Butterfly guard stategies

Discussion in 'Grappling Technique' started by Tony Manifold, May 30, 2008.

  1. Tony Manifold

    Tony Manifold Brown Belt

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    I did a search for this and couldn't find anything so I am starting a thread. I have decided to focus on butterfly guard for about the next month. Besides working on improving the techniques from butterfly guard, I would like to start to develop a strategy from there. With my half guard and my full guard, I have a set of options that I use and a plan on how to get to those options. I don't really have that yet for butterly guard. I was hoping some of you would post your butterfly strategies so I could get an idea of various people play their butterfly guard games.

    So far I have: Get hooks in, secure either double under hooks or an over/under, sit up and that is about it. I have been working a standard hook sweep and a driving sweep for the last couple days but without any real plan. Being the slightly anal game planner that I am, me no likes.

    Any help or just posting your personal strategy would be appreciated.
     
  2. Czyivn

    Czyivn Yellow Belt

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    It's best as a flow chart.

    First thing is stay sitting up AT ALL TIMES, try to have the top of your head below the chin of your opponent, but don't bend your neck forward (guillotine), your back and neck should be straight. You don't want to be square with your opponent, but at an angle.

    The first thing I go for is the underhook on the side nearest to him. Once I get it, I go for my standard hook sweeps, using different variations depending on how I get a grip on his other arm.

    If he blocks the sweep by leaning back, then you sweep him backwards with a double leg or whatever driving sweep you like.

    If he blocks by posting one of his legs up, you switch to x-guard. My favorite sweep from an opponent posting his leg up is to grab his leg and push backwards on that thigh with my shin. Dunno the name of the sweep, but it's on one of marcelo garcia's early nogi sets.

    If I elevate him but can't sweep him over because he gets his hands loose, I go for a leglock or try to take his back from his elevated position.

    If I can't establish the initial underhook or if he's lazy with posting his arms on me, I go for the armdrag and take his back. The armdrag is my best butterfly guard move against guys that are much bigger than me. It's fat guy kryptonite.

    That's pretty much the extent of my flow chart from butterfly. If I can't get ANY of those things, then my opponent is WAY better than me and will pass before I can exhaust all the possibilities.
     
  3. Czyivn

    Czyivn Yellow Belt

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    The main thing with all of these is to be fearless and to constantly switch between them attacking. If you just sit there in butterfly guard holding him, he will flatten you and pass. Period. You need to constantly threaten sweeps and disrupt his balance. You may not get the first sweep, but it will make him uncomfortable and he may overreact and give you another sweep or submission much easier.
     
  4. blanko

    blanko Guest

    i am trying to add the sititng/butterfly guard to my game... and this is what i have noticed


    You head needs to be infront of your hips at all times

    you need to constantly attack with sweeps, it's not like other guards where you can wait and see what your opponent does; you need ot attack..

    all that being said.. i am getting raped
     
  5. Tony Manifold

    Tony Manifold Brown Belt

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    I like the flow chart idea. I may actually draw some up for my various games. It would be an interesting intellectual exercise if nothing else.

    I have heard some people say that you should be up on a hip but not on an angle. So if I am planning to sweep him to my right should I be slightly to me left of center or vice versa?
     
  6. ThinkGreen

    ThinkGreen Der Übermensch

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    There's actually been a bunch of threads on butterfly recently, with a lot of good info, especially from Zankou. Maybe you didn't search well enough?
     
  7. Tony Manifold

    Tony Manifold Brown Belt

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    Search function also sucks. I saw some one on technical aspects but not strategies. By all means point me in the right direction if I missed them.
     
  8. kenban judan

    kenban judan orange belt, i think

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    i go through butterfly guard phases now and then - yeah, stick to the basics
    i am with you, though: when it's a newb, it's nice practice for me; but against advanced players, i have come to realize there are 4000 different ways to smash the butterfly guard.

    the last phase i went through i was messing with guillotine attacks from there. it was ok
     
  9. yovan

    yovan Purple Belt

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    I've recently started experimenting with butterfly guard as well.

    I'm getting passed pretty easily, especially by the wrestlers. They just hop over my hook.

    I guess I need to attack quicker with sweep attempts or something...
     
  10. lethalazn

    lethalazn Purple Belt

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    preferably behind you, with both hooks sunk in
    practice having someone attempt to pass your guard without you using your own arms...it's the only way for your legs to automatically" track" their movement in open guard
     
  11. The Colonel

    The Colonel Purple Belt

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    My butterfly guard kind of sucks, guys rarely pass it, but at the same time I rarely sweep from there. The thing I have really been picking up on-especially after drilling it with my instructor who has a very good butterfly guard-is that you have to really stay tight and damn near fall on your side, and your non-hooking leg needs to push off on the floor. It's probably a no brainer to a lot of the butterfly guard players on here, but its something that I'm trying to start doing.

    Personally though I like whizzering and turning to all fours from butterfly guard, kind of like the "dogfight" position that Eddie Bravo uses, only you're the one whizzering.
     
  12. ThinkGreen

    ThinkGreen Der Übermensch

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  13. Tony Manifold

    Tony Manifold Brown Belt

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  14. codemonkey76

    codemonkey76 Black Belt

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    One of the tricks to the hook sweep i learnt from Robson Moura's instructional is the non hooking leg should kick through under your hook and out the side, it makes it so much easier to lay on your side and get the sweep.
     
  15. Sherdog_Mutt

    Sherdog_Mutt Purple Belt

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    No offense but this is bad advice for practicing butterfly. I agree with your advice for all other open guards but butterfly/sitting guard is another animal. Upper body controls are of paramount importance to playing this guard successfully.

    I employ a basic butterfly guard strategy. Depending on what he gives me, I switch back and forth to other guards too. Here's a rough outline of what I like to do.

    1) Go for the standard hook sweep (grab underhook + control far arm).

    A) If he defends by keeping his hips/weight back. Go for a knee tap takedown.

    B) If he defends by posting out his unhooked leg:

    i) Use my non-hooking leg to kick out knee of posting leg and then finish sweep.
    ii) Get more height on sweep by posting on my non-hooking leg (this leg should really be kicking through to the other side if you're doing the sweep correctly).
    iii) Use my arm to underhook his posted leg and try sweeping him by going underneath him. (low percentage against higher belts but usually leads to transition)
    iv) Switch to x-guard and sweep the hell out of him there (high percentage!)

    C) If he defends by pulling his arm free, I underhook his non-hooked leg and sweep him diagonally backwards.

    2) If he defends my attempt to initiate the standard hook sweep by fighting my attempts to underhook. I try to arm drag him when he pummels and either: a) take his back or b) Secure arm across his body, switch my hook to his other leg and sweep him diagonally backwards (same side as my hooking leg).
     
  16. Zankou

    Zankou Muscle and Hate Staff Member Senior Moderator

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    That's pretty much all you need right there! That's basically my same approach, except that I also like to do a lot of collar drags, arm drags, and leglocks. I like double underhooks too if you can get them.

    But in ultra-simplified land, I'm always looking for the underhook to hook sweep, armdrag/collar drag, or ankle pick/knee pick. That's the game.

    Things I'm working on improving:

    Transitioning into takedowns better (not just the ankle/knee pick, but also the single, low single, and blast double -- they are wide open).
    Half butterfly sweeps (particularly "wrist jam" variety).
    "Wrist jam" sweeps -- instead of clutching the arm to your side, you jam the hand under their stomach as you sweep. This is a huge sweep!
    Reverse sweeps ... getting better at cross gripping. I am starting to play between quarter guard and half butterfly, which are very similar and flow together if you think about it.
    Dealing with the "knee up" block. If the guy is standing on both feet, it's usually easy to go to x-guard. I am not doing very well when the blocking knee is up and the other is down, however. I know I can try kicking out the knee, but it doesn't work very well. Plan for improvement: Grab the knee at the pant, a la Robson disc.
    Loop choke. A deadly counter to the head-low passer. When no-gi, the arm-in guillotine.

    Sigh ... I keep wanting to try focusing on a different guard type for a change of pace, but with butterfly, you could spend years just working on relatively basic details.
     
  17. codemonkey76

    codemonkey76 Black Belt

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    i have been using the pants grip ala Robson and it is awesome
     
  18. wOg

    wOg Burien Top Team

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    As they say in the HW forum, QFMFT

    I started 2008 with the idea of adding butterfly guard to my half guard game (which is my main guard). I got Kesting's butterfly guard DVD and was all set.

    What I realized was that a lot of having a good butterfly guard comes from being able to transition from other guards (open, half) back and forth to butterfly. It's definitely not a guard you can "hang out in" ...

    So now I'm back to building up my half guard and butterfly with just one hook in (half butterfly) first.

    I do think butterfly guard is one of the best, underused guards in MMA, jiu jitsu and grappling.
     

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