My late evening class brought my Submission Grappling client up to the ninth hour of his course. We focused entirely on the guard which included a flow-drill, the scissor sweep and the classic arm-bar.
The lesson started with ground callisthenics, including a large portion dedicated to conditioning for the guard. Then we began the guard flow-drill. This consisted of moving from closed guard to a long range guard (very simplified spider guard) to butterfly guard to half guard then back to butterfly guard to half-guard back to the long range guard and then finishing in the starting closed guard. The transitioning emphasises blocking the hips and getting hooks throughout. Next lesson we will layer in more arm control.
We looked the typical suggested hierarchies of guard tactics. In MMA typically escaping to a standing position is preferred due to the advantages presented by an opponent who strikes from a position that has gravity on their side. Then they go for sweeping because it puts them in a dominant position where they have a good chance of winning. Finally the submission is opted for because although it can get a win it carries a lot of risk from an experienced fighter. Submission Grappling tends to put sweeps first then submissions and then escaping. The sweep puts them in a dominant position where they have the advantage. If they go for a submission they can get win straight away but risk getting their guard passed. Escape is last because this is a sport mainly fought on the ground and can make for negative gameplay.
The scissor sweep is an effective basic sweep. It provides a strong defence with good leverage opportunities. The fighter can also quickly switch to another position if it does not work. The classic arm-bar is a good basic submission that helps set up other submissions. We looked first at a very systematic way of ensuring hips were blocked and arms were controlled as the submission was executed. Then we moved onto a simple arm-bar drill.