The Shell

When you're lying on your back and your opponent is standing, there are three ranges of combat. The first range is where your opponent is maintaining enough distance so that he can't strike you and you can't strike him. I refer to this as the "get-up range" because it is an ideal time to escape back to your feet. The second range is where your opponent is standing between your legs in your open guard. When you find yourself in this position, you want to utilize the De La Riva and Goes guards to neutralize your opponent's attacks and either get up to your feet, sweep your opponent to his back, or pull him down into your guard. The third range is where your opponent is standing just far enough away that he can land strikes. In this range, you want to utilize the shell. Keeping your hands up allows you to protect your face from punches. Keeping your knees lifted up to your elbows helps protect the lower half of your body from kicks, as well as gives you the option of launching kicks of your own to force your opponent back into the "get-up range." If you're in the shell and your opponent attempts to walk around you to create an opening to attack, you want to spin with him by rocking your body back and forth. To be effective in the shell, you must keep your opponent in front of your legs.

Lying on my back, I bring my knees up to my elbows to create a solid barrier on both sides of my body. From this position, I can kick or snap up to my feet on a moment's notice.

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  • Holman
    What is guard position in self defense?
    6 years ago

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