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Smashed In Half Guard?  Use This Simple Guard Sweep

Smashed In Half Guard? Use This Simple Guard Sweep


How To Sweep While Getting Smashed In Half Guard By Josh Roth

If you have done Brazilian Jiu Jitsu for any time at all you will probably be familiar with the concept of half guard. It is a fundamental technique that is easy to learn and hard to master. Some of the greatest grapplers in the world devote their entire careers to mastering half guard as the basis of their BJJ game. With that in mind, it is no surprise that there are a variety of sweeps you can do from half guard. No matter how developed your half guard is, the goal of your opponent will try to be to pass it, setting yourself up for a great opportunity to sweep.

Craig Jones is a master of the half guard and foot lock attacks. His DVD the Z Guard Encyclopedia gives you a variety of different set ups and attacks from half guard to get the sweep or submission.


If you do not know who Josh Roth is, he is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt under Julio “Foca” Fernandez. Josh is also a Muay Thai student level instructor recognized by the Thai Boxing Association of the USA. Roth is a law enforcement professional specializing as a defensive tactics instructor. Is he the head coach of the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Submission Grappling team at Kinetix MMA. His list of accolades are long, some of most recent finishes being 2015 Master Worlds Bronze Medalist, 2015 Ascension Champion, and 2015 Buffalo Classic champion. Roth competes both in gi and no gi grappling tournaments, and is considered a veteran of MMA, Muay Thai, and BJJ competition.

Needless to say, Josh Roth knows his stuff. In the video below Roth will demonstrate how to sweep while getting smashed in bottom half guard position. Check out the video and then we will break down his technique.

Josh Roth starts out this technique in half guard. He considers this a bad defensive position that you should be trying to move away from. A big strong guy on top with an under hook is a bad place get caught in, especially as he goes for the knee cut. All you really have from the bottom is an over hook as you work for a grip at his gi pants. Otherwise you need to main his foot. Roth starts out by switching his feet from traditional half guard to reverse. From here he extends his hips to put his opponent’s hips on top of his. Now you have the right angle you need to trip your opponent and make small adjustments. You will see that Josh Roth maintains full contact while making these adjustments. In a live roll, this is something you are going to have to take a little time to work at. But once you sweep him you land in top side control position – making you much better off than you were while being smashed in half guard.

The great detail that makes this sweep so effective is how you use your half guard to basically control where your opponent’s body has to move. Because there is no flexibility in the knee your partner is forced to adjust his body to follow his leg as you slowly work your way through the sweep. This is a really great sweep from a position that happens often. Try to remember this one the next time you are getting smashed from bottom half guard. It could be the effect maneuver you need to keep your opponent from knee slicing or submitting you!

Craig Jones has a secret weapon in jiu jitsu... his Z Guard. He was virtually unheard of until recent ADCC and EBI competitions where he shocked the world with his Z guard and foot lock attacks. His approach is simple, and makes sense. After watching it, your approah and execution from the Z Half Guard will dramatically change for the better.



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