History of The Triangle

Yes, I know it is found in judo (Sankakujime)....but when did it first appear in Bjj?

Was it taught to Carlos by Maeda (where'd Maeda get it from?)? Who'd know whether he did or not? Helio?

Or is it more recent...like a Rolls thing?



According to Kid Peligro's THE GRACIE WAY, one of Rolls' students invented the triangle while practicing guard passes. It changed BJJ forever.

Fascinating. Thanks. Begs the question..."What's his name?"

Shame if the guy never got acknowledged.


I think I read in an article that it was alliance JJ instructor "Jacare" , If I
remember right he saw it in a judo book.

Was it a rusty judo book?

It probably was always there since Maeda.

I also heard the story about having seen it in a Judo book.

It may have been the omoplata tho, not 100% sure.

I concur with Goldmedal; I have never heard Jacare claim that either.

I've seen stuff that documented it being invented in Judo actually in the 1900s around 1925 or 30 or somewhere in there. So Maeda probally didn't know it when he taught the gracies either if that is true. I know it definately isn't a bjj invention though. I doubt the high up bjj guys think it was actually originated in bjj. It was definately taken to another level in bjj though.

Freestyle: I'll dispute that, I'll say that they've taken it in a different direction... BJJ is the best for Sangaku from the guard.

However, if you watch some european fights, they love hitting the Triangle from EVERY angle.

Matt Thornton once said that when you train in aliveness you tend reach the same results.

I have no doubt that Judo had the triangle choke since its beginnings but I also have no doubt the Gracies (or whoever) also discovered it while training (thats considering they weren't taught the move by Maeda)

"I also heard the story about having seen it in a Judo book."

Maybe the book was Kodokan Judo.

I was told that it was Rolls himself that introduced the triangle. Not sure against who, it could have been Rickson.


According to Jacare Cavalcanti, "There was a guy who trained at Roll's academy, Sergio Dorileo, nicknamed 'Sucuri' (python), who liked to research techniques from old judo and wrestling books he could find. One day he came into the academy and said, "Hey, Rolls, pass my guard; check this out, man." When Rolls went to pass, Sucuri caught him in the triangle. Then he showed everyone what he had learned from some old judo book and since then everyone has known the triangle." Martial Arts Illustated magazine, August 1999.

Sucuri runs the Alliance/Master BJJ school in Charlotte NC.

The triangle was part of the Kodokan Judo list of techniques in the late 1800's. Sankaku Jime or "Bent Pine Needle" was incorporated into judo from older jutsu techniques. Most BJJ techniques are also found in judo's newaza and were practiced extensively in " Kosen Judo" competions which were surprisingly similar to BJJ competions. Jigaro Kano took the best techniques from various styles and incorporated them into his art and added the theory of Randori to come up with Judo.He really didn't invent the techniques just as the Gracies took the best techniques from newaza
judo and came up with BJJ. Most Judo and BJJ techniques have a history far older than the arts of Judo or BJJ.