Side control escapes

What escapes do you like from sidecontrol? What seems to work best? I hate getting stuck here when grappling, worse than mount I think sometimes. Any tips, suggestions would be great. Thanks.

Make space and shrimp into it, in general. You can do a leg entanglement, shrimp to guard, or a bridge and roll type escape, or an uphill turn type escape.

Ben R.

You need to establish your control on him to help take pressure off and create space.

Put your nearest hand on his hip and the other forearm across his neck/collar or under his far armpit.

Bridge up hard! as you bridge use these contact points to keep him off you. Push him away! You now have a few options. I'll give you two.

outside foot. from the bridge position. take a "step" out with it. now as you explode up and push him away this will give you more room to shrimp and get your legs away and you'll end up head to head.

or you can bridge and hold and work your inside knee thru. get it thru as deep as possible and pull guard of half guard.

Hope this helps. the keys to escapes are always to not let him "settle" into his hold down, & when escaping, try to create as much space as possible.

Good Knee to elbow position with great anticipation before he smothers you is the key.

"Push him away!"

Personally, I've always been told never to push them away, rather it's better to push yourself away from him.

after thinking about that for all of about 30 seconds I believe you are right Estanmilko.

Forgive me, My words were not correct. What I should have said was to "hold" him away while you are able to move out (shrimping) or bringing your knee thru ala elbow-knee escape.

as Estan pointed out, "pushing him" may provide him with the opporitunity to apply armlocks.. not a good idea. esp never lock your arms out. keep those elbows tucked in.

A lot of the reason for not pushing him away is just that moving yourself is easier than moving him. You just want the weight off of your centre of mass to make it easier to shift your hips away from him.

Purchase Michael Jen's Ultimate Pin Escapes tape set and choose 2-3 escapes from most forms of pins. You won't be sorry you did - it's probably the most valuable tapes I ever bought for grappling, because side mount escapes are, IMO (and many other people's opinions), the most important aspect of grappling to learn when you're a beginner.

To get you started:

Create space in two places:

1. Between your hips and your opponent's hips.

2. Between your shoulders and your opponent's shoulders.

Now, pretty much simultaneously, try to insert your near knee and your head under your opponent's stomach.

Your opponent may stop either your head or your knee from going under his stomach, but hopefully not both.

If you created adequate space between your hips and his, you should be able to insert your near knee under his stomach and pull guard or half guard.

If you created adequate space between your shoulders and his, you should be able to insert your head under his stomach and get to your knees.

Principles for creating space to work under side mount and initiate your escapes:

0. The primary movement for creating space is the "shrimp" movement, aka. "snakey move", aka. "hip scoot" aka. simply horizontal hip movement to one side. You should be doing a lot of this movement.

1. Be on your side, facing him. This way you can move your hips and breathe better. It's also much harder for him to hold you down this way.

2. Crunch your abs, touch your chest with your chin, tuck in your knee that's closest to him and don't let him pull up on your near elbow. The point here is that it's harder to pin a ball than a board. Also, by doing this, you minimize his chances of using two of the most efficient techniques for flattening you out - "crossfacing" your head and pulling up on your near elbow.

3. Always keep your arms between you and him and never let him get chest to chest contact. Otherwise you'll find it very hard to move. Doing this is called "posture" and is all about positioning your arms in relation to your opponent in such a way to create maximum amount of leverage for your pushing motions on him/her. More on this later (hopefully, if I have time)...

My (currently) favorite posture under the side mount:

One forearm at his hip (the one that's closer to your head), the other one under his neck.

Some of the basic principles of posture and pushing:

1. The power of your push comes from your hips, not your arms, although your arms add slightly to the power.

2. Don't expect to move HIM with your push. Consider him an immovable object and push YOURSELF away from him.

3. When he's close, push with the bottom half of your forearms (near your elbows, not your wrists) OR your biceps. When he's a bit further away and you can't reach him with your forearms, push with the palm of your hands.

4. If he feels too heavy to even budge, begin your escape with a simple bridging motion into him. If that doesn't even work, wait and start working your escapes again as SOON as he begins to move.

