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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

26 October 2022

26/10/2022 - Teaching | Leglocks | Basic seated single leg x/ashi garami drills

Teaching #Evening
Artemis BJJ (7 Easton Rd), Can Sönmez, Bristol, UK - 26/10/2022

In preparation for the first ever leglock month at Artemis BJJ in November, I ran through some of the basic drills that I learned from Charles Harriott (which you can also find on his excellent Leglocks 101 instructional). Sit facing your partner, legs in front of you , feet on the ground, knees up. Start with one leg inside theirs. When you say 'left', both of you move your left leg to the inside. When you say 'right', put the right leg in.

Next do the same again, this time grabbing the heel of the outside foot each time. Then we play a game, where the goal is to get both you feet inside, also grabbing both their heels. That covers off the first chunk of drills, after which we can move into the actual footlock position, which is single leg x. John Danaher insists on calling this ashi garami, because he likes to sound fancy. But it is just single leg x, on the ground. ;)

To enter into this position, get inside control with your feet. Grab the heel of their outside leg, pulling it up to your hip, like you have a holster there. At the same time, kick your leg out straight. Put the foot of your outside leg on their hip bone, curling it around so there is as little space as possible. With your free hand, hold their knee, then shoot your hips forward as close as you can. Bring the knee of your inside leg over your hip foot, trying to cover it, in order to make it harder for them to push it off their hip. The foot of your inside leg is hooking under their butt cheek.

You can then turn this into a continuous drill, where you enter into that position, they push your foot off their hip. You use your inside foot to hook their leg and keep it in range, then repeat the footlock entry on the other side. The MOST IMPORTANT part of the class is highlighting the danger of your knee getting twisted (e.g., by heel hooks and toeholds). I don't want people playing with heel hooks at this stage, but getting everybody to go into that seated single leg x and then hooking the heel demonstrates how it feels. As Charles puts it, tap to pressure, not to pain. Therefore eveyrbody needs to be able to recognise that pressure.


Teaching Notes: I went through the drills multiple times across several classes, keeping things very simple. Next time I can experiment with a bit more info. The marching drill is useful. So far, I start with that, then add in grabbing the heel and tucking your foot under their butt, until the third drill on getting inside leg control. I could probably have people grabbing the heel and holster? That might be worth a try as the middle drill.

This first attempt, I didn't get to the continuous drill, as I didn't want to confuse people by also showing the escape. I could test trying that next time. The key thing will be making sure I run through the warm-up drills, so as I did this time, replace the normal warm up with the marching drill, heel holster, then inside control.

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