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#8: Front Headlock & Stuck Under Counters

The Front Headlock is a very dangerous position for the defensive guy, and an extremely controlling position for the guy on offense. Whenever your opponent is hanging his head down a little you can snap his head down. You can also get this if your opponent takes a bad shot and you sprawl good enough that he's not on your legs or barely has them. It's very easy to control your opponent with a Front Headlock and if used correctly you should be able to get a takedown.

You will pull his head underneath your chest. Grab the chin with your right hand while keeping your elbow high so it's harder for him to grab it. Your arm should be fairly shallow. You can even grip the neck, making your elbow even harder to reach. Your right shoulder should be digging into his trap muscle on the left side of his neck. With your left hand, you'll grab the opposite arm and lift it up. Keeping one of his arms elevated makes it so he can only use one to either support himself or defend his position. If you stuff his arm above his head it will warm his upper-body and make him especially uncomfortable. You can be over the arm or underneath it, but we recommend being over unless you're trying to get a Cement Job and other related moves.

Ideally, you'll want to snap him down to the mat and finish from there. You have more control on the mat than on your feet.

  • Front Headlock On Feet

    You'll have the Front Headlock, but both you and your opponent will be standing on your feet. So this is before you snap him down to the mat. Usually you'll get here while hand-fighting or if he takes a bad shot but doesn't fully commit and you snap the head under your chest. You can control this by lifting the arm up with your arm on the outside, or by having your arm under his arm (Under-Hook, Cement Job). I recommend you try to keep your hand on the outside to lower the chances of him grabbing both elbows and forcing a stalemate.

  • Front Headlock Defense On Feet

    Your head is stuck under his chest so he has a Front Headlock. The goal is to get out of this position as soon as possible before it gets any worse. You can shoot out of most tie-ups, but for this one I want you to get out of it first before you attack. These moves have that goal in mind. If you try to shoot under a Front Headlock there's a very good chance that an experienced wrestler will feel this start to happen and he'll sprawl on you, making the situation worse for yourself. Do not dig yourself a bigger hole. Do not get into a false sense of security thinking that moves that work against bad wrestlers will work against good wrestlers. Remember: your style should not change depending on who you're wrestling. You need to have consistent and good technique if you want to win consistently. Don't use bad technique just because you can. Develop good habits that you'll need to use against good wrestlers.

  • Front Headlock On The Mat

    This would be when you have the Front Headlock but down on the mat. Your opponent will be on his hands and knees, you should be off of your knees to improve your mobility and to put more pressure or weight on your opponent. You can snap his head down repeatedly (bounce the head) to break him down and keep his weight on his hands, but don't do it too often or too aggressively or you'll end up giving up Unnecessary Roughness call.

  • Front Headlock Defense On The

    When you're on the mat and stuck in a Front Headlock, you should probably grab an elbow and pull it down as soon as you can. This will secure your position a little bit and give you time to improve your situation. It'll also limit the amount of attacks the top wrestler can use and it will keep him in front of you. You can grab the chin hand with two hands and post it down, but it's a little bit more dangerous because the top guy has a lot more mobility in this situation compared to when you're on your feet. He can start to spin around you and with his weight on you it's harder to match his rotation. Grabbing the elbow solves this a little better.

  • Front Headlock Short Offense

    To me this means you'll be keeping your arms short, hands over top of the head and/or shoulders. This way your opponent cannot grab your elbows and slow you down in this position. You'll have a lot more mobility, but you will have less control of your opponent. Make sure you keep your hips low, knees off the mat, feet wide and back. You don't want to run into a random shot, and you don't want to lose him completely.