What Is Inside Sankaku? (Leg Attack Entanglement)

What Is Inside Sankaku? (Leg Attack Entanglement)

If you are a big fan of submission only Jiu Jitsu, there is one phrase that you will hear over and over. That phrase is inside sankaku. But what is inside sankaku? Inside sankaku is one of the many leg entanglements that exist in BJJ and Submission Wrestling. It is a particular entanglement, where your legs are triangling your opponent’s legs on the inside. Out of all of the entanglements, inside sankaku is probably the most powerful. The position sets you up for the most dangerous submission in all of Jiu Jitsu and it locks down the opponent’s hip which prevents any rolling escape. Three competitors that use the position to perfection are Eddie Cummings, Garry Tonon and Gordon Ryan (from the Danaher Death Squad). When it comes to entanglements, here are some of its best aspects. Check out this awesome entry into inside sankaku from Craig Jones as he demonstrates on world champion, Bernardo Faria. 


The entries are endless

One of the strongest points when it comes to inside sankaku are the endless amounts of entries. You can enter from butterfly guard, from butterfly half, x guard, imanari roll, etc. If there is a way to triangle your legs around your opponent’s legs on the inside, then that is a way into inside sankaku. Eddie Cummings likes to enter into the entanglement from butterfly, as does Gordon. Garry likes to mix in take downs while transferring in. Because of ridiculous amounts of entries, you can always keep your opponent guessing.

Extremely hard to defend

Another reason that this is one of the hottest positions, is because that it is extremely hard to defend. The position itself locks down the opponent’s hips. That completely shuts down the chance of your opponent from hitting any rolling escape. The best chance to escape is to hope that you’re sweaty enough to possibly slip out. Otherwise, it is a lose-lose situation. If you try to play within the entanglement, you are sure to be submitted.

The reverse heel hook

Going off of the last aspect, inside sankaku leads directly into a reverse heel hook. Because of the way your legs are triangled on the inside, it turns the opponent’s foot up and puts the toes in your armpit. The reverse heel hook is easily the most dangerous and painful submission in all of Jiu Jitsu. It is a submission that will tear every ligament from your ankle to your knee. Besides being dangerous, it also is hard to defend. Most black belts have a tough time defending the leg attack, let alone anyone else. If this all seems overwhelming to you, check out our article "Leg Locks Overview" for a good introduction to all things leg locks!

Learning the leg attack game is a smart thing to do if you want to pursue the no gi, sub only game. Learning this game will give you an advantage of the standard points seeking fighter. So don’t be a fool, and start picking up leg entanglements and attacks. If you really want to improve this part of your game, then you need to check out Craig Jones new DVD Set "Down Under Leg Attacks."  Craig Jones is quickly becoming one of the biggest superstars in bjj due to his outstanding performance at ADCC 2017 in Finland where he was able to submit Leandro Lo.  He recently competed at an EBI and submitted everyone on his way to the finals via inside sankaku heel hook.  He almost got the king, Gordon Ryan in an arm lock in the finals but fell short!