There are a ton of ways to get out from under side control, but it’s interesting that the basic escape we are all taught as white belts (to bridge and hip escape) isn’t the one you see most often employed by high level BJJ-ers, especially in competition.

Does this mean it’s not effective? No, it’s just that people you roll against in BJJ are so used to it that they’re always ready to counter. They’re expecting you to do it. Against an untrained person, or in a self defence situation, then the regular shrimping escape is always your go-to move from under side control, but for dealing with an experienced BJJ player you need something a bit different, and I’d suggest that the Sit Up escape is where you need to look.

The Sit Up escape

Probably the best, most in-depth, explanation of the Sit Up escape I’ve seen is given by Ritchie Yip in this free YouTube clip:


The clip is part of a great series that explores the other side control escapes, but if you want to have one escape in your arsenal that you have ready to go, at any moment, I think this is the one you need to know – inside out. All credit to Ritchie for explaining it so clearly and going into all the little details, like keeping your chest open, ¬†framing with the forearm, using your leg as a pendulum to gain momentum and the need to free up the opponent’s crossface a little first.

I first heard about the Sit Up escape when Marcelo Garcia explained it in the following YouTube clip, and I’ve loved it ever since. Notice the detail he goes into on hooking your legs in afterwards to get your guard back.

That’s it! Have fun with this escape and let me know how you get on.