Terms

  • Submissions – also called holds or hooks, any technique which causes an opponent to concede victory or lose by injury or incapacitation. The term hooks can also be applied to the use of limbs to control an opponent. Underhooks and overhooks tend to refer to specific arm positions while your hooks refers to the use of ones feet to control a person in the back mount position.
  • Joint locks – any techniques which limit the movement of one or more joints.
  • Arm locks – joint locks applied to the finger(s), wrist, elbow, or shoulder. Typically the term is used to refer to elbow or shoulder locks.
  • Arm bar (armbar) – any technique which bars the movement of the arm. Typically the term is used to refer to straight elbow locks, but is frequently also applied to shoulder or bent elbow locks.
  • Leg locks – joint locks applies to the toe(s), ankle, knee, or hip. Typically the term is used to refer to knee or ankle locks.
  • Knee bar (kneebar) – any technique which bars the movement of the knee. Typically the term is only used to describe straight knee locks, but it could feasibly refer to rotational knee locks as well.
  • Blood Chokes (Strangles) – techniques which deprive the brain of oxygen by pinching arteries in the neck. The term is sometimes also used to refer to strangles where “blood choke” is then used to differentiate a true choke from a strangle.
  • Air Chokes (Chokes) – techniques which attack the windpipe to try to limit breathing.
  • Neck crank – a joint lock applied to the cervical spine.
  • Guard – the position where one individual is on their back controlling their opponent’s hips. Common variations of guard are open guard, half guard, closed guard, high guard, spider guard, X guard, De La Riva guard, and butterfly guard. More variations and variant names for the various forms of guard exist. To be in someone’s guard is to be in the top position with your hips being controlled. To have someone in your guard is to be in the bottom position, controlling their hips.
  • Mount – the position where one individual is sitting on the other one with one leg on each side of their body. To be mounted is to be on your back with your opponent straddling you. To mount someone is to straddle them while they are on their back. If you are facing your opponent’s head while mounting them the position is just called “mount”. If you are facing your opponent’s legs the position is called “reverse mount.”  A “back mount” is to control your opponent in a position similar to the guard, but with their back facing you. Points for the back mount usually require that your feet be inside your opponents legs – this is called having your hooks in. Hooks can also be used to “grapevine” an opponent from the mount position.
  • Figure four – a basic grip where one hand is gripping the opponent’s limb and the other hand is gripping the arm of the first hand. The term also applies to the same type of configuration of the legs (do a Google search for triangle choke to see this leg position).
  • Takedowns – an arbitrary class of techniques characterized by both individuals going to the ground with one person being in a top control position such as the mount, side control, or kesa gatame. The term creates a grey area with sacrifice throws which may also result with both individuals going to the ground. Sacrifice throws are initiated by the attacker falling to his back or side to sacrifice his position, whereas takedowns are usually initiated without significant risk of losing the dominant position.
  • Throws – an arbitrary class of techniques used to put an opponent on the ground, but which may or may not include the class of techniques referred to as takedowns. Technically speaking, all takedowns are throws, but not all throws are takedowns. Judo further divides throws into hand throws (which include most all common wrestling takedowns), foot throws, hip throws, side sacrifice throws, and rear sacrifice throws. See the link below for a breakdown of the 67 recognized judo throws and how they are classified.
  • Pins – an arbitrary term varying from sport to sport. The term is used to refer to positions of top control which warrant victory if held for a defined period of time. Various styles of wrestling define a pin being between two and four points of contact (a single point would be each hip or each shoulder, so both shoulders and one hip would be three points of contact). Judo is more specific defining a pin as a specific subset of positions. There is no true notion of pinning in BJJ as points are awarded, but no victory is possible. The term in BJJ is typically used to refer to the top positions in general.
  • Pulling guard – the tactic of sitting down or jumping onto your opponent to gain the guard position without an actual attempt to throw. The guard is seen as a dominant position in BJJ so the tactic is very commonly implemented there. Many rule sets have limitations on when it can be done or negative points for doing so. The forms of grappling which favor top positions generally penalize this tactic as it is seen as avoiding standing forms of grappling.

JudoInfo has a techniques resource for the common Japanese names of techniques and videos.

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