BJJ Tips: More on Approaching the Opponent

My previous post was inspired by the awesome three-hour seminar with Royler Gracie black belt Mr Eddie Kone on Sunday at his Rotherham affiliate EKBJJ North. Eddie didn't necessary spend too much time on the topic of approach and grip fighting, but one thing that struck the first time I visited his BJJ and MMA academy in London (The Ultimate Fitness Centre) a few months back was how quick all his students were to establish grips, both from standing, when playing guard and also when working the guard pass. Coming from Karl's heavily MMA-influenced style of underhooks and overhooks, I was very taken aback the first time and as I struggled to grip fight, Eddie's students were 3-4 steps ahead of me. That highlighted a weak area to my attention and I've been working on that from every position and in every roll over the past few months. I was pleasantly surprised on Sunday when we rolled after the seminar that I was better prepared.

To be clear, the biggest improvement was in my approach. It's not that I was grip fighting more, but I was approaching them in a way and at an angle that gave them much less to go for, allowing me to be more proactive with my own grip hunting.

At the request of Allie and Georgette in response to my previous post, I made a quick video addressing the Approach side. In it, Mr Andy Rhind, who was kind enough to drive the two of us to the Eddie Kone seminar, helps me demonstrate my stance and which arm I use to protect my collar and which arm I reach with both from an open (opposite lead legs) and closed (same lead legs) stance.

It's important to notice that while it's all done in standing, the same concepts can just as easily be applied on the ground. Also, the video was shot at the Labs right after 2 x 1hr BJJ sessions so the lens kept steaming up. While that did give the shot a dreamy, Barbra Streisand-y kind of mist, it was not the original intent, just an added bonus :o)

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Georgette said...

Lovely, that's exactly what I wanted to see. Thank you so much for putting in the extra work and time to make that. And the misty effect was just ... heartwarming.

A.D. McClish said...

Thanks for making this video! It definitely helped me to understand what you were talking about last post.

The Part Time Grappler said...

Ha thank you Georgette for the kind words. It's the best start anyone has given me onthe approach and I owe it all to Mr Powditch. I saw a vid from BJJWeekly yesterday and, as awesome as it was, it totally bypassed HOW you get INTO the grips. It talked about lapel hand and sleeve hand and how to break the oppoenent's grips but once again it was another black belt assuming we know how to approach the opponent in the first place.

The misty effect is super extra :o)

The Part Time Grappler said...

Excellent Allie! We can't be having you stunted :)

Please let me know how you find it after trying it out in session and remember that it's not just for stand up. It's just as applicable when you approach guard passing.