My 8 year old son has been doing BJJ for a couple of months now. He keeps getting taking down by this simple maneuver: opponent's leg behind your leg trip.

Are the options just to sprawl out on time or grab the leg? Anything else?

  • Which leg behind which leg? Same or opposite, inside or outside? What are the grips? (This is most likely a judo throw: osotogari, a Gracie-style kosotogake, or kouchigari. If you're not sure, look around at judoinfo.com's library of images. Also here.) Aug 2, 2012 at 15:47
  • This is the classic bully take down. For example I put my left leg behind your right leg and push you over it. Thanks for the image library links. Aug 2, 2012 at 16:00
  • I'm still not sure I'm clear on what's going on. Are they close, or grabbing the gi sleeve? Does the thrower stay standing or end up somewhere on the ground, and if so, where? Aug 2, 2012 at 16:03
  • 1
    it's probably ko soto gari, i see it a lot in bjj.
    – Patricia
    Aug 2, 2012 at 19:51
  • 1
    @Dave yeah, its pretty much a kosotogake. It varies sometimes the quickly close the distance or grab the gi sleeve. the thrower usually stays standing Aug 3, 2012 at 21:43

3 Answers 3


The advice I'd give to an eight year old for preventing a Gracie-family-style kosotogake-makikomi would be limited.

  • Dominate the clinch. Get double underhooks, and prevent the opponent from getting double underhooks.
  • Keep your hips away from their hips, and your legs away from their legs, once any clinch is established. This opens you up for other techniques, such as hip and sacrifice throws, but it will generally prevent the outside hook takedown.
  • (This is more technically involved, and to be safe, would require in-person tutelage from a skilled instructor.) If your opponent successfully starts this throw, turn hard in the opposite direction (i.e. to the left if my right leg is being hooked), back-step with the opposite foot, and twist hard with my arms and torso, attempting an uchimata-ish hip throw. Hopefully you would at least land in a "dog-fight" position, with both people side-to-side, face-down.

There are more and better options, but for an eight-year-old, that's more than enough. They should be focusing on putting in and enjoying mat time instead of specific stand-up technical issues anyway. If the throw remains a problem after a few more months, the instructor should step in and provide tactical or technical advice.

  • I was going to suggest double underhooks as well, but then it occurred to me that I fold people who have double underhooks on me almost as easily as if I have them in. I think hip distance is much more important, and I find that easier to maintain with overhooks.
    – Robin Ashe
    Aug 2, 2012 at 17:48
  • @RobinAshe I see your point, but in my meager experience, kosotogake without double underhooks relies on dramatically superior wrestling skills in general. (Specifically, exploiting bad footwork or using double overhooks to crushing their underhooks.) Would you agree? Aug 2, 2012 at 17:54
  • Possible, although I'm also leaning towards underhooks not being as effective against taller people because you can't force their arms up, so if the guy has 4"-6" of height on you, the double underhooks won't really kill his ability to trip you.
    – Robin Ashe
    Aug 2, 2012 at 18:58

For an 8 year old kid, keeping the distance is probably the best option. like robin and dave have mentioned.

If they are looking to be a little more adventurous. o uchi gara, and uchi mata are both viable counters to a bjj style ko soto gaki/gari.


o uchi gar is in the first group, uchi mata in the second. both require a lot of practise for the timing, and are probably worth having your son work on, but not count on for a long time.

uchi mata will work a lot kil this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GpGzHiHNPQI

I can't find a video of o uchi gari as the counter. but basically as they are hooking their leg behind your leg, you turn and steer their upper body around, dragging that foot in a circle.

  • 1
    Good point, I had totally forgotten my favorite counter to that technique! That's what I get for not going to judo for a month. Aug 2, 2012 at 19:51

The inside leg trip is a more reliable takedown than the outside leg trip, but it's not popular in BJJ because the inside leg trip puts you in their guard, while the outside one at least gives you half mount. The inside leg trip is a natural counter to the outside leg trip, and in practice the inside leg trip tends to win (I'm not entirely sure if this is because it's favoured by wrestlers and they're way better at takedowns than BJJers, but I would expect if the outside leg trip had viability you'd see it in wrestling competitions as well).

To be able to get the outside leg trip, you need hip to hip contact, so fighting for control of the clinch to keep the hips apart will also entirely kill any chance of getting the outside leg trip.

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