I now have several reliable methods for passing someone’s guard. What’s interesting is that one of the methods, usually the first thing I try, only seems to work on white belts with less than a year of experience. When I’m going against upper belts, I usually end up using other methods, after my first method has failed. I’m considering revising my strategy. Since I already know the first method will likely not work on upper belts, why not go straight to the second method? I think I’ll play around with that idea for the next few weeks. I’m starting to develop my back attack strategy, with the help and advice of a talented blue belt (my home room teacher). He is small, like me, and has convinced me that back attacks are the way to go for smaller people. He showed me a really cool way to trap a person’s arm with your foot when you’re on their back, so that they can’t defend their neck. This makes it a lot easier to work in your choking hand. I made it pretty far with the move tonight against one of the up and coming white belts. I managed to trap his arm and get my choking hand in, but eventually lost the angle, allowing him to escape. I plan on discussing the move during next home room, to see if I can pin point where I went wrong, or what I can try if I get stuck at that point. The main thing I want avoid is the person escaping my back. As long as I have the back, I can keep working toward a submission. However, if the person escapes, I have to work twice as hard to retake the back. What’s worse is if the person reestablishes his guard, or comes into my closed guard, since that’s basically starting back at square one.

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