Full guard top position in mixed martial arts

Techniques from Top Position of Full Guard

the full guard position when you don’t posture up

Durring a mixed martial arts fight all too often the two competitors will end up in the full guard position. There is a reason for this, from the bottom position most people feel relatively secure in this guard for being on the bottom. Also when performing a takedown, even a pretty good takedown can end up in this position once you get to the ground. However no matter how comfortable the opponent feels in this position it is the more dominant position.

From the top position there are many different options on what to do next. Passing the guard and performing a submission, even TKO are all options from here. However a good opponent will not easily let you take him from this position.

Posture Up

Once you get caught in an opponent’s full guard the first thing you should do is posture up. What this means is that you sit back into your heals, lower your hips to the ground, and keeping your back flat. The hands should be placed on the opponents hips and push down as well, this helps keep the back straight as well as control the opponent.

By posturing up when caught in the closed guard you protect yourself from many of an opponent’s possible offensive advances.  Posturing up puts you out of reach of his arms that will be trying to hit or grab you as well as straining his lock with his feet around your waist possibly giving you a chance to escape.

Passing the Guard

A technique that is al almost essential to MMA and grappling in general is being able to pass the guard of an opponent. This position can be almost like a stalemate at times but for the person on the bottom a stalemate is all he needs until you try something rash and he submits you. For the basics on passing the full guard click here.

One simple way to pass the guard is to posture up and use the elbows on the inside of the opponent’s legs to force them appart. this is not only uncomfortable for the opponent but it can easily break his legs behind your back and allow for a pass.


Directly from this position there are not really any useful submissions to use. The key to performing submissions from this position are through quickly passing the guard and using the ensuing scramble to catch him off guard. If The guard is passed and side  control or optimally in full mount there are a host of submissions that can be deployed from those dominant positions.

Ground and Pound

An extremely effective way to finish a fight is through TKO. Being in the top of a full guard position gives you immediate dominance in the fight. A strong or long limbed fighter might be able to have a dangerous ground and pound from the full guard. However throwing punches can be a double edged sword because it leaves one open to submissions and sweeps.

Passing full guard and then seeking a gound and pound TKO is very lucrative. especially if you pass to mount position it is the most dominant striking position to be in really. Also you can pass to a standing position and try to work a ground and pound TKO from there.

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