As the sport of mixed martial arts has grown and evolved so to have the techniques fighters employ. During the early days of the sport – when it was still style vs. style – the level of technique seen in competition was primarily basic.

But as MMA evolved from spectacle to sport, the fighters began cross-training in different arts and began focusing on technique over brutality.

With that evolution the submissions seen in MMA today have become more advanced and complex. Fighters today know and understand the basics so well that they are able to finish fights with submissions many thought you would never see in MMA.

Even though fighters today have shown great technical ability in attacking and finishing with advanced grappling techniques, there is still something to be said for the basics. While the basics may not be flashy they are still an effective means for finishing a fight.

One of the most underutilized, but very basic submission techniques is the kneebar; a leglock that can hyper-extend the knee.

Much like the technique used to secure and armbar, a fighter must trap his opponent’s leg in between their legs and secure the leg with their arms. With the opponent’s kneecap pointing towards their body the fighter will then apply pressure with their hips, forcing the leg to straighten. While there is several variations to the lock itself, this is the most basic technique.

There are some drawbacks to attacking with leg locks, but when executed at the right time they can be devastating.

About The Author

RJ Gardner
Content Coordinator

RJ Gardner is a rabid sports fan and a long time MMA enthusiast. After watching UFC 1 at ripe old age of 11 RJ was hooked and his passion for the sport has continued to blossom over the years. RJ has been covering MMA since 2007 and has had work featured on Bleacher Report,, and RJ is also a Petroleum Transportation Operations Manager during the day.