Isn’t that obvious you say? When it hurts, tap! Apparently it isn’t that clear to everyone. This Russian model and bodyguard didn’t know when to tap, "Former Russian Model Killed in Carjacking", even though she had Jiu-Jitsu experience. There are more factors that play into it. In her case the Porsche was more important then her life. What are the things that hold me back from tapping? Pride has to be number one. I don’t want to be beat. I have to hold out at least long enough that my opponent doesn’t think I’m a push over. Those are the kinds of things I tell myself. I tore my MCL because of that kind of thinking. I changed my philosophy after that to "In a war there are lost battles even on the victors side". I live to fight another day now. I try to make each battle an accumulative learning experience, win or lose. I feel I’m winning the war on most fronts now. But it is far from over. I have often wondered why Helio Gracie refused to tap when he said a technique was not "good technique". I understand that Helio passed out in his fight against Kimura because Kimura was squeezing his ribs and stopping his lungs from expanding. What about when Kimura broke his arm? So I will end this post with this thought, tap when a technique is effective or accept the consequences.
I’ve been studying the Triangle Choke in order to improve my success ratio with it. By teaching you retain and learn better yourself. I hope by sharing with you what I found out we both benefit.
To start with I reviewed the Triangle Choke in four different books and two different videos along with instruction I received in class. The books I used were:
- Jiu-Jitsu University
- Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Master Techniques: The Essential Guard
- Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu: Theory and Technique
- Mastering the Rubber Guard: Jiu Jitsu for Mixed Martial Arts Competition
The videos I looked at where:
Here are the keys to locking down a successful Triangle from my study.
- You don’t want the leg over the neck to be on the shoulders at all. The leg on the neck must be only on the neck and tight against it with the leg perpendicular to the line of the neck. You are making a cross. As you position your leg across the neck you don’t have to worry about them slipping out because you have control of the arm. Here is a video that illustrates my point: Flying Triangle Choke. He does get the Triangle but its a sloppy one and had the guy not panicked I think he could have worked his way out.
- Your hips should align with his neck. You are creating a collar. If your hips are to far past his neck or below you are creating space that keeps you from locking. Walk your shoulders out or in to get your hips under his neck.
- Get the arm across. Eddie Bravo is the odd man our that doesn’t move the arm across the body. Control of the arm and its position are critical to the success of the Triangle.
- Grab your shin not your foot when pulling the leg across the neck forward to get it perpendicular . The instinct is to grab the foot. This puts pressure on your own ankle. It is better to grab the shin which is solid and not give yourself a sprain or ankle lock. If you can’t sit up enough to get the shin your hips may be not be aligned correctly.
- Angle your hips to get the strangle. You do this by pulling your upper body to one side or at the same time you hook the leg over the neck.
- Lock the leg over where your knee bends while pointing up the toes. If your Triangle technique is correct you should be able to drop your other leg over the leg across the neck. This completes the Triangle. I’ve found that sometimes you don’t even need to get the lock in place if it is correct. Your arm pulling on your shin with the leg correctly over and tight against the neck can have the same effect as the lock.
- Squeeze the legs together, lift the hips, and pull the head down to get the submission. Once the lock is in place if that isn’t enough to make them tap then add the fine tuning to put the hurt on fast.
- Sweep a stack! If he starts stacking forward reach over and hook his leg opposite the arm that is in the Triangle. You have control of his head and arm making his base only one leg. You have now locked his leg and what can he do as you push with your hips against his upper body? He will fall over and maybe you will end up in a mounted triangle. Talk about going from the frying pay into the fire for him.