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Effective Takedowns With Dan Vallimont

Effective Takedowns With Dan Vallimont


Every wrestler is looking or better ways to earn takedowns. There are so many complicated and advanced techniques out there that can work, but in reality, simple is often better. Even though a technique may seem simple, that does not mean that there aren’t different aspects to each that you can learn and improve upon. 

Dan Vallimont was a two time New Jersey state champion. After high school, he went on to wrestle at Penn State where he compiled an impressive record of 110-36. He earned a third place and a second place at the NCAA finals. After college, he coached at Hofstra and Penn. Here are some great techniques that Dan has refined over the years that you can use to earn more takedowns out on the mat. 

High Crotch To Double Leg

One of the ways Dan was able to be so successful was because he had great offense that was built around a high crotch. In this video, Dan demonstrates hitting an outside step high crotch then transition to a double leg. 


A couple things to keep in mind when hitting this shot. First, Dan shows the high crotch from an inside tie, but you could also hit this same shot from an underhook. Another thing to notice is how well Dan clears his arm after he throws the tie by. He literally brings his hand down and smacks his own butt to make sure his opponent can’t hook his elbow when he shoots.

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The second thing that Dan does is he takes shoot with his outside leg. When you like to wrestle close, there is often not a reason to take a center step because you have already closed the distance. Shooting with the outside leg is much quicker. Another big thing to pay attention to is that Dan does not stay down on the knee. He immediately drives off his leg to move his opponent. If you stay on your knee, a good wrestlers will easily defend your shot. 

The last thing, which is hard to see on video, is you need your opponent to pressure back into you. So when you have your inside tie, you need to be pushing and pulling your opponent and waiting until you feel them pressure back into you. When they do, that is when you clear the arm and take the shot. 

Fake Single Leg to Ankle Pick

The next takedown is an ankle pick that is set up from faking a single leg while you have a Russian tie. This is highly effective because you are using one takedown to set up another and by the time your opponent realizes what is happening, it is too late for them to stop it. This is a pretty technical series of moves so be sure to pay attention to the details.


A couple key points with this takedown. First, watch how Dan steps behind his opponent’s near leg to get him to react and pull his leg back to avoid the single leg. Notice he isn’t trying to scoop up the foot, just a small step to get his opponent to step their foot back. When they do step their foot back, it puts all the weight on the far foot which makes it perfect for an ankle pick. 

Another thing to really pay attention to is Dan’s footwork he uses to close the distance in order to hook the far ankle. If you don’t do the hop step and close the distance, you will be to spread out and the ankle pick won’t work.  

Once you have the ankle is blocked, the next step is to reach down and grab the ankle and drive over your opponent. One common mistake that wrestlers do is they just try to lift the ankle instead of driving their opponent over it; this makes a big difference. Lastly, notice how Dan finishes with his opponent’s ankle on his thigh. Tabling the ankle will help to keep your opponent from bellying out and may allow you to earn some back points. 

Leg Outside Single Finish

One common position wrestlers find themselves in is when they shoot a single leg and their opponent moves their leg to the outside position to try and defend it. This can be a difficult position to finish a single leg in, especially against good wrestlers. In this video, Dan shows how to effectively finish a single leg from this position. 


A couple key points to successfully hitting this single leg finish. First, make sure you are elevating your opponent’s leg nice and high. This will prevent them from kicking out of the single leg. Another important thing to note in this position is that you still want to be moving your opponent around, don’t just stand there holding the leg. Another key point is you must get your opponent to touch their hands to the mat then pop back up and face you. You are basically trying to use their momentum against them so the more forcefully the pop back up the better it is. 

Lastly, you need to time this correctly so when they pop back up to their feet, you are immediately going to trip with the back foot and come across their neck and club with you arm. If you wait too long, this won’t be effective, but the good news is as long as you have the single leg, you can just redo the move. 

If you would like to learn more elite wrestling technique from Dan, be sure to check out his in depth video series titled “The Russian Tie Formula by Dan Vallimont”. In this four part video series, Dan explains his Russian tie system he used to during his wrestling career. 

Learn to DOMINATE your opponents with The Russian Tie Formula By Dan Vallimont. Use this 4 Part series to revamp your wrestling and utilize to control your opponent before setting your traps! Check The Russian Tie Formula out today!