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Short Guide To Understanding the Knee Bar

Short Guide To Understanding the Knee Bar


The kneebar, the cousin submission of the armbar, is one of the oldest and most powerful leg locks used in different types of grappling. Furthermore, its one of the more widely accepted leg submissions and does not carry the stigma that heel hooks do.

Kneebars used to be much more popular than they are today, especially in no-gi circuits. This is probably due to the rise in popularity of heel hooks, which have a significant positional relationship with the kneebar. The knee bar, however, is still used and even preferred in some scenarios. Also, the kneebar doesn’t have the same competition restrictions we see with heel hooks.

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Like most leg locks, the knee bar can be attacked from many different angles. The most common set up is from top half guard. This is done by rotating around the leg so that you are sitting in what looks like a reverse mount, which is a very difficult position to escape.

One can also set up the kneebar from bottom half guard either by forcing the top player over or by waiting till they put pressure forward. The kneebar from bottom half guard is trickier to set up and also exposes the guard player to getting leg locked themselves.

If you have a good understanding of the armbar, the kneebar will make a lot of sense. Essentially, just keep all the same details but replace the arm with the leg and the shoulders with the hips. Maintaining tight control of the legs, bridging, and sucking the feet in are all tips that you can use here.

The most common question grapplers have regarding the kneebar is what the best grip is. I have learned quite a few different ones and realized that everyone will prefer it slightly differently. My personal favorite is rear naked choke grip, aka figure four grip, with the free handing grabbing the foot on the knuckle joints. This grip will help prevent rotation of the leg, which is necessary for the escape.

  • 2 x Black Belt World Champion Gabriel Arges – Undefeated As A Black Belt At Worlds In His Weight
  • Gabriel Arges won the finals of the black belt worlds by knee bar
  • Learn arguably the best Knee Bar in the world today
  • This is a complete and easy to use system
  • Gabriel has been able to utilize this lower body attack at the highest levels on numerous occasions



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