Bodylock takedown to back

In the previous technique I demonstrated one of several ways that you can move around to your opponent's back and secure a body-lock. When you accomplish this, utilizing this technique allows you to bring him to the ground and secure back control. The move is pretty basic. You simply wrap one of your legs around one of your opponent's legs, and then drive forward and collapse him to the ground. If your opponent applies backward pressure to avoid getting taken down, a good remedy is ease up on...

Striking to Arm

Most fighters know not to straighten their anns upward when in the bottom mount position. However, when you establish neck control and begin raining down punches at your opponent's face, there is a good chance that he will forget this cardinal rule and straighten his arms to either block your strikes or push you off him. The moment he does this, you have an opening to quickly transition to an arm bar and finish the fight. I'm in the mount position. Opening my left hand, I drive the 'V' between...

Mount

The mount is my favorite position in MMA because not only do you have your opponent pinned to the mat, but you've also got both of your hands free to throw strikes and go for submissions. I realize that there are a lot of fighters who don't feel the same way. Some fighters fear the mount because they worry about their opponent bridging and putting them on their back. They feel side control is a much safer position to work from. Although their concern is legitimate, it doesn't mean the mount...

Q

When you execute the basic hip sweep and your opponent counters by wrapping his arms around your legs and driving you back down, you have the option of going for the omaplata. If your opponent is covered in Vaseline or both of you are soaked in sweat, the submission can sometimes be hard to lock in due to the slip factor, but you can often use the movement your submission attempt generated to claim the top position or escape back to your feet. I post my left foot on the ground and elevate my...

Counterattacks

Although it's important to always be offensive in a fight, at some point your opponent will throw an attack of his own. Falling victim to the attack is the worst possible scenario because it causes you damage and increases your opponent's confidence. Blocking the attack is better than getting hit, but it does little to sway your opponent from immediately launching another attack. The best possible scenario is to make your opponent's attack miss, and then launch an attack of your own while your...

Striking to Americana

To execute this technique you first need to put yourself in a position to strike, and this can be managed by turning your hips toward your opponent's head and then walking your leg over his near arm to trap it to the mat. Once you achieve this, you can start dropping hammer fists and elbows to your opponent's unprotected face. He won't be able to defend the shots with his near arm as long as it's stuck to the mat, so he will most likely attempt to guard his face with his far arm. The moment he...

Biceps control

You never want to place your hands on the mat because your opponent can lock your arm down with an over-hook and start to set up submissions. By pinning your opponent's arms to the mat with your hands, you not only nullify his setups, but you can also begin working to pass his guard. As you create movement and work to make something happen, you will transition back and forth between this position and the regular postured up position. Cupping my hands over Mark's biceps, I straighten my arms to...

Double Attack to kata Gatame

Once you secure the double attack position, the kata-gatame choke is right there for the taking. Since you already have your opponent's arm trapped across his neck, all you have to do is drop your head to the side of your opponent's arm (using the weight of your body to keep his arm in place), and then step out into side control and finish the fight. Locking my hands together, I press my weight for ward and begin bailing out into side control. I continue to step my left leg over Paco's legs and...

Sprawl control to Side Control fcnees

This is another option you can choose from the sprawl control position. Instead of angling around your opponent and assuming the turtle position, here you angle around him and force him over to his back so you can assume side control. Although it depends upon the person, obtaining side control tends to be a little more secure than the turtle position because it is harder for your opponent to stand up and he doesn't have the option of rolling into guard. Once in side control, throwing knees is a...

The Clinch

In mixed martial arts several different types of clinching styles can be utilized the Muay Thai clinch, the one-arm dirty boxing clinch, and the wrestling clinch. To become proficient in MMA, you must not only understand the core principles of each style, but you must also understand how to blend them together. A fighter who can tie his opponent up in the Muay Thai Clinch, land a couple of knees, and then transition to the wrestling clinch and execute a throw is a lot more dangerous than a...

Push away takedown defense

Pushing an opponent off you as he shoots in is the most basic way to defend against a takedown. Instead of stopping your opponent's shot with your body, you step off to the side and allow his momentum to carry him forward into the open air. It's kind of like a bullfighter and his red cape. If you execute this technique a couple of times on an opponent who knows his only chance of victory is bringing the fight to the ground, there is a good chance that he will start to get desperate. He might...

H Mount Stabilization Control

Mount Position Drawing

The first thing you want to do when you reach the mount is stabilize your position. After putting in all that work to get 0 there, you want to make sure that your opponent doesn't escape. To stabilize the mount, drop your weight down on top of your opponent, wrap an arm underneath his head, and drive a shoulder down into his face to cause him some discomfort and limit his mobility. If you have your left hand wrapped around your opponent's head, you can either strike h with your right hand or...

