Setting Up Takedowns For Grapplers

There are certain things in the Wrestling and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu worlds that cross over with one another, and even crossover into the world of Mixed Martial Arts.  Despite certain shared traits, the sports are all different and unique in their own ways.

However, there is one thing that the grappling based sports all share: if you want to score that submission, you have to have adequate takedown skills.

You can be the most skilled grappler around, and have some serious submission skills, yet it doesn’t mean anything if you aren’t able to get your opponent down to the ground to execute these skills.

This is why I’m here today to share some cool techniques that Jimmy Quinlan himself shared while doing a seminar at Black Diamond Mixed Martial Arts!

Setting Up The Takedown By Taking Your Opponents Back

There are many ways you can go about securing the takedown.  One very common method is to shoot for the takedown, and putting your opponent right on their back.  While this may be something that wrestlers tend to prefer, it isn’t the end-all-be-all.

A slick setup that Jimmy showed in his time here at Black Diamond is one that almost any level of grappler can learn and throw into his arsenal.  It calls for some strength and being able to control your opponent from the feet.

·         From the clinch, establish an under hook on one side, clamping down on his lat muscle.

·         On the side you didn’t hook, gain wrist control and peel his hand off of your body, by bringing off your hip, and in front of your body.

·         Maintain wrist control, slide your head onto the shoulder of your opponent, and press on it.  This will seal his arm in place, making it difficult for him to free it.

·         From here, switch your grip to a bear-hug of sorts, making sure you have a good Gable grip.

·         Lastly, you can easily take his back.

This is a very basic and easy-to-learn move that many of you grapplers out there can get in just a few tries.  It’s a wonderful tool to have, as it makes securing the dominant position and dictating the match that much easier. Jimmy is a world class takedown artist and this is also very evident in his MMA career. You can learn more about his path in MMA so far here with his stats and records.

Eliminating The Balance of Your Opponent

Using the same setup as above, there is an alternate approach you can take:

·         With the under hook, peel his hand off.

·         Switching your stance, you’ll want to act as if you’re throwing a switch kick.

·         Pull with the underhook towards you, and push on his hand away from you.

·         As their leg rises off the mat, use your hips to throw him off balance.

While this may not be an actual takedown, it does the job of throwing your opponent off balance, allowing you to mount an offense.  As the other move, it’s a very effective tool to have in your skillset. Jimmy also taught a great double leg set up at a seminar in Rhode Island. You can learn it here!

Do yourself a favor and check these setups out, and practice them.  They won’t let you down!

Dan Faggella

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