4 Things You Need To Know To Nail The Rear Choke In Jiu Jitsu


Today, we’re going to work on back attacks. Let’s say, I’m on Justin’s back. This is one of the most dominant positions in grappling.

4 Things You Need To Know To Nail The Rear Choke In Jiu Jitsu

Being in the back, I can attack him. He’s got no offence really to speak up. Virtually nothing that he can do. He is pure defense. I can be 100% offence. He can’t even see what I’m doing back here.

I’ve got the seat belt and I want to choke Justin

So, whenever you can get on somebody’s back, even if your opponent is whole lot bigger than you are, this is a great place to be. You should definitely perfect this – getting on someone’s back and really be able to finish from there.

So, what we’re going to do is kind of summarize some of the things we have been working on. When you get someone’s back and they know a little bit of jiu jitsu, you should get into what we call  “the hand fight“. The reason why is that I’m going to start choking Justin and he will try to defend that. He won’t let me choke in. There starts a hand fighting between me and Justin.

So, to be a good back attacker, to be a good back choker, you have to be good at the hand fight. So, we’re going to talk about how to be good at the hand fight – getting back and being able to finish from back there.

I want to give you four things – four principles you need to know to be a good back attacker.

Principle One: Strip His Hands Off

Let’s say I’ve got the seat belt on. I want to put the forearm choke. That’s what I am looking for. But he is not going to let me do that. He’s going to be having his hands on my choking hand. So, what I do is I take my other hand, put it on the thumb area of his hand and strip both of his hands off one by one and then re-engage.

Strip his hands off your choking arm

Principle Two: Trap

Once I strip, it’s a good idea to trap. He has two hands against my two hands. I’m on his back. I want to choke him. But he doesn’t want me to do that. He starts doing hand fighting.

Even if I strip his hands off my choking hand, he may still try again and put his hand on my choking hand. So, this could be a continuous hand fighting between him and me. So, I need a solution for that. What I do now is that I strip one of his hands off my choking hand and trap it with my leg. Now, I have an one hand advantage over him. Now, the hand fighting is two vs one. It’s now tougher for him to prevent me from choking.

After you strip his off you hand, trap his hand with your leg to get a two hand vs one hand advantage.

Principle Three: Pull His Head Back

Pull your opponent’s head back – this is the third principle you should remember. I take my forearm, put it on his forehead and pull his head back. Now that his head is pulled back, I have ample spaces to put my forearm in between his neck and go for the choke.

Pull your opponent’s head back with your free hand.

Principle Four: Switching Choke

Sometime when hand fighting is going, you may need to switch your choke. By switching your choke, you switch your side. You may try to confuse your opponent by switching your choke.

Switch choke. Don’t let him guess which way you want to choke him

Don’t let him guess when are you going to choke him. And, in doing so whenever you get your chance, you choke him. As you are switching your choke, your opponent may also be doing his hand movement to prevent you from choking him. But you should be clever enough to switch your choke to put you in a good position so that you may choke him right time.

Summary: Things We Learned

To summarize, here are the four principles – strip, trap, pull and switch. There isn’t any particular sequence. These are just four principles you need to remember. You should attack in combinations. So, the synopsis of this lesson are given below:

  1. In order to be a good back attacker, you need to know about the four principles – strip, trap, pull and switching choke.
  2. There isn’t any particular sequence for these four principles.
  3. Always attack in combinations.

Related Article: Jiu Jitsu Houston: The Ultimate Guide To Getting Started

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Father of eight, Dr. Scott Sullivan is the chief instructor at Bam Bam Martial Arts in Houston, TX. He holds a doctorate in philosophy from the University of St. Thomas and is a seasoned martial arts instructor with over 30 years of experience. A firm believer that martial arts really does help people become more fit, safe, and happy, he remains vigilant about helping people improve their lives through martial arts.