5. Posture is an alive thing. As soon as you get posture against a decent grappler, he/she will be trying to ruin your posture, so you'll have to change your posture, i.e. assume a different type of posture. Here are two examples:

a) Your opponent begins by pinning you in a "normal" side mount, i.e. with his stomach facing the ground. Because of your posture, he feels that you're about to escape and switches his hips into kuzure-kesa-gatame ("modified scarf hold" in BJJ). Now his stomach faces your head and his legs are spread. Also, now your forearm that was pushing on his hip slides across his stomach and is useless for pushing. So, to adapt, you have to move that elbow down to the mat, so you can push on his hip (this time, you're pushing on his OTHER hip). THIS IS CRUCIAL TO DEFEND AGAINST KESA-GATEME OR KUZURE-KESA-GATAME (scarf hold or modifed scarf hold)!!!!! PULL YOUR NEAR ELBOW DOWN TO THE MAT!! You can now pull guard, go to your knees, throw your leg over his face, circle your hips away and push him onto his back, etc.

b) Your opponent circles around you towards your head and transitions into kami-shiho-gatame (north/south hold down in BJJ). When he does so, move both your arms under him and let them stick out just a little bit ON THE SAME SIDE (NOT one arm on his right and the other one on the left). Now you have the leverage to throw both legs up in the air, scissor them and go to your knees.

Too many people just try one escape from the side mount - pulling guard. In my opinion, they should be just as good at going to their knees, as those two moves are the highest percentage escapes in submission grappling and BJJ tournaments (since I'm not currently competing in judo, I can't say for sure that it's the same there, but probably not far off).

Here's my standard way to going to my knees (this one is on Michael Jen's Ultimate Pin Escapes tape set - one of the many, many gems there):

Your opponent has you in a normal side mount. He's on your right side. You assume the type of posture in which you have your left forearm under his neck and your right forearm at his left hip.

Get on your right side and create space between your hips and his and between your shoulder and his (see my ramblings above). Let's say that you managed to create shoulder space but maybe not as much hip space - or that you just feel that you have a better chance of going to your knees than pulling guard.

Keep your left elbow high to hold his head up and rotate your left hand down and then under his right armpit. At the same time, keep tucking your chin to your chest and move your head under his stomach. Grab behind his right leg (most likely at the knee) with your left arm. Move your right hand down and grab your left hand. Keep your chin down and your shoulders shrugged all the time to minimize his chance of wrapping his arm(s) around your neck.

If your hips are very close to his, scoot your hips away from him a bit. Now, keeping you knees bent and being on your right shoulder, get to your knees. Next, get on your right forearm.

You are now on your knees, on his right side, with your head under his stomach, holding his right leg with both arms.

This concludes the escape, but you don't want to be stuck there. I'll list a few good ways to get out of here next.

1. Grab his left knee with your right hand (still grabbing his right leg with your left hand) and drive into him. He will fall on his back and you have a good chance of passing his guard immediately as you've got good control of his legs from here.

2. With your right hand, pull his right foot towards you (circle it inwards) and drive him straight backwards (not towards his left leg). He will fall onto his butt and you should be able to circle around his right leg into side mount.

3. Post your head on the ground, keep holding his right leg, get on your toes and circle to his back. From here you have a chance of taking his back, driving him flat to his stomach with an ankle pick, standing up and going to a single leg takedown, etc.

4. Doing a "peek out" (if I remember the name correctly) if he holds around your stomach with both hands and clasps them together. You should be able to find that technique on the net somewhere.

5. If you lose his leg too far away from you, you can fall back to your right shoulder, slide your right knee under his stomach and pull guard.

I hope some of this helps.



One additional thing, when I'm in the process of scooting my hips away and getting on my side, I like to first push with my forearm on his hip and THEN PUSH WITH MY HAND on his hip (or even stomach), to create even more space. I feel that I often need this amount of space to escape. But I still have my other forearm under his throat.

Also, when I posture against the kuzure-kesa-gateme (modified scarf hold in BJJ), I (and Michael Jen, btw.) like to stop pushing under his throat with my forearm and use that arm (my left arm in the above example) to push with my palm in his chin, turning his head away and straightening my arm, if possible. My other arm pushes on his hip that's closer to my, first with my forearm near my elbow and then with the palm of my hand, if necessary.

ttt to read later

jonpall, nice! WWAYD?

zulrik: What Would Andrew Yao Do? Andrew (on the BJJ forum) would probably agree with 99% of this, since I learned a lot of this stuff from him :) He might have a comment on this, but he might also not have the time to read all that shit. Lol.

good stuff jonwell.

Thank you, Bull_in_chinapot.

" good stuff jonwell." BIC, jonwell is the S&C mod ... try to remember your jonXXXXs.