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The best time to use this bridging technique is going to be when your opponent is sitting on his hip and has his bottom leg close to your body.
This is because when he is on both of his knees, or has his outside knee on the ground, he has a base. But, when he takes his knee out of the equation, you can see that there is nothing but wide open spaces behind him. This is exactly what we want. Remember, we want to keep our arm under our opponent’s armpit. Make sure you are actively keeping it tight into his armpit and not just putting it there lazily. If we are lazy with it, our opponent will easily swim inside our arm. This is not the end of the world, as we can still make this move work. However, we would always prefer to have our arm under his armpit. We get far more leverage this way.
Either way, do not be lazy with your arm. If your opponent starts trying to grab your pants to push your leg off, this can be an opportune time to sneak your arm back under their arm and into the armpit. When I decide that I am ready to go, I am going to uncross my legs, place my feet on the ground, and bridge as hard as I can.
When I bridge, I am actively reaching with my top arm. An easy way to think of this while practicing, is to find something, a
target of sorts. It can be anything. A clock, a sprinkler, anything. As long as it is up high, and behind your opponent. Reach for it. Reach your arm back while looking in that direction, and literally try to reach out and grab the target as you bridge. This motion is just as critical as the bridge itself when it comes to successfully completing our escape.
Now, once I have bridged and ended up on our opponent’s side, I do not want to just step over him. More than likely he will put me in the half guard himself. Instead, I put my weight on my outside foot while keeping my chest heavy on my opponent. This allows me to create space between myself and the ground so that I can bring my other leg underneath me and end up facing my opponents head. Across the side, rather than stuck in half guard.
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