Class 2014-04-07: Mount Attack, Armbar and Triangle

AttacksThis class is another case of intending to do something else, but needing to come up with a replacement due to the class skill mix.

We start off with an armbar from mount. 

A very detailed treatment of armbar from mount is available elsewhere on (Armbar Fundamentals)  It goes into more detail that I did for this class, so rather than cut and paste, I encourage you to check out the previous link for a good armbar from mount writeup.

Next up is a triangle from mount

A mounted triangle is slightly tricky to finish in mount, so this class shows the variation where you roll off to the side where the finish will feel a little more familiar.

Triangle Positioning

To start, you need to have control of the head and control of the arm you are going to pass your leg over.  The best place to put your hand on your opponents head is at the base of the skull.  Your little finger should be at the bottom of the skull, as if you are trying to dig your hand under the bone.  This will give you the best leverage on the head while minimizing the risk of slipping.  You don’t need to lift up on the head yet, and it tends to telegraph that you are going to attempt a triangle.  Position your hand, but don’t start lifting their head yet.

Your other hand should be controlling the arm you are going to step over.  Usually you will be gripping the wrist and pinning the arm straight out from your opponents body.


From this setup, you will drive your leg over your opponents arm.  There are some variations to this, but the most common is to step your foot over the arm, then lift your opponents head to make room for your leg.  When you drive your leg under your opponents head, the same rules for a triangle from guard apply.  Be aggressive, as if you want to knock your opponents head off.  The goal is to have the back of your knee fully engaged on their neck.

Now that you have your leg under their neck, you can release their head and grab onto your shin to lock the triangle in until you can get to a finishing position.  One of my students asked where you should grab your leg.  This is actually somewhat important, and getting the right location takes some getting used to.  Your target area will prevent your opponent from ducking their head out while allowing you to create your ideal angle.  If you grab too close to your ankle, your opponent will have an easier time either posturing up or ducking their head out during the finish of this variation.  If you grab too close to your knee, you will prevent yourself from being able to create a good angle for the finish.  If you are going to err, it’s best to eff on the side of too tight.  This is why I recommend that you just release the head and grab your shin where it lets you bump your forearm against your opponents head.

To simplify the finish we are going to roll off to the side of our leg that is under the head.  During the roll, you should also be trying to create a good angle for finishing the triangle  If all went according to plan, you should have your opponent locked in against your arm, and the finish should be able to be locked up during the roll over.


Mounted attacks should be a strong focus for every fundamentals student.  These two attacks are good default goals for gi and no-gi, and they will work incredibly well against an unskilled opponent as well as an experienced sports jiu-jitsu practitioner.  One opponent is harder to finish than the other, but the fundamentals are the same.  Take advantage of your superior position, and setup a submission that is very difficult to escape from.

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