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The Power of Lucas Lepri’s Knee on Belly
Knee on belly is an interesting position for several reasons. For starters, it is a position that in and of itself is not as useful for attack as many other top-control positions, but rather it is a transitional position that gives us pathways to other more dominant positions. While you can submit an opponent from knee on belly, if you are well acquainted with the position it is more likely that you will use it to find your way to a better position.
Knee on belly is what one may call a “control” position. It is a way to address an aggressively bucking opponent and retain control. Rather than relinquish the position one may use knee on belly as a way to quell the opponent’s resistance and transition to a more secure position.
It can also be used as an attack position, in the event that you can really create driving pressure on a person’s chest, their desire to clear that pressure may open up a variety of attacks, many of which are highly potent. Knee on belly can be far more versatile than one would expect for this reason.
One of the most dynamic lightweight competitors in the jiu jitsu world, he is able to use positional control to defeat some of the best in the game. Here is a video of him using his positional dominance to out-score heavyweight study, Roberto “Cyborg” Abreu:
As you can see from the video, Lepri uses positional awareness in a way that no one else in the game today is able to do. It’s for this reason that Lepri has only been submitted once as a black belt. He most recently secured yet another world title in 2016 using this positional awareness.
As much as Lepri’s passing and guard play are effective, his ability to secure positions, like knee on belly, is a major asset to his game. If you’re interested in learning how Lepri plays knee on belly so effectively, get this DVD in which he covers the nuances of the position. Don’t get bucked off of an opponent again, instead use knee on belly to improve your position or, better yet, submit your opponents.