T Nation

Rubber Guard!


Anybody use the rubber guard?

For a variety of reasons, my days standing up and banging are over.

So now ive been focusing more on the ground aspect, before i only knew enough to avoid being subbed or being taken down. But now i really want to make a go at getting serious at the ground aspect. Lately ive been reading a lot about rubber guard and in application so far, its the best thing ive tried so far.

Anybody else use the Rubber guard and twisters etc?


yeah, i love rubber guard when someone's bigger and strnoger than me. one of the reasons why i like it is if i can't sweep somone from my guard, i'll transition to tht and go for the omaplata, which either subs them or sets up a scramble, where i usually get side control...

Eddie Bravo's books are definately worth teh read, if you don't already have them.


I worked on it, even though I'm very flexible I ended up hurting my knee. It did set up more Omoplata's for sure, but I went back to different varieties of closed guard, felt it was a bit safer.

Many people claim that those who get injured weren't following perfect instructions and that might be the case, but since I was learning out of a book and blog posts (I haven't seen anyone apply it in training at a school I've ben at) I didn't have that luxury.


It's like anything else hard as hell to learn from a book or video. You can pick up a LOT, and straight ninja that shit and start to really utilize it, but it will never be like when you get some actual instruction (and roll with people well versed in the system).

The problem is most people assume it's "The rubber guard" but 10th planet is a whole system, everything is really integrated together you can't separate them all that much because one area might lead you to another. It's a "path". My half guard might pull you to rubber guard, to butterfly, which might pull you to the dog fight, to the spider web, and maybe back to rubber guard or something. Eddie Bravo said it in his book, "if you're looking for a guard that works 100% of the time this is not for you".

If you're going to base your ground game off of the rubber guard, make sure that you base it off the 10th planet system and not just ONE guard variation. That's like saying "what do you guys think of the closed guard?" 10th planet system is solid, but it's not the only thing out there.


I use rubber guard alot, I feel very confident from mission control. I train for MMA and hate fighting from conventional guard, The hardest part is getting control of an opponent, but once that hand is to the mat and im sqeezing the knee, being a HW alot of my opponents have trouble backing out or escaping.

Coming from a submission wrestling back ground I use Omoplata and omoplata roll as an oppertunity to catch my opponent in leglocks, heel hooks, toe holds and knee bars can all come off that posistion.

Im still grasping twister, I find having big legs makes establishing the inital figure four for the twister roll a pain in the ass when trying to do it quickly


RubberGuard is a fairly decent tool to have in your box. What I find is that people become overly obsessed with RG and severely lack in the basics. I can't count how many times some white belt tries mission control, I easily pass to side control and they have no idea how to recover guard. I use the lockdown as a distraction from bottom 1/2 and as a sweep set up.


I hate it too, hell i hate fighting from my back period, but i'd rather fight from half guard than from closed guard. at least i KNOW i can get the electric chair sweep and escape out the backdoor.

But YES that is the hardest part that causes most people to say that rubber guard doesn't work. that and they just grab their ankle without squeezing the knee, or isolating an arm, etc. it would be much more popular if that was easier.


Just out of interest can anyone define how much flexibility you need to properly utilise the rubber guard?

For example the ability to bring your leg over your own head would no doubt be sufficient but that would then make the position and maybe the system the preserve of the super flexible.

Would a lesser position be enough? Are there other stretched positions that tend to demonstate sufficient flexibility to properly play RG?


I used it years ago, but I prefer to work from an open guard more these days. I'm a much bigger fan of Eddie's half guard stuff than his RG stuff. I'm a tall, lanky guy; so while I didn't have problems with it, a lot of people just don't have the knee / hip flexibility and dexterity to use RG regularly without getting injured.


I use a couple of bits of it but prefer the basic closed guard or open guard. Being able to sweep is really important. Also, the rubber guard leaves you too crunched up and restricts your breathing which is not a good idea. Finally it is pretty easy to close down the rubber guard game using basic posture.


I dunno, the biggest problem that I have with the RG is that I see too many guys trying to use it too early in their training career. If you're training at 10th planet that's one thing, but picking up eddies book and then showing up to class using the RG as your go to guard is a little ridiculous for a beginner because it is way too easy to pass and causes them to ignore the basics of guard (which btw, Eddie had down pat long before he went to the RG...further that fucker loves to bring up tapping Royler, but he wasn't using no RG when he did it.)

I was guilty of the same thing I outlined above, but not to the extent that I stopped playing close guard, I'd just throw up the RG once in awhile when the position warranted it (guy was stalling, head down, arm out.) But Eddie has done a few seminars over here which I've attended and started to incorporate more of his ideas into my no gi game which has improved my game off my back a bit.


Yeh we've had newbies, turn up fresh from reading RG instructionals trying it and forgetting the details that make it harder to break. Thing is most beginners panic in Conventional guard, the get hit, forget sweeps and find it to hard to sub someone with good posture who is raining hands, so RG to them looks like a great way to control the opponent.


The rubber guard can be great sometimes. I like to use it keep my opponents head down so that he can't posture, or setup to move into a higher guard to setup things like double/cross armbar, etc. Some times I've kicked a leg of with it to setup a sneaky omoplata.


Rubber guard will work on newbies. Other than that - someone with good posture ur gonna have some trouble pulling that shit. Also requires lots of flexibility, risk of injury can be high (knees).

I say learn how to control posture with head control, overhooks and underhooks. Basics will always get the job done (demain maia). Im yet to see someone use rubber guard in MMA effectivly If they do some grease seems to fix that problem pretty quick.


Shinya Aoki is probably the example of a MMA fighter using rubber guard effectivly


yea i agree Shinya is good example, Imanari is also pretty good at it. These guys are extremely flexibile and even then its low percentage for them. I wont say anythin about the crazy pants. But if this guard was so effective wouldnt more top of BJJ (maia,fitch,leites) guys be using it also? Those guys are top notch..but arent too flexible - which means its an attribute based move. By all means if a hand is on the mat ill be the fitst to attack it with kimura or omoplata. But making that your go2 guard just makes it too predictable and easy to counter.


well, i don't think any one guard is the end-all, be all. it's all situationally dependent. for instance, it's not uncommon to transition form closed guard to butterfly guard and back. however, since some people don't attempt to try rubber guard, i think they're limiting their options. and there are quite a few MMA guys that use it, especially in the WEC (Donald Cerrone, Miquel Torres, etc)...they just don't use it exclusivley.

if you don't want to use it, then don't. but to simply not train it becasue it can't replace all other guard positions is a silly idea...


from feedback from friends who have trained at eddie's there are a fair few people there that are good at RG but really lack basics. Seems like something good to add to a rounded game.

That said, his style of teaching which is to focus on the same thing for weeks on end is great!


I always hear people talking up the RG and how they use it to tap people left and right but I have yet to read about a person talking about how he won the Mundials or ADCC with it. Make a list of the top 20 BJJers right now and I doubt you would have one who was a RG advocate.


i was thinking about this when i went into BJJ the other night, and tried pulled rubber guard on everyone....

here's my observation: unless someone was pressuring me, or really trying to stack me, it didn't "take." it seemed to work better the more aggressive someone got...otherwise they were able to back out, or step through easier. same goes for when someone tried to pull it on me....