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The First Pass You Learn, The Last one You Master

The First Pass You Learn, The Last one You Master


Passing is one of the hardest parts of bjj.  There are some people whose guards are so good that it is nearly impossible to ever pass.  One of the most frustrating aspects of bjj is attempting to pass the guard, especially when you are just starting out.  One of the first passes that you will ever learn is the knee slice, it is also one of the last passes that you ever master.

The knee slice seems simple when you learn it, but as you progress, it can become an extremely technical pass and something that you use against so many guards.  The knee slice is one of the best passes, but it is also used as a position the better you get.  The knee slice can be used to set up so many things.  Although simple when you learn, it is difficult to understand all of the mechanics.

The Knee Slice as a Pass

The knee slice is a great way to beat many different guards.  You can use the knee slice against several open guards like De La Riva, reverse De La Riva, Collar and Sleeve, Half Guard, and many other positions.  When you are first introduced to the knee slice you will find it simple to learn but when attempting to implement it at a high level you will see that it is extremely difficult against a high level opponent.

The ADCC is going on right now and the infamous Gordon Ryan actually used a knee slice to pass Black Belt World Champion, Romulo Barral’s guard and ultimately choke him with a RNC.  What separates a good knee slice from a bad one?

Some people combine the knee slice with other passes and there timing is very good.  For example, if you attempt an X-pass and your opponent’s hook catches your leg, you can come back and knee slice.  The combination of the two passes can surprise your opponent and ultimately give you a pass.  Check out this video below of the X-pass/Knee slice combo.

Knee Slice as a Position

Knee slice is also infamously used as a position.  This means that when you are attempting to knee slice your opponent may catch you in quarter guard and this can be knee slice position.  Many people use this to set up several attacks such as the cross choke, baseball bat choke, and more.

The knee slice is an easy place to set up attacks prior to passing your opponent’s guard that way once you are passed you are ready to attack.  Sometimes when you pass the guard, your opponent will shell up and defend instantly so it may be better to attack prior to passing.  Check out this video some attacks from knee slice position. 

If you want to work on your knee slice and try and add some sharp fundamentals to your game, check out Gregor Gracie’s 4 DVD Set, “High Level Fundamentals.” 


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