Catch Wrestling Neck Cranks

This last weekend, we were treated to another chance to rub elbows, or in this case, have our elbows, knees, ankles, shoulders and necks ground into fine powder by the Legendary Coach Billy Robinson.

It was our honor to host another Catch Wrestling Certification at the Mushin Self Defense Gym. And as expected, the training was one of a kind and absolutely fantastic.

Coach Robinson was kind enough to share a few more gems with our youtube followers. In lieu of this, we have released one of the clips we filmed earlier this year, a Neck Crank series by Level 2 Certified Catch Wrestler Assistant Coach, Sam Kressin.


I’ve always been on the fence about the use of Neck Cranks. Especially, when working in a training environment. Recently, I’ve become more liberal in my use of them, but I still exercise restraint when it comes to who I use them on, how I use them and the amount of pressure I’m willing to apply to them.

Where do you weigh in on this “touchy” subject? Let us know in the comments below.

6 replies
  1. KJ
    KJ says:

    Neck cranks and facelocks are great, especially in an MMA environment where the glove can hinder your chances at choking.

    However, neck conditioning is a must beforehand. I like that Erik Paulson’s neckbreaker set starts off with neck conditioning, how to strengthen and prepare your neck for the cranks. A strong neck is helpful in other areas too, including well being.

    It’s important to have the balance between the two.

  2. wylothar
    wylothar says:

    I love cranks! I use them all the time. Understanding the potential of injury is real important. I may not apply all the way to the tap. I know if I really hit it they would tap.
    I am lucky to teach /train at a gym where the owners let me do what I do even though they compete ibjjf rules and alot of my attributes wouldn’t be legal for them.

    Neckbreaker videos were fantastic.

  3. naturalbornfighter1
    naturalbornfighter1 says:

    Poor Kiser haha! That made me wince just watching it. OUCH!!!

    Always great to see some good old fashioned CCCS on DCMMA!!!!

  4. Monkey King:)
    Monkey King:) says:

    I think it depends. I don,t participate in grappling sports where it is allowed. And i think that on an amateur level practicing these kind of verry dangerous maneuvres is unwise and unsafe. However on a professional level or for MMA i think it is great to train these maneuvres, since they might geth used against oneself. So it is better to experience them in controlled training. Than gething caught in it during a match. With all the severe consequenses this might have. Also since it is harder to train i think this might make the move less effective. Since other moves (chokes, armbars) can be trained in an earlier stage. And can be trained full force in all out sparring with sparring partners from all levels. With way less fear of (fatal) injury.
    I think this is a big reason why lots of (high level) matches still geth decided on basic submissions (armbars, chokes, triangles etc) .
    You learn these moves early in ones training and they can be trained full force, ingraining them in our muscle memory, while we geth a good feeling for it under full force sparring and resistance. Anyway just my thoughts. Train safe.


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