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Three of the Best Back Takes from Guard

Three of the Best Back Takes from Guard


When becoming a guard player, it is crucial to have a wide arsenal of attacks from different guards.  One of the most important elements to becoming a tricky guard player is learning back takes from the guard. 

Learning back takes from the guard is a must for guard players.  Back takes just refers to a move that leads you directly to the back.   Some very famous back takes from guard are the berimbolo, the kiss of the dragon, and the half guard under hook back take. All three of these are great moves to incorporate into your guard game.

The Berimbolo

The berimbolo is one of the most popular moves in sport Jiu Jitsu today.  Widely criticized for the inversion tactics used to complete the move, there is no dispute that the berimbolo is not effective.  It has been proven to work at the highest levels time and time again.  We recently wrote an entire article on the berimbolo, if you want to expand your knowledge of the move, check out “Berimbolo, Not as Intimidating as it Looks.”

The berimbolo is often initiated from De La Riva guard and is a move that will lead you directly to the back.  The reason it is so popular today is because instead of using a traditional sweep where you need to get up and pass your opponent’s guard. The berimbolo allows you to take your opponent’s back without ever getting up.

Popularized by the Mendes Brothers, the berimbolo is one of the best back takes from guard.  Check out this instructional from the Mendes Brothers on how to execute a berimbolo below.

The Kiss of the Dragon

The kiss of the dragon is another extremely popular back take from guard.  This move occurs from Reverse De La Riva.  The kiss of the dragon utilizes inversion tactics to take your opponent’s back. The kiss of the dragon is when you invert in between your opponent’s legs so you can end up behind them.

It is an extremely versatile position that has been proven to work at ADCC and the Black Belt World Championships.  The kiss of the dragon is not that grip dependent and can be used in gi or nogi.  Check out this instructional from Jason Scully below of how to do it.

The Half Guard Under Hook Back Take

There are several back takes from half guard, one of the best back takes from guard is the under hook get up back take.  This is where you use your under hook to get up to your knees into the “dog fight” position.  After you get up, you proceed to take your opponent’s back.

Unlike the berimbolo and the kiss of the dragon, which some people are intimidated by because of the inversions, the half guard back take is one of the most simple and effective moves you can learn.   The back take from half guard is one of the first techniques a lot of people learn from guard.  Check out this video executing a proper back take from turtle/ “dogfight” below.  It will help you sharpen your back takes.

If you’d like to learn to stop all these guard players and their back takes check out our article on pressure passing.  If you want to incorporate some slick back takes into your bjj game, make sure to get Atos Black Belt, JT Torres 4 DVD set, “Passing, Back Takes, and Finishes.”  JT Torres is one of the most accomplished American grapplers.  He has placed second at the Black Belt World championships and has won the Worlds at lower belt levels. “Hide your back, hide your belt, they’re berimboloing everyone out here.”


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