Rear Naked Choke from back

Guards For Arms Self Defense

The rear naked choke is the best move ever invented. Once you've got it locked in, you're pretty much guaranteed the victory. However, with most fighters spending lots of time polishing their submission defense, it can sometimes be a difficult submission to lock in. To increase your percentage rate, you might want to try the set-up shown below. If I'm working to slide my left arm around my opponent's neck, I use my right hand to secure my opponent's right arm down by his waist. To defend...

Ankle Lock Defense

When your opponent is lying on his back and you're standing directly above him, you have to constantly be on the lookout for getting caught in an ankle lock. It's pretty much the only submission your opponent can manage from his compromised position, but it's a pretty easy submission for him to slap on, especially when you attack with a belly or face stomp. It's much like arm bars in that if you just stand there and let your opponent slowly synch in the ankle lock, you're not going to be able...

High knees from Sprawl Control

J It's ideal to catch your opponent in a front headlock as you stuff his shot with a sprawl because you can immediately start dropping knees. However, sometimes your arm will end up on the wrong side of your opponent's head. In such a situation, keep your weight pressed down on your opponent and quickly maneuver your ami around his head and secure a front headlock. Once you get it, pick your butt up as high as you can to create as much distance as possible. If you don't create that distance,...

Knee from Front Headlock

Capturing an opponent in a front headlock while in the standing position gives you a lot of control. Your torso prevents your opponent from lifting his head, your under-hook prevents him from escaping out to the side, and your cup on his chin prevents him from backing out. It's a perfect opportunity to throw a couple of powerful knees. To set up a knee strike from the front headlock position, I like to push my opponent away to create some distance, and then use my grip on his head to rip him...

Countering head control with a takedown

When your opponent secures the Muay Thai clinch, it's possible to sneak uppercuts up between his arms and land to his chin, but the chances are his knee strikes will be a lot more powerful than your uppercuts. Instead of trying to bang my way out, I will usually drop my level, get my anns underneath my opponent's arms, and finish with the double under-hook body-lock takedown. If you can't penetrate in for the takedown because your opponent is too strong or has total control, jamming an arm...

Head Clinch to takedown

Fearful that I will land a knee to his face, Troy hinders me from pulling his head down by tightening his neck and straightening his posture. I've secured the Muay Thai clinch on Troy. When you secure the Muay Thai clinch and attempt to pull your opponent's head down to land knee strikes, there is a strong chance that he will strain to keep his head up. If his resistance is great, you can cause his head to snap dramatically back by simply releasing your hold. This creates a small window of...

Hammer Fist to Elbow Counter

When postured up in your opponent's guard, a good option is to rain down a plethora of strikes and work to pass. In reaction to this, your opponent might wrap a hand around the back of your head and attempt to pull you back down into his guard. As he does this, his face becomes vulnerable, and you can make use of that vulnerability by smashing a hammer fist into his nose and jaw. If your opponent is stubborn and refuses to release his grip on your head, a good tactic is to grab his wrist,...

Striking The Downed Guard

Striking at a downed opponent when you're standing is another situation completely unique to MMA competition. Usually you'll end up in this position when you knock your opponent down with a strike, execute a takedown or throw, or stand up in your opponent's guard. You may also end up here when fighting an opponent who wants to bring the fight to the ground but can't get the takedown, so he simply drops to his butt and scoots forward, trying to beckon you down. You have many offensive options...

Kneeing Against the Cage

Landing knees to your opponent's thighs or midsection while pressing him up against the cage usually won't end the fight, but they can wear him down over time and score you points on the judges' scorecards. I've got Butch pinned up against the cage. Notice how I've positioned my left foot behind me. Keeping Butch pinned against the cage with my left shoulder and hands, I drive a low left knee into his left thigh. I return to my normal stance and reset my base. After resetting my base, I mix...

Breaking double underhooks

Hammer Fist Strike

If your opponent establishes double under-hooks when you're in the top mount position, it limits your ability to strike. You can still drive in some rabbit punches, but the hard downward shots are no longer at your disposal. To break the double under-hooks, you want to arch your back, sit up, and then push your opponent's head down to the mat with one hand. Just make sure you don't sacrifice your base. Once you've created that space, you can once again start doing some damage with strikes....

Hand Clasp Guillotine Off Single

Self Defense Position Stance Image

In a previous technique I demonstrated how to defend against the double-leg takedown using the hand-clasp guillotine, and here I'm demonstrating how to use it to defend against the single-leg. The moment you wrap up your opponent's neck, he will be forced to start defending against the choke, which takes his focus away from completing the single. From there you will either be able to finish the choke or your opponent will defend against the choke and you'll escape the single-leg. Hither way....

