As you immerse yourself in the martial art of jiu-jitsu, you'll be exposed to all sorts of techniques that you can work on. While you can practice some movements on your own, it's more common to work with a partner to implement what your instructor is teaching you. In jiu-jitsu, it's important to use the guard position. You'll often hear the term "pulling guard," which means that you're pulling your opponent to the ground. You'll be on your back with your opponent on top of you. This may suggest to a novice that the opponent has the upper hand, but when you pull guard, you're in control. Here are three objectives of the guard position.
Limit Opponent's Movement
Pulling guard is a good way to limit your opponent's movement. If your opponent is striking you and attempting to submit you, you'll want to manage the situation by using the guard position. This technique involves wrapping up your opponent's body with your legs while also using your arms to control them. A jiu-jitsu practitioner wants their entire body to be free, so using guard against someone will prevent them from moving how they wish. For example, they won't be able to use their legs against you in any way when they're in your guard position.
If you've just used a lot of energy against your opponent, they may sense your situation and attempt to submit you. This can be a good time to pull guard. Because you'll be on your back, rather than standing, you'll be able to conserve a bit of energy. If you're partially out of breath, being in this position can help you to recover to some degree. While you still need to work when you're in the guard position, you'll appreciate that you're not moving around and burning energy unnecessarily or putting yourself at risk of submission as much as when you're standing. In competitions, it's common to use the guard position to conserve energy in the latter stage of a round.
Look For A Submission
Using the guard position offers you a good chance to look for a submission. Even though you're on your back, you're not at a disadvantage. From this position, you can take a look at the opponent's body and identify any weaknesses. For example, if they leave one of their arms exposed, you might be able to transition to a joint lock submission attempt. Or if they're not cautious about protecting their neck, this can be a good time to move from the guard position to a chokehold.
Find a local jiu-jitsu academy, such as Alpine Jiu-Jitsu, and learn about its training programs.