Learning the right guard to use to defeat your opponent is important. There are a lot to choose from and to be a winner, you need to know more than one. Some will work for you better than others will. If BJJ were simply learning one or two moves to be proficient, it would be a lot easier. While you can learn several moves and function relatively well in the sport, to be your best, learning all the combinations and techniques will improve your ability, but also take a lifetime to accomplish. Focusing on just a few guards that are most effective and most popular is a start to broadening your knowledge.
You probably already know the full guard.
There’s a reason the full guard is normally taught to beginners. It’s one of the best grappling positions. It’s often called the closed guard and gives the most control to those using it. It’s hard for an opponent to improve their position when used properly in a defensive manner and allows the user to add more sweeps and attacks when used for offense. It’s been used by many famous grapplers, including Helio Gracie and has the test of time.
A half-guard often comes from the natural progression of a match.
The half guard is different from the full guard, because it only involves control of one leg or one side of an opponent. There’s a lot of variations to this guard, since it so often occurs in the middle of a match, whether you want it to or not! That’s why learning this guard and ways to use it to your advantage is important. If you have more girth or shorter legs, you’ll find this guard really helpful. You can use it to bridge guards or as a transition to other positions. If you’re creative, move explosively or are smaller, this guard is extremely beneficial.
Consider adding the butterfly guard to your repertoire.
If you want to keep your opponent off balance, choose the butterfly guard. It’s a swift move that requires you stay alert and hunt to improve your position. It opens up many different options that can improve your position and lets you do powerful sweeps. This guard is good for smaller competitors and those with shorter arms and legs. It’s also good for those who tend to use their speed to their advantage.
- If you’re taller or more flexible and like the strategy planning of a slower moving match, add the rubber guard to your moves to help you win more competitions.
- No matter what your body type, the De La Riva guard can help you. It’s similar to an open guard, but with the use of a hook. It lets you move into other types of attacks, guards or positions.
- No matter what guards you choose, perfect it. Some of the variations may look great, but nothing is better than executing an oldie flawlessly. Work on your basics, then build on them later.
- Choose the best guards for your body build. Shorter, stockier and taller people will all have ones that work better for their body build.