We’re continuing our breakdown of patented 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu techniques with this one on the lockdown from half guard. The lockdown half guard is an effective half guard that is used to transition into other positions, sweeps, and techniques.
Let’s take a look at the 10th Planet BJJ lockdown and go over some techniques you can use with it. We’ll also go over how you can defend against the half guard lockdown and avoid getting stuck in this position.
History of the half guard lockdown
Early history of half guard
Before we get into how Eddie Bravo created his innovative lockdown, let’s go over the creation of half guard. The position itself is actually not that old and only started to get used during the late 1980s.
Roberto “Gordo” Correa developed the half guard due to a severe knee injury he suffered when he was a purple belt. He couldn’t hold a traditional guard, so he had to alter his game and begin attacking from half guard.
When Gordo began using half guard it wasn’t even considered a position in BJJ. If you had half guard before this time, it meant that your guard was half passed!
Gordo’s development of the position quickly caught on, and half guard started to be developed in earnest.
Eddie Bravo’s lockdown
One of the grapplers that began playing half guard and using it effectively was 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu founder Eddie Bravo. Eddie loved playing half guard and would use it to set up sweeps and submissions.
One particular style of half guard that he pioneered was one that he called “the lockdown.” In this variation of the half guard, he switched his feet and triangulated his legs around his opponent’s leg.
Confused by 10th Planet lingo? Check out our article where we provide translations for Eddie’s occasionally far-out terminology.
Bravo found that by using this half guard lockdown, his teammates became completely stuck. Unable to free themselves, they were now open for Bravo to set up various sweeps, submissions, or transition to another position.
Eddie found it so effective that he made this new guard an important part of his 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu system. The half guard lockdown has proven quite effective, and many grapplers use it in their game today.
Holding the half guard lockdown
Before we go over a few different half guard lockdown techniques, you need to know how to enter into and hold the lockdown. Here is how you properly set up the half guard lockdown.
Switch your feet
Traditional half guard is held with your inside leg folded over your partner’s leg with your feet crossed to trap it. The first step to getting lockdown is to switch your feet and cross your outside leg over your opponent’s leg.
The next step will be to triangle your legs together around your partner’s leg. It doesn’t have to be a tight triangle, where your ankle is behind your knee like with the triangle choke submission.
Just lace your foot under your partner’s calf to keep their leg in place as you continue the lockdown set up.
Hook the foot
After triangling your legs together, your inside foot hooks your partner’s foot. Make sure that your foot is flexed back, so the top of your foot can firmly hook onto their lower shin/foot.
The last step to lock in the half guard lockdown is to extend your legs to lock the position in place. Many think you extend with your inside leg, but you actually first extend with your outside leg.
Then as you’re extending, your inside leg extends to lock your opponent in place. You now have your opponent trapped in the half guard lockdown.
Remember to transition
The half guard lockdown is a good position to trap your opponent’s leg, but it’s a static position – meaning both you and your opponent are locked in place.
So, you must remember that you need to transition out of the half guard lockdown to another position. It’s just a position to keep your opponent in place as you set up something else.
The Whip Down
One technique that Eddie Bravo developed from lockdown is the whip down. This move allows you to get into the electric chair sweep/submission.
Underhook the leg
Let’s say you have a lockdown and tried to go for the electric chair, but your partner grabbed an underhook. They’re laying down pressure and are tight to your body, so you can’t underhook their arm. What you’ll have to do now is underhook their leg to begin fighting to get back control.
Once you get an underhook on your partner’s leg, you’re going to do the whip down. Use your lockdown to whip your legs to the outside as you turn on your side.
Pummel your outside arm back inside for the underhook, and then turn back over onto your inside ribs, punching the underhook deep as you return to the first side.
Doing this puts you in a variation of deep half guard with a few different options. You can either continue to sweep your opponent or go into the electric chair submission. https://youtu.be/klSnqZ3ti_c?t=38
The Electric Chair
A nasty submission groin stretch that Eddie Bravo developed is the electric chair. You can use it to either submit or sweep your opponent.
Note regarding legality: Several years ago this technique often resulted in a DQ in IBJJF. In recent years the rules have been clarified, and the submission is regarded as legal. However, there have been cases where the referee deemed the technique a knee attack, which resulted in a DQ for lower ranked competitors who are not allowed to attack the knees.
You’ve already locked in your half guard lockdown, so now you have to frame and get your underhooks. Frame on your opponent’s chest to make space to underhook your partner’s arm and leg.
Once you get your underhooks, you’re going to start your sweep by doing the whip down. Extend your legs to the outside as you keep your underhooks and turn to come up.
Base on your hand
To come up, you need to put your elbow on the mat and transition to basing on your hand. This is a very important step you’ll need to remember in order to come up.
Secure the leg
As you come up, you have to properly secure your partner’s leg, so you don’t lose control. Keep their leg on your shoulder as you’re cupping their knee with your hand. Also, turning their knee inward will give you great control over your partner’s leg.
Sweep & Pass
The first option for the electric chair we’ll go over is finishing the sweep and passing. Take your arm under hooking your partner’s leg and under hook their arm on the same side.
From here, secure head and arm control as you drive forward. Then to pass, switch your hips and move to side-control.
If you want to keep your electric chair, then you can just stay in the position and finish the submission. Keep your underhooks and drive forward as you extend your lockdown.
This puts a lot of pressure on your partner’s groin and if they’re not flexible, they will probably tap.
How to defend against the half guard lockdown
The half guard lockdown is one of the most annoying positions to get stuck in. Here are some options you have to get out of the BJJ lockdown position.
Lockdown Prevention: Drive your knee through
To avoid the lockdown altogether, you can do so by driving your trapped knee out of half guard. This will put you in quarter guard and your partner won’t be able to get the lockdown.
Escaping the Lockdown: Walk your body down
If you get stuck in a half guard lockdown, the first thing you’ll need to do is walk your body down. Keep your knees on the mat, walk your body down to your partner’s hips, and apply shoulder pressure to their stomach.
Head positioning & locking your hands together
Keep your head on the same side as your leg that is trapped, and lock your hands together behind their legs. A Gable grip would be a great grip to use here.
Rotate & kick out
After locking your hands together, rotate to your side and kick your leg back. The kick out puts pressure on your opponent’s knee and forces them to let go of their lockdown.
Once you kick out, keep your Gable grip and walk your body into side-control.
Playing The 10th Planet BJJ Lockdown
The half guard lockdown is a great option which gives you significant control over your opponents. But remember not to use this as a stalling position – instead you should use one of the powerful sweep or submission options that are available to you.
Once you get it down, it will really annoy your training partners and they’ll always try to avoid your lockdown!