Unique Head and Arm Choke Variations
There is an endless variety of choke options that one has available in jiu jitsu or submission grappling. One of the best variations that works well in both gi and no gi situations is the head and arm choke or arm triangle choke.
In this particular choke, one of the opponent's arms is isolated and trapped across their body high up so that their arm runs perpendicular to their neck and allows pressure to be placed on the shoulder of that arm cutting off the blood flow on that particular side. In one of the most common variations from side control, the opponent's far arm is isolated and that shoulder is trapped and pinned to the side of their neck using one's body, head and gable gripped hands. In this variation, one must move their body across the opponent's body to maximize the forward pressure of the trapped arm into their throat. This can be achieved by first beginning to utilize a low knee on the belly that drives across their body seeking the floor with your knee. As that leg goes across the body, the trailing leg windshield wipers in and remains applying pressure on the far side. Then by sprawling out and driving your head upward and attempting to look over their head, while giving a gentle squeeze with your arms, the opponent will tap.
In the videos below, we will see a number of unique variations to this basic head and arm choke. I would recommend working the basic one described above to be able to get a feel for the proper placement of the opponent's arm. It also takes some finesse to truly land this choke without trying to squeeze their head off out of frustration. I have found that by really utilizing the placement of my upper body and accentuating the look over their head, the squeeze becomes almost unnecessary.
Before we look at the videos below, check out this head and arm choke variation taught by BJJ Fanatics' own Tom DeBlass at a seminar in West Virginia. Note for a big, strong BJJ athlete, Tom relies primarily on proper body placement to secure the tap and not simply brute strength.
In the video below, Master Renzo Gracie shows a very unique hand placement that will revolutionize the way you work the head and arm choke. In his own words, we are addicted to going too deep with our grip in an effort to make the choke tighter, but in reality we are achieving the opposite results.
In the next video, Russian grappling phenom Rustam Chsiev shows a Russian Head and Arm smother that will have your opponents begging for mercy from the first time you apply this simple variation of the head and arm choke.
Lastly, in the video below, we see a very interesting and sneaky use of the head and arm choke when an opponent is turtled. What is great about this variation is that it comes so unexpectedly to your opponent, they will have no time to launch an offense and will be force to tap in seconds.
If you want to learn all of the secrets to Russian grappling and wrestling phenom Rustam Chsiev's game, you will want to take advantage of the special offer on his "Russian Grappling Hacks" 4 DVD instructional set. The powerful techniques contained in this all-encompassing grappling system will have you sending your opponent's back to the woodshed much like Ivan Drago did in Rocky IV.