The Power of the Shoulder

The other night I had the pleasure of doing some positional drilling with 10th Planet Van Nuys head instructor Coach Alder. We were working on some mounted arm triangles where one partner would start with head and arm pit control. The goal of the guy on top was to set up the head and arm choke. The goal of the guy on the bottom was to escape the head and arm. I couldn’t escape. Every time I thought I was free he pinned me back down. His secret? Shoulder Pressure.

The shoulder can be a powerful weapon for pinning your opponent. Let’s look at side control for a second. For a perfect side control I want to make sure that I am blocking the hip with my knee, blocking my partners head movements with my other knee, and putting my chest on his chest. While all of these can pin a guy to the mat, there is one extra little thing you can do to make it unbearable for him. Use your shoulder pressure to turn his face. By doing this you are limiting his head movements. It is very hard for the body to move without the head.

Shoulder pressure is also key to finishing some chokes. This month we are working on our North South Choke. I have always struggled with this choke because I tried to squeeze with my arms. Makes sense right? I mean I finish most chokes by squeezing. Wrong. One of the keys to finishing this choke is dropping your shoulder into their neck and then squeezing. Dropping the shoulder makes the choke even tighter and easier for me to apply. Again the power of Shoulder Pressure!

If you want to learn more or possibly feel the Power of the Shoulder, make sure to check out 10th Planet Van for more info!

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