Elbow From The Clinch With Benson Henderson
Elbows are one of the most devastating strikes that someone can land. They can smash your opponents bones or leave a massive cut on your opponent's head that will leave them bleeding a ton and obviously they can score a knockout when landed at the right place and at the right time.
With that much potential, it’s not hard to see why elbows have become a staple of Muay Thai. In Muay Thai, elbows score a ton of points, on top of all the benefits that we just went over. Despite not being super fancy, fans also like to see them land, so that can help sway the judges in your favor, even if you aren’t competing in Muay Thai.
The big problem with elbows is that they are probably the shortest range strike that you can throw. This means that it can be hard to find opportunities to throw elbows and any position you find yourself in where you are close enough to throw elbows, will probably be one where your opponent can strike you as well.
This level of danger means that you are going to want at least some control over your opponent when throwing elbows. This leads most people to only throw elbows from the clinch as you can control your opponent when throwing the elbow, and then protect yourself after by regaining your clinch position.
In this video, former WEC and UFC Lightweight champion and current Bellator Lightweight contender Benson Henderson, goes over a way to land elbows from the clinch safely and effectively. This technique is done from a 50/50 clinch where you and your opponent each have a collar tie. This position is a harder one to land elbows from than others, as your opponent is just as in control in this position as you are, but you can change that very easily.
The technique itself is fairly simple but one that will take a lot of drilling to become natural to use in a fight. With the hand that you have on their collar tie arm, you are going to pull or smash down on your opponent’s collar tie arm right in the crook of their elbow and then pull back so they lose their collar tie. Try doing this technique one step at a time and slowly when you are first training it, and then gradually move to make it one fluid motion as you get the hang of it.
From there the side of their head is completely open to strikes, especially an elbow off of the hand you used to just break their collar tie. You are also going to want to pull their head into your elbow with your collar tie to maximize the damage.
Take note that this style of elbow should probably be more of a smashing style than one simply thrown to cut your opponent so they bleed, because if you pull them in for a smashing elbow, the strike is going to be more powerful overall.
Remember that this technique is also one that takes a lot of drill so that you will be able to use it in a pressure situation, so get to training! Check out Power Kicking by Benson Henderson TODAY!