How To Do A Proper Heel Hook


The heel hook…the word heel hook is honestly one of the most feared leg attack techniques in all of grappling. It is feared because of the insane amount of damage it can cause. It is a tendon tearing, ligament obliterating, knee destroying submission. While it has always been respected, the last few years of high profile submission only events has really shown its effectiveness. Competitors like Eddie Cummings, Garry Tonon and Geo Martinez have really shown the power of the heel hook. While there are different ideas and concepts with the heel hook, let’s see how EBI champ Eddie Cummings performs it.

Before he even attempts the leg lock, he controls the leg that he is attacking, specifically the knee. He makes sure that he has a strong control of the knee, while he maintains a nice, strong ashi garami position. First, Eddie makes sure that his opponent’s toes are in his arm pit so that the heel is facing out. Once he gets that, he makes sure that gets the proper bite on the achilles tendon. Using his right wrist, he locks up the achilles right on his wrist bone. Don’t do deep with the grip, stay shallow. The wrist bone will help cause the pain. Eddie then uses his other hand to get a good palm to palm grip.

After getting everything correct on the grip, Eddie draws his right elbow back, and gets the right side of his chest close to the mat. He then bridges outwards while drawing the opponent’s toes back to his butt as he slightly pulls the heel up. Bada boom, your opponent will tap. Also by bridging into the submission as opposed by trying to rip it across your chest, you will take away the opponent’s ability to use a rolling escape. Brutal and effective, which is the perfect combination for a leg attack.

The heel hook is exceptional because there are so many entries into positions that allow for it. If you can master a handful of these leg entanglements, entries and of course the finish, then you will notice the amount of times that you’re tapping people. Train it safe, and train it right. That way your training partners won’t get hurt, but your heel hook skills will become that of a leg locking marksman. If you want to improve your heel hook and overall leg lock game then check out…

Leg Attacks & Grappling Hacks by Dean Lister. Click here!