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One Arm Head and Arm Choke with Neil Melanson

One Arm Head and Arm Choke with Neil Melanson

Neil Melanson is one of the most sought after grappling and MMA coaches in the world.  With a background in BJJ, Catch Wrestling and MMA, he has become well known for his brutally effective approach to jiu jitsu and MMA grappling.

During a recent visit to the BJJ Fanatics HQ where he was filming an instructional all about the Head and Arm Triangle, he took a break to show Bernardo Faria a few of the key details about his favorite One Arm Triangle choke.  Check out the video below and we'll break it down afterwards.

Don't let the crook rob you of your choke.--Neil Melanson

The first key detail that Neil shares involves the proper positioning of the near side arm and bicep that is connecting to the carotid artery on that near side.  Because of the physiology of our elbows and biceps there is a space known as the 'crook' of the elbow.  If you aren't mindful of positioning the crook somewhat behind the neck instead of right at the carotid, the choke will not be as effective.

Reach for the armpit

Once the choking arm is properly in place with the bicep tight against the carotid artery to stop blood flow, the next details to pay attention to is the positioning of the hand of the choking arm.  Ideally, Neil Melanson recommends reaching all the way to the armpit of the opponent.  If that is not possible due to arm length or body size, it's important to make sure the hand is reaching towards the armpit behind the back.

Where's your head at?

With the opponent's far arm properly pinned Asacross their face pointing towards you, the next key detail is to focus on where and how your head is placed to keep the arm pinned across their face.  For Neil Melanson, the best placement of the head is as close to the rear deltoid as possible because by putting the pressure at this point, one is able to most efficiently drive the opponent's shoulder into the carotid to cut off blood on the second side.

Come to the other side

The final step is to transition yourself to the opposite side of the opponent's body to ensure that proper pressure is set up to finish the strangle.  There are a number of ways to transition from the near to the far side, from as simple as jumping over the legs and basing out, to dragging the knee and shin across slow and grinding across the opponent's hips to transition across.

To finish the strangle, once you are established on the other side of the their body and based out, you will flex your arm around their neck while driving your head into their deltoid to cut off the blood on both sides of their neck.

Head and Arm from Mount Bonus

As a bonus, based on Bernado Faria's interest in the head and arm triangle from the mount, Neil Melanson shows a unique way to use the mounted leg grapevine to both set up and finish the choke.  Each time Neil Melanson twists to one side or the other, it forces the mounted opponent to turn their body from side to side.  So initially, to set up the choking arm, he would turn his hips down and extend his grapevine, then switch to the other side to have the opponent turn and allow him to finalize the choke.

 Stay on the lookout for Neil Melanson's upcoming release from BJJFanatics.com all about the head and arm choke.  For now, you can satisfy your fix for Neil Melanson's unique catch wrestling approach by checking out Cradle of Filth.  You can get your copy here or at the Buy Now link below.

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