I wanted to give a special thanks to Dan for taking the time to write this article. Since the last time he’s featured posts here, he has a #1 book on Amazon in the category of BJJ - has toured teaching seminars, and continues to film and write daily.
I highly recommend his new “Giant Killer 2.0” course - which you can find here.I'm also giving away a FREE "Skill Drills" BJJ DVD with the course itself, so when you get it, pop me an email and you'll get the skill-drills Bonus as a thank you :).
- - -
There are few things that are so unpleasant that you would never wish them on your worst enemies. In the world of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, I feel that the body lock is one of these experiences. While it’s possible to hit the lock from various positions, I feel it’s most effective from the back mount.
Growing up I would always see it used in MMA fights and BJJ matches, but never really understood the dynamic of it all. I was always convinced that the lock was just that; a lock to keep your body from moving out of a hold. Boy was I wrong.
The first time I had the body lock applied to me, all the air escaped my body as I felt my insides trembles; what an experience! Since that day, I have become a huge supporter of the body lock and have preached it’s benefits to my students and beyond.
It’s one of the unsung moves in BJJ. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oAYg_lTUlaY Rafael Mendes Executing The Body Lock From Back Mount
I stumbled upon this clip the other day, and I can’t express how much I love it. It’s from Abu Dhabi from a couple of years back, and it’s Rafael Mendes doing what he does best: dominating on the mat. Unusually, this time his back-take was not a Berimbolo variation (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vd2OjfrNzaU
The clip picks up towards the end of the match, so it’s hard to tell you the specific setup and how we got here. However, we start with Mendes acting as a backpack to his opponent. His opponent—a much larger man—was doing his best to fend off any and all attacks.
For a blip on the radar, Rafa went for a rear naked choke, but could not lock it in. Yet in still, the body lock remained, slowly draining the life out of his much larger opponent.
Next thing you know, his opponent crumbles to the mat. If you look closely at Rafa’s legs, you can see how tight the muscles are, clearly demonstrating vicious power being exerted onto his opponent.
Eventually, the clock would run out, giving Mendes the victory as he sprinted into the crowd to celebrate. The Importance Of Drilling The Body Lock
One day I had a student come back from a tournament very upset; in his match, his opponent had applied a body lock that kept him stagnant for the entire match. Being relatively new to the competition scene, my student couldn’t get out and lost the match due to points.
This opened my eyes as to how important it is to drill the little things. From then on, I have made it a point to stress the upside—and dangers—of the body lock and how to utilize it and defend against it.
Used to drain your opponent, the body lock it a fantastic way to make sure your opponent isn’t going anywhere. Make sure you do yourself a favor and practice the small stuff, there’s no such thing as something being unimportant on the mat. Dan
- - - For anyone interested in back takes, chokes, and submissions for beating bigger opponents in grappling, be sure to check out: Giant Killer 2.0 CourseOr, you can click the banner below, and if you end up getting Dan's "Giant Killer" course, you just contact me and I'll send you my BJJ Skill-Drills DVD for FREE as an extra "Thank you" - Ken Primo
These are two passes you may wan to drill. I included some mention of Rodolfo Vieira and Leandro Lo from with my email newsletter.
I learned a variation of this during the spring when I was in Rio at Check Mat from professor Ricardo Vieira.I find it to be very effective. Keep your weight heavy and watch the knee sliding back inside. Hope this helps your jiu jitsu game. Keep training and going to class when you can.
Robson is the man. Here's a few good Youtube clips of him, including one of his more famous wins, and some of his wisdom as an instructor. If you want to grab a Free Breakdown eBook of a lot of the best Lightweight BJJ world champs, you can check it out here.
Here's a Video of Robson's 7th world title win.
Some people think Robson's game is "old school," but I don't think he cares much. He's one of the little guys who still will play on top, force for the pass, look for side control, and take armbars. Not just crazy back take stuff (not that there's anything wrong with that).
His defense and counters to inverted and de la riva guard are also worth noting if you have training partners who use these techniques on you in the gym.
Robson talks about noobies in Bjj
I love listening to guys who've been in the game forever, who can talk about everything from competition to instructing to cutting weight / ect..., and Robson's got about as much "experience" as any grappler now living.
Anyone who has watched Rafael Lovato lately knows he is on a tear when it comes to submissions. His go to looks to be the Kimura. here we take a deeper look at his Kimura from a match and I take a stab at a defense. Enjoy!
Rafael went from North South and isolated his opponents arm here with his right arm.
Rafael's opponent belles down but Rafael now has his arm trapped, grabbing his own collar.
Rafael now shifts his weight back and has both knees down on the mat, squeezing his opponent.
