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The Arm Drag: Secret Weapon For Takedowns & BJJ Guard

The Arm Drag: Secret Weapon For Takedowns & BJJ Guard

The Powerful Arm Drag For Takedowns & BJJ Guard Players

The arm drag is a powerful setup (and a takedown itself) for many takedowns found in wrestling and judo, but is also one of the best weapons for a BJJ Guard Player. The arm drag itself is commonly found in wrestling rooms and used to effectively setup double leg takedowns, single legs, as well as upperbody takedowns found in Greco Roman Wrestling.

The Arm Drag is one of the favorite setups used by Greco Roman Olympian Bronze Medalist and BJJ Masters Word Champion: Adam Wheeler.

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How To Do The Arm Drag

The concept of executing the arm drag is very simple. Control your opponents arm with either both hands. Typically one hand behind the elbow, with the other having wrist control.

Using the 2 on 1 arm control, think about pulling your opponent past you, and you pull yourself to your opponent. The arm drag when done effectively will allow you to take your opponents back or remove their defenses so that you have a straight "shot" at their legs or midsection.

Here is one of our favorite videos on how to do the arm drag for wrestling or BJJ takedowns.

Arm Drag Trap and Takedown With Bernardo Faria

Arm Drags By Wrestling Legend John Smith

Greco Roman Wrestling Arm Drag By Adam Wheeler

Arm Drag From Guard

Being a guard player can be very tedious.  One of the best weapons a guard player can use is the arm drag.  The arm drag has long been one of the best techniques in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Why is the arm drag so powerful? There are several reasons, the arm drag is extremely versatile, it is very quick, and it can be used from several guards.

The arm drag can be used from virtually anywhere; Marcelo Garcia and many other Black Belt World Champions have always used the arm drag to win tournaments. Check out our article “Why the Arm Drag is so important to Jiu Jitsu.”  It is a great read on how the arm drag has been used over the last decade.  

ArmDrag Versatility

The arm drag is one of the most versatile moves in bjj.  The arm drag has Greco roman wrestling roots and is simple and effective.  You can use the arm drag while standing or from guard, and it is very effective in gi, nogi, self-defense, and MMA.

The arm drag is a powerful weapon.  Check out our article “Harness the Power of the Arm Drag ” To learn some cool set ups and entries.  Check out this video of an arm drag from butterfly guard with Caio Terra below.

The Arm Drag Aggression

The arm drag can be an extremely explosive move and works well as an engagement point.  You can use the arm drag to start your roll from either standing or seated guard.  This is another benefit to the arm drag.

Engaging a roll before your opponent is very important.  You always want to dictate the pace and movement of a match and the arm drag is an excellent way to do just that.  Check out this highlight of Marcelo Garcia below and watch how often he uses the arm drag.

The Arm Drag from Guard Technqiues

One of the best places to use the arm drag is from guard.  You can use the arm drag from almost any guard effectively.  You can use it from half guard, full guard, butterfly, De La Riva, and many more guards.  It is always a good move to build movement.

One of the best positions to use the arm drag from is the butterfly guard.  In many gyms, people will start their rolls on their knees and one person may elect to play guard by playing butterfly.  This is a great position to use the arm drag.  You can use it to sweep, get a single leg or take the back.  Check out this video of a single leg finish below.  The single leg takedown is often set up with an arm drag.

Learn The Safest Yet Most Effective Takedowns That You Will Ever Need For BJJ: From An Olympic Medalist and Black Belt Masters No Gi World Champion

“I have to admit as a mainly bjj practioner I was skeptical about getting this DVD because I thought it wouldn't be too applicable to bjj due to not directly grabbing the legs, but after watching a few techniques I am excited to integrate many of these takedowns into my game. He also presents it in a SYSTEMATIC way that chains the moves together so that if one step fails you logically progress to the next step instead of starting over and doing another random move. A lot of DVDs claim to be a "system" but this one, like Danaher's stuff really is a system.”

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