Category Archives: Uncategorized

Are you looking for a 3 in 1 open guard passing drill?

Vicente Jr and I are always working on new drills and this is one of our NEW favorites. We love the way it flows, and the idea, of working 3 different passes from the same starting position. When you approach a technique this way, it gives your mind and body a few different options, but you will always gravitate toward the one that woks the best for the situation, and your body.

Take a look and let me know what you think!

If you ever have a question or want to see a drill or technique for something please send me an email with your request to

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“Side Control Survival Guide”

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Help, I can’t pass anyone’s Spider Guard!

Fights, Fights, and more Fights!! I have another big weekend full of fights. One of my Pro MMA fighters Rob Watley will be fighting MMA in Atlantic City at the Borgata, plus Vicente Jr. and a lot of the Conquest Competition Team will be going to the IBJJF New York Open.  So needless to say we will be very busy this weekend.

2 spider guard drills
2 spider guard drills

Now that I’m back posting each week, I have been getting all kinds of questions… most are related to passing the Spider Guard. Here is a question that I got last week.

“Help, I can’t pass anyones Spider Guard! Every time I get caught up in someones spider guard, I get swept or submitted. Breaking their grips is impossible. PLEASE HELP!!” Tom M.

Tom, I’m here to save the day (lol) I asked 4th degree De La Riva Black Belt Vicente Jr to help me out. In this video we will teach you how to break the grips and pass the normal spider guard and the leg lasso spider guard ending in a fancy leg drag position.

Please leave a comment or share this on Facebook if you like it!

Also send me more questions!!


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Top 5 Tips for your “First BJJ Tournament”

BJJ Tournament
Team Conquest at US Grappling
First Tournament Tips

1.Just do it!!! The biggest thing holding people back from competing is the feeling of not being “ready”. The truth is the sooner you start competing the better competing is. With your first tournament, there is less of an expectation to win and less pressure to perform. Pick a tournament, register, and hold yourself accountable to show up and compete on that day. The skill difference between you and the other competitors can become vastly different the longer you wait. For example,the novice white belt division is typically 6 months (or less in some cases) of training where the blue belt can be anyone training from 1 year up to 4 years. I have also found that the students who compete sooner progress faster. I believe this in part due to those students gaining confidence more quickly and being in situations that allow them to develop their game. When you decide to compete you typically start developing a game or style. Which brings us to tip number two….

2. “If you don’t know where you are going you might not get there”. What does this mean to the person getting ready for their first tournament? It means develop a game plan and set a goal. Obviously, the main goal of competing is to test yourself and win; however, that is too broad of a goal for this scenario. You need to develop a game plan that will guide you to win. For example, if Steve is very good at from closed guard, his game plan should be centered around that and not takedowns. You should be able to pinpoint your strongest position and have an avenue to always be able to get back to that position. This is best done in training; decide on your strategy and how you would like each of your tournament matches to go and force that game plan in every roll during class. This builds precision in your techniques, confidence in your ability to execute the techniques, and provides opportunities to learn how to adapt when the technique fails.

3.Learn to listen. There is a great saying… “We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we talk.” The ability to listen to your coach during a match is essential and can be the difference between winning and losing. Your coach has an outside view of the match and can help remind you of techniques you may have forgotten in the heat of the moment. The best way to train your listening skills is to have mock tournament matches during class or open mat during the weeks leading up to the tournament.
Doing this will help you recognize your instructors voice under pressure, while your adrenaline is pumping.

4.Learn the rules. Many competitors, both novice and experienced, now a days get to a tournament and do not understand or even take the time to read the rules for that particular tournament. By taking the time to read and understand the rules you can prevent any chance of getting disqualified and even plan a strategy around the rules (to your advantage). For example, if the tournament you are entering has a time limit you can use a strategy that secures points quickly while you go for submissions or wait until time runs out. If it is a submission only-no time limit match, your game plan will be based on being able to submit quickly or build your endurance to last a long match.

5.Train Train Train! If you have picked a tournament and made the commitment to compete, the best thing you can do is train. Show up to as many classes as your schedule allows. The time spent on the mats leading up to a competition is invaluable when it comes to preparing for any tournament. Listen, learn, drill, and roll as much as you can to prepare for the competition. Train with a goal in mind, do not just train and roll like you normal would in class. Have your game plan in mind and roll every time looking to execute your game.

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Great Scissor Sweep with escape Drill

I had to spend countless hours, above and beyond the basic time, to try and perfect the fundamentals.

Just as Julius Erving shot thousands of basket balls, you will need to drill this basic sweep thousands of times to master it . The scissor sweep and technical escape are two very basic but also very effective techniques.

