The juji gatame, ude hishigi juji gatame formally, is an armbar in which you as tori use your legs to control uke while you hyper-extend his elbow into an armbar. The juji can be accomplished from a variety of positions, from the ground, from standing, etc. In the case of this fight, the positions were classic with Hardy on his back on the floor and GSP at about 90 degrees from Hardy and on his back as well. The object is to apply pressure to the elbow, extending it to the point that you achieve a tap out. In order to get the arm bar, the pressure must be applied to the elbow and the arm must be straightened out completely. When we teach this technique, we talk about pointing the thumb to the sky. That position works for the most part, but there are some versions of juji in which that statement doesn’t apply. Tori must be aware of where uke’s elbow is and turn the arm such that the elbow is the joint that is having the torque placed to it. The elbow has to be against your body, the thumb away from your body. In GSP’s attempt at the juji gatame, Hardy managed to move his arm so that he could bend it. GSP did not control Hardy’s upper body or his arm, so that eventually Hardy turned over and got free.
Initially GSP had his left leg over Hardy’s face and the right leg over Hardy’s upper torso. GSP had Hardy’s right arm extended to the right maintaining grips on Hardy’s wrist and hand. This is the first screen shot of the position:
In the photo above, GSP has Hardy’s arm in the correct position, but the leg on Hardy’s face should be extended and be pushing down, squashing his face. But even more importantly, GSP should be squeezing his legs together around Hardy’s arm while pushing down with both legs. Closing the gap between the knees immobilizes the arm so that uke cannot move his arm from the juji position. Pushing down on the face and torso enables tori’s control over uke’s shoulder and upper body. Squeezing the legs together is the most crucial element, though.
If you look closely at the video (you can see it better than with just the few photos we’ve included), you can see Hardy’s arm twist and turn between GSP’s legs, allowing him the range of motion to resist the arm bar attempt and ultimately escape.
By the 18 second mark above, Hardy has begun to turn onto his side and his arm has moved, his elbow slightly bent such that GSP cannot apply the arm bar – the elbow is pointing sideways here, so Hardy can actually bend his arm to relieve the pressure.
At the 17 second mark below, Hardy is fully on his side and GSP is straining to achieve the submission, to no avail.
At the 16 second mark below, the grimace on GSP’s face shows his effort, applying all his strength. It was in vain, though, because Hardy managed to move onto his side, having lifted GSP’s hips right off the floor. If GSP were in control of the arm bar, Hardy would still be on his back, and GSP would lift his OWN hips to further hyper-extend the elbow. Hardy’s elbow is away from GSP and his thumb is now pointed toward the floor instead of the ceiling, enabling him to use the larger bicep to bend his arm.
One second later, at the 15 second mark above, GSP’s left foot is completely under Hardy; Hardy is turned onto his side and is moving his arm away from GSP. Georges spent all his effort on Hardy’s arm, but had not managed to stabilize the arm.
By the 14 second mark above, Hardy was on his knees and about to escape from GSP’s grasp completely. Had he squeezed his knees together at the beginning of the arm bar attempt, we believe Hardy’s arm would have been immobilized and the submission would have been successful.
April 4, 2010