The Kimura Trap leads to an excellent series of transitions and submissions. It has been popularised by David Avellan and frequently utilised by such names as Andre Galvao, Keenan Cornelius, Andris Brunovskis and Dominick Cruz.

It is also an example of one of the most difficult positional concepts to understand in Jiu Jitsu: A Position of Transition.

Positions of Transition are positions where control is not exerted in a traditional pinning or riding fashion.

Pins are dominant positions in which control is exerted by restricting and controlling the opponent’s movement and Rides are dominant positions where control is exerted despite the opponent’s movement.

A Position of Transition’s primary method of control is the gateways it creates to other positions or submissions. However, unlike pins and rides, the ability to remain in these positions is comparatively limited and these gateways are created almost exclusively through the opponent’s choices.

In this example it is easy to see how the attacker’s options are essentially dictated by the choices of the defender and it is equally easy to see how the attacker has little means to force any particular choice upon the defender.

Why is any of this important?

Well, despite being easily entered into from a variety of situations and allowing a series of extremely powerful actions, Positions of Transition are comparatively under utilised. And they are not uncommon – Kimura Trap, Harness, Two on One and Seatbelt are all Positions of Transition if used correctly.

Secondly, realise that due to their action/reaction type nature, Positions of Transition take significantly more drilling than more conventional positions to make use if their full potential.

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