Choking Out the Competition: The Top Chokes Guaranteed To Tap Out Your MMA Foe
Chokes are the most effective method for submitting an opponent in MMA and grappling. As evidenced by Mikey Musumeci in ONE Championship, you can shred an opponents knee and ankle but they may not tap. However, put someone in a choke and you render them unconscious if they decide to play tough.
A recent study showed it's not about the fancy flying arm bars and devastating heel hooks when finishing opponents in the UFC, instead it's chokes that are the most prevalent submission. Esteemed fighter Charles Olivera currently holds the record for the most chokes with 13 finishes.
To make life easier, we broke the study down into bite-size sections with all the stats relating to submissions in the UFC.
New Research Identifies The Most Effective Chokes In The UFC
A new study in The Physician and Sportsmedicine studied every single UFC event between 12 November 1993 to 24 October 2020 resulting in 538 events. Of the 5834 fights analyzed, 1186 ended with a submission and 904 of those submissions were chokes.
Of those 904 chokes, the rear naked choke was the most common consisting of 444 UFC finishes making up 49.1% of all chokes. Of the 904 chokes, 99 resulted in a loss of consciousness representing 11% of all chokes. Below are the top 5 most effective chokes in the UFC by percentage and a table with every choke and their prevalence.
# Of Chokes
% Of Total Chokes
Rear Naked Choke
Front Head Lock
*LOC = Loss of consciousness
How Long Does It Take A Fighter To "Go Out" When Choked?
What Does This Mean For MMA & BJJ Practitioners Training?
- Strength & Conditioning Coach Experience — the interpretation of the study is based on my more than a decade of experience working in professional sport, published research, and Masters degree in Sport and Exercise Science.
- Fact Checks — data was obtained through peer-reviewed research journals for the highest quality and accurate information.
Full data is available upon request.
Who We Are
Sweet Science of Fighting is founded by James de Lacey. James holds a Masters in Sport & Exercise Science and is a professional strength & conditioning coach who has worked within professional sport for over a decade and has trained hundreds of athletes from various sports.
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