Half Guard top Position in Mixed Martial Arts

Top Half Guard Position

The half guard position

Getting your opponent on his back and getting on top of him is a great position to be in, in general, during a fight. Of course there are a variety of ways this can happen and not every position is as sought after as the other. Being on top and caught in half guard is usually on the less sought after side of the spectrum when it comes to grappling. This is probably because from bottom half guard you have a good amount of control even from your back and there is a lack of familiarity from the submissions from top half guard as well.

A lack of familiarity only means that a lot of people have room for improvement from this position. Or they need to find a way to get into a position that they are more comfortable in. There are a variety of passes and submissions possible to achieve that form this position.

Top Half Guard Passes

Passing somebody’s half guard is not usually the easiest thing to do. This is because if they have had any type of training they will have your leg locked down tight with their legs. Also though when in bottom half guard the last thing you want to do is slip up and give up a full mount to the opponent because its all downhill from there. However of course there are a variety of passes that you can perform of course and all involve a good amount of technical skill. Here is a website with a variety of these passes.

Striking from Top Half Guard

Top half guard offers a variety of ways to land strikes on the opponent as well. If they break your posture like they should shoulder punches and quick elbows can be used to soften up the opponent for your next move. Also if you posture up and control your position straight shots to the head, body shots, and hooking strikes can all be thrown at the opponent. Striking from this position can be very effective because your orientation to the opponent offers pretty much the same striking options as a full mount. However the opponent is not as defenseless as in full mount so one should also be cautious of a good grappler.

Submissions from Top Half Guard

There are also a good amount of possible submissions that can be performed from top half guard, some being more technical than others. One submission is the arm triangle choke. The concept is similar to that of a regular triangle choke except using the arms instead of the legs and from top half guard it is an easily accessible choke. Another simple submission is the kimura. This joint lock is easily accessible from top half guard  as well because of the leverage and position you have over an the opponent on bottom.

A couple of more technical submissions include the darce choke and a personal favorite from any position the guillotine choke. Both of these chokes are powerful blood chokes that require a slightly more setup than the others mentioned but are very similar in execution. Instead of trying to explain the complexity of these chokes here a couple videos to illustrate them


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