BJJ Submissions: 46 Techniques Ranked (Tier List)

By Tsavo NealLearning BJJLeave a Comment

bjj submissions arm triangle

What are the best BJJ submissions, and why?

As a passionate hobbyist, I think about this question a lot. I want to spend my time training high-percentage techniques.

So, I found a great video by Jordan Teaches Jiu-Jitsu on a tier list of BJJ submissions. It ranks 46 submissions from best to worst.

All credit to Jordan Preisinger of Limitless BJJ for creating this list. I’m just sharing my notes on it. I highly recommend you watch the video for his additional insights.

Let’s dive in.

BJJ Submissions Tier List: Jump To Section

S-Tier BJJ Submissions

These are the best, most high-percentage submissions in jiu-jitsu. John Danaher teaches them, and Gordon Ryan uses them.

1. Rear Naked Choke

doing a rear naked choke on the grappling smarty

Me practicing the rear-naked choke on my Grappling SMARTY

2. Armbar

  • Can be done from so many different positions
  • Gets the tap quickly

3. Heel Hook

  • Forces the tap quickly
  • Best leglock

4. Arm Triangle

  • You can use the setup to get to easily other submissions and positions
  • If you have a good bite with the bicep, it’s easy to finish
  • Very low risk

5. Bow & Arrow Choke

  • Very straightforward to finish
  • Easier to get than the RNC
  • Gi-only move

6. Triangle Choke

  • Very difficult to escape once you have it locked up
  • Versatile position with hundreds of setups
  • Favors people with longer legs

A-Tier BJJ Submissions

There are very good BJJ submissions that are reliable and work well at all levels.

7. Arm-In Guillotine

  • Easy to initiate
  • Can stop someone’s offense
  • Can easily transition to other front headlock variations
  • Difficult finishing mechanics, but Jordan breaks it down in his instructional

8. Kimura

  • Better as a grip than as a submission

9. D’arce Choke

  • S-tier for people with long arms because it’s easy to lock up
  • Finishing mechanics can be difficult
  • Not as effective in the gi

10. Kneebar

  • Best leglock other than the heel hook
  • Harder to hit for lower belts

11. Twister

  • Very easy to finish once you’ve set it up
  • Major style points, cool-looking submission
  • Difficult to set up

12. Calf Slicer

  • Fast, effective, easy to set up
  • You can hit it from many positions

13. Loop Choke

  • Powerful and effective submission

14. Von-Flu Choke

  • Simple finishing mechanics
  • Very situational

B-Tier BJJ Submissions

These are solid, high-percentage submissions with more pros than cons.

15. Arm-Out Guillotine

  • Easy to finish
  • Harder to get your arm in deep

16. Omoplata

  • Great utility for transitions and sweeps
  • Can be difficult to finish

17. Americana

  • Easy to understand, but easy to defend
  • Good to use to set up the back take
  • Can switch to a straight armlock
  • Better for bigger, strong BJJ players

18. Toe Hold

  • Kneebar is often the better option

19. Buggy Choke

  • A good way to threaten the opponent from a bad position, gives you space to escape
  • Deadly against unsuspecting opponents
  • Tough to figure out

20. Anaconda

  • Hard to finish against someone good
  • Worst variation of the front headlock

21. Wristlock

  • They come on fast and hard
  • Easy to do
  • Low risk
  • Requires a lot of control
  • Easily defended

C-Tier BJJ Submissions

These are relatively average submissions that require specialization to work well.

22. Straight Ankle Lock

  • Difficult to finish against people with flexible ankles
  • Opponents can continue even if you break their ankle
  • Overshadowed by the heel hook

23. Cross-Collar Choke

  • Can be used for the armbar setup
  • Difficult to finish
  • Hurts your fingers
  • Not as good in closed guard

24. Paper Cutter Choke

  • Very low-risk submission
  • Difficult to get the 2nd grip in

25. Bulldog Choke

  • RNC is almost always the better option
  • Difficult to set up deliberately
  • Easy to defend

D-Tier BJJ Submissions

These are lower-percentage submissions that are done from positions where there are often better options.

26. Peruvian Necktie

  • Easy to see coming
  • Not as good as the other options from front headlock

27. Scissor Lock

  • Tough to escape if locked up
  • Difficult to set up

28. Body Triangle

  • Great for controlling your opponent
  • Can be A-tier if you have very strong legs
  • Very dangerous if your training partner doesn’t tap

29. Groin Stretch/Banana Split

  • If it fails, you can use it as a sweep
  • Very rarely the best option from that position
  • Tough to finish against flexible opponents

30. Brabo Choke

  • Can be easier to finish than the D’arce choke if you have short arms
  • Difficult to finish

31. Tarikoplata

  • Very niche submission

32. Electric Chair / Lockdown

  • Effective but only if you specialize in it
  • Can be dangerous to your training partners

33. Ezekiel Choke 

  • Good threat to get your opponent to react
  • Difficult to finish

34. Mir Lock

  • Low percentage technique

35. North South Choke

  • Hard to get it locked in place

36. Suloev Stretch Kneebar

  • Very limited window of opportunity to hit it
  • Rarely the best option from the position

37. Baseball Bat Choke

  • Not very effective
  • Difficult to set up
  • They hurt your fingers
  • If you screw it up, you give up a dominant position

38. Bicep Slicer

  • Difficult to finish
  • Very rarely the best option from the position

39. Boston Crab

  • Funny when they do work
  • Very difficult to finish unless there is a big skill gap

40. Knee On Belly

  • More of a pain move
  • Better thought of as a position

41. Gogoplata

  • Omoplata is often the better option
  • Difficult to finish

42. Estima Lock

  • Easy to defend
  • Can hurt your training partner’s knee if you’re not careful

43. Kesa Gatame Crush

  • Takes a lot of effort to finish

44. Clock Choke

  • There are better options from the top turtle position
  • You can hurt yourself doing it

F-Tier BJJ Submissions

These are very low-percentage techniques and you’re lucky when you hit them.

45. Foot Lock From The Back

  • Can be a sneaky submission for unsuspecting opponents
  • Easy to defend

46. Can Opener

  • Very easy to defend
  • Training partners don’t like them

Takeaway Thoughts

So there you have it: 46 BJJ submissions ranked from best to worst.

What does your BJJ submissions tier list look like? Do you agree with Jordan Teaches Jiu-Jitsu?

Let me know in the comments below.

Happy rolling. 🤙

tsavo neal

Tsavo Neal

Tsavo is the founder of BJJ Equipment, an assistant BJJ instructor at InFighting, and a BJJ purple belt. He's a passionate hobbyist and BJJ gear/equipment aficionado. He launched BJJ Equipment in 2022 to make it easy for grapplers to find the best BJJ gear so they look, feel, and perform at their best on the mats.

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