Grapplers Graveyard

Grapplers Graveyard | Mastering Escapes

bjj escapes

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Mastering techniques to escape bad positions during a match is essential when looking to excel in the sport of Jiu-Jitsu. No one likes being caught in bad positions, but it is very difficult to lose if you hold the tools and skills necessary to escape from unwanted places. Although escapes take some time to learn, being a master in the field levels up your game and make it nearly impossible for you to be tapped out on the mats.

bjj escapes

Survival and BJJ Escapes improve your attacks

Although it doesn’t seem logical, there is a lot of evidence supporting the fact that a good defense allows for a stronger offense. When you learn how to defend a submission well, you typically figure out the little details that separate an okay attack from an incredible one. These little details make a major difference during the match. So, practicing the defense of some submissions you know can help you learn and practice offensive tactics as well!

Understanding the Art of Escapes In Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

Being good at escaping bad positions in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is a trait that not many people have. When looking at BJJ, it is easy to get caught up in the flashy takedowns and submissions without paying proper respect to those who have mastered the art of escaping from less-than-ideal spots. It takes complete understanding and control of one’s body to truly excel in submission escapes.

Essential Escape Techniques for BJJ Practitioners

Side control escapes:

Escaping side control can be an extremely difficult process. When your opponent has full control of your upper body, it is difficult to regain position, but it is not impossible. Here are a few side control escapes that could be used in a pinch.

  1. Guard Retention:

    Attempting to retain guard is a solid way of escaping side control. Begin by getting your basic frames; one arm framing against your opponent’s head and the other on their hips.

    Once you have your frames, push off to create space, lift your hips, and shrimp away from your opponent. Finally, bring your legs back in between you and your enemy, retaining guard.

  2. Buggy Choke:

    Although the technique is often frowned upon, the Buggy Choke has been shown to be incredibly useful as a last resort during a match.

    The Buggy Choke is executed from side control. This sneaky submission is done by using your opponent’s shoulder and your body to cut off the blood circulation to their brain.

    Begin in bottom side control. If your opponent’s head is on your right side, reach your right hand up to the sky and place your tricep on your opponent’s ear closest to you. Lift your right leg up in the air making sure that their left arm is being brought to your opponent’s head. Reach your right arm under your lifted leg, and try to put the pit of your elbow in the pit of your knee.

    Then, bring your left leg up and lock a figure 4 (Triangle choke lock) and gable grip your hands together. Once accomplished, squeeze until you feel a tap!

    It is important to note that this submission is not for everyone. Those with shorter limbs may have trouble locking up the Buggy Choke in a match. Whether you are stalky or lanky, try out the Buggy Choke and see if it’s right for you!

  3. Fat Man Roll:The Fat Man Roll should be executed when your opponent has switched into a modified side control, otherwise known as Kesa Gatame or the Scarf Hold position. The Fat Man Roll allows you to end up with a top position on your opponent’s chest allowing for all sorts of BJJ submissions.Start by getting your frames. You want to be able to push hard against their head and hips. Then you want to inch your lower body to the opposite side of your opponent’s body. This movement should have created space for your enemy to fall backward. Once you have offset your angle, you want to lift your feet up in the air, then swiftly pull them down to create momentum. As your legs are coming down, push away with your frames while sitting up. If done correctly, you should already be in top side control passed your opponent’s leg/ opponent’s guard.

Escaping Bad Positions is HUGE for your Progress

There are two main parts to any combat sport; offense and defense. If you solely focus on your offensive attacks, you aren’t going to make it far in the sport.

Sure you may tap out a few people at your belt but someday you are going to find a young prodigy who has better technique and agility. When this athlete puts you up against the fence, there will be nothing you could do to defend because you didn’t put the time in to study and drill escapes as much as submissions. As stated previously, defense and escaping from your opponent’s dominant position is half of Jiu-Jitsu. It would be difficult to progress through the art of BJJ while neglecting these important techniques.

Mastering the Art of Defense: Escaping from Dominant Positions

Whether you’re stuck in the knee on belly, north-south, mount, or side control, escaping from dominant positions is no easy feat. As stated previously, it takes an understanding of one’s body to become proficient in escaping. But what exactly does it mean to know your body when participating in combat sports?

Well, knowing your body can consist of a lot of different things. For one, knowing your body could mean knowing what nutrients it needs to perform at its best. Eating healthy and hydrating properly can increase physical ability by an incredible amount.

Knowing your body can also mean that you know what you need to work on. In order to escape bad positions in Jiu-Jitsu, you need to have an abundance of fast-twitch muscle fibers. Knowing your body and what you need to work on can allow you to excel in those bad positions.

Being in tune with your body means that you understand what it needs for success.

bjj escapes

The Importance of Strategy in Martial Arts

Many Jiu-Jitsu practitioners correlate their sport to that of chess. There are many similarities between the two games. For one, both require intense focus. In both Jiu-Jitsu and chess, it is extremely important to use your mind to initiate attacks and counter-attacks based on your enemy’s movement. Along with that, both require an incredible amount of strategy. One wrong move could cost you the match in Chess as well as Jiu-Jitsu.

