I’ve been slowly studying the matches of the 2011 Worlds, and was floored by this match:
I’ve never heard of Eduardo Telles before, but after a little research into it, it was clear that I was missing out on one of the most innovative jiu jitsu practitioners out there. He transformed the turtle position from a defensive one into an attacking one.
On a practical level, his instructional on the turtle guard gives me a better understanding of what to do in turtle position. Most academies teach the basics of the closed guard, half guard, side control, mount, etc, but few teach the basics of the turtle “guard”.
It seems that it’s always easier to improve my position by distracting my opponent with sweep and submission attempts. Nowhere is that more useful than the turtle position.
However, in a more general sense, his success in transforming the turtle position has made me realize that it’s possible to develop a complete (defensive and offensive) system around many positions which traditionally are considered to be undesirable. For example, from the butterfly position, it’s generally a good idea to not get flattened out on your back, but more and more, I’m learning that this may not always be true. Depending on the athleticism and body type of my opponent, there are times when I can be more dangerous when I’m flat on my back.
Then again, I’m always skeptical investing time into techniques that I have not seen pulled off successfully at the black belt level in competition. That’s why it’s always exciting to see someone like Eduardo Telles find success with a revolutionary approach to an underestimated position.
Check it out as he pulls and plays turtle guard successfully against Andre Galvao: