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

07 November 2018

08/11/2018 - Teaching | Side Control | Underhook Escapes

Teaching #812
Artemis BJJ (MYGYM Bristol), Can Sönmez, Bristol, UK - 08/11/2018

If you are able to get your arm underneath them, several underhook escapes become available. Be careful though, as if they can anticipate the underhook and switch their hips, they can squish your arms and trap them. That puts you in a terrible position with your neck exposed to chokes.

Nevertheless, underhooks can be a powerful tool for escapes. The same principle applies as with half guard: if you can get an underhook into their armpit, swinging your arm forcefully into it can bump their weight off you, creating a space you can rotate into. Use the momentum of swinging your legs to help generate that momentum. It is safest to rotate towards their legs, as that is the shortest distance to travel and also sets you up to attack their back.

Spinning in the other direction can work too, but it's riskier. In that situation, you are either looking to simply get out from under them, or if you stay closer, you end up in a front headlock. That lends itself to guillotines, d'arce chokes, anaconda chokes and the like.

With double underhooks, you can generate even more leverage, but conversely you're also in a lot more trouble if you mess up and they manage to switch their hips onto your arms. One underhook is therefore safer, if less powerful. With two, you can whack your arms up into both their ribs and their armpit, reverse shrimping away to create the momentum to create the space to escape. Again, you can then rotate in your preferred direction.
Teaching Notes: I might just show turning towards their legs next time, showing other direction is confusing people. Emphasise armpit push more. Do I need two? Also, drill reverse shrimp and the bridging motion.

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