When your opponent has you locked in a body lock position in the clinch it is important to understand how to defend against it.

The body lock is a strong position because your opponent can squeeze you and control your body position. From a body lock position, they can score knee strikes or sweep you to the ground using a throw.

Because the body lock is a disadvantageous position, it is important for you to learn the proper defense. In the following video Petchboonchu demonstrates some important techniques you can use when your opponent has you locked down.

Things to Consider

Drop Your hips and Arm Control

The first thing that you need to do when your opponent has you locked with a body lock is to lower your hips to the ground and drop your weight. This will help alleviate pressure from the grip and help create space between your hips and your opponents.

If your opponent can squeeze you tight enough, they will be able to throw you off balance with ease. Lowering your hips and squatting, puts you in a good balanced position. This makes it difficult for your opponent to throw you from this position.

In addition to dropping your hips, you also need to squeeze your arms downward, putting pressure on your opponent’s hold. By putting downward pressure on your opponent, you will be able to release some of the pressure of their grip. In some cases, you may even be able to break your opponent’s hold on you.

The combination of lowering your hips to the ground, and pushing your arms downward against your opponent’s arms, will help you gain more control over your position.

Defense Against Knees

When your opponent throws knees at you from this position you can circle away from the knee strike as they throw the knee. This is a technique that requires good footwork and timing to execute.

By stepping out as your opponent tries to knee you, it will make it difficult for them to score points against you.

Another defense you can utilize against knee strikes is raising your leg to block the knee strike. This is another defensive skill that requires good timing to execute. You must wait for your opponent to throw the knee, for you to successfully block the strike.

Both techniques require you to practice to perfect. Let your clinching partner lock you in a body lock position, then work on blocking the knees with your legs or moving away with your footwork.

Throws from the Body Lock

Another defensive tactic you can utilize is to throw your opponent from the body lock position. The key to throwing your opponent off balance, is to wait for them to throw a knee strike, then pull them to the side. If you have a good grip on your opponent, it can knock them off balance.

Throws are difficult to pull off because you need to time your opponent’s knee strike to throw them off balance.

Special thanks to Petchboonchu for demonstrating this technique. If you want to train with Petchboonchu you can visit him over at Evolve Vacation.