Do you shy away from playing lapel based guards because you think your legs are TOO short?
Do people call you Frodo on the mats?
When you buy a new gi, do you look like a 4-year-old wearing their dad’s robe?
It’s ok, even though you may be short in a world where the players with the longest legs have the greatest guards…
… I’m here to let you know, you don’t have to suffer.
There’s a common misconception in the Jiu Jitsu community that you HAVE to have Inspector Gadget legs to play the Worm Guard or any other lapel based guard!
The truth is, your only limitation when it comes to playing the Worm comes down to your approach…
Your approach to your approach…
Just Like Rock Beats Scissors, Covert Beats Overt
It’s super important you understand that it doesn’t matter how long your legs are when you play the Worm Guard, if you telegraph your entry, you’re…
… (You get the idea)
Now that the word about the Worm is out, it’s getting more and more difficult to set up the guard from a straight forward caveman type approach…
Instead, for greater success, and even greater frustration for your opponents, your best bet is to have entries from a variety of other guards, peeling the lapel and securing your grip while your opponent tries to navigate a different guard.
Now, those of us with short legs (yes, your faithful Author is also a Hobbit) could find this task a little difficult, especially when our opponents are using our lack of length to their advantage.
But this doesn’t mean all hope is lost…
Don’t roll up your gi and belt and go home, just yet.
There are other guards, that work VERY well for shorties, like you and I, that can be used effectively as channels for covert entry into the Worm.
Let’s take a look at one of those guards, right now…
The Single Leg X Guard
The beauty of the Single Leg X is, unlike other guards, it doesn’t require Go-Go-Gadget like legs to hook, weave or push distant limbs, which an opponent can step back or hide.
The Single X utilises the concentration of your body as a whole against one limb of your opponent’s (i.e. their closest leg to you) making it excellent for unbalancing your opponent to sweep or force their hands to the mat.
Another great facet of the Single X is its ability to be used as a controlling position for a wide variety of footlocks – once your opponent has been swept to the ground, of course.
Ok, we’ve fawned over the Single Leg X long enough.
We can now see how short people in Jiu Jitsu can rely on the Single Leg X for success.
So, the real question is…
… how can it be used as a means for effectively entering the Worm Guard?
Worm Guard Entry From Single Leg X
Once your knee is in a higher position, clasp both your knees together to help you better maintain this hips-off-the-mat position.
There you have it, a super simple yet effective covert transition into the Worm Guard from the Single Leg X.
If you’ve enjoyed this entry and want more, you’ll find everything you need is covered in great detail within the Lapel Encyclopedia!
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