Elbow from Muay Thai Clinch

Muay Thai Clinching Against The Ropes

I've got Albert in the Muay Thai clinch, giving me con- Maintaining control of Albert's head with my left hand, I trol of his head. back away just enough to chamber my right elbow. Anytime you gain control of your opponent's head, you have the ability to land elbow strikes. They can be thrown from the Muay Thai clinch, as well as from the dirty boxing clinch. For the best results, you want to rear back, pull your opponent's head into your elbow with your opposite hand, and then quickly regain...

Blocking Overhand to a Damn Good Guard

Belly Punch Work Over

If your opponent is content staying in your guard and working ground and pound, utilizing your legs to block his punches is an excellent strategy. You should still be moving and working for a sweep, submission, or an escape back to your feet, but if you can't block the strikes coming your way, you won't get very far with your attacks. The best way to get your legs involved is to place one leg on your opponent's back to keep him postured down and place your opposite knee in front of his shoulder...

HipOut Mount Escape

Guard Position Fighting

This is another rudimentary way to escape the bottom mount position. Turning onto your side to eliminate some of your opponent's weight from your body, you scoot and pull your legs out from underneath him, and then capture him between your legs in the guard position. Tony is mounted on top of me. I've established double under-hooks, and I'm gripping my hands together to prevent him from posturing up and pounding me in the face. Releasing my grip, I place both hands on Tony's hips and push them...

Push Away Takedown Defense to Knee

When an opponent shoots in for a takedown his head obviously drops, and this gives you an opportunity to land a powerful knee to his face. You can catch your opponent with a knee as he reaches for your legs, you can defend his takedown with a sprawl and then land the knee while he is pinned underneath you, or you can avoid the takedown by stepping to the side as you did in the previous technique and then throwing a knee while your opponent is off balance, which is the technique I demonstrate...

Turtle to back Sequence Countering Defense

This is the second back transition that you can utilize from the top turtle position. In the previous one, you established a hook on your opponent's near leg, rolled to your back, and then pulled your opponent on top of you so you could get your second hook and start working for a submission. In this sequence, you establish a hook on your opponent's near leg just as before, but then you throw your near leg over your opponent's back to establish your second hook. Once you've got both hooks...

Triangle Arm Bar from Back

In the previous technique, you used a leg to trap one of your opponent's arms down by your hips to make the rear naked choke easier to manage. When you do this, your opponent might realize his vulnerability and attempt to bridge out and escape. If this should occur, you can slide the leg you're using to trap your opponent's arm up to his shoulder and assume the reverse-triangle position. From there, you can work to finish your opponent with the reverse-triangle submission or go for an arm bar....

The Shell

When you're lying on your back and your opponent is standing, there are three ranges of combat. The first range is where your opponent is maintaining enough distance so that he can't strike you and you can't strike him. I refer to this as the get-up range because it is an ideal time to escape back to your feet. The second range is where your opponent is standing between your legs in your open guard. When you find yourself in this position, you want to utilize the De La Riva and Goes guards to...

Info

As soon as Paco's hips rise off the mat, I fall to my right knee and position my hips underneath his hips. This limits his mobility, giving me an opportunity to strike or pass his guard. It is important to notice that I am posting on my left leg. This increases my balance and mobility, which will help me achieve my attack. As I load up my right hand, I place my left hand on Paco's right hip to further control his body. I drop my right hand between Paco's legs and smash it into his face. Notice...

Controlling the legs

When your opponent is lying on his back and you're standing, it generally doesn't take that long for the referee to call a stop to the action and stand the fight back up. If you're a grappler who wants to keep the fight on the ground, you need to get in and make something happen. A good way to accomplish that is to step in and grab a hold of your opponent's ankles. Once you control his ankles, you have options. You can toss his legs to the side to set up a strike or pass, or you can use your...

Fighting From The Downed Guard

i 'V V, ' .' -------- There are many ways that you can end up on your back while your opponent is standing. You could get knocked down with a punch or kick. Your opponent could trip you or stand up in your guard. However you end up in this terrible spot, your main goal should be to escape back to your feet. This is often difficult to manage when your opponent is standing within striking range because he can land a kick to your head or haul you back to the mat the moment you begin to rise. To...

Stomp Kick to the leg

Having missed the kick, Beach loses balance and plants his right foot outside of his normal fighting stance. This exposes his back and creates an opening to use the previous technique to get back to my feet. Although the shell is primarily a defensive position, you still have a few strikes in your arsenal. The stomp kick to your opponent's lead leg is perhaps the most practical one. You want to drive your foot powerfully forward, striking just above your opponent's kneecap. Even if your...

