Americana BJJ Move [The 101 Guide with FAQ]

If you’re delving into the world of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, chances are you’ve encountered the term “Americana BJJ move” buzzing around the mats. This classic submission, also known as the key lock or ude-garami, is a fundamental technique that holds both strategic and technical significance in the realm of BJJ. Let’s explore the ins and outs of the Americana, from execution to defense, and unravel the secrets behind its effectiveness.

Introduction to the Americana BJJ Move

What joint are you affecting with the Americana BJJ lock?

The Americana BJJ move is a joint lock that primarily targets the shoulder. Before we dive into the specifics, it’s crucial to understand its step-by-step execution and the key details that make it a formidable weapon in a BJJ practitioner’s arsenal.

Can the Kimura lock break an arm?

t primarily targets the shoulder joint rather than directly breaking the arm. When applied correctly, the Kimura lock puts significant pressure on the shoulder by leveraging the arm into an unnatural position.

If the person caught in the Kimura lock doesn’t tap out (submit) in time, the shoulder joint can be subjected to excessive rotational force, leading to potential dislocation or damage to the ligaments and surrounding structures. While the Kimura lock itself is not designed to break the arm, it can cause serious shoulder injuries if not released promptly.

It’s important to note that practitioners should exercise caution and adhere to proper training practices to avoid causing unnecessary harm to training partners. In a controlled training environment, practitioners are expected to submit when they feel discomfort or pain to prevent injuries. In a real-life self-defense situation or a competitive match, the goal is to control and submit the opponent, not to cause unnecessary harm.

Is Americana allowed in Judo?

The Americana, or ude-garami, is indeed allowed in Judo. The misconception that shoulder locks are illegal stems from a misinterpretation of the wording in the Kodokan/IJF rules on kansetsu-waza (joint locks). The rules state that kansetsu-waza should be applied to the elbow joint, and in Judo, “elbow locks” have a broader definition than in some other martial arts.

The Kodokan and IJF consistently use the phrase “kansetsu-waza applied to the elbow” to encompass armlocks that extend or bend the elbow and then stretch, bend, or twist the arm. This includes various armbars, as well as several bent-arm rotational locks, such as ude-garami (Americana), which is specifically mentioned as a competition-legal technique.

Therefore, the Americana, when executed properly and within the specified rules, is allowed in Judo competitions. The clarification from the IJF Referee Commission reinforces the legality of certain twisting bent-arm locks, including the (reverse) omoplata (ashi/hiza-gatame). It’s always advisable to consult the latest edition of the IJF rulebook and seek guidance from Judo instructors for the most accurate and up-to-date information on allowed techniques in Judo competitions.

As with any martial art, the rules and regulations can evolve, so it’s advisable to refer to the latest edition of the IJF rulebook or consult with your Judo instructor for the most up-to-date information on allowed techniques in Judo competitions.

When did Americana become popular?

The term “Americana” is commonly used in the United States, and European countries, and not only, and it’s a popular technique in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, mixed martial arts, and other grappling sports.

The popularity of the Americana, like many grappling techniques, has evolved over time as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu gained recognition and spread internationally. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu became particularly popular in the 1990s and 2000s, especially with the rise of mixed martial arts. As the sport gained popularity, practitioners worldwide began to explore and incorporate various techniques, including submissions like the Americana.

The Americana itself has been a fundamental part of grappling and self-defense systems for a long time, but its specific name and recognition in the context of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu became more widespread as the art gained global popularity. The exact timeline of its popularity can vary regionally and depends on the specific development of martial arts communities in different parts of the world.

How to Do an Americana BJJ Step by Step?

