need to block the opponent’s cross face. If you don’t, then you will always be fighting an uphill battle. You need to block the cross face right away after getting into the half guard. Otherwise, you will get flattened out every single time and your guard will be useless. Get your arms moving and block his bicep so that you can stay safe and be ready to utilize the position.
Practice a handful of techniques
When it comes to the half guard, you do not need hundreds of techniques. Pick out a handful of techniques and practice, practice, practice. The best options from half are sweeps, so pick out a few of your favorite sweeps and drill the hell out of them. Learn a couple of solid submissions from half as well, and you will that the half guard is very effective.
The reason that you see half guard work at the highest levels of competition is because it works. And it happens to work superbly. So get the reps in now, and make your half guard fearsome. If you want a great resource on the half guard, then check out…
The Coyote Half Guard by Lucas Leite. Click here!
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