Grappling Range in Self-Defence (diary entry)

clinch body clinch Knee strike to head from clinch04.03.20


Wednesday lunchtime’s lesson continued my sixth self-protection course for Kingham Hill School. Today I introduced them to stand-up grappling/the clinch in order to better understand how build next week’s anti-grappling techniques.


Grappling is not the preferred option in an immediate high situation. There are exceptions, such as being corned unarmed by an armed assailant, but even then interception of the weapon hand and control via grappling is best assisted by striking. Low and mid-level threats might be better suit grappling when you are trying to subdue an antagonist or perform a citizen’s arrest. However, when dealing with most high risk situations, grappling is usually a support tool. If your fight situation has deteriorated to grappling range then it is best that understand some basics of the clinch. This is so that you can get back to striking as quickly as possible.


We went through the basics of the collar/elbow tie, double collar tie (plum position or Muay Thai clinch) and underhook/overhook clinch. These were taught as flow drills teaching how to dominant and how to look for balance points. We then increased intensity to grappling/clinch sparring. Next we covered wrist-grips and grip fighting.  The lesson finished with work on the double leg takedown. This technique is worth learning as a good model to work against when defending lowline grappling attacks.

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