Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a martial art of creativity! There are a number of techniques that you can choose to go for, and they can be mixed up in such a vast variety of setups that the number of moves seems to be infinite! However, no setup and submission work perfectly well each and every time. Plus, there are some submissions which are extremely hard to both set up and finish, especially as your opponents become better.
Now, take these submissions to the realm of mixed martial arts; and you’ll see that, while some of them are possible, they are rarely ever done. With that said, here are 5 of the rarest, most difficult submissions to hit in MMA!
RAREST SUB #1: THE STRAIGHT ANKLE LOCK
Now, we know what you’re thinking: „The Straight Ankle Lock?! That is one of the most simple submissions in Jiu Jitsu, plus it’s seen rather often! There’s no way that it’s one of the rarest subs in MMA.“
But think again. Just how many Straight Ankle Lock finishes have you seen in mixed martial arts? Sure, there have been some cases when the fighter would go for it – but would the tap happen? Truth be told, after the Jiujiteiros move up from, let’s say, blue belt – Straight Ankle Lock finishes aren’t seen much in BJJ and grappling competitions either.
So what may be the cause behind this? First, any skilled and experienced grappler/fighter has good Straight Ankle Lock defense. And secondly, even when locked, it’s easier to push through the pain of a Straight Ankle Lock than through the pain – and injury levels – of other submissions.
RAREST SUB #2: OMOPLATA
The Omoplata, a nasty and fancy shoulder lock, is a fantastic submission used… Well, perhaps not on a „regular“ basis, but not rarely either – in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. However, when MMA is taken into consideration, things change a bit. But why is this the case?
The reasons are simple: it’s trickier to set up than other submissions are (such as the Triangle Choke, which is often set up from the same position plus it is much more available, much more high percentage); and it could quite easily lead to a bad position if both you and your opponent are sweaty and slippery.
RAREST SUB #3: GOGOPLATA
Whenever you hit a Gogoplata in training, you feel like a million bucks, right? Deservedly so; while it’s effective for getting the tap, it’s quite difficult to set up. Nevertheless, it has been used successfully time and time again at the highest of grappling competitions by those athletes that take advantage of their Rubber Guard (such as Jeremiah Vance).
So why isn’t it seen as often in MMA? Unlike the previous two submissions, the case here could be that the fighters don’t really practice it. For – even in your BJJ class, how often do you actually drill the Gogoplata? Not that often; and if Jiujiteiros themselves don’t practice it, why expect the MMA fighters to do the opposite?
RAREST SUB #4 AND #5: THE CALF SLICER AND TWISTER
The Calf Slicer and Twister can fall into the same category of rarity, for a very simple reason. Yes, both have been done a few times in professional MMA matches worldwide, but they’re still very rare. And they’ll continue being so.
The reason? You need to have a really high doze of luck to set them up; you and your opponent need to be in just the right positions for you to go for it. But when the opportunity is there and the setup is acquired, both of these submissions lead to very, very painful taps.