Wednesday, October 2, 2013

7 Throws/Takedowns for BJJ: Thoughts and Amendments

I got the video below over here and it got me thinking,
If someone came to me and asked me what I think they should know as far as the basic takedowns for BJJ, what would be my list?
Fortunately, I've pondered this question since I began competing in BJJ about 4 years ago.

My takedowns for BJJ are more what I call opportunistic.
They take advantage of the posture more common in BJJ: flat feet, and relatively stiff gripping (the white belt death squeeze stiff arm on your lapel) where they hold you at arms length as though their life literally depends on it, and bent over posture with the hips far away.

Rather than get into the semantics of the variations shown below (foot sweeps are shown all together), I'll amend the list afterward with what I show training partners who ask me about my high percentage takedowns in BJJ.

1. Double leg
2. Single leg
4. Body lock
5. Ouchigari
6. Foot sweep
7. Ankle pick

I've had enough emails, youtube messages, and friends ask me about this that I'm going to put together a video of the below. I got a lot of positive feedback from my cross grip seionage video, and though I loathe the sound of my voice recorded, my hair is now shorter and less ridiculous looking, so I'll put together a video to demonstrate the following salient points:
The reality is, that I'm lazy. And taking down BJJ players with even moderate levels of experience requires energy and in reality, he simply can pull guard at any time he feels uncomfortable in BJJ or submission grappling. There are also a fair number of BJJ competitors with wrestling experience to widely varying degrees.

However, should I find myself able to take advantage, or perhaps I meet a guy who simply does not want to be on bottom, he's down on points, scrambles to his feet and needs to get the takedown points, here we are: in a pitched battle for the takedown.

Let's breakdown the weaknesses in standard BJJ posture/stance:
no purpose of grip - just grabbing stiffly to keep out/the stiff arms of death - arms over extended. they do things like grip the inside of your elbow, grab your lapel and push indiscriminately, grab the sleeve and just try to defend whatever they think you are trying to do but basically it is all spaz and little purpose.
bent over posture - makes shooting a wrestling style single or double difficult if and/or when they get a lapel grip, but means his attacks are limited as well, his head well past his hips means he's MUCH easier to pull forward off his flat feet/get moving
hips far away - difficult to fit into big/major Judo style throws but again, this also limits his range of attacks and forces his feet flat and usually relatively square
feet flat -  it is tough for him to get moving/in motion in certain directions, but it also means his feet are stationary targets, he has to move each foot before he can adjust his stance/weight when you attack

- Thus, my approach is either jerk him around, get him moving (prefer to do this with a cross grip, open him up)
- break him down, snap down like in wrestling
- attack his stationary targets/feet

This video breaking down Rodolfo Vieira's takedowns (especially showing the cross grip seoinage builds on these principles and shows them in motion:

The FOLLOWING are MY higher percentage takedowns when working with BJJ players/wrestlers:

FOOT SWEEPS/movement/relaxing with the grip
2 on 1 grip to ouchigari
outside foot sweep to ken ken uchimata
kouchigari/blocking to leg grab/ankle pick
over/under outside leg trip - show hook from inside/hook from outside - preference ?
ouchigari power grip against flat feet

- Again, video forthcoming.

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