Tonight, I was able to use my x guard effectively during sparring, although one of my sparring partners, who outweighed me by a considerable amount, definitely pushed my defenses to their limits. I believe he outweighed me by more than 50 lbs. At one point, he was able to use sheer muscle to blow right past my legs and mount me. Nobody else has been able to do that to me in quite a while, once I get x guard or single leg x guard. I’m convinced that he wouldn’t have been able to do it either, if it weren’t for the size difference between us. Fortunately, it wasn’t too hard to get back into x guard from the bottom of mount, since his mount controls were not as tight as they could have been. X guard has now become the most reliable part of my game, which makes me wonder why more people don’t use it. I’ve never seen anyone sweep people as effectively as Marcelo Garcia does, once Marcelo achieves x guard. I mistakenly thought Terere defeated Marcelo’s x guard during their match in 2003, but in re-watching it, Marcelo never actually got to x guard during that match. He did not yet have his leg in position when Terere under hooked his leg and passed his guard. The trick to x guard is getting there. Once you get there, there is a high probability that you will sweep your opponent, provided you understand the fundamentals of x guard and single leg x guard. However, getting to x guard can be incredibly easy or incredibly difficult, depending on the skill of your opponent in blocking your entry. That’s where the butterfly guard comes in as plan b.

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