3 Tips For Your Half Mount

Many BJJ guys refer to it as half guard, but more properly, the position in top of the half guard position would be described as half mount.

Now that we have our terminology straightened out, let’s look at how to deal with your opponent’s half guard.

Along with the specific techniques to pass the half guard, there are some strategic factors that are every bit as important in the position.

Here are three tips that will improve the half mount position for you.

1) Put your opponent flat!

Saulo Ribeiro was teaching the half mount position, and instead of jumping right into the pass, he talked about the importance of dominating the position.

Saulo explained (I’m paraphrasing) that everything the half guard player wants to accomplish require them to be on their side. Saulo explained this is why you have to flatten your opponent out before you pass.

Check out Xande Ribeiro demonstrating the technique below:

2) Get the underhook!

There are many different offensive options from the bottom of half guard such as sweeps and back takes. The majority of these threats have one factor in common; the half guard player needs the underhook.

It may be an oversimplification but you might say that whoever has the underhook is dominating the half position.

Getting the underhook from half mount completely removes the danger of a back take and helps you keep the opponent flat.

3) Remove the lockdown hook before attempting to pass!

The leg entanglement, where you figure four your legs and hook your opponent’s ankle with your instep, is a powerful control position for the half guard.

Watch the second match between Eddie Bravo vs Royler Gracie to see how Bravo used the lockdown to defend the pass against one of the greatest BJJ competitors of all times.

I have watched many BJJ students frustrated in their attempts to pass the half because they didn’t understand how to deal with that lockdown.

A basic rule of passing any guard is to deal with a troublesome hook or grip before the pass.

Watch how Bernardo Faria removes the lockdown hook here:


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