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Sharpen Your Americana From Mount with Andre Galvao
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Sharpen Your Americana From Mount with Andre Galvao

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The Americana is a great submission, especially from the mount because there are not a wide range of options for defending it. It is a very strong position and if you have it locked well, your opponent has no choice but to tap or risk a serious shoulder injury.


More recently in the world of Jiu Jitsu, technique from the mount has been getting more attention. Both from the top and bottom positions, practitioners continue to strengthen their game, making both attacking and defending more difficult.


Before diving deep into the technique of submissions from mount, it is important to spend time learning how to effectively control the mount. Often newer Jiu Jitsu practitioners get to the mount and are so eager to attack submissions, they fail to keep a strong base or easily give up and arm to a trap and roll and get reversed.


To properly attack and maintain the mount, it is important to understand what the bottom persons goals are in terms of getting out. They are going to bridge, try to get their legs into play to retain their guard, try to trap your legs, and so on. Understanding this you know you need to stay tight, keep a good base, apply pressure, and be patient and stubborn until you get the opportunity for a submission attempt.


In this video, Andre Galvao gives a technical explanation of a variation of an Americana from the mount, check it out below!


 


To begin, Andre goes over the importance of being aware of exactly what you are doing when using this technique. He explains that this shoulder lock can absolutely cause injury, so be mindful when you have it locked up whether you are training with a partner in class or in competition.


Starting in the mount, Andre first makes sure he will be able to maintain the position by keeping his knees and feet close to his partner to avoid getting one of his legs trapped. He also keeps his knees in his partners armpits to try and take away some of the mobility of his partners arms. He keeps his weight forward over his partners chest and head, making it difficult for his partner to bridge and allowing himself to base out with his arms.

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To avoid having one of his arms isolated and trapped, it is likely your partner is going to be keeping his arms close to him, perhaps tight over his chest to both keep them safe and to try and frame and create some distance between you. He might have his arms crossed over his chest which is fine, but what that means is you are always going to attack whichever arm he has on top.


When you know which arm you are going to be attacking, you are going to use one of your arms to get control on his wrist, and the other to control near his elbow; controlling his entire forearm. Andre states that he likes to use a gorilla grip here, meaning he does not use his thumbs to wrap around his partners arm like a “C” grip, instead he keeps them up with the rest of his fingers. 


From here the goal is to drive your partners forearm to the floor. An important note from here is that you do not want to put your weight forward and over his arm and try to push. Rather, stiffen your arms and use your entire body to push his arm, keeping yourself tight. When you get his forearm to the mat, you need to ensure that the back of his hand is also on the mat.


Once the back of his hand is on the mat, you are going to keep the grip you have on his wrist and let go of his elbow, passing that hand under his arm and you are going to grab your own wrist. When doing this, your arm that is closest to your partner's head needs to have your entire forearm on the ground, and your elbow close to his head continuing to keep everything tight.


When you pass your hand under his arm and grip your wrist, you should maintain the gorilla grips. To finish the submission from here you are going to slide his arms down towards his waist, and lift your elbow up. This engages the shoulder lock and as long as you have followed the technique properly and have everything tight, you are sure to get the tap.


Some people have more flexible shoulders than others, so you may be able to get the tap by just slightly lifting your elbow, and for someone else you may have to lift it a bit  more. Just be mindful not to rip your elbow up here and potentially injure someone, this is a spot that offers great control and gives you the ability to take your time.


Fourth degree Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt Andre Galvao has one of the biggest names in the Jiu Jitsu world. He has trained under Fernando Augusta and Luis Dagmar and has a long list of achievements such as 6-time IBJJF Champion, 6-time ADCC Champion, and many more. 


In this instructional, Andre covers the basics of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. The amount of technique that is presented in this instructional is seemingly endless, and it covers topics such as mount escapes, standing and kneeling guard passing, multiple sweep variations, almost every submission you can imagine, and so much more.


Allow one of the most sought after coaches in the world to help you perfect your technique and sharper your arsenal, check out his instructional here!

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