Out Before It’s Too Late

Escapes are harder the longer you hold on to whatever it is that lost you control in the first place.

Last night I was an armdrag machine. Not one of those really good machines that does its job. I was one of those machines that’s meant to do one thing and only did it once out of 100 attempts. I was playing a seated guard while sparring. My gameplan in the seated guard is this:

Sweeps- Armdrag, Hooks Sweep, Hook lift to Back

Submissions- Guillotine, Omoplata

My aim last night was to armdrag to the back. So, here’s what would happen.

I would get a hold of a same side wrist. I would jump up to get a hold of the arm. I would drag back down. I wouldn’t get out to the side. I would allow them to grab my leg and keep me underneath. I would keep dragging them as if it might work the second or third time. I would get my guard passed. I would get stuck underneath in a well established side control. I would have to work my way out of a deep, weighted control.

Lessons I took away.

Stop insisting on moves. I should be shooting for a technique and letting go if it’s not there. By shooting for the armdrag and missing, and still holding on like they might forget what was going on and stop defending the move that they are in the process of defending, I am giving them everything they need to pass. If I miss I need to be willing to reset.

Bail out. The second one is the half a step deeper than the previous one. Bailing on lost moves saves lives. It really does.

Escape early. I should be looking to escapes well before they ever get into side control. The problem last night was that I was still trying to armdrag as they came around, got a crossface, and underhooked an arm.

So, to help me get back into a good mindset I’ve decided to watch more Marcelo Garcia videos.


This is Marcelo. I watch for his grip fighting, submission set-ups, and early escapes. This is a great video that shows how simple his game is. It shows how good he is at bailing on a lost technique and, most importantly, not letting a bigger fighter establish a dangerous control.



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