Executing an Americana requires precision and control. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

  1. Control Position:
    • Begin in a dominant position, such as side control or mount, where you have control over your opponent.
    • Ensure that your chest is on your opponent’s chest, making it difficult for them to move.
  2. Isolate the Arm:
    • Identify the arm you want to attack (usually the one on the same side as your body position).
  3. Secure the Wrist:
    • With the arm you’re attacking, use one hand to grab your opponent’s wrist. Your thumb should be on the same side as their fingers.
  4. Create Leverage:
    • Use your other hand to control their elbow. Your hand should be placed on the same side of their elbow, with your fingers under the elbow and your thumb on top.
  5. Knee on Belly (Optional):
    • For additional control and pressure, you can choose to bring your knee across their body and place it on their belly or chest. This step is optional and depends on the situation.
  6. Apply Pressure:
    • With control over the wrist and elbow, start applying pressure by pushing their hand towards their head while simultaneously pulling their elbow towards their hip.
  7. Finish the Submission:
    • The combination of pushing the hand towards the head and pulling the elbow towards the hip puts immense pressure on the shoulder joint, leading to the submission.
  8. Check for the Tap:
    • Be aware of your opponent’s response. A tap or verbal submission indicates that they are in discomfort, and you should release the pressure immediately.
  9. Control the Transition:
    • If your opponent doesn’t tap, be prepared to transition to another position or submission, as they might try to escape.
  10. Practice Responsibly:
    • Americana, like any submission, should be practiced carefully and with control during training to avoid injuries.

Americana Jiu Jitsu Lock by Andre Galvao

Key Details for Executing an Americana Lock

Achieving a successful Americana involves paying attention to crucial details:

  1. Grip Placement:
    • Secure a strong grip on your opponent’s wrist with one hand. Your thumb should be on the same side as their fingers, creating a firm hold.
  2. Elbow Control:
    • Use your other hand to control their elbow. Position your hand on the same side as their elbow, with your fingers underneath and your thumb on top.
  3. Body Position:
    • Ensure that your chest is pressing against your opponent’s chest. This close proximity helps you maintain control and minimizes their ability to escape.
  4. Knee on Belly (Optional):
    • For added control and pressure, consider bringing your knee across their body and placing it on their belly or chest. This can make it more challenging for them to move.
  5. Angle of Attack:
    • Position yourself at the correct angle. Your body should be perpendicular to your opponent’s body, making it easier to apply leverage to the shoulder joint.
  6. Wrist Alignment:
    • Keep your opponent’s wrist in line with their shoulder. Misalignment can reduce the effectiveness of the submission and make it easier for them to defend.
  7. Smooth Transition:
    • Execute the technique in a fluid motion, combining the push on the wrist and the pull on the elbow simultaneously. This creates maximum pressure on the shoulder joint.
  8. Controlled Pressure:
    • Apply pressure gradually and with control. This allows you to gauge your opponent’s response and prevents injuries. Be ready to release the pressure immediately if your opponent taps or signals submission.
  9. Awareness of Counterattacks:
    • Be mindful of your opponent’s attempts to counter the Americana. If they start defending or escaping, be prepared to transition to another position or submission.
  10. Training Responsibly:
    • Practice the Americana lock safely during training. Communicate with your partner, and tap early if you are the one being submitted. This helps create a positive training environment and reduces the risk of injuries.

Common Mistakes When Applying an Americana in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

Even the most seasoned practitioners can fall prey to common mistakes when attempting an Americana. Avoid these pitfalls to enhance your success rate:

  1. Incorrect Grip:
    • Gripping the wrist improperly can significantly reduce the effectiveness of the Americana. Make sure your thumb is on the same side as your opponent’s fingers for a solid grip.
  2. Weak Elbow Control:
    • Failing to control your opponent’s elbow properly can allow them to defend or escape easily. Ensure your hand is on the same side as their elbow, with fingers underneath and thumb on top for strong control.
  3. Inadequate Body Position:
    • If your chest is not pressing firmly against your opponent’s chest, they may find opportunities to escape or counter the Americana. Maintain a close and dominating position to control their movement.
  4. Incorrect Angle:
    • Being in the wrong angle reduces the effectiveness of the submission. Your body should be perpendicular to your opponent’s body to apply optimal pressure on the shoulder joint.
  5. Lack of Smooth Transition:
    • Jerky or uncoordinated movements make it easier for your opponent to defend or escape. Practice the transition from the initial grip to applying pressure in a fluid and controlled manner.
  6. Poor Wrist Alignment:
    • Misaligning your opponent’s wrist with their shoulder reduces the effectiveness of the submission. Keep the wrist in line with the shoulder to maximize pressure on the joint.
  7. Overcommitting:
    • Applying too much force too quickly without proper control can lead to your opponent escaping or countering the Americana. Gradually increase pressure, maintaining awareness of your opponent’s reactions.
  8. Failure to Adjust:
    • If your opponent starts defending or attempting to escape, failing to adjust your position or transition to another technique can result in losing the opportunity for the submission.
  9. Neglecting Partner Communication:
    • Proper communication with your training partner is crucial. Tap early if you’re the one being submitted, and encourage your partner to do the same. This helps create a safe and cooperative training environment.

