Intelligently Defending From Bottom Guard with the UFC’s Alan Belcher

Alan Belcher is a top UFC competitor and is recognized as one of the best submission grapplers in America. His new "Immunity Course" is built to teach ANYONE how to beat more experience grapplers. Get in on his Free video series at:

There are certain things that reach across the aisle and can draw correlation in both the MMA and BJJ world.  There have been posts I’ve made that only concern one of those two demographics; however, this is not one of them.

In both fields, being able to defend from bottom guard is a key proponent to success.  Not only that, but being able to get out of bottom guard and mount an offense is what makes or break a fight/grappler.

Belcher Breakdown: Standing Up From Bottom Guard

Whether you wear a Gi or fight shorts, at one point or another we’ve all been in bottom guard and have likely hand some difficulty with it at times.  It can be tough—in fact, I have a former student share story of his about how in his first tournament, he got stuck in bottom guard and couldn’t get out!  Luckily for him, and our readers, we have a breakdown from Alan ‘The Talent’ Belcher on how to deal with bottom guard!

·       Wrist Control: With your left arm, grab his left wrist.  Stuff his hand towards the base of his stomach, similar to setting up a triangle choke.

·       Free Your Legs: Simply put, break your guard.  There will be no need to keep your feet tied up if you want to eventually stand.

·       Arm Extension: With your left arm, make sure you keep it fully extended.  Even a slight bend can give your opponent a chance to counter-act the grip.

·       Creating a Base: Reaching back with your right arm, look to create a base.

·       Foot Placement: Taking your right foot and place it onto their hip, while your left foot plants.

·       Staying Tight: As you prepare to push off, make sure that your shoulders, traps and triceps are all flexing and staying strong.

·       Pushing Off: With your setup in place, simply push off your opponents as your swivel your hips outwards, standing up.

Staying Strong

This is a vital part to the move as a whole.  On a few instances, if you find yourself being a little limp in the arm, your opponent can easily take advantage of you and stifle this transition.

The slightest bend in your elbow as your look to stuff his hand away could prove detrimental, especially in MMA because your face will be exposed and can be easily hit with strikes.  Stay strong and firm, making sure they don’t break your grip.

Also, if you stay strong, you can easily over power them.  After you stand up, you’ll have an ideal chance to dictate where the match/fight goes next, so don’t waste this opportunity!

As always, I’ll share the video so you can watch it and study it!

-Dan Faggella

PS: To learn more about Alan and his fight record and accomplishments, check out his full profile on the UFC’s main website.

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