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Effectively Get Out Of Turtle and Circle To The Back Using This Strategic Technique From Neil Melanson

Effectively Get Out Of Turtle and Circle To The Back Using This Strategic Technique From Neil Melanson



There are certain positions in Jiu Jitsu that people typically consider either dominant or non-dominant positions. There are a handful of neutral positions or positions that could swing either way depending on your level of technique. The amazing thing about this sport is that technique is constantly evolving and the dynamic of these positions can completely change.

Being in the turtle position is not widely considered to be dominant. If you are here, you are likely defending against a choke or back take, or waiting for a good time to sit out and get your guard or back to a better position. There are other options, but all in all there are not a ton of attacking opportunities from here.

However, you can bait a choke to get yourself to a better position and start attacking. If you can simultaneously stop your opponent from choking you while also controlling their ability to move, you just may be onto something. Luckily, that is exactly what is shown in this technique.

In this video, Neil Melanson shows a technique done from turtle that allows you to quickly circle to your opponents back and start attacking, check it out below!


The Technique

Two of the most popular chokes while attacking someone in turtle are the anaconda and the darce chokes. Both require one arm in and are entered from either the armpit area or the neck. While your opponent is in the turtle, often where there is open space is near the neck or under the arm.

Also on the topic of control, some people may try to just body lock you with their arms or get some sort of head lock to keep you down and take their time planning their next move. This can be super tiring on the bottom, especially if you don’t address the grips soon enough and start working to get out.

The key points to pay attention to in this technique are wrist control and head position. Due to the nature of this technique, these two aspects are crucial for success. This is also a technique that you should drill frequently to become familiar with the movements and see it right away when you get to turtle instead of getting stuck there.

Upgrade your tactics from the turtle position with Neil Melanson! Click Learn More!



To start this technique, you need to get double wrist control on one of your opponents wrists. It is likely that he is going to be reaching for some kind of choke or attack so it may not be that difficult, but if you're having trouble then you need to bait him. Maybe you create some space by your neck to make it appear to your opponent that there is an opening for an anaconda choke. As soon as he starts reaching in you can grab his wrist and control it.

As you are controlling his wrist with both of your hands, you want to staple it to the mat to ensure it’s not going anywhere. With his hand stuck to the mat it essentially renders that are useless, and makes it extremely difficult for your opponent to move. From here, you need to start moving off to the same side you have wrist control on.

As you start to move off to the side, utilize a kickstand to help for when you begin to move up to your feet shortly. This also gives you more strength to push forward into him which you are going to do with good head positioning. As you are moving to the outside, place your head on the side of your opponents neck, right between his shoulder and his face. This allows you to provide good pressure and it stops him from being able to turn towards you and prevent you from circling.

At this point, you want to make sure your head positioning is solid and his hand is stapled to the ground before you progress. If all is in order, you simply get to your feet and start circling behind. Once you get to the back get a tight grip around your opponents waist, and now you are in a great position to start attacking the back.

This is a super simple technique and a great one to drill. You can get good at waiting for the right moment to sit out from the turtle and get your guard back, but that becomes more difficult when you have an opponent who wants to stay heavy on top of you. Not to mention you are still going to be on the bottom whereas this technique gives you an easy path to the back.

About Neil Melanson

Neil Melason is well versed in many different forms of martial arts, particularly grappling. He is a submission grappling coach who specializes in catch wrestling, while also drawing many elements from judo.  His incorporation of Jiu Jitsu with so many other forms of martial arts really sets his technique apart from others.

Neil is currently the head grappling coach at Jaco Hybrid Training Center, and he loves to work in the area of grappling for MMA. He has trained fighters such as Chael Sonnen, Vitor Belfort, and many others. After overcoming medical adversities from a young age, Neil has become one of the most sought after coaches and offers a level of technique that is special and outside of the box.

About Neil’s Instructional

Neil has dedicated this entire insuructional to tactical turtle techniques. Included you will find moves such as body position concepts, ankle grab roll, Russian kimura, anaconda escape, and so much more.Neil’s experience in so many forms of martial arts and his overall creativity are what makes his technique and his ability to teach so special. This series offers tons of material for every kind of Jiu Jitsu practitioner, no matter the level. Allow Neil Melanson to help you achieve the level of success you know you can attain, check out his instructional here!



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