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The 80/20 of Guard Retention 🛡️: Guard retention tricks that actually work!
The Guard Retention Commandments: What to do to never get your guard passed!
Becoming a master of guard retention is like having good insurance. But becoming great at retaining your guard can be a frustrating process.
Here are what I believe are the most useful tricks and principles that govern all effective guard retention:
Trick #1: “Eyes on your feet 👀 🦶”:
I learned this trick from Junny Ocasio, and it’s probably the best way to teach guard retention with a tangible trick. Basically, you imagine that you have eyes on the bottom of your feet, and you need to always look at your opponent! That’s it! I’ll add this weird image so you remember the next time you’re on the mats! 😂
Trick #2: Keep them in front of you:
By combining trick #1 and ensuring you keep your opponent in your 10-2 range, you’ll make it impossible for them to loose pass
Trick #3: Never let your knees pass your hipline:
Trick #4: Always contracted, never relaxed:
This one is super important for beginners… Sometimes people relax because they are not conditioned to stay contracted for so long. A good trick to remember is never to let both of your shoulders touch the mat simultaneously. If they do, you’re probably not contracted enough.
Principles & Commandments of Guard Retention:
Knee-elbow connection is the most important thing to protect
Guard Retention might as well be called “Frame creation”:
Use frames if they get too close: Remember, if they cannot control your upper body and your head (make the “Cranial Shift” in Danaherian), they are not really passed. So make it a rule always to have at least one solid frame between you and your opponent.
Prevention is the most important thing when it comes to Guard Retention:
And when it comes to how to prevent, there are a couple of practical things you can do:
Never stop attacking: As long as you keep your opponent responding to your offense, you won’t let them start an offense of themselves… (See the last post on offensive cycles and Kuzushi)
Kuzushi is key to keeping them from starting an offensive cycle.
If you get your guard passed and can only learn one move, I think your main focus should be to do the Elbow Push & Sit Up Escape Marcelo Garcia style (don’t worry… we’ll cover it in detail in the future)… And I’ll use it as an excuse to add a Marcelo Garcia 🐐 gif here 😂:
That’s it for this week! 👊 🤼♂️
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