In this video we will link both techniques together to work a sweet partner drill. Professor Kail Bosque and I will show the way we like to teach both of these movements and how we put them together to drill in a very effective way.

Time is always an issue for us. By linking two or three techniques together like we did here and in the triple guard attack, we are not only drilling, but we are drilling with no wasted movements.

Drilling is the key, so just do it.

Talk to you soon, and please share this.

Professor, Lance Trippett

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Call me the Head Hunter!

“We learn from failure, not from success!”
― Bram StokerDracula

This quote is so true in BJJ. I must have been a purple belt before I really understood how important head control is when grappling.  It took me having my guard passed at least a 1000 times before I started understanding the real importance of “head control” when playing guard. From white to purple belt, I heard “control the head,”  “push the head,” or “move his head,” over and over. Thinking back, I never really understood why or where I needed to put their head, I just pushed. Like most of the time in Jiu Jitsu, it just clicked one day when I was training . I kept feeling Vicente Jr. pushing my head to the mat every time I tried to pass. After training, we always sit and talk about the session. I started asking some questions about where to push, how to push and even more important, where NOT to push the head. After that class, I must of felt like a Head Hunter to all my teammates. From that point on, anytime someone started to pass my guard, they had one or both of my hands on their head or face pushing them back.

Where should you push the head?

We can start with them passing the guard. Controlling the head when they start their pass is super important. During most tight guard passes, your opponent will want to get their head across your body or hips. They want to keep their head on one side, and their body on the other side of you, crossing your body. This is where you need to start controlling the head. Your goal at this point is to control the head by not letting them cross the center of your body and definitely not letting them glue their head to your hip. When I see or feel my opponents head crossing my body, this is when I must react. I need to redirect the head back to the same side that their body is on. Never push the head across your body. Putting their head on one side of you and their legs on the other side of you will just help them pass. Once their head and body are on the same side of my body, I like to push their head to the mat. After the head is pushed down, I can start hipping out (shrimping out), starting to recover my guard.

Another great example of head control is when you have your opponent in cross body side control. This is a super dominate position, that everyone hates to be in. The way I like to control this position is with a ton of shoulder pressure. I will put my top arm under their head or neck and drop my shoulder on their face. The goal is to make them look away from me, with my shoulder pressure. The pressure can be so intense, I have had people tap out from just holding this position.


Side Control with Shoulder Pressure
Side Control with Shoulder Pressure


The concept is if they can’t look where they want to go, move, or stop something, they will be weaker. Spine and neck alignment is very important for strength, once you start interrupting that alignment, you will start weakening your opponents movements and defenses.

I hope this article gives you something to think about when it comes to controlling your opponents head movement. If you have any questions about this subject or anything else BJJ related, be sure to send it my way. I always love to hear what is on your mind and how you like my stuff.

And please feel free share this or any of my blog posts with a fellow BJJ enthusiast who could benefit from the info, and make sure to get signed up for your


Drilling is the key, so just do it.

Talk to you soon, and thanks for sharing this.

Lance Trippett



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2014 Goal Setting Worksheet download

I’m going to keep this short and sweet.  I posted a goals setting article a week or so ago named,  “BJJ Goal Setting for 2014 How & Why.”  I wanted to make setting your 2014 goals very easy, so I put together a downloadable pdf.  This is going to make it SO easy for you to get started.  Click the link below and print out the worksheet.  Then, fill it out and post it where you can see it everyday to keep you on task.

Click this Link to download your 2014 Goal Sheet

P.S. Don’t forget to sign up for your FREE

“Never get smashed in side control again”  14 day BJJ program


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BJJ Goal Setting for 2014 How & Why

Many people feel as if they’re adrift in the world of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. They work hard, but they don’t seem to get anywhere.

Like Zig Ziggler Said “If you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time!”

( Read this whole post! At the bottom there is a goal work sheet pdf for you to print out. )

A key reason that they feel this way is that they haven’t spent enough time thinking about what they want from BJJ, and haven’t set themselves formal goals. After all, would you set out on a major journey with no real idea of your destination? Probably not!

Goal setting is a powerful process for thinking about your ideal future, and for motivating yourself to turn your vision of your future into reality.

The process of setting goals helps you choose where you want to go in life. By knowing precisely what you want to achieve, ie: winning a local tournament, not getting smashed in side control, making it to class 3 days a week, or my favorite drilling with a partner 2 days a week, you know where you have to concentrate your efforts. You’ll also quickly spot the distractions that can, so easily, lead you astray.

Why Set Goals?

Goal setting is used by top-level athletes, successful business-people and achievers in all fields. Setting goals gives you long-term vision and short-term motivation. It focuses your acquisition of knowledge in BJJ, and helps you to organize your time and your resources so that you can make the very most of your BJJ life.

