MN-VT triangle escape question

Roy (or anyone who has used the final triangle escape on the Minn-Vermont seminar disc),

I have begun to use the triangle escape shown on your Minn-Vermont seminar instructional; where you put both hands next to your opponent's head, walk/stack forward until your head gets "past" your opponents, then you hip into them to pop the triangle.

It seems like a fantastic idea and works like a charm as I have practiced it against little or no resistance. But, using it in sparring against guys who know their way around even a bit (advanced whites and above), I've been getting arm barred like crazy on my "in" arm. I've been caught with different variations of the arm bars (simple swing one leg over, reposition/cross legs, etc.) and I can't quite figure out what to do about it.

The fact is that the escape does expose my arm and if they don't allow an instant stack, there is room there to maneuver for the arm. I've tried stacking first, but I have trouble getting my arm into position then, without exposing it.

I know there might not be any magical answer, it might be a timing and feel issue. But, the escape seems so elegant that I'd love to get it to work and I hope I'm not missing something easy.

Any help you can give is appreciated. The Minn-Vermont seminar gets better every time I watch it. Thank you.



To answer your question, I need to know what it is that you are doing. I understand what technique you are doing, but I don't know specifically what you are doing to effect the technique. More than likely, it is one of three things:

  1. A part of your mechanics if off.

  2. Your timing is off.

  3. Your awareness level to what is going on during the transition is low.

  4. You've used the technique way too many times on the same people and they are on to you. In other words, you haven't figured out what to follow up with when their triangle choke changes to something different.

  5. Your reaching for the stars. In other words, you've gotten it to work on several people your own belt color and a few one level higher than you and now you want it to work on people who have much more experience than you.

In order to answer your question, I need for you to explain, in explicit detail:

A. What are you doing to effect the technique? Give it to me step by step.

B. When are you entering into this technique?

C. When do you notice things are changing? When you get arm locked or before? If before, why do you allow your opponent to continue applying the arm lock? If it's not until you're about to tap, then your awareness level is low (and the only thing that will help you is getting arm locked more often and observing the process).

Lemme know.



Thanks for the reply. As I suspected, there is no magic tip or trick to (almost) anything.

But, the process of having to think extensively about every step of the process in order to reply appropriately to your questions was a great help.

After breaking down step-by-small-step my interpretation of "your" escape, I discovered that I was doing things independently that I should have been doing concurrently. I put my analysis into action last night and had much better success.

For what it's worth (and I might find other problems as my partners become accustomed to the escape), my issue seemed to be my sprawling pressure during the stack/foward movement toward their head. It feels like I was concentrating on just getting into position to put my hands next to my opponent's head, rather than thinking about how I was getting into position. I was, in what I thought was a reasonably controlled manner, getting up on my toes and driving toward their head.

But, I gave my hips and sprawling pressure no thought because I was focused on the "end" portion of the technique and just wanted to get to the "fancy" part. After really breaking it down, it became very apparent that my arms were being exposed as my opponent was able to bring his hips skyward to create room to work. Sprawling hard through the whole forward movement controlled my partners' hips and kept them from extending and getting to my arms. It didn't work every time, but it gave me a path toward making this escape a go-to.

In this case, my shortsightedness of focusing on the fun part of the escape wasn't allowing my to do all the intermediate things I needed to do to get to a satisfactory "end".

Thanks again for taking the time to reply to these sorts of questions in the manner that you do. And, feel free to release more seminar dvd's, I'll be among the first in line to purchase.



I am SO PROUD of you for taking the time to answer your own question by raising your own level of awareness! I can't tell you how proud that makes me feel!!!!!!!!!

So often, I teach principles and guidelines (to teach students how to fish for themselves), but still, some students want to be spoon fed. It's as though they don't want to do any of the hard work themselves.

And really, when you boil everything down to its bare roots, all of the technical stuff in Jiu Jitsu is pretty simple. It just takes time to think it through! Granted, I know it is easier to have someone spell EVERYTHING out for you, but it so much more memorable when you do the hard work yourself! I'll bet you'll never forget this particular lesson you taught yourself : )

Again, I am very proud of you for doing the hard work and seeing how an adjustment or an addition of one minor detail can make all the difference in the world!

Phenomenal training to you,

Roy Harris

P.S. If you sprawl harder and sooner, even the really flexible guys will have difficulty finishing the triangle on you!!!

One final note: Take a look at the position of my hands when I perform this technique on the DVD. There's a couple of secrets hidden in their placement! Most people overlook this one aspect of the technique ; )