How do you roll?

I know you guys had a similar thread a few weeks ago, but what i'm thinking about is a bit different then the question in that thread.

Now i'm not asking if you roll to win or roll to try out specific moves etc, what i'm interested in, is if you roll and have a specific "Plan" so to say, in a position. So for example when in guard you always work for one positions and try a few moves from there depending on what he gives you. Or do you just go on autopilot and do whatever presents itself?

Personally i'm an autopilot guy, but i'm not at all sure if that's a good thing or not (i'm thinking it isn't). I sometimes try to think of a strategy or something i'll be using, but once i get on the mat it's usually autopilot again lol

i barely know shit to even try anything except to stay alive.

what i work on now is how long i can go without getting tapped.

im actually getting pretty damn good at


I'm kinda with TT on this.I don't know alot but my goal is to make them work as hard as I can.I work the basics,passing gaurd,sweeping,getting the mount,etc.

I have a very sysimatic (sp?) guard game, that I have been doing for so long that I no longer have to think about it. I really broke down my favorite guard attacks, and how to deal w/common ways of resistance. I am def. a guard player, my top game is more haphazard.

Before I roll, I have a two step plan. The first is whether to play a top game or a guard game ( which is my weakness). The second, is when I get in that position - I will go not totally on auto-pilot but more on a semi-automatic mode while geeting ready to change tactics if the situation changes.

For example, I may start off looking for an armbar but if I find that the person I'm rolling with is prone to exposing his neck - I'll hunt for a choke instead with set-ups.

I stay away from having a pre-set plan. If you have a plan that you use over and over, what happens if your partner doesn't co-operate? Let's say you like to play top position, pass into side control and then work for a choke. Then you come up against a good thrower who lands you on your back and takes a north south position. Game over. Although everyone has strengths, improving your weaknesses is what will bring your game up.

It's o.k. to have a plan, but make like a boy scout and be prepared...........

We hardly ever start rolling from our knees. We start either from closed or open guard or standing up (not so often). So I decide weather I want to be on my back or to pass. I usually have "favoured submissions" for a time e.g. my game will be centered around going for a choke or to the back or let's say armbar from KOS etc.

When rolling with a weaker opponent I always try to practice also my escapes = I play some type of open guard I'm not yet so familiar with, usually get passed, escape, try that open guard again etc until I succeed with pulling off a sweep or sub or myself getting tapped.

I am trying to find my game at the momment so i am just doing the same things over and over. Along the way if my opponent starts to realise this i will change it up, for example i will go to closed guard rather than straight to hooks in guard. But then i practice geeting back to my game plan from that position. One move at a time, if i want to be on top, but i am on the bottom, what do i have to do? Pull guard, whats next? sweep. etc

I have only just started this thinking because around comp. time my instructor insists we all have a gameplan and play to our strengths, rather than be a jack of all trades and a master of none. i therefoer want to develop a game and find out how to make it work.

Right now I am training to achieve a specific position and work from there. While it would be nice to just start in that position every time, I realize it's not going to happen against anyone good without a game plan. So I come up with a strategy of how I will get to that target position from every other position I may find myself in - top positions, bottom positions, and even transitions like guard passing and escapes. I write it all down and go through all the different routes in my head before I start rolling.

That way I am always working toward my goal and staying focused, even if the guy isn't letting me do everything I want. Once I achieve the position I want, I am working on a specific attack series, and I just let it flow and see what he gives me as I try to set him up.

I always pull guard, try to sweep from full guard, move to half guard if I have to, sweep from there, pass, and try to submit him from side control or north south. I dont mount much, but I take the back quite a bit.

unemotional, relaxed, receptive to what he's giving me or the pressure I feel, waiting or making an opening then exploding to try to advance and then compound the gain. secure my postition and keep progressing (both winning and losing).

I usally pick a "game" to work on every couple months and work to get that position.  Currently I'm working on 2 things, my head control from guard and a 1/2 guard single leg.  So while rolling I usually pull guard and either start working on my head control issues or transition into 1/2 guard.  After this "game" in really need to go back to working my back attacks. 


What you wrote can be also applied to as life strategies as well. Well said.