Super Simple and Effective Side Control Escape by Pedro Sauer

Super Simple and Effective Side Control Escape by Pedro Sauer

Side control escapes may be the most important defense you could learn in Jiu Jitsu. When you get caught on bottom side control against someone that can really lay down some heavy top pressure it really sucks!

When your opponent pins you down with side control pressure and it is only a matter of time until they take a submission. Sometimes the pressure alone will make you want to tap! This is why knowing side control escapes are so important.

Corral belt Pedro Sauer went on BJJ Fanatics to show Bernardo Faria a super simple and effective side control escape. Check out the details of this technique below.

Master pedro sauer

Quick Backstory on Pedro Sauer

For those that may not know, Master Pedro Sauer is a corral belt that trained under the Gracie family. He was one of the first few Brazilians to move to the US and open Jiu Jitsu schools. He is one of the most respected instructors in the world and has thousands of students all over the world.

Sauer’s style is very old and being a smaller person, he developed a very defensive game. It's something he calls “invisible Jiu Jitsu.”

Very subtle movements your opponent doesn’t see that negates their control and allows you to escape. The technique we detail below is exactly that.

The Technique

The technique that Master Sauer shows is just a basic elbow escape to guard recovery. Although he does it in a way that you’ve probably never seen and it exponentially improves the technique.

In a traditional guard recovery from bottom side control, you just frame and elbow escape your hips out. Sometimes though if you’re going against an opponent laying down heavy pressure it’s easier said than done. Sauer’s technique addresses this and will get you out of side control.

It all starts with your hand placement. Master Sauer places one hand on the opponent’s hip and grabs the inside of his leg with the other.

The big details with these hand positions is the placement of his elbows. His inside elbow is placed under the opponent’s hip and his outside elbow is placed low trapping the opponent’s arm.

By having arms this way it negates the opponent’s ability to control him and lay down pressure. With their pressure and control compromised this leaves the door open for you to escape.

Master Sauer escapes by doing slow methodical movements that are all technique and no muscle. He uses his feet to turn his hips inward, scoots his body outwardly, and then recovers guard.

His outside foot slowly steps away making space between him and the opponent. All he has to do is slide his bottom leg through and recover guard.

Old school Jiu Jitsu that is simple, subtle, and works.

Key Details To Remember

Paying attention to detail is the key to doing this technique right. Remember these key details that Master Pedro Sauer shared.

  • Elbow Positioning: Where you have your arms is important, but where you have your elbows is the key to the technique. Remember to keep your inside elbow under their hip and your outside elbow low to control their arm. Doing this with your elbows like this will less the opponent’s control and keep them from laying down pressure.
  • No Muscle: Pedro stresses that the key to Jiu Jitsu is to rely on technique and not muscle. If you do this you will be extremely successful using this technique.
  • Stepping Your Foot Out: To make the space between you and the opponent remember to slowly step away with your outside foot.
  • Be Like A Jack: The last detail Master Sauer shares is to be like a car jack with this move and all techniques. To do this move properly you must do in small incremental steps rather than a big forceful movement.

Final Thoughts

The way Master Pedro Sauer does Jiu Jitsu is the way the martial art was designed to be done. Everything done in this side control escape is smart, technical, and efficient.

It’s the small moves that you don’t see that really make a technique like this work. Definitely check out Master Pedro Sauer’s video after reading our breakdown and then get to the mats and start drilling.

This technique and concept will drastically improve your Jiu Jitsu.