Single leg from an underhook q.

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Let's say that I've got a single underhook in a no-gi situation with my forearm in his neck and I've turned sideways in relation to him (a good underhook position, basically) and now I want to take him down with a single leg takedown.

1. Which one of his legs makes more sense to attack?

2. Should I grab his leg first with my underhook arm or the other one?

3. Doesn't it make more sense to do an "outside step", i.e. with my lead leg going a bit past his side and not directly between his legs. For example, if I have an underhook with my left arm, I will step right past his right leg on the outside with my left leg. I'm having difficulty picturing the penetration step, since I'm in more than a staggered position, I'm actually at a 90 degrees angle to him and penetration would mean that I would step directly to my side. Am I misunderstanding something? Am I supposed to take the penetration step directly to the side because I've turned sideways with my underhook?

4. Should I, in general, attempt to have my head on the outside or inside when setting up the single leg takedown from an underhook? And does it matter for the guillotine counter where I place my head or is it simply a matter of being as upright as possible?

Good questions.

1) Attack his near leg, the one on the same side that's underhooked. Pop him with your shoulder of the arm that has the underhook. That will put all his weight on his far foot and make it very easy to pick up the near leg.

2) Grab his leg first with the underhook arm for the head inside single. If you had the underhook with your left arm, wrap your left arm around his leg with his leg in the crook of your elbow, and your left hand palm down. Grab palm to palm with your right hand palm up. Like you're checking your wristwatch on your left wrist. Why? Because your left arm is the one wrapped around his leg, if he starts to sprawl that leg back, your left arm will be forced down. If your right hand is palm up under your left hand, that will help stop it from being forced down. If you grip the other way, your grip will be broken easily.

3) Not exactly sure what you mean, but from an underhook you are already very close and don't need to do much of a penetration step at all. Just change levels and grab it.

4) Head inside. Inside will avoid the guillotine and has better followups including getting his back. Outside can result in being guillotined or him getting your back. Which is not to say that outside doesn't have its place, but generally inside is preferable.

Thanks a million, Andrew. Hey, when are you due for the purple belt, man? It's gotta be around the corner for you. Cheers.

Got any good finishes from this type of snatch single, i.e. when you are completely to the side of him? I was wondering if it wouldn't make sense to actually turn to face him before either a) dumping him ("running the pipe"), or b) switching to a double leg or c) lifting his leg high and sweeping the other. Or should I keep the 90 degree angle and not face towards him?

I've still got a long way to go.

Any of the finishes you mentioned are good. I don't know what you mean by turning to face him. You should always be facing him. When you have the underhook, you are facing him, even though he is not facing you. If you mean should you square up with him so you are face-to-face, hell no. The goal is always to be facing him when he's not facing you.

Yeah, I ment squaring up with him. But actually, when you do the dump finish ("running the pipe"), you circle in such a way that you square up with him.

Ok, but you do it as you do the move, not before. The motion of squaring up with him is part of the move.

If you want to do the standard double, you would have to square up with him, but there's a double you can do specifically from a single where you keep the angle and just grab his far leg and pinch his knees together and he falls down.

For reaping his supporting leg there are a variety of ways you can do it, some that do not involve squaring up, some that do. But in general, especially for a single you want the angle. Check the last two posts of the thread "The Basics of Sprawling" in the wrestling forum archive.

Another variation you can do:

1: you have the underhook with the left arm. You raise up and raise him up with you, lifting with the underhook. Step behind his leg (big, exagerated step) with your left leg while bending slightly forward, pushing (shoving) up with the underhook, all before you finish your step (before your foot is replanted). This should all be in one motion, and knocks his leg forward.

2: Your right hand is waiting for his leg, grabbing on the inside of the knee. You finish the step, which drives into him, allowing you to bring his leg up, and immediately following this in a continuous motion bring your left arm down to lock hands and secure the single.

Another option that I have had a lot of success with is not locking hands, but using the underhook arm to reach across his back and grab his far hip while you hold his leg elevated with your right hand. This gives him a whizzer, but it is incredibly easy to finish by stepping behind his support heel and dumping him backwards.