The most important Techniques BJJ beginners should learn

When asked what they find most difficult about their training, most BJJ beginners say that they find the sheer number of Jiu-Jitsu techniques overwhelming. There are easily about a thousand variations of locks and sweeps and it’s clear that that is enough to make anyone’s head spin.

A woman sparring Jiu-Jitsu

The very next question that people find themselves asking is, “where should we start”, or “which of these Jiu-Jitsu beginner techniques should we concentrate most on?” Of course, there isn’t just one answer to this question and you will definitely find conflicting advice out there. 

Our answer, however, is that you should focus on the basics. We believe this is important because of one fundamental reason – they always work! 

Let’s now look at some of the most important Jiu-Jitsu beginner techniques that you should master. Here they are. 

Jiu-Jitsu Beginner Technique #1: Hip Escape with Guard Replacement

This escape with side control takes it a step further than other escape rolls. It is important to learn how to use your hips on the floor in order to master all escapes and this technique is something you ought to perfect before anything else. 

This technique teaches you 2 of the most important hip movements when it comes to escaping from tight situations. These include hip escape and bridging. Your number-one priority should be the replacing guard once you have escaped from your opponent’s guard. 

Once you have become an expert in your side-control escape technique, you, almost definitely, will have also mastered guard retention. This is because of the fact that all the similar techniques have the same carry-over methods. 

Jiu-Jitsu Beginner Technique #2: Scissor Sweep

The scissor sweep is important because it teaches you all the necessary elements that are a part of most guard sweeps. These elements include breaking your opponent’s balance and then moving your hips in a manner that creates an angle. 

The very next thing you will have mastered would be how to control your grips so that your opponent can’t posture into a reversal. Lastly, the scissor sweep also teaches you how to use the strength in your legs instead of ‘bench-pressing’ your opponent with your upper body.

The scissor sweep is among the most important techniques because of the fact that it can be combined with so many other guard techniques. These include the cross collar choke and the triangle for example for a combo attack. 

Jiu-Jitsu Beginner Technique #3: Triangle Choke from Guard

If you have been following BJJ for some time now, you will know that the triangle choke is one of the signature submissions. This technique can be used as early as your white-belt days and continue to deliver brilliant results as you climb up the higher ranks of the sport. 

The triangle choke is an important technique because of the fact that it teaches us how to choke and attack opponents with our legs. This can become your primary offense whenever you are confronted with stronger or larger opponents who may be more superior wrestlers. This is also the best technique to implement from the ground if you can’t obtain the top during a fight. 

Another great thing about this technique is that it can be set up from any possible position which makes it more versatile than most other guards. In order to master this technique, you will have to practice how to implement its different mechanics in different positions. 

Jiu-Jitsu Beginner Technique #4: Cross Collar Choke from Guard

This guard technique is another starting point when you’re leaning so many other attacks. With the basing sleeve and collar grip, your closed guard strategy will be quite strong while conditioning you for other guard attack combinations. This technique can also be a great starting point for learning the previous 2 techniques as well. 

With the help of the Cross Collar Choke, you will have learned how to use your grips in order to break the posture of your opponent. Naturally, you will be in control right away because you control your opponent’s head. 

Jiu-Jitsu Beginner Technique #5: Bridge and Roll Escape/ ‘Upa’

In order to easily master all the ground escapes in BJJ, you need to learn powerful hip bridges. If you learn how to utilize an explosive bridge, then you won’t even need the strength in your arms to escape from a tight situation. This way BJJ teaches you how to use your strongest muscle group in accordance to your situation.

When you begin to learn this escape, you will find that it relies on your lower back, hamstrings, and thighs instead of your arms. In BJJ, using your arms to bench-press your way out of situations gives your opponent a great chance to employ an armbar. 

Using your arms to get out of situations is something that most new students can be seen doing and it should be abandoned as soon as possible. With the bridge and roll escape, these new students can quickly begin to increase their percentage of escapes from the bottom. 

Jiu-Jitsu Beginner Technique #6: Elbow to Knee Escape

When you combine the previous technique with the elbow to knee escape, then you can shrimp your way out of most bottom positions. This can then also be combined with Jiu-Jitsu Beginner Technique #1 in order to really move your hips in order to make space for yourself. 

The elbow to knee escape isn’t only a BJJ fundamental but can also be seen being used during professional UFC matches. This is how important these techniques really are and continuing to train with them during training will make them part of your muscle memory. 

Other important Jiu-Jitsu beginner techniques that you may learn include the Straight Armlock, Americana Lock, Rear Naked Choke, Over-Under Guard Pass, and the Bullfighter Guard Pass. If you think you need to learn some more, you can go ahead and visit our website to find out everything you need to know about Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, fitness diets, and so much more.


John Porter

John is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Blue Belt and founder of Livermore Supply Co. When not training and competing in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu tournaments, John enjoys learning languages, traveling to the warm parts of the world, and photography. Outside of Livermore Supply Co., John has a career in the technology field.

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