Top 5 Secrets to Holding the Mount Position

So you are getting better at your sweeps and escapes and you are finding yourself gaining the mount position more and more often.  But you can’t seem to stay on.  Your opponent bumps you right off.  Here are some secrets to keeping that position long enough to make the submission.

  1. Get up under the arm pits.  Don’t sit up back on the guys hips.  You are sitting on his most powerful lever.  Move up by lifting his elbows and sliding your legs under.
  2. Lower your point of gravity. Don’t sit straight up like you are a cowboy in the saddle.  You want your weight to help hold the person in place. Use your free arms for base.
  3. Lock your legs.  Some people call this “grapevines”.  It involves getting hooks around your opponents legs.  Usually this also has you with your arms out forming the base.  If you can’t hook the legs, another option is crossing your legs under the buttock.  This gives you more stability.
  4. Let the storm pass.  When you first get someone in mount they are going to upa and try to escape.  No one wants to be in mount.   It makes them panic. They will throw everything they have at you to get out.  But in time they will tire and the storm will pass.  If you ride it out before attempting a submission you will have had some time to rest.  Now that they are wore down it is time to look for a submission.
  5. Keep your dominance while looking for the submission.  You opponent my be tired now, frustrated, or even ready to give up but don’t sacrifice your base for the submission.  You can still keep yourself forward under the arm pits and your legs locked.  You could even switch to a forward side mount that gives you more room to look for that coke or arm bar.  Just don’t fool yourself thinking that you can easily cherry pick a submission now.  Maintain your base while looking for the submission.

The Secret to High Percentage Submission BJJ and MMA Techniques

Everyone loves to see the Flying Triangle or the Flying Arm Bar.  They are spectacular.  But how often are they used and what percent of submission come from them?  Lets face it, not many.  The guy who wins the most matches in BJJ or MMA has good solid skills in the basics.  The secret to high percentage submissions is simplicity.  The more steps there are to a submission the longer it takes to set up and the more likely it will fail.  If a submission takes 4 steps to work, it only needs one to go wrong and fail.  A example of a high percentage sweep that comes to mind is the Hip Bump Sweep described in Jiu Jitsu University by Saulo Ribeiro.  It is simple to master and very efficient in execution.  If I were to give it a percentage I’d say 85% of the time I get it.  In the submission category the first one that I think of is what I call The Giant Johnson.  It is done from cross body.  You are on top and you arms are over you opponent and below his arms.  You simple reach under his arm and around his head and lock your hands together.  You now have a blood choke on him with his own arm and yours on the other side.  Simple and quick!  That is where the high percentage techniques come from.

You know the old saying “Keep is simple stupid”.  I can’t think of a better application for it then in Jiu Jitsu and MMA.

The Secret to Winning Jiu Jitsu

What is the secret to winning Jiu Jitsu? I am amazed at what I discover every time I go to train with a open mind.  Let me share with you one of the latest things I’ve learned.  As a white belt I was a white belt.  I couldn’t over come someone higher then me unless I got lucky or so I thought.  When I got my blue belt all the sudden it was as if I came alive.  My instructor commented on how impressed he was with how I was doing after my promotion.  I was very happy and excited.  Then something happened.  I blogged about it in Jiu Jitsu Mind Block – In The Slump and Jiu Jitsu Learning Curve – What To Expect.  I hit a wall.  I just couldn’t do anything.  I was reduced to holding guard for dear life.  I got a lot of good advice and it helped me pull out of it.  In the process of pulling out I learned a secret to winning at Jiu Jitsu.  Its all in your head.  I was my own worst enemy.  I was limiting myself by my belief in myself.  I was to worried about my ego.  I didn’t want to lose so I couldn’t take a chance to win.  Once I took all the good advice I was given things started to change.  I relaxed and enjoyed myself, win or lose.  The next thing I knew I was back on my game.  As I rolled techniques flowed and I found myself in mount more often then being mounted.  It all came together last night at class.  I went up against another blue belt I had never meet before.  Instead of trying to size him up or let thoughts enter my mind of what my chances would be of winning I just rolled.  I dominated.  I was not able to submit him but he spent 80% of his time with me mounted on him.  He finally tapped as I was setting up a arm bar that felt like it would have brought his tap anyway.

Jiu Jitsu is about battling on two fronts, the physical and mental.  Using them together in proper form and balance is the secret to BJJ.