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This website is about Brazilian jiu jitsu (BJJ). I'm a purple belt who started in 2006, teaching and training at Artemis BJJ in Bristol, UK. All content ©2004-2016 Can Sönmez

06 May 2016

06/05/2016 - Teaching | The Back | Bow & Arrow Choke

Teaching #506
Artemis BJJ (MYGYM Bristol), Can Sönmez, Bristol, UK - 06/05/2016

Tonight, it was time for the signature move at Artemis BJJ, the bow and arrow. Starting from standard back control with a seat-bet grip, you open up their collar with the hand you have under their armpit. Fold it over (a handy tip from James '300' Foster), then grip it with the hand you have over their shoulder. Don't grip too high, or you'll lack the range to finish the choke.

Next you want to get hold of their non-choking side leg. If you're having trouble grabbing it, Dónal suggests using your same side heel to dig in by their knee, curling your leg back. That should bring their trouser leg in range for you to grab with your free hand, establishing a good anchor point. You then want to swivel your body, in order to get your leg-grabbing side foot to the outside of their other thigh.

I tend to push off their non-grabbed leg side thigh with my same side foot, to help me move my other foot over. Once you've got that foot locked in place, you want to keep it there to block them from trying to turn into an escape. Along with your initial grip on their leg, that hook with your foot gives you better leverage to move into the main choking position.

To get there, swing out your non-hooking leg. You want to end up with your opponent's head on the thigh of that leg you just swung out. Tuck the elbow of your choking arm back by your hip, as pulling on the elbow is one of the main escapes. To finish, pull your hand down (like you were cracking a whip), pressing your forearm into their head (you can drive with your shoulder too). If that doesn't work, you can try increasing the range by gripping with less fingers (though this does make your grip weaker). Putting a leg over their shoulder and then crossing your feet can give you more leverage, as you can then thrust your hips up into the choke.

If that still isn't getting the choke, try bringing the hand that was gripping their leg behind their head, driving it through to push their head forward as you lock in the choke. For even more leverage, you can bring it under their arm. That then sets you up for yet another follow-up submission: the armbar is right there from that position.
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Teaching Notes: Next time, I'll emphasise the wrist positioning on finishing the choke. It is like cracking a whip, rather than trying to yank the gi across. I cut the follow up submissions down to three, but I think next time I should include the behind the head option. That's the most natural one to go for if you can't finish, judging by drilling. It would also be worth emphasising bringing your legs over their shoulder for extra leverage too.

I did include the armbar, but that's because we went through the armbar from guard in the previous month on mount, with armbar drills too. As long as I do that not too long before, it shouldn't be confusing.

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