If you’re interested in improving your triangle choke, I have some quick tips for you.
1. Learn how triangle choke works
This explanation by Ryan Hall is the most concise and comprehensible explanation I known on how to do triangle choke.
It will take you about 4 minutes to watch this video, and you will understand how to position yourself correctly and how to use your legs properly.
I know it’s a boring answer, but drill triangle choke. Make sure to follow Ryan Hall’s advice in the video I mentioned above with regard to your positioning. What’s important here is to understand the mechanics of effective triangle choke.
Don’t just mindlessly drill triangle choke, but get into the correct finishing position and understand how it feels to do triangle choke properly.
It should feel as if there is no resistance and as if you can keep strangling your training partner. If it’s working properly, your training partner will tap immediately. If not, either your technique is not good, or your training partner is a mutant who is hard/almost impossible to strangle with triangle choke due to their body type.
3. Drill on both sides
If you want to be good at triangle choke, you should be able to do it on both sides. When your left side triangle choke fails, one of the best B plans is to go for the right side triangle choke. This works, because your opponent hardly expects it.
4. Work on triangle setups that work for you
Once you get to the finishing position for triangle choke, it’s not difficult to get a tap from your opponent, but of course… getting to this position is what’s difficult.
Some setups are more timing-based (i.e. Fellipe Andrew is probably the current best example of people who do timing-based triangle choke) and many others are control-based. I think control-based setups are much easier to learn and have higher success rates, because they are less risky. (Have you tried using this setup of mine yet? And this one is a new video you can take a look at as well.)
Stick with one or two setups that work for you, and expand them gradually.
You can go for triangle choke from all sorts of positions. Some of my favorite ones include 1) going for triangle choke as a follow up to my own cross collar choke, and 2) going for triangle choke from the single leg X guard (this one is in gi as well).
These are unusual setups, but triangle choke can be connected with all sorts of positions and moves. Keep exploring 🙂
6. Drill all the major variations of triangle choke
It’s probably better to focus on front triangle in the beginning, but once you’re comfortable with it, start working on rear triangle, side triangle, reverse triangle, and mounted triangle. Try becoming good at all of them.
7. Don’t forget about other submissions
Keep in mind that it may be better to switch to armbar or omoplata (or leg attacks) when triangle choke doesn’t work. So, even if you want to use triangle choke as your main submission, make sure to practice these other submission options as well, especially in connection with triangle choke.
That’s all the major tips I can think of at the moment. Feel free to share these tips with your teammates who want to improve triangle choke.
If you have any triangle choke questions, shoot me a message and let me know.