Leg locks : The 5 Basic Types

The jiu-jitsu world is seeing a higher frequency and success of competitors who use leg attacks as their primary strategy at the high level events such as the Eddie Bravo Invitational and Polaris.
Let’s take a look at the basic categories of leg locks.

1) Straight Foot lock (aka Achilles lock, Ankle lock)
This is the first leg attack that most of us learn and is legal in most grappling competitions.
There are many setups but the mechanics of correctly applying the force are critical to getting the tap.

2) Heel Hook
The heel hook has basically 2 variations: the outside and inside heel hook. Depending on which side of the heel you are gripping.
* Known as possibly the most dangerous submissions in grappling – exercise caution when training this technique!

3) Knee Bar
Knee bar master Stephan Kesting shows the most common mistakes in performing the knee bar.
We see knee bar submissions in all aspects of jiu-jitsu: MMA, kimono and no-gi. There are some incredible setups for the knee bar you can investigate!

4) Toe Hold
Dean Lister is famous for his leg locks that he has used to win the ADCC Championships 2x and numerous other grappling titles.
Here Lister shares some details about how to correctly apply the toe hold.

5) Calf Crush / Calf Slicer
Ralph Gracie black belt Sean Roberts has a great deal of success with his patented calf slicer.
Sean demonstrates how he sets up the slicer and the specific details on how to maximize the leverage.

There are other variations and lesser known leg attacks, but the majority that we see in competitions will fall under one of these 5 categories.

“The Spider-Ninja” on Experimentation and Innovation in your Jiu-Jitsu

“The Spider-Ninja” on Experimentation and Innovation in your Jiu-Jitsu


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