How to keep people flat when doing the Americana BJJ?

Keeping your opponent flat on the mat is essential when applying the Americana in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Maintaining control over their position enhances the effectiveness of the submission. Here are some tips to keep people flat while executing the Americana:

  1. Maintain Chest-to-Chest Control:
    • Ensure that your chest is pressing firmly against your opponent’s chest. This close contact minimizes their ability to turn or escape.
  2. Underhook Control (Side Control):
    • If you’re in side control, use your underhooking arm to control the far side of your opponent’s body. This prevents them from turning away and helps maintain a flat position.
  3. Knee on Belly (Optional):
    • If you choose to use knee on belly, apply controlled pressure to their midsection. This makes it uncomfortable for them to turn and can help you maintain a dominant, flat position.
  4. Control the Near Hip:
    • Place your weight on the near side hip of your opponent. This disrupts their ability to bridge or shrimp to escape and assists in keeping them flat on the mat.
  5. Head Control:
    • Control your opponent’s head with your far-side arm. This can limit their mobility and make it more challenging for them to turn or bridge.
  6. Back Leg Blocking:
    • Place your back leg (the one closest to your opponent’s legs) in a position that blocks their hip movement. This can hinder their ability to turn towards you.
  7. Crossface (Side Control):
    • Utilize a crossface to control your opponent’s head and neck. This creates discomfort and makes it difficult for them to turn into you.
  8. Use Your Body Weight:
    • Distribute your body weight effectively to control your opponent. Shift your weight to the side you want to control, making it challenging for them to escape or regain guard.
  9. Be Mindful of Their Movements:
    • Stay aware of your opponent’s attempts to escape or counter. If you feel them starting to turn or bridge, adjust your position to maintain control.
  10. Transition to Mount (Optional):
    • If you have good control, consider transitioning to the mount position. This increases your dominance and makes it even more challenging for your opponent to escape.

What is the best body type for American BJJ lock?

In BJJ, the effectiveness of a technique often depends on the understanding and skill of the practitioner rather than their body type. However, certain body types may have advantages when executing specific submissions, including the Americana lock. Here are some considerations:

  1. Leverage and Arm Length:
    • Individuals with longer arms may find it easier to apply the Americana lock due to increased leverage. Longer arms can make it more straightforward to control the opponent’s wrist and create the necessary angle for the submission.
  2. Flexibility:
    • While flexibility is not solely determined by body type, individuals with good shoulder flexibility may find it easier to secure and finish the Americana. Greater flexibility can allow for a wider range of motion when controlling the opponent’s arm.
  3. Strength and Size:
    • Having strength can be an advantage in BJJ, but it’s not necessarily tied to a specific body type. A practitioner with more upper body strength may find it easier to control and submit opponents, but technique and leverage remain crucial.
  4. Compact Body Type:
    • Individuals with a more compact body type may find it easier to control their opponent’s upper body during the setup and execution of the Americana. A lower center of gravity can provide stability and control.
  5. Understanding of Mechanics:
    • Regardless of body type, a deep understanding of the mechanics and details of the Americana lock is crucial for successful execution. Knowing how to apply pressure, control the wrist and elbow, and maintain a dominant position is more important than body type alone.
  6. Adaptability:
    • BJJ is an art that rewards adaptability. Practitioners who can adjust their techniques based on their own body type and their opponent’s characteristics are often more successful. Being able to modify the Americana based on factors like arm length and flexibility is key.