Going into a BJJ match with a game plan increases your chances of winning by a large margin. That way, you are able to sharpen the techniques you know that you want to hit in a match and you are able to visualize executing your strategy in advance.

Having a game plan is extremely important before entering into a tournament or competition. Without one, you are going into a combat scenario, not sure what to do.

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Escaping Submissions

In the sport of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, a practitioner’s goal is to put their opponent into a position of defeat. This could be by the likes of a joint lock, muscle slicer, or a choke. Many important tips can help when being put into a submission by a competitor or a training partner.

  1. Know the submission

    Have you ever been caught in a joint lock or choke that was completely unfamiliar to you? It doesn’t feel too great, does it? It is very difficult to escape a submission that you have never seen or felt before. So, to enhance your defense, start learning offensive submissions as well. Attacking armbars and leg locks will help you defend the same techniques.

  2. Stretch

    When being put into a submission (especially joint locks) your body is being manipulated against its will. Being flexible and having more give in your muscles and joints allows for more time to escape from a bad position. Although it is always suggested to tap early and often, when a lot is on the line, some fighters are willing to take more time to attempt to escape from a certain submission. Stretching and being flexible keep you safe just in case you need to fight out of a submission during a tough match.

  3. Study and drill

    When looking to master escapes in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, you need to know specific techniques that can get you out of bad scenarios. For instance, the hitchhiker escape is an incredible way to get out of a straight armbar. Once you know what a hitchhiker escape is, it is important to drill the move repeatedly until it becomes second nature.

    Our mind reverts to its fight or flight response when put in danger. To hit certain moves during a match, you must have drilled the technique enough that it is your instinct to hit the escape once you’ve been put into a bad position.

  4. Lift: Nothing quite increases muscle mass like lifting does. Having strength is so nice in all aspects of life, especially Jiu-Jitsu. Muscular strength allows you to control your opponent’s body easier allowing for swift and simple escapes. Not only that but being able to lift someone off of you is very helpful when looking to escape from bad positions. Though, it is important to be careful pushing people off of you in the sport of Jiu-Jitsu. Experienced grapplers will catch you in an armbar if they see you with your arms straight.

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Drilling BJJ Escapes: What Works, What Does Not Work, and Building Resilience

Like any other drills you do, BJJ escapes require intense and continuous practice. The only way to build resilience in the sport of Jiu-Jitsu is to do the same thing over and over again until it becomes comfortable. That is how you build resilience; you callus your mind. Wrestlers know this all too well, they practice the bridge escape and thousands of takedowns every month.

This is why wrestlers have the beautiful takedowns that they do. The same thing is possible for your escapes. If you practice your Jiu-Jitsu escapes enough, it is easily possible to perfect them. You just have to have the discipline and resilience to continue to drill the same move hundreds of times to truly master it.

How to properly drill BJJ techniques

Whether you are drilling takedowns from a standing position, mount escapes on the ground, or even some side control escapes, it is important to drill continuously and vigorously. The best way to get better at a technique is to get reps in.

Do as many solid repetitions as it takes to get a technique mastered then move on to the next position. This is one of the only tried and true methods that have been shown to give near-immediate results.

Easy drill that you can do right now to benefit your BJJ escapes

There are many small drills that can be practiced anywhere at any time that can up your BJJ game fast. These basic movements will benefit your escapes from almost any position.

  1. Hip escapes

    The hip escape (also known as the Shrimp Escape) is the most basic drill that you can practice. It is the gateway to all other defensive movements in the martial art. Typically the hip escape and the triangle choke are the initial techniques taught by instructors to white belts

    To do a hip escape drill, start on your back with your knees bent. Lift your hips in the air, turn slightly to one side, and push off your feet in order to move your hips back. It is a funny-looking motion but one of the most beneficial techniques to learn in all of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

  2. Framing

Using your frames is important when defending yourself in different positions. This simple technique is used by all practitioners from white belts to black belt world champions. There are a lot of different frames you can use for different positions during a match.

The most basic frames from side control are on the jaw and the hips, a north-south escape requires frames near the chest and arms. These simple tools are simply used to make space between you and your opponent. This space allows for escapes from almost any position.

Unlocking The Secrets to Evading and Countering Attacks

If you look at great escape artists in the world of Jiu-Jitsu, you will notice a few things that they all have in common.

For one, many of these grapplers have incredible nimbleness and the ability to maneuver out of bad positions. You don’t have to escape an armbar if your opponent can’t catch you with one in the first place.

Not only are these fighters nimble, they are also incredibly strong. When speed an agility doesn’t help, strength and muscle mass is typically their saving grace. Sometimes athletes just have to tough out submissions or fight them off with more aggression instead of technique

All in all, grapplers who want to excel in counter attacks and escapes must be agile and nimble, yet strong and sturdy, An athlete who has all of these traits is prepared for whatever scenario That’s thrown their way

BJJ escapes are arguably the most important part of Jiu-Jitsu. If your opponent is unable to submit you, it is very difficult for them to finish the match. No matter what, it is important to round out your game. If you are an aggressive grappler, consider practicing more defense and escapes. If you are a slower, more methodical practitioner, start practicing your takedowns and scrambles. Mastering Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu means mastering every aspect of the grappling art.

Happy Rolling!

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