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Pass This Bizarre Form Of Guard With Andre Galvao

Pass This Bizarre Form Of Guard With Andre Galvao


Lapel based guards have become quite popular in the modern age of BJJ training and competition. It seems we find practitioners constantly developing new ways to use the gi as weapon. And why not? That’s what its there for. If you’ve ever squared off against someone with a proficient lapel guard game, it can almost make you feel a little bit silly. Your balance is incredibly compromised and the weaving of the gi through different parts of your body can be very difficult to unwind. There are several methods of setting up a lapel guard. You’ll find the gi tail being looped around and through every possible nook and cranny of the body and it’s important to understand how to dismantle a lapel guard before you’re too far down the path. 

Andre Galvao has recently compiled quite the passing library for BJJ Fanatics and as you might have guessed, the lapel guard is on the menu. There’s not much this 6x ADCC champion hasn’t seen and there isn’t much he hasn’t accomplished in the world of BJJ. Galvao’s experienced, battle tested technique is sure to help us all get a better foothold on our passing game. With constant experimentation with his students and training with the elite competitors of BJJ, Galvao has left no stone unturned when it comes to passing and now, he’s sharing this crucial information with the BJJ community. 

Lapel based guard passing is addressed in the full instructional but today we get a sample from Galvao of what’s to come. In this video, Galvao runs us through a common lapel guard scenario. He’ll cover some pitfalls of the position, help us understand what were dealing with, and ultimately pass this frustrating form of the guard. Check this out! 


Commonly set up from a De La Riva position, the particular variation of the lapel guard finds the bottom player feeding the passers lapel around the outside of the left leg into his waiting right hand. This entangles the guard players own right shin as well and creates a pretty intricate web. As Galvao explains, the tail of the gi is usually controlled with a thumb up grip.

Overwhelm The Lapel Guard With Galvao! Click Learn More!

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With the guard in place, Galvao begins to break down the pass. He refers to the method here as a “reverse stack pass”. This is good to keep in mind as you work your way through his one. Keeping himself at 90 degrees, Galvao begins to reach for the far leg with his left hand and gets a grip on the pants behind the knee. This can still be done even if the sleeve is being controlled, as Galvao demonstrates. 

Here, Galvao begins to reach his right hand to the underside of his partner’s near leg. He couples this reach with some lateral movement that begins to take him around his partner’s head. As this occurs, he finds a 4-finger grip in his partners left lapel. This motion puts his partner’s body into a folded position as Galvao arrives at the other side. Here he applies pressure from his hips and begins to stretch his leg away to break the lapel grip. 

To stop his partner from turtling, Galvao keeps the grip on the underside of the knee and scoops the legs up so he can wedge his left knee underneath them to prevent any unfavorable movement. Here Galvao begins to slowly establish side control and settle in. 

In a secondary option, Galvao finds he cannot break the grip by simply stretching his leg. Here, he uses his right knee to drive in to the grip and separate his partner’s hand from the gi tail. 

Finishing the sequence with a quick piece of gold on framing, Galvao shows us what to do when the bottom player blocks our bicep. As the guard player throws up the frame, Galvao fakes an upward movement of his arm to get entice his partner to follow the frame and then quickly takes his arm south again, shedding the frame and gaining position on the underside of his partners left arm. This piece of information itself is a gem. Galvao then inserts his thumb into the collar and uses a hammer style curl to solidify the position. With two under hooks and some heavy shoulder pressure, he staples his partner to the mat and its likely things will only get worse from here. 

In another variation, Galvao shows us how to trap the arms and force our partner to turtle. This exposes the back and another entire world of options to attack. Amazing stuff. 

With some closing thoughts on lapel-based guards, Galvao brings up some interesting points. As he explains, it can be tough to sweep when using this type of guard. Having your own leg trapped usually forces a lapel guard player to find ways underneath the passer. Galvao has studied this particular nuance in depth and has created his passing game around this theme. You can see here in this video how he continually takes measures to stop the guard player from getting underneath him. 

Passing Modern Guard Using Old School Concepts by Andre Galvao

Galvao is incredibly well rounded, but he loves to pass the guard. His extensive study of guard passing is apparent in his instruction, as he has developed an answer for everything. This instructional is one of the densest materials BJJ Fanatics has ever compiled and its sure to give you a better understanding of this most incredibly important aspect of BJJ. Passing the Modern Guard: Using Old School Concepts is available now!



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