BJJ Basics: Innovative Attacks – Top Cross Side

By October 15, 2022No Comments

Cross Side is one of the most versatile top attacking positions in BJJ.  In our Vancouver BJJ classes, our students learn that there’s countless ways to hold and maintain the position. This article explores some unconventional attacks from Cross Side.

The Advantage of Surprise

Conventional attacks in top Cross Side are the Armbar or the Americana.  Your opponent on bottom will surely expect those two attacks and will probably have a defense plan in place for them. But what if we were to execute a technique which is typically done from the Guard?  Not only would it be surprising for your opponent but it would also be confusing and discombobulating. There are attacks that are considered really high percentage in Vancouver BJJ, the Triangle Choke, the Omoplata Shoulder Lock, and the Bow and Arrow Collar Choke, but these attacks are rarely executed in Cross Side.

Triangle Choke from Cross Side

Triangle chokes are one of the most prominent attacks in BJJ.  The triangle choke is almost always done from the Guard.  Very few people realize that it can also be executed from Cross Side.  It’s tricky at first to do at first, but with some practice the Triangle Choke can become a staple of your Top Cross Side attacking game.

Omoplata Shoulder Lock

The Omoplata is exceptionally powerful technique that attacks your opponent’s shoulder using some of the largest muscles in your body.  Large muscles attacking small muscles.  Many muscles versus singular, isolated muscles.  These are the cornerstone tactics of Jiu Jitsu. The most common set ups for the Omoplata come from the Closed Guard or the Spider Guard. The Omoplata can also be applied from Top Cross Side.  This unexpected application of the Omoplata from Top Cross Side can surprise and confuse your opponent, making it more difficult to defend against. Check out this video filmed in my class where I show the Top Cross Side Omoplata.

Bow and Arrow Collar Choke

Another innovative technique from Top Cross Side is the Bow and Arrow Lapel Choke.  The Bow and Arrow Choke is one of the strongest attacks we can do once we have secured the Back position.  The Bow and Arrow Choke is also a super strong technique from Top Cross Side. Along with being a high percentage attack in Top Cross Side, the Bow and Arrow Choke is also a low risk technique. If you make a mistake or if your opponent escapes during the set up phase you’ll still be in a dominate position to follow up and attack.

Keep rolling!

Ritchie Yip

Ritchie Yip

Ritchie Yip is the Head Instructor for InFighting Training Centers located in Downtown Vancouver and Brentwood Burnaby. InFighting Training Centers offers programs in Kickboxing, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Bootcamp Conditioning Classes and Personal Training

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Ritchie Yip

Ritchie Yip is a life long martial artist, BJJ Black Belt, and the head instructor of the InFighting Martial Arts Gym in Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada.

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