Being muscled into an armbar


White Belt
Mar 29, 2008
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This real strong guy who has fought in legit MMA matches with limited BJJ experience was rolling with me. He has a few months less than me on the mat but that ain't saying much, we are both noobs. I found myself on my back most of the roll and the guy had sick base - he wrestled in high school and college so his base was like at least a blue belt's. At full mount, I was having trouble bucking him off and he'd just keep pulling/using strentgh on my arm. I'd fight it as much as I could, slowly but surely he'd position it just right for an armbar. All this time, I feel his legs getting into position and boom...arm bar. We'd go again, same thing. If I roll into it before he does it, I am sort of on my side and just shifts his body a bit and muscles the other arm...rinse and repeat. Or he'd muscle my arm for a Keylock, fake that and armbar.

What can I do to get out of an armbar when I know it is coming? Alot of times, I feel my opponent setting up, like its in slow motion...but I am clueless.
Dont get in it in the first place - best advice seriously.

Work on returning to at least half guard.

Fighting an armlock from the armlock position is the worst possible way to fight it.

However you usually have two major options. The rock up, or hitchhiker escape.

The rock up is the same way Barnett Escapes Nogueiras armlock in the Pride GP - rather than try to type it out.. go look up that fight and youll see exactly what im talking about. keep your weight over his head to keep him from extending the arm once you rock up.. and shake shake shake your arm out.

The hitchhiker escape is where you turn your thumb down/backwards towards the ground and follow the direction with the rest of your body to your knees. Pretty much watch any bjj, or mma fight where a bjj guys escapes the armlock and they will do this escape. Its especially easy to pull off in nogi because of the slickness of the opponent.

For some reason a fight that Serra did in the UFC i remember seeing this escape clear as day.. So search for some of his old fights to find it.
Sounds like the guy has decent technique as well. Start reacting before he gets mount, that's my best advice.
That's not using strength for an armlock, that's taking your time and setting it up properly, he just happens to be strong as well.
When you say you "bucked" him what do u mean? Were you bucking him once every few seconds? Once in a while? Like a crazy mofo?

BC when I get mounted which isnt often (not being the least bit arrogant I just dont get mounted much, I end up under half guard a lot) I buck and bump like a maniac! My BJJ is slow but and I save my energy but when I get mounted all that energy gets spent until I get off. I think it works well bc if I do get mounted it is usually only for 3-4 secs until I elbow escape and pull half guard again.

The way I look at it is...if you are going crazy bumping he has to just worry about staying on top of you and he cant plan his next sub attempt. But he you are just bumping every once in a while he can shrug it off and keep working for subs.

So my advice is to bump him more so he is worried about just holding the mount.
Bump - Elbow escpae
Bump - block and roll
Bump -Elbow escape
Bump - Block and roll

Until you either pull guard (or half guard) or roll him into his guard.
i get forced into armbars alot when im in people's guards. they're just that much stronger that they extend my arms...

not a problem if you see it coming though. as soon as it's coming, grab your non-armbarred biceps with the amrbarred hand. insert the palm of your non-armbarred arm under his knee. its like a rnc position, hard as fuck to break.

the best thing to do though as far as im concerned against an armbar from the mount when you see it coming is this: when you feel the armbar coming, clasp your hands together and just as he swings his leg over your head bump it with the clasped hands and start turning into them. you basically push his leg off of your face before he gets into position and you start turning into him. usually, he'll just go for the armbar again but now he's on the bottom and you're on top and you can do the escape that i described first. i think roger did this when werdum tried to armbar him in adcc.

works like a charm, im telling you.