The wrestling clinch is used to manipulate the head and neck of the opponent, to set up for takedowns.
It was famously used in MMA by Randy Couture for ‘dirty boxing’.
He would set up the clinch with his left arm/hand, circle towards the left/clockwise and land punches with his right hand. He would swap and do the same with his clinching arm/hand.
If using your left hand/arm, place palm of hand around opponent’s neck
Place your left elbow in the middle of his chest (this may feel awkward if you have short arms or low flexibility)
Pull and push with the arm and side step and twist the head
Variations & Tips
Pulling & pushing from the neck is a difficult clinch to remove, however, manipulating the top of the head is actually more effective for putting the opponent off balance
Step back and pull the opponent down into the ‘space’ you just left between you and your opponent to set up a head lock or guillotine.
Pull head down, the opponent will normally try and ‘posture up’ / stand up straight, at which point you can shoot for a double or single leg takedown.
You have most control in the clinch if you clinch with one hand, and have wrist control/hold of the opponent’s wrist with the other.
Move constantly, push and pull, don’t let the guy settle and think of his counter
Here’s a nice takedown if you both wrap up in a wrestling clinch/ neck tie
Clinch and arm tie up – push and pull to set up a double leg takedown
Peel off /know with elbow and shrug shoulder (see video below)
Push on the arm pit. Simply push on the armpit on the side the guy has his clinch