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BJJ Instructional Videos
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3 High Percentage Chokes For Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

3 High Percentage Chokes For Brazilian Jiu Jitsu


If you love jiu jitsu but you struggle to finish your submissions it is likely you are missing a few key details in your technique.

Submissions like wrist locks, arm locks, leg locks, and neck chokes all require a lot of practice and refinement in your technique to master. Typically you will see different BJJ instructors teach different approaches to chokes. Everyone has different tricks and tips to make chokes more effective. So let’s take a look at how some high level professional grapplers approach their choke submissions! Here are three high percentage chokes for BJJ.

It's amazing how "scientific" of an approach that John Danaher takes towards jiu jitsu. Yet, he explains it so us monkeys can understand it and use it. This is evident in any of his DVD series that has on Front Headlocks, Leg Attacks and more.


#1: Von Flue Choke by James Clingerman

The Von Flue Choke has long been one of the best chokes in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, MMA, and all forms of submission grappling. The von flue choke is a guillotine defense choke. James wants to pass his training partner’s guard rather than try to defend the guillotine. He does this by placing his hand on his opponent’s knee and passing to the opposite side that his head is trapped in. As he goes he places his hand on his opponent’s knee, shoots forward, and then hops over into side control. As James lands he shoots his body up high, so his free arm comes up as he shifts his body weight towards his opponent’s head. His other hand comes around his training partner’s head and he secures the gable grip. From here James pressures his opponent’s chin as he extends his leg backwards to tighten the choke and settle into the squeeze. Notice how his training partner is ready to tap instantly! This is a really effective choke, especially against the bigger guys.

#2: Ezekiel Choke by Murilo Bustamante

The Ezekiel choke became popular in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu during the 1990’s. It is one of the few chokes that is safe to try while in top guard or in this case from mount. The first thing Murilo points out is the proper posture to have from top mount. You should be pressuring down with your hips as you post forward on the mat. You can also use your feet to set hooks behind your training partner’s thighs which will add additional pressure. From here Murilo moves back to wrap his arm around his training partner’s head. Now Murilo grabs inside his own gi sleeve to establish his grip. He connects his hand to his bicep across his opponent’s neck, and puts his elbow to the mat to tighten the choke.

#3: Head and Arm choke by Chael Sonnen

This choke is done from top side control. You want to keep your opponent’s arm trapped, otherwise you will lose your position. Make sure you get your opposite arm across as far as possible before securing your grip. Now you want to pass to the other side of your training partner. The key here is to switch to the other side while keeping focus on where your head is positioned. Once you get to the other side of your training partner you want to lock tight, and drop your hips. Now you can take your time finishing your choke. Remember that in this position you have a major advantage over your opponent. He is the one that has to try and move, so be patient and work your way into a tight, effective submission.

Chokes are a great way to finish a match early! The most common mistake people make when failing at a choke is that they are rushing to finish. So pay attention to the details like the ones we have learned here today. If you are interested in learning more choke techniques then check out Travis Steven’s “Chokes” instructional series available exclusively on!

The Front Headlock System was developed by Danaher not only for grappling but for MMA as well. His student, George St. Pierre has used this front head lock system on several occasions in the UFC and in the gym. All the athletes from the Danaher Death Squad and Renzo Gracie's School are known for their front headlocks and guillotine set ups.

The idea is to control the head and arm and use this position to exploit other opportunities. All to often people associate head and arm control with submissions like the guillotine, the anaconda, the D'arce, and more. Although these can very easily be obtained once you have secured head and arm control, that is not the primary reason for obtaining head and arm control.

Break into the front head lock system with John Danaher to turn yourself into a head hunting machine!


The Front Headlock System By John Danaher


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