Struggling on your back against larger, stronger opponents? The chances of beating someone shaped like a mountain in the takedown game are slim and you can probably count on one hand the number of times heavier rolling partners have elected to play guard on you. There aren’t many guarantees in jiu jitsu, but you can bet your bottom dollar no matter which guard you like to play, larger opponents are looking to pass by crushing you in half guard. And the worst part is, when they sink the crossface, they’re always extra generous with their weight on your chest, neck, and face. It’s like they’re not aware of any size difference or something.

Be honest, do you play half guard, or do you hold on to half guard? Real talk, the problem here isn’t being under the half guard… the problem is how you think about half guard.
“Half guard is half passed” = Wrong.
“I carry too much of my opponent’s weight in the half guard and I get tired there” = Couldn’t be more wrong.
“The half guard is only a defensive position, there aren’t any attacks from there.” = That’s a paddlin’.
“The half guard is a white belt position and doesn’t work at higher levels.” = You better believe that’s a paddlin’.
If you’ve ever said any of those comments above… then what you’re about to see is going to change your mind, for good.

How would you like to turn your biggest weakness on the mats into your biggest strength? The truth is, your half guard doesn’t have to play more of a part in your opponent’s passing game than it does in your own. When you understand how the half guard works: the intricacies of technique, body positioning, knee torque, and how they all link together, you’ll have more than just a defensive position at your disposal. You’ll be able to… Transform your opponent’s best passing position into your ticket to winning gold by becoming a lord of the half guard with Jake Mackenzie. Forget everything you know about playing half guard; this is the missing link in your game you’ve been waiting for.

Join 3rd-degree black belt and jiu jitsu cult hero, Jake MacKenzie, on a journey to reinvent your half guard and get more sweeps, more backtakes, and ultimately — win more matches!


Target Audience

  • For those who struggle against larger opponents
  • For those who hold onto half guard instead of playing it
  • For those that want to turn their biggest weakness into their biggest strength

Topics for this course

39 Lessons

The Knee Tweak Position

Deep Half Guard

Reverse Half Guard

De La X

Proto Guard Grip

Half Guard Worm

Extra Reverse Half Guard

Half Guard Protection


About the instructors

The ultimate half guard enforcer, Jake Mackenzie


Jake Mackenzie is a Canadian-born professional black belt jiu jitsu instructor and an athlete who avidly competes in world-class tournaments. He was born in a very small town in rural Nova Scotia, Canada; Jake started training jiu jitsu at age 12. Over the past 25 years of training, he lived and trained for over 10 years in Brazil. He made it to the podiums through countless competitions and achieved multiple wins. Here are some of Jake's main achievements in the adult black belt division.

  • 2nd AJP World Professional Championship 2018

  • 2x Brazilian National No-Gi Champion 2013/2014 CBJJ

  • 5x Brazilian National Teams Champion CBJJ

  • IBJJF South American Champion 2017

  • IBJJF Asian Champion 2019

  • 3x São Paulo International Open Champion IBJJF (2013/2015/2017)

  • 3x Rio de Janeiro State Champion 


He's also secured several victories in the masters division:

  • 1st Place IBJJF World Masters Championship (2018 M1)

  • 1st Place IBJJF American Nationals (2022 M1)

  • 1st Place CBJJ Brazilian Nationals (2022 M2)

  • 1st Place AJP Brazilian National Pro (2020** M1)

In both competition and teaching, one of Jake's go-to systems revolves around half guard and deep half guard. His capability to transform his opponent’s best passing position into his opportunities to attack and win the match made him one of the best half guard players of all time. 

What am I missing to better my half guard like Jake?


Jake Mackenzie is like a walking highlight reel of well-executed half guard techniques, sweeping his opponents left and right. But I’m sure there are a lot of jiu jitsu practitioners frustrated, not knowing what is stopping them from becoming like Jake. This might sound familiar to you: Every time you enter half guard, your training partners always seem to figure out your game and stay a step ahead of you with a knee cut, back step, or other attack. Although half guard can open up many opportunities for any practitioner regardless of their skill level, many tend to get overwhelmed based on their experience of getting smashed and flattened out by their opponent. Be honest, do you play half guard, or do you hold on to half guard? Real talk, the problem here isn’t being under the half guard… the problem is how you think about half guard.


To help out all the jiu jitsu practitioners, Jake brought his broad knowledge of half guard to JJX users through “Lord Of Half Guard - Vol1 & Vol2” 


The courses consist of extensive chapters packed with various individual lessons to help your understanding of the half guard. One of many benefits that playing half guard offers is the option to transition to other positions. In Jake's courses, he helps you explore transitions to deep half, reverse half, de la riva X, half guard worm, and many others.


Lord Of Half Guard Vol 1” goes over details of knee tweak positions that allow you to initiate half guard game with tons of advantages. Deep half guard and reverse half guard are included in the course, opening up numerous sequences to back takes and sweeps. Reverse half guard and de la riva X will let you proceed with your attacks against a back step or knee cut pass. Here are other things Jake will review in the course:

  • Proto Guard

  • Half Guard Worm

  • Ways to protect your half guard


Lord Of Half Guard Vol 2” branches off from the previous course, offering further tips and tricks to perfect your half guard. Going over grips and hand positionings, knee twist, knee cut defense, and more details to deep half and reverse half enhances skills you’ve learned in Volume 1. It is a well-thought-out system with new details covering how to implement and counter the latest techniques. These include the infamous lapel slayer defenses and the fishnet attacks.


It’s your turn to become the lord of half guard (or at least a duke!). Anytime your training partners feel accomplished for getting to your half guard, you will be ready to sweep them and submit them!


There are 3 free videos available for every single course including Jake’s courses “Lord Of Half Guard - Vol1 & Vol2”! Just click on any one of them to access and start stepping up your jiu jitsu game!


Jake’s instagram :

4.96 (23 ratings)

2 Courses

Student Ratings & Reviews


Total 17 Ratings

16 ratings
1 rating
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Well structured, and high quality

Great Course

It is very technical and detailed
he is a real lord

Good course!!

Great stuff

Best half guard course out.

I am the half guard guy at my academy, I have put in a lot of time in on and off the mat to get build my game. I have studied a lot of the top guys games including Faria, Leite, Buchecha, DeBlass, I even have the DVD Bear from Shoyoroll put out when he was still a brown belt. Jake's game is unique. The biggest thing is reverse-half, I used to hate it but now I am trying to get there. My opponents really don't understand what I am trying to do and it gives me a big advantage. Definitely recommend this one.

Jake is the best in the game when it comes to the half guard. He outlines critical details in his course starting with body positioning and progressively moving into different scenarios and techniques. Highly recommend this to anyone at any belt level.

Easily oneof the best half guard instructionals out there. MacKenzie really puts everything in a logical order so you can really implement his game on the mats . Can’t wait to become a half guard pro with this!

Next level half guard. Instructional production was Phenomenal. Jake meticulously outlined a solid modern half guard DVD. I highly recommend for everyone.
-Louis Comitale

All Levels

What Will I Learn?

  • Half Guard Fundamentals
  • The Knee Tweak Position
  • The Deep Half Guard Position
  • Reverse Half Guard Position
  • Gripping Effectively
  • Half Guard Worm
  • Half Guard Protection

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Jiu Jitsu X is better

enjoyed in our mobile app.