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What Is The Estima Lock?

What Is The Estima Lock?


If you watch a lot of high level Jiu Jitsu, you will notice a particular foot lock that many black belts win with in competition. That foot lock is known as the estima lock. But what is the estima lock? Let’s go into a small history of this awesome leg attack.

How the Estima Lock was Created

In the late 2000’s, brothers and BJJ black belts, Victor and Braulio Estima developed this dangerous submission. Back in 2009, Braulio was getting ready for ADCC. His brother, Victor had quite the difficult time dealing with Braulio’s inverted guard. During one sparring session, Braulio’s foot got stuck in Victor’s midsection, and just by instinct, Victor wrapped up a rear naked choke grip. He submitted his brother, and the Estima brothers knew that they were onto something.
The foot lock gained worldwide acclaim when Victor submitted all of his opponents with it to win the 2011 No Gi Worlds. Ever since then, it has become an attack that almost every black belt has used at some point. Like the heel hook, the ankle lock, and the toe hold, the estima lock is a devastating lock that requires the use of hands. 

Take a look at what Victor says about the mechanics, and let him show you how you can use it as a defense to reverse De La Riva. He also recommends that you should forget about foot locks and just wait for the opportunity to present itself, but when it does, be "forceful and surprising". 

Breakdown Of the Estima Lock

As you see, Victor is playing low, attempting to pass when his opponent decides to transition to the reverse De La Riva. But as soon as he feels his opponent’s outside foot go to his hip, he goes right into the technique. Victor uses his outside arm to lock up half of a rear naked choke style grip, while crunching the foot in his abdomen. He then completes the full rnc grip and steps inside to get closer to his opponent. He turns his body and hips inward and compresses the foot/ankle by raising his opponent’s heel up to the ceiling. It’s quick, it is sudden and it hurts like hell.

The Explosion of the Estima Lock

The Estima Lock is now one of the most popular and devastating foot locks in the competition circuit.  Many of the worlds best Black Belts have been perfecting this submission and applying different variations of it.  The estima lock is often used in submission only competitions such as Eddie Bravo Invitational, Fight to Win Pro and Gracie Worlds. 

The estima lock has become a staple in the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and submission wrestling community.  It is one of the most popular lower body attacks in the world, rightfully so. This submission is absolutely devastating. If you're having problems and getting caught in this submission check out our article "3 Steps to Defending Leg Locks" for some help. Here is another video showing how to properly apply the devastating estima lock. 

Defending the Estima Lock

Defending the estima lock can be one of the most difficult things to do given the explosiveness of the submission.  It happens so fast and you have such little time to defend it. One of the keys to defending it is knowing the mechanics and being able to tell when your foot is in danger.  

After you know the mechanics and have good foot placement, if someone is going for it, there is a split second where you can invert to defend it.  Much like with defending a toe hold, always roll or invert towards your big toe.  Check out this video below displaying the escape. 

The Estima brothers have made this lock famous, but it has spread to many other competitors. Edwin Najmi is a frequent user of the submission. As is Felipe Pena, and even Marcus “Buchecha” Almedia. You can see how Felipe Pena uses the estima lock from the 50/50 guard in our article "Felipe Pena's Estima Lock from 50/50". It is a fantastic leg attack that can fit into anyone’s game. To explore more ways to add leg locks to your game, check out our article "Three Devastating Leg Locks in the Gi". 

If you want to explore this submission more, then check out…

Felipe Pena’s 50/50 Guard DVD set. Click here!

If you want to learn some more incredibly effective and sneaky foot locks, check out Luiz Panza's DVD set, "Hidden BJJ Secrets." 

Cover of DVD set instructional video on Hidden BJJ Secrets taught by Luiz Panza


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