North-South and Fighting in the Guard (diary entry)



My client’s course on Mixed Martial Arts Ground-Fighting reached the four and a half hour point. Tonight we continued work on the top position, adding in some extra options from side control and working on the north-south pin. We then began looking at fighting inside the guard.


Warm-up consisted of a series of mainly top position calisthenics – bear crawls, stiff-legged bear crawls, frog jumps, monkey crawls, lizard crawls, press-up jumps, row walks, knee-pin transitions, seal crawls and commando crawls – as well as some bottom position calisthenics – snakes/shrimps and crab crawls. This was an energetic set, emphasising good muscle activation and specific training. Fighting from the top position requires good core strength and excellent mobility, as the fighter secures his pin whilst striking and executing submissions.


The solo warm-up was followed up with more muscle memory work in partner-training.


We went through side control revising the hammer-fist/cross/American arm-lock combination and changing to the oblique raise angle, transitioning into the scarf-hold. We focused on North-South position using strikes to set up a triangle choke. Then we revised the knee-pin punching/arm-bar combination and the mounted position punching/Americana arm-lock combination. This was all then trained with a degree of resistance from underneath.


The lesson finished with an introduction to fighting in the guard. Here we focused completely on fighting from a kneeling position. We looked at going to the safety position with the face down and guard in only to emerge with a flurry of punches, and establishing a strong posture and base to strike.

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