By setting sharp, clearly defined goals, that, you can measure and take pride in, the achievement of those goals, and you’ll see forward progress in what might previously have seemed the long BJJ grind. You will also raise your self-confidence, as you recognize your own ability and competence in achieving the goals that you’ve set.

Starting to Set BJJ Goals

You set your BJJ goals on a number of levels:

  • First you create your “big picture” of what you want to do with your BJJ life (or over the next 10 years), and identify the large-scale goals that you want to achieve. ie: get your black belt in 10 years, win Worlds at each belt rank, open your own school
  • Then, you break these down into the smaller targets that you must hit to reach your lifetime goals. ie: get my blue belt by the next belt test, add one day a week for classes and drilling, volunteer my free time at the school to learn the business side
  • Finally, once you have your plan, you start working on it to achieve these goals.

This is why we start the process of goal setting by looking at your lifetime goals. Then, we work down to the things that you need to do in the next five years, then next year, next month, next week, and today, to start moving towards them.

Step 2: Setting Smaller Goals

Once you have set your lifetime goals, set a one to five year plan of smaller goals that you need to complete if you are to reach your lifetime plan.

Then create a six-month plan, and a one-month plan of progressively smaller goals that you should reach to achieve your lifetime goals. Each of these should be based on the previous plan.

Then create a daily To-Do List  of things that you should do today to work towards your lifetime  BJJ goals.

At an early stage, your smaller goals might be to read books and gather information on the achievement of your higher level goals. This will help you to improve the quality and realism of your goal setting.

Finally review your plans, and make sure that they fit the way in which you want to live your life in BJJ.


If you feel that you’re not paying enough attention to certain areas of your life, you may need to use these same goal setting techniques in other parts of your life. Family, money, education, love, anything and everything. 

Staying on Course

Once you’ve decided on your first set of goals, keep the process going by reviewing and updating your To-Do List on a daily basis (if possibly) but no longer then weekly.

Periodically review the longer term plans, and modify them to reflect your changing priorities and experience. (A good way of doing this is to schedule regular, repeating reviews using a computer-based diary, or a composition book)


A useful way of making goals more powerful is to use the SMART mnemonic. While there are plenty of variants (some of which we’ve included in parenthesis), SMART usually stands for:

  • S – Specific (or Significant).
  • M – Measurable (or Meaningful).
  • A – Attainable (or Action-Oriented).
  • R – Relevant (or Rewarding).
  • T – Time-bound (or Trackable).

For example, instead of having “winning worlds” as a goal, it’s more powerful to say “I want to win blue belt Worlds by June 2015.” Obviously, this will only be attainable if a lot of preparation has been completed beforehand! (Setting smaller goals daily, weekly, monthly to attain your larger goals.

Further Goal Setting Tips

The following broad guidelines will help you to set effective, and achievable goals:

  • State each goal as a positive statement – Express your goals positively – “Execute this technique well when in Closed guard ” is a much better goal than “Don’t make this stupid mistake when sweeping someone.”
  • Be precise: Set precise goals, putting in dates, times and amounts so that you can measure achievement. If you do this, you’ll know exactly when you have achieved the goal, and can take complete satisfaction from having achieved it.
  • Set priorities – When you have several goals, give each a priority. This helps you to avoid feeling overwhelmed by having too many goals, and helps to direct your attention to the most important ones.
  • Write goals down – This crystallizes them and gives them more force. You must do this!!!!!!
  • Keep operational goals small – Keep the low-level goals that you’re working towards small and achievable. If a goal is too large, then it can seem that you are not making progress towards it. Keeping goals small and incremental gives more opportunities for reward.
  • Set performance goals, not outcome goals – You should take care to set goals over which you have as much control as possible. It can be quite dispiriting to fail to achieve a personal goal for reasons beyond your control! In BJJ, they could include poor judging, injury, the person is better then you or just plain bad luck.If you base your goals on personal performance, then you can keep control over the achievement of your goals, and draw satisfaction from them. ” I may not have won worlds this year but I played my game well Roger Gracie was better then me, I will beat him next year.” 🙂 Thats the idea at least
  • Set realistic goals – It’s important to set goals that you can achieve. All sorts of people (for example, employers, parents, media, or society) can set unrealistic goals for you. They will often do this in ignorance of your own desires and ambitions. It’s also possible to set goals that are too difficult because you might not appreciate either the obstacles in the way, or understand quite how much skill you need to develop to achieve a particular level of performance.

I have made a goal setting work sheet for you to download

Click the link to download your 2014 Best BJJ Drills Goal Sheet

Tell me your Goals for 2014 in the comment section below!

Also please share this blog if you like it!


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