JKD & BJJ Short Kicks and Triangle Chokes

Jeet Kune Do has some brutal kicks delivered at extremely short range:The "regular" arsenal of longer range kicks include:Using this arsenal we started with a progressive low line coordination drillWe also worked punatuken (3 shot drills) with "advanced" practitioners inserting a reaction to the final kick by your partner, e.g. leg defense, picking up the kick, leg evasion, or knee destruction. We finished up with hubud (Filipino energy drill/pummeling) and over-under pummeling while inserting our kicks. The essential key was body mechanics (or should it be dynamics) to create enough space for the kick and being able to deliver it forcefully.
Today in BJJ the class was divided up and the purple belts taught technique (Jack was very hoarse). I showed the triangle to my group. In my opinion there are essentially two ways to enter the triangle:
  1. Controlling an arm/sleeve and the head/lapel, keeping the head low and the arm control to guide into the triangle submission. For example, if someone tries to pass by going under your leg, this set up will often times be used.
  2. Leg grab, that is, shoot one leg over your partner's shoulder and catching them in a loose (or tight if your able) triangle. This happens when you go for the triangle from the open guard.
In either case once we have started to enter the triangle it is essential to control our opponent. This can be done by
  1. Retaining head control with lapel or neck grip
  2. Grabbing your own shin next to your partner's head and switching to cross hand arm control
  3. Setting the best triangle you can, i.e. the leg grab
The triangle is often lost here, because we do not secure a full triangle and rather than controlling the position we have and adjusting we lose the attack entirely. In order to finish with the triangle the area between your thigh, leg, and your opponent's arm must be minimized.
The Anatomy of a TriangleTightening the Noose
The Anatomy of a Triangle
Tightening the Noose
Profile view of the initial triangle position
Profile view tightening the noose
We create a hangman's noose tightened by three dependent variables:
  1. Angle
    Your body should be more than 45o off your partner's midline in the direction opposite the side with the arm through. Since you have crossed the arm over your body, they will "typically" point in the direction you need to go. To increase your angle, use the same side hand on shin control free your other leg to push in your partner's hip. Alternatively, keep the triangle position and hug the far arm, either getting the armbar submission or pulling yourself into a deeper angle.
  2. Minimizing the knee angle
    Pull your free leg foot toward your posterior. We cannot shorten our legs, but we can decrease the angle between the two. This decreased angle between the thigh and leg forming two sides of the triangle, minimizes the area. You will need to contract your calf and hamstrings, this also decreases the available area within the triangle
  3. Tightening the noose
    Finally, perform a crunch, pulling your bottom and top together, this will push the through arm further across your body and create increased pressure by driving their shoulder into the choke.
If all else fails, hug your partner's head to finish the triangle. Using these principles, I showed three entries:
  1. Opponent tries to pass with one hand under
  2. From open guard
  3. Off an armbar that is pulled out

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