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The Kimura For BJJ - Submissions, Sweeps & Escapes

The Kimura For BJJ - Submissions, Sweeps & Escapes


The kimura has long been one of the best submissions in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Mixed Martial Arts.  We have seen people that have a high percentage of success with this attack in the top levels of the UFC and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu competitions.  One of the most common misconceptions with the kimura is that this is only a submission, contrary to popular belief the kimura can also be used as a transitional position, control grip, and yes of course a submission.

The lineage of the kimura dates back to Helio Gracie’s historic and legendary match against the Japanese Judo fighter Kimura.  Helio was put in this shoulder lock and he let his shoulder pop and this submission was coined as the Kimura.  The kimura has long been evolving in bjj.  People use this all the time to do several things; it is one of the most powerful grips and submissions in the sport.

When first learning the Kimura, many people assume it is just a submission, as you grow your Kimura game, you will learn that it is much more. You can use the Kimura as a submission or submission entry, as a counter attack, and as a control position to sweep or control your opponent. Mastering the kimura is always wise, there are virtually endless possibilities that accompany a good understanding of the kimura.  It has long been one of the most successful techniques in all of grappling and mixed martial arts! It has also been referred to as the figure four, or the “Gracie Killer.”

Learn The Secret Kimura System This 38 Year Old "Chubby Guy" Uses To Catch Everyone He Rolls With. IBJJF and UFC champions like GSP, Cobrihna, and many other greats seek his advice on the position.


The Kimura as a BJJ Submission

The kimura submission has long been an excellent choice to submit your opponent.  This is for several reasons.  You can use the kimura from several different guards, and several different positions.  Some of the strongest guards that you can utilize the kimura submission from are the closed guard and the half guard.  The closed guard has many kimura set ups that are excellent options.  Not only is the kimura an excellent submission from the closed guard but it can also be used to transition to other submissions. As you threaten the kimura you may also be able to capitalize on other submissions that present themselves.  For example, if someone is defending the kimura, maybe you can attack a triangle or a sweep.  All you need to do to start working your kimura from the closed guard is isolate your opponent’s arm and start setting up your figure four.

The same goes for the kimura from the half guard.  As you use the kimura from the half guard you may have the opportunity to get a sweep or something else.  The kimura is an excellent option from the half guard, half butterfly, or the lockdown.  Once you isolate your opponents arm it can be very difficult for them to get it back, this will allow you to capitalize and sweep your opponent. Check out this awesome kimura from the half guard with the great Garry Tonon below.

The kimura is also one of the best submission options from the side control, knee on belly, full mount, or even from the back.  When you use the kimura from the mount it can be a great way to control your opponent and ultimately allow you to get the submission or transition into something else.  The same goes for side control, the kimura can be a great way to attack the back from the side control and or go into the arm bar.  The possibilities with the kimura for submissions are endless; you can use it to set up triangles, omoplata’s and more. Check out this kimura from mount below!

The Kimura as a Position/Transition

The kimura is not only an excellent submission option or submission entry point but it is also a great grip and position.  What we mean by position is that you can use the kimura to attack the back, or control your opponent from various places.  For example, if you are in single leg X or Ashi Garami, one of the best transitions that you can use to advance position is the rolling kimura.  The rolling kimura can be utilized from various guards and you can attack your opponents back.  Check out this match below of Black Belt World Champion, Lucas Lepri going against the infamous Garry Tonon at the 2015 ADCC.  Pay close attention to how often Lucas is using the rolling kimura to avoid Garry’s leg attacks and pass the guard.

The kimura is also an excellent way to defend take downs; we constantly see this in the UFC and in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu competitions.  Sometimes when people shoot the single leg or the double leg one of the best counter attacks can be the Kimura.  The kimura has long been one of the best ways to defend against a takedown.  This is because people generally need both grips to finish a takedown.  That being said if you can nullify one of their grips than you can attack your opponent back and threaten a submission.  Check out this video below where we see a good counter to the double leg with a kimura.

The possibilities don’t stop there; you can use the kimura to counter other submissions as well.  Some times when your opponent is trying to submit you one of the best things you can do is attack a kimura.  There are kimura’s to counter chokes, counter leg locks, counter arm bars, and more.   You can even counter the kimura with a kimura, don’t believe us?  Check out this video below showing you how.

So now you’ve learned the possibilities of the kimura and you want to develop your kimura game?  Well that’s a smart choice and you’re on the right website.  Here at BJJ Fanatics we have an excellent choice of resources for you to develop your kimura game.

One of those resources is “Mau Mau’s” 3 DVD set “The Kimura System.”  Mau Mau is a GF Team Black Belt and as such he is NOT FROM GRACIE LINEAGE! GF Team is from Oswaldo Fadda – a footlock specialist who learned Jiu Jitsu not through the Gracies but through Luiz Franca who learned directly from Count Maeda. Since the Gracies are credited with founding most of the Brazilian style of Jiu Jitsu, the GF Team was always seen as outcasts and their fighters have always had something to prove.. Mau Mau didn’t grow up idolizing the Gracies, he grew up idolizing the Great “Gracie Hunter” Kazushi Sakuraba who became famous for defeating Royler, Royce and Renzo Gracie. Sakuraba specialized in the double wrist lock or the hold better known as the Kimura.  Mastering the Kimura is exactly what  “Mau Mau” did and now he is considered by many the best person in the world at the kimura.



We also have another excellent DVD set from BTT black belt, Fabio Holanda, “The Kimura machine.” Fabio Holanda is one of the bets people in the world at the kimura.  He is not super athletic, he is not super fit, he is not young, he has no special talents, he is an ordinary guy who chose to master one move better than anyone else and this has allowed Fabio to be able to roll with anybody and everybody by just trusting in his kimura. He is so good at the Kimura that UFC Champions and stars like Georges St. Pierre, Murilo Bustamante and Patrick Cote take his advice. BJJ Stars and legends like Rubens “Cobrinha” Charles and Leonardo “Cascao” Saggioro listen to him. Fabio is the world’s premier master of the Kimura.   This DVD set is perfect for anybody of any age, weight, height, skill level, fitness level, and belt. 



So there you have it, these are two excellent DVD Sets for you to master the kimura better than anybody in your academy and add a new weapon to your arsenal of attacks.  Having the kimura in your back pocket can literally change your game.  It is an excellent submission, position, transitional move and grip. 


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