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Fear This Straight Foot Lock With Luiz Panza
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Fear This Straight Foot Lock With Luiz Panza

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We hear a lot of BJJ practitioners say, “I don’t tap to straight foot locks”. Maybe they haven’t been caught in the right one yet. A straight style foot lock can attack different parts of the foot and lower leg depending on who’s applying it. You may actually feel it in the foot, the ankle, calf muscle, or even in the achilles portion of the leg. Regardless of where the attack is intended to do damage, proper mechanics here can have devastating effects. Just because we are not dealing in attacks of the knee, does not mean an attack of this type won’t have you hobbling out of the academy.

possessing the ability to apply a good straight foot lock style submission will bring a great deal of value to your overall lower body attack game. If your straight foot lock skills are on point and the opposing party feels threatened, you’re going to command taps as well as force all kinds of opportunities. The threat of these locks can lead us in to other dangerous leg entanglements and even sometimes present us with opportunities to pass the guard. Straight foot locks are also legal in the lower levels of competition, so it would serve us well to understand how they are applied, so that we can use them and don’t get caught off guard when they’re employed against us. 

Luiz Panza knows a thing or two about this style of lower half destruction. Take a look back at his competition record. You’ll see a slew of big names that have succumbed to this devastating submission at the highest levels. Panza’s resume speaks for itself and his ability to implement the straight style lock at the elite levels of competition tells us that there is something very special happening when Panza gets a hold of a leg. In this video, Panza will walk us through some his secret details to applying this incredibly efficient straight ankle lock. Pay close attention and enjoy!  

 

Panza begins his instruction from the 50/50 position. With his partner’s leg riding across his body he begins to envelope the leg and offers some important details. As he over hooks the limb, he looks to get a parallel configuration with his forearm and his partner’s shin. Panza then finds the sweet spot, positioning the blade of his wrist just below the end of the calf, on the achilles tendon and then pinches his elbow tight to the foot.

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Unlike many other variations of this technique that you’ve probably seen before, Panza does not feel it necessary to lock his hands here. He simply attaches his hand to his hip. This provides him with more mobility, making it easier to pursue the submission. Panza also find a home for the feet on his partner’s chest. This is also a new detail for me, but it makes a ton of sense as far keeping distance and preventing the hand fight that usually ensues here. As Panza explains, this also keeps his feet safe from attacks on the other end. 

With everything now in place, Panza begins to turn away from his partner, extending his spine and pushing his hips into the leg to bring the submission to life. As you can see by Bernardo Farias’s reaction, this appears to be incredibly painful. 

This is a bit unorthodox, but the mechanics are so on point and positioning of the body lends itself to creating a massive amount of pressure and breaking power to the leg. I think one of the major takeaways here, is the positioning of Panza’s arm that’s captured the foot. Many times, we allow the foot to go so deep in to the over hook, that it becomes impossible for us to create the leverage we need to actually threaten a real break.

Panza secures the foot with a more open position of the elbow, but he creates a tight wedge with the unique positioning of his arm. This almost completely takes away the ability to defend the lock in the traditional “boot” style that has become so popular. The other concept here that deserves some attention is the one-handed finish. This may seem like it would offer less control over the limb, but the way Panza is securing the foot takes care of that right away.

With only one hand committed to the lock, Panza gives his upper body an enhanced range of motion. This allows him the freedom to extend and turn his body as much as he deems necessary to achieve the tap. Notice when he released his partner’s foot for a moment and demonstrated the full range of motion he was capable of. Should this actually be applied in a real setting, the leg would be broken and then some. 

It’s been too long since Panza has released some instructional material. His first release entitled, Hidden BJJ Secrets, was an inside look at some of Panza’s greatest BJJ insights in the gi. Years later we’re on the cusp of being treated to some new instruction from Panza, only this time we’ll get a look at his incredible no gi game. Judging by this sneak peek we’re in for something very special. This release may be available by the time you read this in the BJJ Fanatics online store. Don’t sleep on this one! 


Catch your opponent off-guard with Luiz Panza’s Hidden BJJ Secrets. If they don’t see what is coming it will be too late to defend. Unlock more than just footlocks. Learn the sweeps, submissions, passing game of one of Jiu-Jitsu’s best….Luiz Panza!

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