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Joint Locks

Joint locks manipulate wrists, elbows, knees, etc., beyond their normal range of motion in order to break or dislocate bones, injure muscles, tear tendons or rip ligaments. These grappling techniques, used in martial arts such as chin na, jujutsu, judo and Brazilianjiu-jitsu, force an opponent/attacker into a submissive, nonthreatening position.

Arm locks, such as the armbar, elbow lock, key lock, juji gatame (cross-arm lock) and shoulder lock, attempt to hyperextend, hyper-rotate or hyperflex the elbow and/or shoulder. Leg locks, such as the ankle lock, heel hook and kneebar, aim to disable the hip, knee or ankle. Small-joint manipulations twist the toes and fingers. Wrist locks rotate, supinate, pronate, hyperflex or hyperextend an opponent’s wrist. Spinal locks, including the neck crank, can opener, cattle catch, crucifix neck crank, twister and spine crank, are the most dangerous of the joint locks.

Compressions locks (also known as “muscle slicers” or “crushers”) are a subcategory for all five joint-lock types. They squeeze or squash muscles onto the bone, causing excruciating pain.

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  1. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Escape From an Armbar

    Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Escape From an Armbar

    Brazilian jiu-jitsu’s adaptability is epitomized by the accomplishments of this amazing master of the art and legend in his own time, Jean Jacques Machado. In this instructional video, Jean Jacques Machado demonstrates a technique featured in the November 2008 issue of Black Belt: escaping from an armbar.


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  2. Mac Danzig MMA Technique: Reverse Omo Plata

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  3. Mac Danzig MMA Technique: Head and Arm Choke

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    Mac Danzig, a veteran of The Ultimate Fighter on Spike TV, demonstrates why he’s got what it takes to win in the Ultimate Fighting Championship! In this video, he demonstrates a head-and-arm choke step-by-step and at full speed. An article about his mixed-martial arts training and fight history is featured
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  4. Combatives Expert Kelly McCann Shows You Three Effective Counterattacks for “Handshake” Moments

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    Combatives expert Kelly McCann shows you how to handle “handshake” situations in this exclusive self-defense video from the Black Belt video vault! (Please note that the Black Belt magazine issue shown in the video is no longer for sale.)

    In this combatives video, Kelly McCann demonstrates what to do in a
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  5. Learn Three Tricky Combat Hapkido Techniques From John Pellegrini

    Learn Three Tricky Combat Hapkido Techniques From John Pellegrini

    Combat hapkido is unique in that it straddles the line between the ancient and the modern. As the word “hapkido” implies, combat hapkido has roots in old-time Korea. But the addition of “combat” indicates that it’s been modified and updated to better address the needs of reality-based self-defense practitioners. So
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