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How To Catch Your Opponent's Leg And Take Them Down By Henry Cejudo

How To Catch Your Opponent's Leg And Take Them Down By Henry Cejudo

These days in combat sports many athletes use kicks, a fighter that has a deadly leg kick can prove extremely hard to conquer, and if you're a grappler or a wrestler competing in MMA, taking on a striker can be a very dangerous fight.  

Henry Cejudo talks about his philosophy when dealing with opponents who kick, His first option is to always get away from the kick. You don’t want to check leg kicks from an opponent who knows how to kick properly, otherwise you're guaranteed a short night.  Instead you need to master the distance and keep away from your opponent, use your timing to execute a takedown.

Catching a high kick can be dangerous but if you practise these techniques then you can safely execute this defensive technique. Once you have your opponent’s leg, there are many variations of takedowns you can use, from a single leg to the double or even a leg trip.  

Who Is Henry Cejudo?

Henry Cejudo is one of the most respected combat sports athletes in the world. He is the only person to have ever won an Olympic Gold Medal and a UFC title. Henry at age 21 became the youngest American Olympic Gold Medalist in Wrestling at the 2008 Summer Olympics. He was also the 2007 Pan American champion and has won multiple American Continental and US National championships. Henry Cejudo is the second person in UFC history to defend two title belts in two different weight classes and hold those titles simultaneously.

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Check Out Henry Cejudo’s Leg Catch In The Video Below!

At the start of this video Henry Cejudo professes his philosophy on dealing with strikers in MMA. He talks about checking leg kicks as his last defense, his first option is to get away from the kick. Henry says you need to master the distance, so staying out of range of your opponent then stepping into range when you know you're safe to attack is the key. 

Catching The Leg Kick!

The first thing you need to do is anticipate your opponent's kick and keep your hands up to guard your head. When blocking a right high kick, bring your left arm up with your elbow high, this will cover your chin, your temple and the back of your head. 

As you absorb the kick into your left arm, your right arm forms a scoop under your opponent’s calf. Now you have your opponent on one leg and extremely vulnerable to your attack.

Executing The Takedown!

Once you have caught your opponent's leg you immediately pull them towards you as you cover the distance. You can shoot in for the double leg takedown and put them on the mat! Just remember to drive in low on their hips with your double, and then angle your opponent as you try to take them down on the mat. 

Executing the single runs off of the same setup, the only difference is, that you make sure you dive into the single leg with a tight grip and your head tucked in strongly. If you have a loose grip your opponent will easily free his leg and he will have an advantage over you. If your head is not tucked in strongly then it will be easy for your opponent to guillotine you.

Another good tip for executing this technique is, once you have caught the leg don't let it go until you have pulled them toward you. You will feel them off balance and that’s when you can strike with your takedown. If you let go of their leg too early they could regain their balance and easily sprawl over the top of you. 

Take these fighting principles you have learnt from Henry Cejudo, and train this with your partners in the gym, and you too will soon be catching legs and taking your opponents down with ease!

Learn More From Henry Cejudo!

5 Senses of Striking by Henry Cejudo
If you liked this philosophy Henry Cejudo showed us about defending leg kicks and you want to find out more then watch his series 5 Senses of Striking by Henry Cejudo Available exclusively on Dynamic Striking!