Rafael stays tight to the elbow with his upper body and turns his upper body to his right, isolating the arm, and putting pressure on the shoulder for the finish.
Here I show a variation of a kimura defense.
If you are interested in more of Rafael Lovato's submissions that have made him a world champion see here: Lovato Subs
In this short series we take a look at Pan Am Champion Dan Faggella in a No Gi Match. Here we highlight his ability to act quickly and change direction for what is easily available rather than already predictable.
Dan has used this in competition to get some serious submissions against bigger opponents. If you want to download his Three Best Toe Hold Attacks for free - you can do so here:Top 3 Toe Hold Leg Lock Attacks that WORK (PDF).
At the outset, Dan dives toward his opponent to purposefully pull guard. Dan has a collar tie with his right hand. Dan's left hand captures the heel. And Dan's right leg is ready to pendulum back toward his right side (as you will see). Of important note is Dan's left leg in between his opponent's legs so he can stay in position to attack the leg he is currently holding if it stays available.
Dan rolls to the leg as he brings both hands toward it (low near the heel so he can push his opponent downward with his hips). Dan has effectively done a shoulder roll. Notice Dan's opponent being privy to the attempt. His opponent bends his right leg to prevent the incoming knee bar.
As Dan picks the heel and hips in his opponent falls. rather than fight to get to the obvious leg,m which his opponent now knows the leglock is coming, Dan switches his hands to attack the opposite leg. The opposite leg has straightened when his opponent fell, thus making it a potentially easier leg to attack, as he is focused on the leg that was first attacked..
Misdirections, fakes, or whatever you would like to call them are important aspects and options for all levels of grapplers as well as most other sports. Dan Faggella has practiced leg locks enough to get his timing and composure down for this to almost seem to come naturally. If you would like to learn more about leg locks click the ebook below:
"Automatic Jitsu" is the Jiu Jitsu that you do when you don't really think before your practice, or you aren't really "into" your practice, or you mind is elsewhere.
It's when you end up "going through the motions," and leave Jiu Jitsu feeling pretty good, but not your best.
I've been doing wrestling / BJJ for upwards of 20 years, and I've done it during undergrad, during law school, while running an academy, keeping up with friendships, etc... and frankly I would be lying if I said that I was "ON" 100% of my training sessions. However, I am the kind of guy who never fully eases up, who never really just said "Ah, it's okay" and can go on for mediocre for very long.
One thing I want to do for the REST of the year (and I'm getting others onboard to do, too), is to determine ONE night a week to definitely break from "automatic jitsu" by not only doing "normal" class stuff.
This could mean "Extra" training, it could not mean "Extra" training.
For example, some of you reading this might grab 15 minutes before or after class on Wednesdays to get in your own quick skill-drilling session.
Others might take 30 minutes
People with REALLY busy schedules might just watch a few mins of BJJ before class if they can, and pick ONE move that they want to hit as many times as possible in that class... (maybe Omoplata, for example, or a specific half-guard sweep, etc...).
My challenge is not that you do this EVERY day, or even every training day, but that you pick just ONE day that you know you're going to be able to "break the mold", and be ON as much you possibly can on that ONE day.
Be onboard, and make the MOST of 2013... "Like" this if you picked a day for yourself - but be serious!
The fact of the matter is, getting a LITTLE bit better at BJJ not only brings you closer to your next rank, etc...., but it also gives you a kind of satisfaction that "Automatic Jitsu" can't bring, a satisfaction that you left yourself on the mat and made more of yourself because of it. I live for that more than trophies, and in terms of "happiness," I think that makes the most difference for me...
Maybe I'm the only one but I doubt it...
In this video, Toquinho demonstrates a beautiful double leg takedown transition into a kneebar attack. He begins by closing the distance on his opponent and immediately lowers his base. As he is pressing forward on his toes, he secures an elbow deep grip on each of his opponents legs.
As he establishes position for the double leg takedown, Toquinho pulls his chest into his opponents knees. Notice that he is not pulling his opponent into him. He leverages his weight properly rather than resorting to strength. This creates the perfect angle for him to hook his opponents left ankle with the back of his knee. As he continues to drive forward and slightly rotate his hips to the right, he takes his opponent down into a half guard position.
Toquinho has an array of options from here. He has a deep underhook, which he can use to pass his opponents guard knee cut style, or he could begin transitioning to the mount. However, Toquinho chooses an unconventional, yet effective attack from this half guard position.
By abandoning his underhook, he swim strokes over his opponents chest with his right hand. This creates the space needed to step over his opponents hips with his right leg, placing him in the perfect position to start attacking the far side knee. To finish the submission, Toquinho pinches both knees and puts his head on the top side of his opponents foot. By slowly arching his hips backwards, he creates more than enough leverage to get the immediate TAP.