Five Super Cool Takedowns You Need To Know
Earning takedowns is one of the biggest aspects in the sport of wrestling. There are fundamental takedowns and setups that all wrestlers should know like a head snap to double leg or an underhook to high crotch. These types of simple takedowns are the foundation of wrestling, but once you have those down, it can be a lot of fun to add some takedowns to your offense that are a bit more flashy and unorthodox. Now there are a lot of interesting takedowns out there, but not all of them are necessarily effective against good guys. Well here are five really cool takedowns that will work at the highest levels of wrestling.
Two one One Lunge Step
The first takedown comes from a two on one. Often times when you have a two on one, your opponent will post on your head to prevent you from attacking the near leg. When they post, you can use it to your advantage and attack the opposite side. Check out this video where Olympic bronze medalist Adam Wheeler shows this version of the two on one lunge step.
When hitting this lunge step, make sure you keep a hold of the near arm when you take the lunge step. Also, watch how Wheeler pops the arm up and takes his lunge step at the same time as he lowers his level. When you start to practice this takedown, you want your opponent to be pressuring into you so you can get the two on one and wait for them to post on your head. When they do, push into them a bit and bait them to pressure back. When you feel their pressure will be the perfect time to post the arm and hit your lunge step. Once you are in on the lunge step, you can hit a high crotch, a double leg, or a duck under. This is a great takedown from a two on one that can be highly effective.
Fake Single Leg To An Ankle Pick
An ankle pick is a cool takedown all by itself, but an even cooler way to do an ankle pick is to set it up with a fake single leg from a two on one. Check out this video of Dan Vallimont going through the details of how he likes to hit this attack.
The first step to setting this up is to get your two on one. Once you have it secured, the next step is to fake the single leg. As you can see in the video, it is not a full out shot, but rather just putting your foot behind your opponent’s foot to make them think you want to hit a single on the near leg. Most guys will automatically pull the foot back and when they do it sets everything into motion. Watch how Dan does the little hop step to close the distance then uses his foot to hook his opponent’s ankle. Then reach down to secure the ankle and drive your opponent over it.
This is a great takedown because it keeps you two steps ahead of your opponent and by the time they realize what is coming it will be too late.
Misdirection Double Leg
One takedown that makes peoples’ jaws drop when they see one being hit out on the mat is a misdirection double leg. A misdirection shot is basically when you fake shooting a shot to one side to get your opponent to react and immediately transition to the opposite side to finish the shot. If you can get this takedown down, you can make guys look silly out on the mat. Check out this video of three time NCAA champion Ed Ruth explaining how he likes to hit a misdirection double leg.
The biggest keys to hitting this double leg successfully are first, you have to sell the first shot. The more you can get you opponent to believe and react that you are really shooting to one side, the easier it will be to attack the opposite side. The other big key to this is committing. A lot of times guys don’t fully commit to shooting on both sides and they fail when they attempt a misdirection double leg. Lastly, make sure you are setting it up with an inside tie on the side you are hitting the fake on. This will help to ensure you opponent won’t be able to block your initial shot.
Low Double From An Overtie
One position that you see in almost every match is guys getting collar tied. One way to deal with that is to hit an overtie, which is basically when you collar tie over top of your opponent’s overtie. In this video, four time NCAA champion and world champion Logan Stieber uses an overtie to hit a low double leg. Check it out.
First of all, when you have the overtie, you must collapse your opponent’s head in their biceps. If you don’t, you are essentially giving them inside control and the opportunity to hit an easy high crotch, but by bringing their head to their biceps, it closes off the space so they can’t shoot. Another key point is watch now Stieber pushes and circles his opponent in order to get the feet in the correct position. Lastly, his shot is not a standard double leg, it is more like low single but he attacks both legs instead of one.
If you practice this takedown you can be very successful with it because a collar tie is such a common position in wrestling and the opportunity will present itself very often.
Head to Chest Fireman’s Carry
This last takedown is called a head to chest fireman’s carry and is quite a bit different from the standard fireman’s carry. It comes from a two on one and is great for freestyle because it puts your opponent straight to their back. Here is a video Olympian Georgi Ivanov demonstrating the head to chest fireman’s carry.
As you can see, this isn’t the standard fireman’s carry you learned in middle school. It starts with a two on one and the big keys to hitting the move successfully are first, you must step up with your outside leg and elevate your opponent. Next is the back step. Watch how Georgi steps behind his opponent's near leg with his near leg and bends at the knee. This will act as tripping point when your bring your opponent back. Another important point is the Georgi doesn’t just fall back, he drives his opponent over his leg to get the takedown.
The 2-on-1 Encyclopedia by Georgi Ivanov is ESSENTIAL for grappler’s looking to dominate the mat. If you want to learn more Russian tie technique, be sure to check out Georgi’s in depth video titled “The 2-on-1 Encyclopedia by Georgi Ivanov”.