Success in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu comes from a combination of technique, timing, leverage, and understanding your opponent. Training consistently, focusing on refining your technique, and adapting your approach to different situations will contribute more to your success than your specific body type.

Positions or Setups Leading to Americana Opportunities

Opportunities to apply the Americana can arise from various positions, each requiring a nuanced approach:

BJJ Americana from Guard

From the guard position, catching your opponent off guard with a well-timed Americana can be a game-changer. By controlling their arm and manipulating their posture, you create an opening for the submission.

BJJ Americana from Mount

Establishing mount position provides a prime opportunity for the Americans. Pinning your opponent’s arm while maintaining control from the mount sets the stage for a seamless execution.

BJJ Americana from Side Control

Transitioning from side control offers a chance to isolate your opponent’s arm and capitalize on the vulnerability created by the position.

BJJ Americana vs Kimura

While both submissions target the shoulder, understanding the nuances of the Americana vs. kimura helps in choosing the right technique for the situation.

Defending Against an Americana Lock

Defense is a crucial aspect of BJJ, and countering the Americana requires a combination of technique and awareness. Here are some key defensive strategies:

  1. Hand Positioning:
    • Protect your arm by keeping your elbows close to your body. If your opponent can’t isolate your arm, they won’t be able to set up the Americana.
  2. Awareness of Grips:
    • Be vigilant about your opponent’s hand positioning. If you sense them trying to control your wrist or elbow, immediately work to prevent a secure grip.
  3. Hand Fighting:
    • Use hand fighting techniques to break your opponent’s grip on your wrist. This can involve stripping their fingers or using your free hand to create space and prevent them from securing a solid hold.
  4. Defensive Framing:
    • Create frames with your arms to create space and prevent your opponent from getting close enough to apply the submission. Frames can disrupt their control and give you room to escape.
  5. Hip Movement:
    • Move your hips actively to prevent your opponent from settling into a dominant position. If you can create angles and disrupt their base, it becomes more challenging for them to apply effective pressure.
  6. Shoulder Mobility:
    • Maintain good shoulder mobility to reduce the vulnerability of your shoulder joint. This can make it more difficult for your opponent to isolate and control your arm.
  7. Escape to Guard:
    • If your opponent is applying the Americana from side control, consider escaping to guard. Regaining guard can change the dynamics of the situation and give you more options for defense.
  8. Bridge and Roll:
    • If your opponent is attempting the Americana from mount, use a bridge-and-roll escape. This involves bridging explosively to create space and then rolling to escape or reverse the position.
  9. Counter Pressure:
    • Apply pressure against your opponent’s face or neck to disrupt their focus and balance. This can make it more challenging for them to concentrate on applying the submission.
  10. Communicate and Tap Early:
    • In training, communicate with your partner and tap early if you feel significant pressure or discomfort. Tapping is a crucial part of BJJ, and it prevents unnecessary injuries.

Being proactive, maintaining good defensive habits, and understanding the principles behind the Americana lock will contribute to a more effective defense. As always, seek guidance from your instructor to refine your defensive techniques.

Variations of the Americana Submission

The versatility of the Americana extends to its variations, allowing practitioners to tailor the submission to their style:

