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Rotational Submissions

Submission Type




For the most part a rotational submission is a twisting lock usually on a joint, often a ball and socket joint or hinge joint. 

So how can this help us?

My aim with this series is to help you generalize what you should be doing in the submission, even if you have never done it before.

Examples of rotational Submission

  • Kimura (Ball and Socket Rotational Submission)
  • Americana (Ball and Socket Rotational Submission)
  • Omoplata (Ball and Socket Rotational Submission)
  • Heel Hook (Hinge Joint Rotational Submission)
  • Twister (Cartilaginous Joint Rotational Submission)

So what are some of the keys to a rotation submission?

In general terms the biggest things to remember are often in a rotational submission are the following (Not all the time but usually)

  1. You are not directly gripping the affected area – As an example a kimura is a shoulder lock but you are attaching to the wrist and elbow to finish the submission. Typically you are one down from the target joint. Often securing the joints below. 
  2. You are focusing on keeping the trapped area very tight to your body
  3. You are locking down the affected area in some way. Often trapping the bone or bones above the joint you are trying to affect. In the case of an americana this would be the chest. 
  4. You want to create rotation in more than one plane. 

What other factors do I have to worry about with a rotation submission?

You have to attempt to trap any appendage that might be able to aid your opponent in grabbing the affected appendage.  

You have to control the distance. Allowing your opponent to create space lessens the effect of your submission. 

Not allowing rotational movement in the same direction you are taking the submission

How can we get out of these?

Ball and Socket Rotational Submissions – Often you are trying to grab the affected arm and pull it back to your center or roll in the same direction of the submission. 

Hinge Joint Rotational Submissions – 

  • If they do not have proper control of the bone above the joint you can rotate in the same direction as the submission and pull out the affected appendage. 
  • If they do have proper control above the joint I have to break the grip they have on the bone below the affected joint.