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Best Guard Passes for Beginners

Updated: Dec 26, 2023

Embarking on the journey of Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) can be both thrilling and overwhelming for newcomers. One of the fundamental skills every Jiu-Jitsu practitioner must hone is the art of guard passing. Successfully navigating your way through your opponent's guard opens up opportunities for dominant positions and submissions. In this blog post, we'll explore five effective guard passes tailored for beginners, helping you lay the foundation for a strong and dynamic ground game.

The Knee Cut/Slice Pass:

The knee slice pass is a versatile and powerful technique that allows you to cut through your opponent's guard with precision. Start by controlling your opponent's legs and shifting your body weight to the side. Slide your knee through the gap between their legs, forcing their legs to open. Maintain upper body control and transition into a dominant side control position.

Key Tip: Stay low and use your shoulder to pressure their legs apart, making it challenging for them to recover their guard.

The Torreando Pass:

The Torreando pass is a fast and effective method for passing the open guard. Begin by gripping your opponent's pants at the knees, preventing them from establishing a strong guard. With quick footwork and lateral movement, pass to the side, maintaining control of their legs. Once you clear their guard, secure a dominant position such as side control or knee on belly.

Key Tip: Keep a low stance and use your arms to control their legs while circling to create openings.

The Leg Drag Pass:

The leg drag pass is a slick technique that capitalizes on manipulating your opponent's leg positioning. Start by controlling one of their legs and dragging it across your body. This disrupts their balance and sets the stage for you to transition to side control or take their back. This pass is effective against various types of guards, making it a valuable addition to your arsenal.

Key Tip: Control the upper body as you execute the leg drag to prevent your opponent from countering.

The Double Underhook Pass:

The double underhook pass is a powerful method for passing the guard, especially against opponents with an active open guard. Secure both underhooks around your opponent's legs and lift, effectively nullifying their ability to control the distance. Walk around their legs, forcing them onto their back, and transition into side control.

Key Tip: Keep your head low and drive forward to prevent your opponent from regaining guard.


Mastering guard passes is a crucial aspect of developing a well-rounded Jiu-Jitsu game. As a beginner, focusing on these fundamental techniques—the Knee Slice Pass, Torreando Pass, Leg Drag Pass, and the Double Underhook Pass —will provide you with a solid foundation for navigating through various guard positions. Remember to drill these passes regularly, and with time and practice, you'll find yourself seamlessly maneuvering through your opponent's guard, setting the stage for dominant positions and submissions in your BJJ journey.

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