Friday, March 23, 2012

[Video] The Hip Sweep: Working in Clusters vs. Sequences

The hip sweep is a fundamental technique.  My game tends to favor technique like the hip sweep.  Minimal flash, high percentage, no prerequisite physical attributes, and integrates easily with other fundamental techniques.  In this particular instructional, I want to focus on the connections between techniques and how we think about those connections.  Capitalizing on these connections is how you get what r/BJJ would call "Mad Flow" (it's Mad Flow month over there), and mad flow makes you aggressive and efficient.

You can flow in two ways: in a cluster or in a sequence.  I owe Matt from for this particular insight (and for the sketch above).  Before talking to Matt about mad flow, I knew that some techniques had a two way connection and that these two way connections, when considered as a bigger picture, form a network of techniques that overlap.  When Matt brought up the idea of thinking of techniques as clusters or as sequences, he made clear a very important distinction.  Some connections do not have a two connection.  The relationship is linear, which is key when developing a game plan.  Below is a map of the hip sweep cluster contained in the video, and below that is an example of a sequential combination.

In the final diagram, you can see that as soon as you make the leap from guillotine to triangle, you cannot go back.  The connection is one way.  You cannot rewind.  This is the reality of working within a sequence.  Now, the end of this sequence could be another cluster, so a sequence is not necessarily a bad thing. However, you need to know where you are going and what your options will be when you get there to eliminate hesitation and to keep attacking.

This is, of course, a small example of clusters and sequences.  They can get to be pretty complex, but breaking your clusters down into groups of three or four interconnected techniques is ideal for trigger training the clusters within a cluster.  Enjoy the video.

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