I’ve been working on a particular guard position in a low-key way.
The main reason why I decided to work on it is that it gives me some of the easiest ways to deal with heavier & stronger opponents.
I was opposed to learning this guard position for a long time… for no particular reason. It’s not worm guard, by the way.
The guard position I’m talking about is deep half.
If you use deep half, that’s great! And if you aren’t familiar with it, I suggest you to start looking into it.
- You can escape from the mount/side control directly into the deep half guard.
- You can set up the deep half guard to counter your opponent’s knee cut pass (i.e., one of the most common guard passes) attempt.
- It can be connected from all sorts of other guard positions.
- Sweeping a bigger & stronger opponent from the deep half guard is relatively much easier. You will need to deal with just one of your opponent’s legs, and you do so beneath it.
- You can go for the back from the deep half position.
- It works both in gi and no-gi. If you know what you are doing, like Ryan Hall, you could use it in MMA, too.
- It’s relatively easy to learn some of the major options from the deep half guard.
- Once you manage to establish some solid control, it can be difficult for your opponent to pass your deep half guard, especially if you’re smaller than them.
- You can sweep your opponent into the over/under pass position, which I think is one of the most powerful guard passing options.
- It doesn’t require strength or flexibility.
Now, let’s take a look at some significant cons of the deep half guard.
- This isn’t an offensive position in terms of submissions you can directly set up from the deep half guard.
- You have the risk of getting kimura-ed. Make sure to hide your arm.
- Getting into the deep half guard position and setting up your sweep from there require some major patience because your opponent will be literally sitting on you for the entire time. People who use the deep half guard as their main guard often seem to be way more masochistic than other BJJ folks, though…
I think these are the major cons of the deep half guard, and as you can see, there aren’t many, and none of them is too bad.
I highly recommend you to learn the fundamentals of this position and start experimenting with it.
If you’re interested in learning deep half, ask your coach about it and/or get some inspiration from some of the major deep half guard players like Jeff Glover, Ryan Hall, Jake McKenzie, Masahiro Iwasaki, and Bernardo Faria.