  1. Traditional Americana (Side Control):
    • This is the classic Americana setup from side control. You control your opponent’s arm, secure the grip, and apply pressure to the shoulder joint.
  2. Americana from Mount:
    • Transitioning from the mount position, you control your opponent’s arm and apply the Americana. This variation often involves using your body weight to enhance the pressure on the shoulder.
  3. Rolling Americana:
    • This variation involves initiating the Americana from the bottom position. As your opponent attempts to pass your guard, you catch their arm and roll into a position where you can apply the submission.
  4. Counter to Guard Pass:
    • When your opponent is attempting to pass your guard, you can counter by trapping their arm and applying the Americana. This variation takes advantage of your opponent’s movement to secure the submission.
  5. Gi Grip Americana:
    • In Gi Jiu-Jitsu, you can use the lapel or collar to secure a grip for the Americana. This variation adds an element of control and makes it challenging for your opponent to defend.
  6. Americana from North-South:
    • From the north-south position, control your opponent’s arm and apply the Americana. This variation can catch your opponent by surprise, especially if they are focused on defending against other attacks.
  7. Scarf Hold Americana:
    • In scarf hold (kesa gatame), a top control position, you can transition to the Americana by isolating and controlling your opponent’s arm.
  8. No-Gi Americana:
    • The standard Americana can be applied in no-gi situations, but the lack of a gi means you need to focus on controlling the wrist and applying pressure without the assistance of clothing grips.
  9. Americana from Back Control:
    • If you secure back control and your opponent exposes one of their arms, you can transition to the Americana from this advantageous position.
  10. Reverse Americana (Kimura):
    • The Kimura lock is a related submission that involves controlling your opponent’s wrist with an overhand grip and applying pressure to the shoulder. While technically a different submission, it shares similarities with the Americana.
  11. Transition to Armbar: Seamlessly transitioning from an Americana to an armbar keeps your opponent guessing.

Experimenting with different setups and positions will enhance your overall understanding of the submission and make you more versatile in its application. Always train variations under the guidance of a qualified BJJ instructor to ensure proper technique and safety.

Recommendations for Recovering from Americana BJJ Injury

BJJ, like any sport, carries the risk of injuries. If you find yourself nursing an American-related injury, prioritize rest, consult a healthcare professional, and gradually ease back into training with rehabilitative exercises.

If you’ve sustained an injury, consider the following general recommendations:

  1. Consult a Healthcare Professional:
    • Seek immediate medical attention to assess the severity of the injury. A healthcare professional, such as a sports medicine doctor or physical therapist, can provide a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.
  2. Rest and Immobilization:
    • Give your injured shoulder adequate time to rest. Immobilization may be necessary, and your healthcare provider may recommend using a sling to support and protect the injured area.
  3. Ice and Compression:
    • Applying ice to the injured area can help reduce swelling and inflammation. Compression with a bandage may also be beneficial, but be cautious not to wrap it too tightly.
  4. Elevation:
    • Elevate the injured shoulder when possible to minimize swelling. Prop it up on a pillow or cushion while resting.
  5. Pain Management:
    • Over-the-counter pain relievers may help manage pain and reduce inflammation. Follow your healthcare provider’s recommendations regarding medication.
  6. Physical Therapy:
    • Once your healthcare professional gives the green light, consider starting a physical therapy program. A physical therapist can guide you through exercises to restore range of motion, strength, and flexibility.
  7. Gradual Return to Training:
    • Only return to BJJ training when your healthcare provider approves it. Start slowly, and avoid putting too much strain on the injured shoulder. Inform your training partners about your injury, so they can be mindful during rolls.
  8. Strengthening Exercises:
    • Incorporate specific shoulder-strengthening exercises into your rehabilitation routine. Your physical therapist can provide a personalized plan based on your injury and recovery progress.
  9. Joint Mobility Work:
    • Include joint mobility exercises to improve the range of motion in your shoulder. Gentle movements can help prevent stiffness and enhance recovery.
  10. Listen to Your Body:
    • Pay attention to any pain or discomfort during and after training. If you experience increased pain or signs of reinjury, consult your healthcare provider for guidance.
  11. Considerations for Technique Modification:
    • Work with your coach to modify techniques or avoid movements that put excessive strain on the injured shoulder. Communicate openly with your training partners about any limitations.

Returning to training too quickly or without proper rehabilitation can increase the risk of reinjury. Everyone’s recovery timeline is different, so be patient and prioritize your long-term health and well-being over rushing back into full training.

Americana Drills to Improve Technique

These drills focus on various aspects of the Americana, from grip control to transitioning between positions. Make sure to practice these drills safely and under the supervision of a qualified instructor.

