Ways To Improve Your Guard Passing
Use your body weight
The first thing you can do is to use your body weight. I don’t care if it is a closed guard or an open guard pass, you need to use your body weight and the pressure that goes along with it. Too many people don’t feel comfortable using body weight and pressure, because they feel like they will hurt their training partners. Don’t worry about that. A little pressure on their legs, torso or face won’t kill them. In fact, it will get them ready for the real pressure that will surely happen in a tournament.
Use tight, controlled motions
When it comes to passing the open guard, a lot of people like using sloppy, incorrect technique. People seem to like to try to throw the legs by. But if you are facing a good guard player, they will have excellent pummeling skills and that kind of pass will get you triangle choked or arm barred. Use tighter, more controlled motions. This goes along with the first bit of advice. Use small, conservative motions that will make your opponent actually work to pummel and re-guard.
Never forget your handles
It doesn’t matter if it is gi or no gi. You need to use the handles that are available to you. And by handles, I mean the parts of your opponent that you can grab to control and pass. For gi, you have the belt, the pants and the kimono. In no gi, you usually have to use your hands to cup the legs, hips, neck or head. These handles will help you shut down any possible movement that he will use to try and regain guard or submit you.
Master your favorites
This is pretty self explanatory. Don’t worry about the hundreds of passes and variations. Master a handful of your favorite passes. For me, it is the toreando pass, the knee slice pass, and the leg drag pass for open guard. I know those passes inside and out so I am able to pass guard rather easily. This is something that you need to do. Drill it in class, and use it during rolling. You will get better.
Like I said, guard passing isn’t glamorous. Everyone loves a good submission, but being able to pass a dangerous guard from a competent player will help you win the matches that count. Work hard at using these pieces of advice and you will improve. If you’re looking to improve your guard passing, then a must have is…
Bernardo Faria has an awesome Instructional about Guard Passing: “The Pressure Passing Encyclopedia”. Click here to view!