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Add This Triangle To Your Arsenal With Neil Melanson

Add This Triangle To Your Arsenal With Neil Melanson


So often we hear people say things like, that submission doesn’t work for me it’s only for (insert a body characteristic that they don’t have here…) tall, short, big, small, etc. grapplers.   The reality is that most submissions can be used by most of us if we simply learn them properly. If you haven’t noticed yet in Jiu Jitsu almost every submission has multiple variations that you can try until you are able to find one that works for you.  Generally speaking, the technique works if you do.  

One of my favorite submissions and a common one people make excuses about not being able to perform properly is the triangle choke.  What’s interesting about the triangle choke is that in the grappling world it is a fairly new submission. While most of grappling dates back thousands of years in the form of wrestling the best evidence available shows that the triangle choke submission was first seen in Japan at a Judo school in the early 1900’s, shortly before World War One.

There is obviously a chance this happened prior to this point, but this is the only evidence that has been found to date to help us understand when the triangle choke submission made its debut in our world of grappling martial arts. It’s incredible to think about the fact that the triangle choke submission is only roughly one hundred years old whereas so many of the other techniques we utilize in this sport are literally thousands of years old.  

Looking at things like a double leg takedown, or a guillotine choke submission, or any other technique that dates back literally thousands of years, it really puts into perspective that this sport can, and will continue to evolve for eternity.  As the saying goes, if you are not growing you are dying. 

Let’s take a look at a creative triangle setup by Neil Melanson, one of the most well known instructors in grappling and mixed martial arts thanks to his out of the box thinking and unorthodox approach to grappling.  Neil is known for his unique approach and defying the odds when it’s thought something can’t be done. It’s this mindset that has made him such a successful grappler. One thing you will notice as you start to study Neil is that he is constantly doing something to make his opponent uncomfortable, in many cases he starts by getting his knee in their chest setting up to move into his Shin Whizzer or another submission setup attempt from there. 

When looking to setup the triangle choke submission from the Knee Bump we need to understand the knee bump and the goals we need to achieve to get there.  

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You will notice starting out, Neil starts the same as if he were setting up his shin whizzer.  To start, Neil is sitting in a modified butterfly guard position with his training partner kneeling in front of him on both knees.  Neil has his right arm behind him on the mat for as a frame for support and has his right arm over his training partner’s right shoulder.  He starts with his left foot planted on the mat and his left knee in his training partner’s chest. His right leg is laying on the mat with his knee pointed to his right and his right foot on the outside of his training partner’s right knee.  

Neil is pulling on his partner to get the reaction of them pulling back.  As they pull back, he flairs his right leg behind him so he can come up on this right knee and left foot.  From here he is over hooking the opponent’s right arm with his left arm and controlling their left wrist with his right hand.  Once he has these grips he can then sit (he points out that you must carefully sit, do not allow gravity to take over and fall, this will create momentum and potentially prevent you from being able to get the position you want) to his butt keeping his left foot engaged between the opponent’s legs and his right leg back in the original position.  As he sits, he looks to grab his right wrist with his left hand while still keeping his over hook and maintaining control of their wrist.  

Now it’s time to start locking up the triangle.  To begin getting in position Neil is looking to lean back as he stretches his left leg therefor stretching the opponent out as well.  Once they are stretched out he puts his left foot on the opponent’s right hip to keep them from coming forward again. He can now take his right leg out and bring it over the opponent’s left shoulder to clamp down on the neck.  He then reaches under the opponent’s left arm for an under hook grabbing his right knee as he lays to his back slightly turned on his right hip to help free his left leg. He can now pull his left leg out and lock the triangle. To finish Neil is simply hugging his right leg on either side of his knee.  Neil also adds the detail of turning your feet away to assist in tightening the triangle. 

Neil has a number of video instructionals available if you like his teaching style and are looking to take your game to the next level.  Regardless of which one you decide to start with there is no doubt that it will help you take your game to a new level with high pressure wrestling techniques that will change your thinking and ultimately your game.  You will be surprising everyone you roll with at your academy when you start implementing the tips and tricks from Neil that previously were only available to high level athletes.  

Watching Neil demonstrate techniques makes you feel sorry for his partner! This BRUTAL approach will catch most grapplers off guard. Get in there and put them on the defensive, and land a submission. The Snap Guard With Neil Melanson takes this ruthless approach and applies it to the GUARD!!



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