Stephen “Pesadelo” Hall instructs a new block of tournament hints and tips for BJJ competitors. In this video, he covers how referees give points for takedowns, sweeps, and advantages. These commands may change from tournament promotion to tournament promotions, but these pointers should be common to most competitions you will encounter.
Stephen Hall is wearing his competition Gameness Feather gi in this video, and his training partner is wearing his Gameness AIR gi.
The key to completing the takedown is to ensure that it is a clear, deliberate action, and to maintain control when your opponent lands on the mat. In order to achieve the points for the technique, you must maintain control for a full three seconds (by the referee’s count). Once you complete these steps to finishing the move, the referee will raise his hand high in the air to signal that two points have been awarded to the grappler who achieved the takedown.
If you take down your opponent, but you cannot maintain control, you will not be awarded two points. Instead, the referee will give you an advantage. This will be signaled with him/her straightening their arm parallel to the ground.
PASSING THE GUARD
Much like the takedown, you will only be awarded points for a successful guard pass if you can hold the position after the pass for three full seconds (by the referee’s count). Once you pass your opponent’s guard, the referee will give you a three count. After the three seconds pass, he/she will raise an arm signaling that three points are awarded.
If you pass, but do not hold it for three seconds, you will be awarded an advantage point (identical to the takedown advantage) in place of the three points.
A sweep is any motion that brings you from the bottom to the top which begins from any form of guard. This is significant because many technique may bring you on top from side control or mount, but they will not be awarded points because they were not from your guard. These moves are considered reversals, not sweeps.
A sweep follows the same guidelines as a guard pass/takedown in the sense that it requires you to hold the position for three seconds in order to be awarded the two points. Otherwise, you will only be awarded an advantage.
ACCEPTING THE POSITION
Lastly, Stephen Hall explains a very controversial aspect of points in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu competition focused on accepting a position. This means that the grappler on the bottom may have points scored against him/her for a pass even though the top grappler has an arm caught in Spider. This is because the bottom grappler accepted the pass and the referee has used his/her discretion to award points for the dominant position.