slick counter to the "both arms under" guard pass


Brown Belt
Apr 13, 2004
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here's a little sequence i came across lately that i thought id share with you all. im a mere bluebelt, so take it for what it is. i think its really good, but thats me. its best no gi. anyway, here goes...

the situation: your opponent is going for the "both arms under pass." i dont know if thats the official name, but fuck it, you all should know what im talking about. he puts both his arms underneath your legs and grabs his hands in front of your stomache, stacks you, gets a collar tie with one hand and passes around that side.

the counter: the first thing you need to do is prevent him from clasping his own hands and pulling your hips on top of his lap to start the pass - if he gets this grip, your hips are pretty immobilized and the defense is different. anyway, prevent this by not letting him clasp his hands, grab them and pin them to the sides of your body. next, do a shrimping or hip escape movement to create a little space between you and your partner. push off the floor or his hips depending what your can reach. then put your hooks in, so you're now in butterfly guard, with his hands still pinned against your side (he still has both arms under), his face will be in your crotch for the submission via your stank-ass nuts. no but really, at this point his guard pass has been twarted. he can't lift you up to stack you or roll you over into the turtle position.

whats next? go for a guillotine from here. quickly let go of his wrists. with one hand, grab under your opponent's chin with a monkey grip and pull him in(read: no thumb). with the other, push his head towards the oblique-area on the side of the chin-grabbing hand, to position him for the guillotine. slip your chin-grabbing hand through and grab your other wrist, or whatever gddamn grip you use. lean back and squeeze to apply the choke, its a brutal one, so get your bony ass wrist right on his windpipe. you can also easily sweep to mount from here by simply lifting your opponent with your hooks. he will likely go with you to alleviate the pressure of the choke anyway. the beauty of this attack is that both his hands will still be under you if you're fast, leaving him unable to defend the choke.

if he doesnt let you get the guillotine grip for some reason, but his head is in your armpit: you've got a neck-crank turnover. say his head is in your right side. reach your right hand in for the under hook like you were stuffing a shot, grab high on his upper lat or even trap if you can reach. with your left hand, grab your right hand with a palm to palm monkey grip. while keeping the grip and staying close, move your forearm in back of his neck, so you can put downward pressure on him. pull up with your right arm (your hands are still clasped, and his head is still in your armpit) while extending your right hook straight up. put downward pressure on him with your left arm to crank. roll him over to your left side, he WILL want to go if you crank hard...but be gentle to your training partners.

so i hoped you enjoyed that. im horribly stoned and i need to pass out, wake up early and do some reading before work. i just got a digi camera and ive been thinking of logging all the bjj i learn, so maybe ill come back in a few days and add pics...if im not being a lazy asshole. peace.
doing that and just waiting is an option too. but you dont have the guillotine or sweeps from there.
i'll try the guillotine and sweep options. hey, i've seen it in royler's no gi book. if it's good for him, then it's good for me too. :)
goddamn, no one else has anything to say about this? no questions? nothing? did everybody learn this shit the first day and i just missed the boat? not even a "ill try that out."

tt fuckin t
it sounds good

but, man, I think it would be easier with pictures :redface:
English is not ma mother language and even than it's hard to completely do it right by reading it

but I'll check it out
I understood, and it all sounds good. I'll give it a try. Please post pictures!

I was actually shown a nice no arm triangle from there a few weeks. You need to be kind of flexible

Lets say he's in the process of stacking you and has his hands clamped. Bring up your right leg and put your calf across the back of his neck. Bring you the blade of your right wrist (palm out) across his throat, bring your hand round behind your leg and grab your shin from behind. Walk your hand up towards your knee tightening the choke and then triangle over your right foot with your left leg. Use your left hand to either pull down the head or place it over your right hand and push down.
Triangle your legs around his head. Reach through and grab the ankle/shin of the leg behind his neck. Sit up. Voila. Triangle using an ankle grip.

Stephan Kesting used to have a great transition to an armbar from both arms under guard pass but I don't think he has it on his site anymore. It involved dropping your leg so your foot was just level with his shoulder, grabbing his tricep, moving to the side, hooking your leg under his body and then rolling him forward before passing your leg over his face. I nailed it maybe three times because it is dependent on timing but it's very cool and slick if you get it.
nice collin i call it the "Shovel guard pas" but i know what you are saying, and i use it alot i saw alot of people in brasil just get on ther hands and kind of crab walk back wards like out of bounds or just keep moving back, its kind of frustrating. the other thing i do if someone does that to me is hook my legs inside of theirs and it makes it tough for them to do anything but no submissions. but if you push the passers head down between your legs then underhook an arm and pull it out while his head is down you have an instant triangle. hope it helps
Has anyone tried the armless triangle to counter this? I.e. grabbing the collar with one of your own hands and triangling away? It seems badass ... and really surprising too. Any luck with it? Isn't there a risk you are going to get stacked too hard? I am dying to try it on someone going for the arms under pass.
To avoid stacking, sit up and use your hand(s) to pull yourself backa foot or two. It will put pressure on his neck to flatten him out.
Just the other night I went for the "both arms under" pass and as I fucked around a bit to long I found that one of my arms had been completely tied up in the dudes gi and rendered completely useless. I'm not sure what the guy did but I at first thought I had just gotten my hand tangled in his gi but then it sloooowwwlly dawned on me that he had done some slick move on me.

Colinm it was exactly what you were saying about pinning the arms to your side, just this guy did it with his gi somehow.
colinm said:
... the counter: the first thing you need to do is prevent him from clasping his own hands...

I never clasp my hands together, that makes it harder to execute the pass, just grab his thighs (no gi).
either way i guess, the point is not to let him immobilize your hips which is what happens when he pulls you on top of his lap, you have to beat him to the punch.