Jan 23

A small grip that made all the difference

A few months back, two high profile matches happened almost side by side.

They weren’t at the same event, but the time between them was almost inconsequential. What was interesting about them though is that at one point the same exact situation occurred, but the outcome was totally different.


It’s because of one small difference in grip.


That’s all.

That one grip made the difference between sliding off an omoplata like an eel lathered in oil and locking on the attack in a way that gave the opponent no opportunity to escape.

I noticed right off the back because I use that little grip too.

And I know it’s significance.

In fact, I remember learning it many years again from Jordan Schultz during a seminar when I was a purple belt. The topic was completely focused on the omoplata and the monoplata (it was kinda his thing). Several of his setups and transitions were based on the grip too.

He used it to break posture and expose the arm to attack.

I’ve realized though that it accomplishes far more than just that. In fact, in the gi, there’s NO way that I’ll go for the omoplata without it.

Here’s why:

That grip anchors me to their shoulder. They can’t pull away. As long as I have that grip, they’re mine.

It doesn’t even matter if they roll.

I’m still attached to them, and I can roll right back through to reset the attack or I could snatch up the armbar. Either way, absolutely nothing has changed. I still dominate the situation.

I had an epiphany as well.

Awhile back, I had someone in the omoplata, and the grip was set too. So all was good, but he was actively trying to escape, and I had to transition with him to keep the attack in play.

It was that moment that I noticed something.

His head was lower than mine.


I did what I do. Yup. I loop choked him. It was straight vicious.

In fact, I even made a micro adjustment listen that broke down the application and concept behind the grip and a few additional offensive options that flow from it.

You know what though?

It’s on the chopping block.

In a few short days, it will be replaced with a new lesson. So if you want to grab and study it to your heart’s content, now would be the time to act.

More details can be found here with just a little innocuous click:

Jan 22

Random tips for finishing the omoplata

Jan 21

A straight up ridiculous grip

Almost two years ago, I attended one of Renato Tavares’ seminars.

And on that day, he brought a special guest. It was a guy whose name you probably won’t know. His name isn’t often written on the web, and he’s no darling of social media.

(If you want to look him up though, his name is Fabricio “Bicudo” Medeiros. And he even has a few competition videos out there.)

I had no idea who he was when I met him.

But I was shocked, shocked when I discovered how long he’s been training. Over 30 years. Imagine that.

That’s a wealth of experience.

And I picked up something special from him on that day.

It was a grip.

Yup, just that. But it’s VICIOUS. He showed it towards the end of the seminar, during a Q&A session, when someone asked him about his favorite way to pass the closed guard.

It blew my mind.

I started playing with it right away. And when set up right, it’s just straight up ridiculous. In fact, I learned that lesson the hard way once. I remember distinctly when it happened. At the time, I had been showing it to all my training partners, and one of them actually used it against me….

First off, he broke one of the cardinal rules.

If I show you something cool, you must not, under any circumstances, use it against me (I really should write up a formal contract and make everyone sign it).

It showed me though, in no uncertain terms, how powerful the grip was though.


Because I couldn’t break it. And I tried. I TRIED. It was frustrating. And it’s hard to stop the pass once it’s set.

Lately though, I’ve been using it not only to pass but also to take the back and immediately threaten the choke. And that transition is what I plan to cover in the next micro adjustment lesson.

You can find out more about that course here:

Dec 03

The beginning of a defensive sequence for escaping side control

Dec 02

An one handed loop of doom

At a certain point, one of my teammates made a significant change in her game.

She stopped going for armbars in closed guard.


It’s because she kept running into hyper flexible women in tournaments. She would get the arm across, establish good angle and then shoot the hips up, but yet still it would be a fight.

So she started asking herself if there was something else she could do when she got that arm across.

And midway through blue belt she came up with an answer.

Instead of going for the arm, she started reaching around the neck and grabbing the far side collar. And she built a whole system of offense around that one little grip. In fact, it’s what she used to dominate match after match on her way to winning Worlds at blue belt.

It was same exact grip every time.

And all her competition saw it coming but they couldn’t stop it.

Once she got that grip, it was over. She either took the back and dominated or choked them out right then and there. The choke is a thing of beauty too. It’s one of the strongest and sneakiest loop chokes I know.

And I added it to my arsenal, of course.

But some changes were made.

I change the grip and made the whole system of offense more versatile. Even slapped on a catchy name for the hell of it too. But within that system are many basic principles for developing effective offense for closed guard.

And it can all be learned here: