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Two Ways To Pass The Half Guard

Two Ways To Pass The Half Guard


Many people have difficulty passing peoples guards in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.  Passing someone’s guard may be the most difficult part of bjj.  If you get a guy with a good open guard that is long and flexible it can be so hard to beat them and pass their guard.  One of the best ways to nullify a flexible and long guard player’s game is by forcing the half guard.  This is a great way to beat a lot of open guards as well.

 Many of the best BJJ competitors in the world like to force half guard to ultimately pass peoples guards, some people who are notorious for doing this are Marcelo Garcia, and Rodolfo Viera.  Forcing half guard is a great strategy to pass because than you do not have to deal with trickier guards like De La riva, Spider, and other open guards.

Forcing Half With an Underhook

Forcing half guard is a lot easier said than done but it is a great game plan if you are having trouble passing somebodies open guard.  One of the best ways to get to the half guard is by using an underhook to force the half guard.  For example, Marcelo Garcia was infamous for getting into a one in and one out passing position against open guards and then diving to his knees with an underhook.  This can be difficult to do but if applied correctly, it is an excellent strategy.

The first step would be to stand in one in and one out.  This means that you have one leg in between their legs and one outside while they are playing open guard or butterfly.  Once you are in this position you need to be able to find an underhook and dive to your knees.  Once you have successfully got into half guard you have now nullified many of the open guards.  Check out our articles on the underhook and the cross face to learn more half guard passing strategies.  Also, if you want to work on countering the underhook from half guard, check out this video from Jake Mackenzie below.


Back Stepping into Reverse Half Guard

Another great way to get into an aggressive passing position in the half guard is by back stepping into the reverse half guard.  Many people are not nearly as good at playing reverse half guard as they are in a traditional half guard.  If you are in De La Riva, you can back step and sit to your hip and force a reverse half guard.  Or if you force a traditional half guard and cannot get the underhook, you can back step and force them to play reverse half guard.  If you’re not familiar with the reverse half guard check out this video below with Jake Mackenzie who is the king of Reverse Half.


If you want to learn the ins and outs of the reverse half guard so that you can pass it better, make sure to check out Jake Mackenzie’s DVD set, “High Precision Half Guard and Reverse Half Guard.”


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