Tozi/Sao Paulo/Wilson Pass: Uncrossing the Feet and Finishing: A BJJ Tutorial

Updated on April 9, 2020
revolutionbjj profile image

Andrew Smith is a 3rd-degree BJJ black belt based out of Richmond, VA (Revolution BJJ). He runs BJJ Path, a video tutorial website.


Uncrossing the Feet and Finishing the Tozi Pass

You're no doubt going to find yourself unable to uncross your opponent's ankles simply by pushing on the shin. Here are the easiest two ways to uncross the feet, plus one additional "dirty" trick to either get them uncrossed or to simply finish your opponent with an ankle lock.

Before moving forward, make sure you are familiar with some fundamental overhook attacks from guard!

Quick note: this tutorial is a follow-up to the first Tozi pass tutorial, which you can find here.

Method #1: Left Over Right

First and foremost, it's important to understand which way your partner's feet are crossed. Is it right over left, or left over right? Instead of taking a look back there (and potentially ruining your balance in the process), use your hips as your eyes, feeling where your partner's ankles are and how they're crossed. With more and more experience, this becomes much easier and more intuitive.

  1. Once you've determined that the feet are crossed left over right (assuming you're passing the same direction as me in the videos) and have pinned the hip and switched your base, apply downward pressure on the bottom (right) shin first, making absolutely sure to keep your elbow in as you do this.
  2. Now open your hip up by pointing your left knee up at the ceiling, making sure your knee is above your partner's right heel.
  3. Now simply "chop" downward with your left thigh, scraping your partner's heel down and opening their guard up.

In this video example, I simply pass to half guard, but I have the underhook and crossface, which is a very dominant half guard top position.

Method #2: Right Over Left

Once again, your hips are sprawled and your base is very low, and you've just switched your hips. Again, you're pushing down against your partner's inside right shin, but you notice that your partner has crossed their right foot over their left this time.

  1. This time, your right hip is simply sliding forward and then opening up. The downward pressure of your right hand on their shin, coupled with the opposite direction of your opening hip, will combine to create enough tension to open nearly every guard when their feet are crossed this way.
  2. This time, to finish the pass, I'm simply shooting my left leg back enough to clear my partner's right leg, then "baseball sliding" into modified kesa gatame (since their guard opens wide momentarily).

Method #3: Ankle Lock

Suppose your partner doesn't allow you to uncross your feet. Oh noes! Not to worry; you can actually capitalize on this stubbornness.

  1. As you switch your hips, make sure your partner's ankles are between your legs.
  2. Now simply step over with your top leg (it's really tough to step with the bottom leg without compromising your base) and triangle your legs, and then push your hips forward to finish a nasty ankle lock.
  3. Note: if their feet are crossed left over right, the pressure will take longer to achieve, but the end result will be like a heel hook; whereas if their feet are crossed right over left, the pressure will be like a straight footlock. Either way, be sure to use extreme caution and apply pressure slowly!

This can take people by surprise, just like the first time you catch someone on your back crossing their feet.

Time and Repetition

I've certainly put in some time on this pass, and it took a long, long time before I felt comfortable enough to use it in competition—probably five years of playing with it at the gym, although I wasn't drilling the technique obsessively as I would now if I wanted to get good at something. However, the dividends are huge.

I no longer dislike ending in the closed guard. After drilling and experimenting at the gym, you can feel great doing this pass, and uncrossing the ankles is just one portion of the pass, but it's one you can get down much sooner than the rest of the pass.

Enjoy, have fun, and let me know what you think! Feel free, as always, to check out some of my other guard passing material, including passing reverse De La Riva guard, advanced knee cut passing, and using the Kimura to pass.

Closed guard: would you rather be on top or bottom?

See results


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, 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:

    Show Details
    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 or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    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)
    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.
    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)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)