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Passing the Guard: Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Details and Techniques: Volume 1 (Brazilian Jiu Jitsu) Paperback – February 1, 2003

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Editorial Reviews


Production: EXCELLENT... Organization: EXCELLENT... Techniques: EXCELLENT... Details: EXCELLENT... -- Michael

From the Publisher


This book was written with the assumption that intensivity typically prevails over extensivity. Rather than trying to touch upon all that is Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, we have focused on one area - passing the guard - and tried to cover it well. It also attempts to address various situations, opportunities, and dangers, which occur in the process of passing guard.

It is hoped that this book will serve as a valuable resource to jiu-jitsu, judo, and sambo players, as well as grapplers and martial artists in general. The rules and strategies discussed throughout the book were written with Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu sport competition in mind. Their application, however, is much broader.

The level of material ranges from rudimentary to advanced. We make little attempt to differentiate on the basis of difficulty. What is hard for one comes easily to another. We have tried to cover the fundamentals, but that is no easy task. To a large extent, martial arts can only be learned by doing. This applies to fundamental and advanced technique alike. This book is not a substitute for training, or for the feedback of someone who knows what they are talking about. No book or video is. On the other hand, this is a source of information, some of which is not widely taught or easily available..

It is our experience that if you are taught the same technique by three different instructors, each is likely to teach details that the others did not. To the extent that this book covers techniques that you are already acquainted with, we hope this will be the case for you.

It would have been cumbersome to both the reader and the authors to cover everything that is important every time it is important. It is the nature of grappling that the principles and details which make one technique work, have applications to other techniques. Learning to improvise the details and principles learned from one technique into other situations is vital to proficiency in the art, not to mention a big part of what makes it interesting. Grappling arts require both mental and physical acumen. This book provides ideas which have applications beyond what is shown. Experiment with them, modify them, and make them your own.

All of the techniques in this book work. But none of them work if improperly executed. The difference between success and failure of a technique sometimes comes down to a single detail. Do not give up on a technique because it is not immediately successful. It may be that you have forgot something, your timing is off, or your opponent is a step ahead of you.

Different physical attributes favor different techniques. Every player must make adjustments for their own attributes, as well as those of their opponent. Keep this in mind as you attempt to apply techniques.

We have tried to make the demonstration of technique primarily visual. To that end the book is picture intensive. Text is provided and the text is important. Nevertheless, many readers will focus most of their attention almost exclusively on the pictures. Realizing this, and to facilitate visual learning, we did several things. Typically, martial arts books (and "how to" books generally) rely on numbered pictures with corresponding numbered text. The result is that it takes some effort for the reader to figure out the sequence of the pictures and the corresponding text. We have attempted to alleviate this difficulty with a non-numeric system of picture flow. The order of the pictures for a technique is delineated by lines and symbols to make recognizing their flow intuitive and obvious. Many of the techniques are shown from more than one angle. Where more than one angle is shown, the alternate views are delineated by symbols. Finally, we have highlighted key points and the direction of certain movements by illustrating some of the photos.

The names given to the techniques in this book are a mixture of convention and imagination. English, Portuguese, and Japanese terms are used. If you are unfamiliar with some of our terminology, it may be because we made it up.

We hope that this book proves to be a valuable resource and that it expands your game. We plan on authoring future books on the other aspects of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.


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Product Details

  • Series: Brazilian Jiu Jitsu
  • Paperback: 200 pages
  • Publisher: Grappling Arts Publications, L.L.C. (February 1, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0972109757
  • ISBN-13: 978-0972109758
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.5 x 10.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,651,387 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Michael Lomker on August 16, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I began studying BJJ a couple months ago and have purchased a number of books and videos to supplement my training. Passing the Guard is not only the most reasonably priced books but the first that I've seen that has done everything right.

The book uses a unique method of graphical symbols that indicate what limb moved or had previously moved from picture to picture--they also list alternative approaches within a technique. Counters are listed on the same page with each technique so you not only learn how to pass the guard but you get some ideas on how to keep it.

