John Danaher is always full of useful insights into BJJ and this time he’s explained the importance of distance management in the sport, and how to use that concept when you find yourself on the bottom and playing guard. This isn’t the first time that Danaher has shared some of his knowledge on how to play guard in Jiu-Jitsu, as he previously went into detail on his approach to open guard-play as well. It’s a pretty regular occurrence for Danaher, who often shares his approaches to different key concepts of the sport and they can often be a huge help to people just starting out in the sport.
It’s one of the reasons that Danaher receives so much praise from all corners of the BJJ community, and why much of his instructional content is still used by so many, years after their initial releases. When he discusses distance management in BJJ here, Danaher explains that one of his favorite positions is Ashi Garami, something that one of is students Firas Zahabi has also been a vocal proponent of. Not only is Ashi Garami important for managing distance but it’s also one of the key positions for attacking the opponent’s legs and by mastering it, it allows a grappler to maintain position before submission even when attacking the legs.
Of course, Danaher himself has been open about saying that ‘position before submission’ is not as much of an absolute rule as many coaches will tell their students. Instead, it’s one of the many aspects of Jiu-Jitsu that should be thought of as a good guiding principle for beginners but one that the more experienced practitioners should feel comfortable in moving past. John Danaher shared his advice on how to use distance management when playing guard in BJJ in a post to his official Instagram account: