The Jiu Jitsu Times Weekly Challenge: Transition the Submission

As you may already know we’ve been issuing a weekly challenge here at Jiu Jitsu Times.  The purpose of each weekly challenge is to offer you a training method that can help improve your game by changing only one aspect of what you do for that week.

Last week we looked at the benefits of giving your training partner enough time to escape the submission by not applying it. This week we’re going to take this a step further: rather than holding the position where the submission is until your training partner is able to escape, transition to another submission.  That is to say: This entire week, at least 4 times per training session do not finish your training partner with a submission, but rather transition to a secondary submission. 

This exercise is to help you expand your transitional game.  For example: if you’re an individual who hits a lot of arm bars from mount, chances are you don’t hit too many bow and arrow chokes.  For the next week one option may be to transition from arm bars to bow and arrow chokes, or triangles or whatever.  The point is: don’t finish the primary submission, but rather transition to a secondary one.

This exercise has potential to help you in many ways.  For starters, it will help you see pathways to new and unexpected submissions.  The other day I was rolling with one of my teammates and I was doing this exact exercise.  I had him in an omoplata which he was defending well, so I transitioned to a toe hold which he wasn’t expecting.  Every submission has several other submissions that can be readily used.

There are a lot of possible benefits to this.  For starters, it’ll open your mind to available paths that you may not even notice.  Secondly, more often than not people will recognize the primary submission but not the secondary one, making submissions much easier to finish.  Not everyone reacts to submissions the same way, some people are able to escape submissions that seem like a sure thing, if you are thinking of transitions rather than focusing on finishing a submission that you may not be able to finish anyways, and your chances will greatly improve.

As part of this challenge, use the threat of a given submission to setup the next one.  For example go for that omoplata, but when you feel the other person resisting let them posture back up and close up that triangle.  There are plenty of examples, but try to use your submissions as setups for other submissions, and transition between different submissions as needed.

Let us know what you think of this challenge, and how it goes over the course of the week.  Have you seen this training method before?  If yes, do you have anything to add to the description?


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