  1. Grip Break and Control:
    • Start with your partner in side control.
    • Practice breaking your partner’s grip on their wrist and establishing your own grip.
    • Work on maintaining control of the arm, preventing your partner from defending effectively.
  2. Smooth Transition to Americana (Side Control):
    • From side control, smoothly transition into the setup for the Americana.
    • Focus on proper hand positioning, securing the wrist, and controlling the elbow.
    • Practice the transition with minimal resistance initially to refine your movements.
  3. Knee on Belly Transition:
    • Practice transitioning from side control to knee on belly before setting up the Americana.
    • Emphasize maintaining control and balance while applying pressure with your knee on your partner’s belly.
  4. Americana from Mount:
    • Start in the mount position and work on transitioning to the Americana.
    • Practice securing your partner’s arm, maintaining control, and applying the submission.
  5. Flow Drilling:
    • Engage in flow drilling with a partner, where you take turns applying and defending against the Americana.
    • Focus on the fluidity of movements and maintaining control throughout the sequence.
  6. Escape to Guard Drill:
    • Have your partner attempt the Americana from side control.
    • Practice defending and, if necessary, escaping to guard. Your partner can then work on transitioning to different attacks.
  7. Resistance Drilling:
    • Gradually increase resistance during Americana drills to simulate realistic scenarios.
    • Practice adapting your technique when your partner defends or counters the submission.
  8. Specific Training:
    • Allocate specific rounds during sparring sessions to focus on the Americana. Communicate with your training partners to work on specific aspects of the technique.
  9. Gi and No-Gi Variations:
    • Practice the Americana in both gi and no-gi settings to adapt to different grips and situations.
  10. Solo Drills:
    • Work on solo drills to improve your body mechanics and muscle memory. Practice the movements of securing the Americana grip and applying pressure without a partner.
  11. Review and Feedback:
    • Record yourself practicing the Americana drills and review the footage for areas of improvement.
    • Seek feedback from your coach or training partners to identify areas that need refinement.

Timing is everything in BJJ. Look for openings when your opponent exposes their arm or loses balance, creating the perfect window to attempt the Americana.

Most Effective Counters to an Americana

Being well-versed in countering the Americana adds a layer of defense to your skill set:

  • Rolling Escape: Timing a well-executed roll can disrupt your opponent’s control.
  • Creating Distance: Creating space between you and your opponent diminishes the effectiveness of the submission.

Differences Between an Americana and a Kimura Lock

The Americana and Kimura are both shoulder lock submissions in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ), and they share some similarities, but there are key differences in their execution and mechanics. Here are the main distinctions between the Americana and the Kimura:

BJJ Americana vs Kimura

1. Grip Positioning:

  • Americana:
    • In the Americana, you control your opponent’s arm by gripping their wrist with one hand and placing your other hand on their elbow. The grip resembles a “key lock” position.
  • The attacking arm’s palm is generally facing down.
  • Kimura:
    • In the Kimura, you grip your opponent’s wrist with one hand and secure a grip on their triceps or elbow with the other hand. The grip is more of a figure-four configuration.
    • The attacking arm’s palm is generally facing up.

2. Leverage and Direction of Pressure:

  • Americana:
    • The primary direction of pressure in the Americana is downward and toward the opponent’s feet. The focus is on applying pressure to the shoulder joint by bringing the hand toward the hips.
  • Kimura:
    • The Kimura applies pressure by isolating the shoulder and rotating it externally. The force is directed more outward and upward, creating torque on the shoulder joint.

3. Execution from Positions:

  • Americana:
    • The Americana is commonly applied from top positions such as side control or mount. It can also be initiated from various positions during transitions.
  • Kimura:
    • The Kimura is versatile and can be applied from a variety of positions, including side control, guard, or even when both you and your opponent are in a neutral standing position.

4. Grip Variation:

  • Americana:
    • While the Americana can be performed in both gi and no-gi settings, the grip is often affected by whether or not your opponent is wearing a gi. In no-gi, you focus on controlling the wrist and elbow directly.
  • Kimura:
    • The Kimura grip remains consistent whether you are training in gi or no-gi. The grip on the wrist and triceps or elbow is fundamental to the technique.

5. Attack Arm Position:

  • Americana:
    • The arm that applies the submission in the Americana typically remains close to the opponent’s body, forming a “key lock” structure.
  • Kimura:
    • In the Kimura, the attacking arm often extends away from the opponent’s body to create leverage. The figure-four grip allows for greater manipulation of the opponent’s arm.