Defending Against the Guillotine from Guard

yj There are a variety of ways that you can end up in a guillotine choke while trapped between your opponent's legs. Your Z opponent could wrap up your neck and pull guard as you shoot in. Your opponent could secure the guillotine from the clinch and then jump to the guard position. Your opponent could sit up from guard and try to synch it in. The bottom lil line is that there are a number of ways to land in this potentially compromising position, so you must understand the basic principles of...

Fake Open Guard to Overhand

If you're in the top guard position and don't make an effort to pass, your opponent can focus more intently on defending your strikes and setting up a submission. You must always switch things up, and this technique is one of my favorite ways to accomplish that. By using a hand to pry your opponent's legs apart, you force him to focus on the lower half of his body. While he is concentrating on defending against a pass, you quickly come over the top with an overhand to his face. I arch my right...

Fighting Stance

Hands Guard Position

With my shoulders facing my opponent, I keep my lead foot pointing forward and my rear foot angled to my right. My hands are up to protect my face, my elbows are tucked to my sides to protect my ribs, and my knees are slightly bent. With my shoulders facing my opponent, I keep my lead foot pointing forward and my rear foot angled to my right. My hands are up to protect my face, my elbows are tucked to my sides to protect my ribs, and my knees are slightly bent. This is the stance that I will...

Hand Clasp Guillotine Off Doubleleg

Hands Driving

Ideally you want to execute a flawless sprawl when your opponent shoots in, but you don't always have the time or room to get your hips down and your legs back. In such a situation going for the guillotine can sometimes be a good option. If you can gain control of your opponent's head before he wraps up both of your legs, then you have a chance to not only defend against the takedown, but also finish the fight. It is important to pay attention to the pictures below because this guillotine is...

Straight Knees from Sprawl Control

This is another way you can land knee strikes from the front headlock position. In the previous technique I hoisted w my leg as high as I could and then came down with a devastating strike. In this technique, I'm pulling my knee back and coming straight in. It doesn't pack as much power, but it tends to have better speed and accuracy. Deciding which gt technique to use depends upon the situation. Your opponent will have one hand to defend your knee strikes, and if you're having a hard time...

Dirty boxing clinch

Dirty Boxing

While the Muay Thai clinch creates openings to land knee strikes, the dirty boxing clinch is built for punches. Personally, I like to use the hand I have wrapped around the back of my opponent's head to either pull his face down into powerful uppercuts or brace his head as I throw repeated hooks. However, you must be careful in this position because your opponent will most likely have one hand wrapped around the back of your head, which means he too has the ability to punch. There have been...

Slipping the hook to body clinch

When your opponent throws a hook, his fist and shoulders move along a circular path rather than a linear path, which means you must avoid the strike differently than you would either a jab or cross. You have a couple of different options depending upon the situation. If you can spot the hook the instant your opponent begins to throw it, you can drop your elevation and shoot in for the double-leg takedown because his hips will still be squared up. However, as your opponent's fist and body...

Spring Stomp Kick

Renzo Gracie kept trying this move when we fought in the K-l World Grand Prix in Hawaii. Although I won the fight, this technique got under my skin, and I thought, Now I've got to use it on someone else. To execute this move from the shell, you want to hold your knees tightly with your amis, while at the same time applying outward pressure with your legs. When you let go of your knees, your legs spring out extremely fast. It's a deceptive and effective technique to utilize when you're lying on...

Belly Stomp

Belly Stomp

Gaining control of a downed opponent's legs opens up an assortment of stomps. The stomp to the face is always a good option, but it has been outlawed in MMA competition in America for quite some time. If you're competing in the United States, a stomp to the belly is a good alternative. The Face Stomp can cause quite a bit of damage to your opponent, but because the technique requires that you extend your leg so far forward, it can also put you in a vulnerable spot when done with improper...

Getting the Head in off Double Under Hooks

If your opponent secures the double under-hooks, which you want to avoid at all costs, you're in danger of getting picked up and slammed. To avoid such an outcome, immediately drop your hips and keep a low center of gravity. You also want to relax as much as possible because it is a lot harder to throw something limp than something rigid if you've ever tried to pick up a drunk friend who is passed out on a curb, you know exactly what I mean . Next you want to get your head underneath your...

Kick Out to Standing

A lot of opponents like to remain postured down in your guard and work ground and pound. Although it is hard for lt your opponent to do any real damage when striking from this position, he will still be winning the fight in the eyes of the judges. To make something happen, you might have to open your guard and kick your opponent away from you. By creating separation, you gain the opportunity to snap back to your feet. It's a great move for strikers because you don't lt have to be a jiu-jitsu...