Pinning: Judo compared to BJJ

Is there a difference in the way "pins" (any of the variety of chest on chest hold down such as side control, north-south, some versions of the mount, etc.) are performed in BJJ that are different than Judo?

I understand that in Judo a pin is often times seen as an end, since one can win by pin/hold-down in Judo, wheras in BJJ it is seen as an important "means" to an end (the submission), so my question is not necessarily about which practitioner's arts are able to exert the most pressure of have the greatest a bility to keep a person down in a pin (a chest on chest type pin is what I am referring to). But my question is about as to whether or not they use different types of grips, have different theories about hip placement, or where to exert pressure, etc.

Anyone who has dabbled in, or grappled with practitioners of, both arts, please provide some insight.

In my experience, BJJ players tend to use looser pins so they can stay mobile and look for submissions. They don't mind if you roll and give your back, so they're more likely to let you move.

Judoka usually clamp on and squeeze the crap out of you. They don't want you roll, so they lock you on your back and crush you like an anaconda. (It's not unknown in Judo to submit someone with a pin alone.) They usually don't go for a sub unless you offer something easy or start flopping around creating openings.

Because immobilization is a greater priority in Judo, the mechanics of pins are sometimes different. Arching the back or twisting into the pin (to exert greater crushing pressure) and tying up the opponent's free hands with the belt are tricks you'll see often in Judo. I've never seen these particular methods used by BJJ players.

the pins at my bjj club are no joke at least 5 times better than my old judo club.

But I think that says more about my current and former clubs than it does about the respective arts.

I think it really depends on the person and their style of grappling. Some bjj players have a looser game whereas others have a much much tighter game.

Those who are the latter tend to have better pins then the former.

Another thing to keep in mind is some Bjj players, regardless of the type of game they play, really make pins and transition from pin to pin a big part of their game. I know the Machado brothers work on their pins and pin transitions (moving from pin to pin without giving up control or pressure). You can clearly see this in their fights. When JJ Machado catches his opponents in a pin he keeps them there and is very skilled at transitioning to another pin or to a submission setup and back to another pin when the submission attempt fails. The essence and purpose of pins is control and JJ Machado is a master of controling his opponent.

Scythrop is correct. See my answer in the judo forum.

One thing that stands out when comparing the pins utilised by BJJers vs. Judoka is the use of side-sitout or kesa/kata-gatame.

Because one cannot 'win' in BJJ via a prolonged pin, such holds don't really hold the same value as they do in judo. I know for one, as much as I love the hold, during a BJJ match, it often causes more problems than its worth because over the course of a few minutes the opponent can wiggle their head out and basically get access of your back (a big no-no in BJJ).

Also BJJ rules are pretty liberal about hand placement on the face etc - it isn't considered 'bad form' to push someones face to escape such moves.

Typically BJJ practioners will secure a yoko type hold before seeking a kesa/kata... this significantly changes the dynamics/flow of the game. While a Judoka with good newaza skills probably wouldn't embarase themselves in a BJJ competitition as a white belt (novice) the different rule sets and feel of the game a blue+ would probably put the Judoka at a real disadvantage.

When BJJers are playing Judo however, once (an if) they've dealt with the standup portion of the game, their newaza would be considered (typically) very strong. Not everything one learns in BJJ is applicable to Judo newaza, but a lot is.


I've noticed that some judo guys like to use "funky pins".


By that I mean pins that aren't really standard in BJJ. They will tie up your arms, using ways I'm not too familiar with, hold your legs in similar ways and basically do what Scythrop said.

But I'm talking about judo guys that have been doing judo for 12 years - that was the case with most of the judo guys that have entered my gym to try BJJ out. But I have no idea how those guys would do against BJJ purple belts or higher. That being said, I found them to be nice people and pretty damn good on the mat.