Are you wise to the armdrag in Jiu-Jitsu and MMA?

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André Galvão and Pablo Popovitch in an armdrag-filled affair at ADCC 2011 / Photo: Daren Bartlett/GRACIEMAG

The other day two 15-year-old boys were having a conversation at a restaurant in the Brazilian city of Fortaleza when one asked, “What’s an armdrag?” They didn’t know. An eavesdropper made it into the subject for this post. After all, how many white belts are out there with the same question buzzing in their minds? How many UFC and MMA fans are there in the world who don’t know how to do an armdrag? Your problems are over, gentle reader in doubt.

So how exactly does this dragging of the arm work?

“The armdrag serves to help you get the sweep or reversal by pulling the opponent’s arm at the elbow and sliding out your hip,” explains the didactic black belt Marcelo Vilhena of Brazilian Fight team. “It opens up room for you to get your hip around the side and head towards his back.”

Vilhena further elaborates: “The arm reaching across grabs at the opponent’s elbow, while the other one assists in pulling. By doing so you can get out from bottom position and take the back or, at worst, end up on top.

Two-time Jiu-Jitsu world champion Antonio Braga Neto contributed his own lesson on the move for readers. “I always use the armdrag as a counter-attack, but I also do it without using the arm, which theoretically would be essential. My armdrag works by grabbing my opponent’s collar. I wait for the guy to shrink his weight back in the direction opposite where my hand is placed or his arm is extended, and then I crack the guy down to the ground while at the same time sliding out my hip.”

Watch another splendid armdrag variation in the following video:

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