Understanding the differences between the Americana and Kimura is essential for effective application and defense in BJJ. Both submissions can be powerful tools in your arsenal, and the choice between them may depend on the specific situation and your positional context within a match.

Can an Americana be Used Gi and No-Gi?

The beauty of the Americana lies in its versatility. Whether in a Gi or No-Gi setting, the fundamentals remain consistent, with slight adjustments based on attire.

Rules and Etiquette Regarding Applying an Americana in BJJ Competitions

Participating in BJJ competitions demands adherence to rules and etiquette. Familiarize yourself with competition guidelines to ensure fair play and avoid penalties.

Americana Finishes in UFC Fights

Americana Submission Chains or Combinations

In the dynamic landscape of BJJ, chaining submissions together keeps your opponent guessing. Experiment with combinations like transitioning from an Americana to a triangle choke or an armbar.

  1. Americana to Armbar:
    • When attempting the Americana from side control, your opponent may defend by extending their arm. Transition to an armbar by releasing the pressure on the shoulder and adjusting your position to secure an armbar grip.
  2. Americana to Kimura:
    • If your opponent resists the Americana, transition to a Kimura by adjusting your grip on their arm. This can be particularly effective if your opponent tries to roll away from the pressure.
  3. Americana to Triangle Choke:
    • From the mount, if you are unable to finish the Americana, release the pressure and slide your knee up toward your opponent’s head. Transition to a triangle choke by trapping their arm and adjusting your legs into the triangle position.
  4. Americana to Wrist Lock:
    • If your opponent defends the Americana by straightening their arm, switch to a wrist lock by isolating their wrist and applying pressure.
  5. Americana to Back Take:
    • Use the threat of the Americana to bait your opponent into giving their back. As they defend the shoulder lock, transition to taking their back and working for the rear-naked choke.
  6. Americana to Mount Escape:
    • When attempting the Americana from the mount and your opponent explosively bridges to escape, use their movement to transition to a back take or to maintain control while moving to a more dominant position.
  7. Americana to Knee on Belly:
    • If your opponent defends the Americana from side control, transition to knee on belly to maintain control and pressure. This can lead to further attacks or positional dominance.
  8. Americana to Sweep:
    • From the bottom position, use the threat of the Americana to set up sweeps. As your opponent reacts to defend the submission, exploit their weight distribution to off-balance them and sweep to a more advantageous position.
  9. Americana to Guillotine:
    • If your opponent attempts to bridge or roll away to escape the Americana, transition to a guillotine choke by catching their neck in the process.
  10. Americana to Omoplata:
    • If your opponent resists the Americana by turning away, follow their movement and transition to an omoplata by isolating their arm and leg.

Drill these combinations during training to develop a sense of timing and fluidity in your transitions. Additionally, be mindful of your partner’s safety, especially when training more advanced combinations.

Expert Data Table: Americana BJJ Move Comparison

Position/SetupKey DetailsCommon Mistakes
BJJ Americana from GuardControl opponent’s arm, manipulate posture for opening.Lack of control, overemphasis on strength.
BJJ Americana from MountSecure mount position, pin opponent’s arm for seamless execution.Neglecting positional awareness.
BJJ Americana from Side ControlTransition from side control, isolate opponent’s arm for vulnerability.Incorrect hand placement, lack of weight distribution.
BJJ Americana vs KimuraDifferentiating between americana and kimura, understanding grip and leverage points.Confusing grips, improper positioning.

Conclusion: Mastering the Art of the Americana BJJ Move

The American BJJ move is a multifaceted submission that transcends the boundaries of Gi and No-Gi, making it a valuable asset in a BJJ practitioner’s repertoire. From its step-by-step execution to variations, counters, and expert insights, this comprehensive guide aims to equip both novices and seasoned grapplers with the knowledge to navigate the intricacies of the Americana. Remember, mastery comes not just from knowledge but from dedicated practice on the mats.

For further exploration, consult authoritative sources such as BJJ Fanatics, Gracie University, and Bjjheroes.

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