Monday, 1 August 2011

Spider Guard Master Class..

 I have been continuing my quest to acquire a decent guard during my time here in Miami. Last Saturday myself, Angie and Milan got together at open mat to drill some guard techniques. We warmed ourselves up- (well, THEY both warmed up. I, on the other hand, took advantage of doing my own suuuuper chilled warm up which consisted of about 4 backwards rolls and re-tying my belt a couple of times. .) and then proceeded to crack on with some spider guard. Angie was our master class instructor. She has a horrific open guard. I should say, horrific for the person trying to pass. Despite being about 130lbs she has no difficulty tying me in knots with her spider guard. She’s very patient and well aware that trying to pass her spider guard causes people a LOT OF FUCKING FRUSTRATION. Waiting for her opponent to get so frustrated trying that they resort to something totally and utterly spastic, before she attacks with a sweep or a submission. So not only does she have a good guard to attack and sweep from, but she’s comfortable staying there until the right time. This is what I need.  A guard I can be comfortable in, just waiting to pounce..

She showed as a couple of sweeps when the opponent is on their knees, then we progressed to a standing opponent, using the same principles to complete the sweep.

Here you can see me practising some basic sweeps from kneeling. I was focusing on using my feet like hands. And using the WHOLE of my foot. I used to just use my toes or heels, which got knocked off easily. I'm trying to make me feet stick to the biceps more.

 Which was kinda her biggest focus. She tried to get across how important the control with the feet in the opponents biceps is. She kept repeating how your feet have to be like hands. They’re not just pushing and digging in. You pull your toes to help grip, and push with your heel when pushing away to off balance your opponent. Using your whole foot. We spent most of the time getting comfortable with our second pair of hands and watching our opponents closely. She showed us that you can often tell by watching their face whether they are going to try to stack you, or straighten your legs out to try and pass. We practised anticipating what pass they would attempt, whilst testing our reaction times.

Milan practising on Angie. Gripping with toes when pulling, and pushing with heel when pushing..
Using the whole foot. Not just the toes and heel.

It was a really good insight to an aspect of spider guard I’ve never really covered. I’ve always felt it was a case of “feet on the biceps and push and pull to off balance your opponent” but this week I learned much more than that. I’m very grateful to Angie for taking the time to go through it with us. I’ll passee your gward real fast soon, for suuuree, biatch.


  1. Presumably she doesn't like the lasso grip from there, where your foot wraps over the arm then into the armpit?

  2. No, I asked her that. She's aware of it, but doesn't use it. I like it. Think it gives more control to be honest. Terere showed me to use spider guard with the lasso grip. I'll have to have a play around :)