Step Up Your Greco Game with These Olympic Level Throws
Greco-Roman wrestling often gets overlooked when people discuss wrestling even though it is an Olympic sport. Even Greco isn’t your main focus, it is still incredibly helpful to train and compete in Greco events. Just by spending more time on the mat, you can become more poised and composed when you wrestle freestyle or folkstyle. Also, learning upper body throws is very beneficial for any wrestler and throws can often be easier to hit when you can use leg attacks to set them up. Here are four Greco throws from two different Olympians.
Elevator Body Lock
This first takedown is from Olympic bronze medalist Adam Wheeler. The first throw is an elevator body lock that starts by getting double underhooks. Check out the video to see Adam demonstrate the throw.
Having double underhooks is a great position to be in, but you have to be somewhat careful because it means your opponent has double overhooks and if you are locked up high, you are in danger of being headlocked. With this elevator body lock, once you get your double unders, it is important to drop down lower on the torso to avoid this. Also notice how Adam pull his partner back which allows him to drop down lower. After you have the body lock, you can hit a corkscrew finish or lift and elevate the leg and take it over.
Update your Upper Body Takedowns with Adam Wheeler!
Another great Greco option is called the Wheeler Whip. This starts with an arm drag and when you drag, you take a deep center step between your opponent’s legs and the near hand goes behind your opponent around their waist. Most of the time, your opponent will step their leg out because they feel vulnerable. What is great about this move is Adam is anticipating his opponent stepping their leg out and using it against them.
When you feel them step out, the hand that is on the waist will slide up to the armpit. From here, be sure to pull with both of your arms to twist your opponent’s upper body and now you can hit a lateral drop style throw.
Reverse Arm Throw
A reverse arm throw is another great option to throw your opponent. It starts with a two on one and is highly effective. In this video, Olympian Georgi Ivanov demonstrates how he likes to hit this throw.
This throw starts in a two on one position with a reverse grip with the bottom hand. Once you have your grip switched up, you are going to pull your opponent behind you which loads them up to be thrown.
From here, you will do a quick level change and a slightly turn your body as the back knee goes down to the mat. Keep the arm tight with both your arms and even use your head to pinched their arm. Then, use the knee that is on the mat to drive forward and throw your opponent. Be sure to use your legs and drive them over.
Elbow Pinch Lateral Drop
This elbow pinch lateral drop is another great throw from a two on one. One of the reasons that it is so effective is because you can hit it when your opponent grabs your elbow to defend the two on one which happens a lot.
This throw starts out in a good Russian tie position with the arm is tight to your body. Watch how Georgi uses his belly to block his opponent’s arm and then takes the hand that is on the wrist and brings it up to an underhook. Then pop your hips and commit to the throw; be sure to look in the direction of the throw.
If you have trouble hitting this throw here are a couple of things to look at. First, your hips need to be close to your partner’s hips so make sure you are stepping in deep enough. If you don’t eliminate the space between you and your partner, the throw probably won’t work. Another aspect to look at is are you able to pop your hips. If you can’t already do a lateral drop form and over under position, you probably aren’t ready to for this variation of a lateral drop. Lastly, as with any throw, make sure you are committing 100% to the throw. Either you go all in with it or don’t bother hitting it or you will end up on your back against a good wrestler.
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”.