This week I want to talk about one of the things that makes Jiu Jitsu so beautiful as an art and sport. If you look at many other martial arts and other sports throughout history, you will see much of the same thing just applied in a better or more athletic way, however this is not the case in Jiu Jitsu. We don’t even have to look that far back and we can see how much our art has changed in the many years. If you watch some highlights from the 2005 worlds (ten years ago); you will see very little 50-50 (if any) and zero berimbolo’s which are now two common positions in high level Jiu Jitsu. If you look back 20 years you will see a completely different game more based on control and self-defense. My point is that what makes Jiu Jitsu beautiful is that it is always changing and evolving. We constantly add more and more positions to the physical Rubiks cube that is Jiu Jitsu and no two people will share the exact same game. So I want to now discuss three modern technics that any competitor should be aware of and learn either for themselves or simply to be aware of how the moves are applied. (Disclaimer I will not attempt to describe how to implement or stop the technique).
First I will talk about one of the more well-known and popular positions, the berimbolo. Take a look at any light weight or below tournament footage and chances are sooner rather than later you will see a berimbolo or two. The technique is usually applied from some variant of the De La Riva guard or 50-50 and can be very dangerous to the unsuspecting prey. The main goal of the berimbolo is to roll over your shoulder and underneath your opponent leading to taking his/her back however the position can also end in many other top positions.
Next is an even newer guard witch was brought into the spotlight by Atos Phenom Keenan Cornelius. By now many of you already know I’m talking about the infamous “worm guard”. While Keenan didn’t actually create the position (Andre Galvoa did) , Keenan has had much success in using and marketing it. The Worm guard involves threading the far lapel through your opponent’s legs while playing an open guard (usually a De La Riva Variant). If you have ever been put in this position you have a sense of being trapped and it is very difficult to make any smart moves. While still relatively unutilized by many I can see this position really exploding in the next few years and I believe it is worth studying if you don’t want to get “wormed”.
The Body X
Last I want to talk about a really new technique. I have only known about this for a few months now and ive only seen one person use it at the high level … Yuri Simoes . Yuri has recently released a new technique the “body X” witch many people including myself have probably played with in the past without knowing what to call it or what to do with it. Well Yuri Has created a system around this new guard and it looks promising. The body X is similar to the standard X guard , but instead of using both of your legs on one of your opponents; you place one foot across the hip and one under the armpit in an x pattern. There are many positions shown by Yuri most are used as a sweep to the top position . You can see for yourself at,
I will definitely be studying these techniques as I continue my Jiu Jitsu journey and I believe you should as well. Remember you either evolve or are left in the stone age.
Photography: Chad Rommerdale