Unlike many BJJ books the written instructions are clear and there are only a minor number of typographical/editing errors (many BJJ books are so bad it is distracting). There is also a remarkable lack of ego for a BJJ book--I've become accustomed to gratuitous chest thumping and repeating their names over and over as if the instructor was more important than the technique. Throughout this book the players are referred to as Blue and White (gi color) and the focus is entirely on what you need to know.

I can't recommend this book more highly. I eagerly look forward to additional books in this series--I want a book like this on the Mount.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Stephan Kesting on September 17, 2003
Format: Paperback
This is an awesome piece of work. Tim Cartmell and Ed Beneville are two southern Californian Jiu-jitsu enthusiasts who are also regular competitors in the tournament scene.
I am getting a little bit tired of books that try to take on the entire subject of grappling or Jiu-jitsu. This is too vast a subject, and, as a result, 99% of books are function simply as yet another generalized introduction.
By taking one subject (albeit a very complex subject) and really exploring it very thoroughly, this book could actually directly result in noticeable skill improvements RIGHT AWAY. This book not only shows a technique, but it often shows you three or four counters to that technique, some counters to those counters, and then discusses the strategy and psychology of these moves. Even if all you do is browse through it, you are more than likely to come across an 'answer' to one of your grappling 'problems'.
Tim and Ed show all the techniques wearing the gi, but even grapplers who disdain the gi will find that 70 or 80% of the material is directly relevant to them.
This book is desktop published, and aside from one or two (very) minor glitches is very slick and professional. All the photos are in color, and a position is often shown from more than one angle.
Stephan Kesting
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on May 27, 2004
Format: Paperback
This book is the one I was looking for. I've had so many problems passing the guard and this is what I needed.
It's not just about passing but if you put yourself in the position of the person who's getting passed then you can learn counters to guard passes. It's just put in the perspective of the person who's passing but you can easily see how it can help prevent a guard pass.
The book should be titled guard passing and how to maintain your guard.
Lastly, sure you've never heard of these guys but so what. They do a tremendous job at communicating fine details that they've worked out through countelss hours on the mat. It's important to know a lot but just as important to be able to communicate what you know. You know that in your class sometimes you feel like your brazilian teacher just doesn't get the point across exactly the way you think he wants to. I mean come on - one of these guys is a US educated lawyer. Of course he's going to be good at writing and noting all the little details. But in Jiu-jitsu one small little detail can change everything.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By C. K. Mccracken on November 2, 2005
Format: Paperback
Too many books try to cover too much in their text. This often results in poor details, a small snapshot of someone's game, or unconnected techniques that don't integrate well. It is a fantastic idea to spend an entire volume on one aspect of the game.

I'd read Cartmell's good work in "Effortless Combat Throws" and liked it a lot. I'd never heard of Beneville, though, as per most of the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu community.

However, the most important qualification is whther your information is accurate and effective. This book is exactly that.

The book opens up with imporatant details on posture and position. What it is, why you need to get there and - of course - how. This is golden information to the beginner and early intermediate, but more advanced practitioners will even find some useful info here.

Then, onto the guard passes. The passes shown are the same ones you're taught in every class. The details, though, are intricate and accurate. There are a number of options for each pass and photos aplenty, along with concise, accurate text descriptions.

The book covers more than passing and is THE text for the whole game from inside the guard. It covers posture and position, passes from the knees, passes from standing, submission attacks from inside the guard, defenses and counters to attacks and even a great section on a ttacking the turtle position.

More still, the book ends with some great drills that will help you develop the skills described in the book.

This book pioneered the contrasting coloured uniforms on the models and the blue vs white is still a great idea. The photography is great and has views from multiple angles. As said earlier, the text is concise, clear and descriptive.

It's clear that the authors know their subject and have planned this book well. Kudos to them.
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