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-   -   Cross Collar Choke (http://www.catalystathletics.com/forum/showthread.php?t=5636)

Derek Simonds 08-13-2010 08:31 AM

Cross Collar Choke
I have been playing with the Cross Collar from guard and mount with some good success. It has always been an integral part of my game as a setup but not as an actual submission. In researching the choke a couple of things have come up. One is that Roger Gracie apparently teaches the choke with the strong hand in the traditional palm up but with the weak hand he uses a thumb in palm down grip. Another thing is the position that Roger uses from the mount to finish the choke. He really wraps his legs and maintains enormous pressure while applying the choke. Someone said that when he does the choke from the mount it isn't a timing sub it is a brutal, exert your will, I am going to dominate you submission. Apparently when he locks the first hand in he drives the elbow down into the sternum and places as much pressure as he can onto the elbow while working to get the other hand in.

All that said several of the guys I train with have weak wrists. Not limp mind you just weak. A properly executed choke depends on being able to pull your pinky towards the ulna while gripping the gi tightly. I have been playing with several different levering motions and I think that the weaver lift and sledge levering have the most direct carryover to the collar choke.

Any thoughts?

Derek Simonds 08-13-2010 08:40 AM

I found this just now.


Roger has choked me with this. It was not fun.

I asked him to explain the finer details, which I will share with you:

The first thing is base. Let's say you want to get your right hand in first. Post out with your left hand and lean over to the left, preventing the guy from bridging/bucking you off to the right.

The next thing is to get the right hand in deep. After that it's all over. Experienced opponents know this and will defend tenaciously. If you just try to push your hand using shoulder strength, the guy will most likely be able to keep it out.

What Roger does is to brace his right elbow on the inside of his hip bone/inner thigh and then lean forward, using his body weight to force the hand inside the collar. Get it deep.

Next step. Zankou has it spot on. Move the elbow onto his breastbone and lean your bodyweight on it as hard as you can. Vicious. I was considering tapping just from that.

Next reach over his head with your left arm and base on your left elbow. Hook your thumb inside his collar near his left trap, palm up. Then bring your left elbow up over his face in a quick movement and apply the choke. Since only your thumb is hooked in, it helps if you have inhuman grip strength like Roger. Leaning forward and basing your head on the ground often makes it tighter.

Even if it isn't perfectly across the throat the guy will tap, believe me.

Against Roger, my recommendation would be to worry less about the neck, which he will get anyway, and do everything you can to recover half-guard quickly. Good luck with that. Haha.

Hope this helps you guys.

Derek Simonds 08-13-2010 08:57 AM

Ralek Gracie with this technique.


Pretty darn violent...

Grissim Connery 08-13-2010 03:18 PM

i'm not really sure if your question is about technique or about building wrist strength. in either case, you don't need as much strength as you'd think to pull this off.

everything you've mentioned so far is right. somethings to consider: the bottom arm is the one that really chokes, and the further his face is turned away from the choke, the less it will choke. when you drag your elbow across, use your elbow to point his chin at your choking wrist. if a guy tries to resist it, it will be painful both from the pressure and from the massive gi burn he will give himself. another consideration is proportions; yes, having the thumb in the collar is good, but sometimes the size of the gi or the kind of gi he has will mess it up. it's ok to grab the fabric on his trap without getting a thumb inside, just as long as i can use my elbow to point his chin at the choking hand.

ralek does what i've always heard called "shake the baby." shaking/earthquake motions often allow you to open cracks in people's grips or, in this case, to his neck. then you can slide the choke in deeper. it's one of those things that feel like magic when you do it. all of the sudden you are way deep.

a cool trick to do if the guy has his arms folded tight is to grab the base of his lapel near his waist, pull it up high towards your face, then push it down hard above his shoulder on the same side, this will temporarily impede his arm, but more importantly, it will allow EASY access to slide your first grip in deep. roger's method of using his hip sounds cool though. i'll try that next week.

if your partner's wrists feel weak right when they grab it, then tell them to straighten their wrist before they grab. the problem is that although deeper is normally better, sometimes people reach so deep that their wrist bends into a weak position. thus they achieve a deeper choke, but their wrist is so bent that trying to apply pressure through the wrist feels like you're wristlocking yourself. pull back the grip just enough to make the wrist firm again, and then take the grip. if for some reason you try to choke at that point and it's still not deep enough, "shake the baby."

Grissim Connery 08-13-2010 03:23 PM

another bit of cool info is that some people now place both hand in a palm down grip. i think saulo teaches this in his dvd. you feel safer as you do it, but in order to actually finish the choke, you have to slide up to perpendicular, as if you were going for the arm.

Derek Simonds 08-17-2010 06:01 AM

Grissim thanks for the reply. I was posing the question on strengthening the wrists but also putting all my thoughts in one place so I figured I would share what I have found. I will try and see if anyone at the academy has the Saulo DVD I am interested in the both palms down technique.

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