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BJJ Instructional Videos
John Danaher Leglocks
John Danaher Back Attacks BJJ
Half Guard BJJ Instructional Video
Basics of John Danaher’s Back System

Basics of John Danaher’s Back System


Put the System To Work On the Back 

John Danaher has proven as one of the most successful instructors due to his unique approach to teaching Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Danaher has abandoned the classical mode of Jiu Jitsu instruction for a systematic approach based on biomechanical principles and positional pathways. As a result, his students, such as Garry Tonon and Gordan Ryan, have submitted countless challenging opponents in unique ways we are only starting to truly understand. John Danaher has developed numerous systems, most popularly the leg attack and back attack systems using unique principles and ideas we can all learn from.

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In the following video, John Danaher provides us with some basic principles he used to develop his back-attacking system. He starts off with the idea of right-left control with a critique of how the common grappler considers the core of controlling someone from the rear. He goes to explain the true power of the seatbelt grip is not with the hands or from squeezing, but the elbows. The elbows, when placed properly, can prevent the upper body of an opponent from rotating. In order for someone to escape the back, they need to rotate independently of the attacker. By preventing the upper body rotation, you can severely hinder your opponent’s ability to escape.


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Danaher follows this by explaining a principle he calls diagonal control. As you can see in the video, John’s one-on-one grip can prevent the opposite side rotation. The grip alone is not capable of preventing someone from rotating in the same direction as the grip. The placement of the hook on the opposite said, namely diagonal to the hand grip, is the main method to prevent the same-side rotation by placing pressure in the opposite direction. This means that we need to be using opposite side limbs simultaneously in times of countering the rotational defense.


I thoroughly enjoyed this video specifically because John does not perform some crazy never-before seen technique, but something all grapplers due. The only difference is how the principles are applied. By understanding the biomechanical nature of the leg hooks and seatbelt grips, we can more effectively maintain back control and finish with a submission. In taking a unique approach to understanding the common positions in Jiu Jitsu, we allow ourselves to improve our use of various grips and controls in ways that are less energy consuming, which is one of the main principles of the gentle art.

For more from John Danaher's Back Attack System, get his Enter the System:  Back Attacks series here from BJJ Fanatics!  You can join thousands of satisfied customers who have taken advantage of this amazing level of instruction!


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