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The Toreando Pass
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The Toreando Pass

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The Toreando pass is one of the most simple and effective guard passes that can be used in both Gi and Nogi grappling.

“Toreando” is derived from bullfighting due to its visual similarity to the motion a matador makes with his leg when being charged by a bull. As the matador makes a last-minute maneuver, like the torero, so the bull runs through the cape, his leg shoots back to allow him to pivot in a quarter turn-like motion. That leg kickback is the key to the Toreando pass.

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To carry out this pass, you will need to be standing above your opponent in their open guard. If you end up in closed guard, the first step would be to open it and stand up, adding an element of danger and excitement to the encounter. Next, grab their pant leg at their ankle to give you a control point, injecting a surge of adrenaline into the maneuver. Use this grip to bring that foot to the floor while sliding chest down to complete the guard pass, intensifying the overall dynamic of the technique.

Once you get comfortable with this variation, you can begin to grip by the knee instead of the ankle. The benefit of this grip is that since you are gripping closer to the body, you are able to control the entire leg easier, rather than just the foot and ankle. The knee grip allows you to lift your partner’s tailbone slightly off of the mat and twist to collapse their legs away from you. Once their leg if out of the way you can easily pass around them, rather than cut through. After you have completely circled around their legs then you are free to drop into side control and continue submission hunting from there.

Lachlan Giles

Your opponent will be trying to keep their feet on your biceps, so in order to gain control of the pass you will need to swim inside of their legs before starting to move in. Since this move is so simplistic in theory, it is a favorite amongst most Jiu Jitsu practitioners. Not only is it applicable in Gi and Nogi, but it can also be used when going against someone that is a different size than them (particularly helpful for the lighter grapplers!).

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The bullfighter pass is helpful to use when passing someone’s guard is near impossible; getting through their legs and up to their head involves a huge amount of energy and will likely result in getting caught in a position you hadn’t planned on. Rather than try to force your way through a person literally from their feet up to their head, you can just go around!

Lachlan Giles Incorporating The Leg Drag

There are a few different variations off of the classic side control Toreando pass to choose from, depending on your strengths, your opponents defensive skills and what your positioning allows for at the time during your match. Instead of ending in side control using shoulder pressure, you can land in knee on belly, especially if your partner remains on the ground and doesn’t attempt to sit up during your pass.

You also have a few options when it comes to where you pin your partners feet; you can use the leg drag version or the throw past. Working a combination of the two, there is the option to land in reverse knee on belly and avoid (as much as possible) their guard maintenance by completely going around the legs and feet. If the person you are working with has a very strong guard recovery, then a hip switch might be your best bet. This involves allowing them to carry you with the power of their hip out, making them essentially pull you into an almost reverse scarf hold position.

Along those same lines, you can use the knees-in technique, using your partners reaction to you pinning their knees to there chest. Test out all of these different methods and scenarios to determine which you are most successful at and what works for your style, but be on the lookout for a way to use them all!

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