How to Do a Pendulum Sweep

Updated on April 28, 2018
revolutionbjj profile image

Andrew Smith is a 3rd degree BJJ black belt based out of Richmond, VA (Revolution BJJ). He runs the BJJ Tutorial Encyclopedia here.

Pendulums

The pendulum sweep has been a staple of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, both in the realm of competitions and self defense, for several decades now. The fundamental principles of this sweep can be applied across a wide range of positions, as we'll see here. Start with the closed guard versions, and work your way outward and upward in complexity.

The Fundamental Sweep

Start by controlling your partner's right sleeve with your left hand while they're in your closed guard. As they move to stand up, they make a crucial mistake by lifting their opposite (left) leg up, leaving them vulnerable to the pendulum sweep. Hug your partner's leg with your right arm (don't grip, just use the underhooking arm to pivot to a right angle). Next, kick your left leg out to build up momentum, and as soon as you reach the apex of the swing, just chop back (similar in nature to a scissor sweep). Use the momentum of your bottom leg to help kick upward and across against your partner's armpit. Go straight to mount.

The Armbar

One of the great elements of the pendulum sweep is that you're making yourself perpendicular with your partner, which means other opportunities immediately open up (if jiu jitsu is about any two key factors, it's range and angle of attack). Note that you can finish the armlock either from the guard or from the armbar finish position, and this is going to depend on how effective your initial sweep attempt is. It should be relatively easy to transition to the armbar if they're fighting hard enough not to be swept.

Omoplata

Once you hit the right angle, the sky opens up in terms of opportunities. Another such option is the omoplata. Note that when you pivot to the side, your near-side leg is able to transition easily in front of your partner's face, easily allowing a fundamental omoplata entry.

Pants Grip Variation

This move is somewhere in between the classic pendulum sweep and the updated Xande sweep. One benefit here is that your partner doesn't have to start standing up at all in order for you to hit the sweep, and you can simply reach outside of your partner's knee and grip the pants in order to get a similar effect. Another advantage here is that you can keep the pants grip once you reach the top, virtually ensuring that you will end up on top in mount. Further, when you start the movement from guard, you can watch your partner's movement (even better, you can feel it), and just wait for their weight to shift.

Arm Drag Pendulum

The closed guard arm drag position is one of my personal favorites. Start by cross gripping their right sleeve (with your right hand), and pull their arm across. Solidify this by gripping their far armpit with your left hand, making pulling that arm free considerably more difficult. Next, wait for them to start driving in to you (if they don't, you can just go to their back instead). Once they drive in, they are primed for a simple pendulum sweep.

Closed or Open Guard?

See results

Penduluming Away

Pendulum sweeps are fascinating and beautiful, and likely one of the first moves you gravitate toward from closed guard. It's certainly one of the areas in which I was relatively effective early on, and it stuck with me throughout my career. The interesting thing to watch was how much the position evolved over these years, and continues to evolve today. There are numerous applications for the pendulum motion in BJJ, and we've only glanced at a rich handful of options from one place (closed guard). As always, let me know if these techniques work well for you!

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, howtheyplay.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://howtheyplay.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)