pressure point nerve strike

by Keith Pascal

Even though we are about to discuss pressure points, this is really a discussion about nerve strikes. And even though this is a discussion about causing pain as you wallop the nerve, we’re still really in the middle of a discussion about wrist locks. Yes, wrist locks …

Are you ready to learn about a few spots that can be real fight enders … even though that’s NOT how I use them?


[headline_georgia_small_left color=”#000000″]1. Separating Two Sides of the Nerve Strike “Practice Coin”[/headline_georgia_small_left]

Anyone who has been a subscriber for any length of time knows that I always look at the “flip side” of any situation. And those very same subscribers have heard me explain this before.

Well, today, I’d like to present a different idea. Call it an experiment for you to try:

Instead of practicing both the wrist-locker’s punch response and the response by the person wanting to escape, one drill right after the other, try this change.

Today, whether your are the locker or the lockee, only have the person locking shooting for these lesser-known targets. Tomorrow, switch, and the person trying to escape the lock attempt will do the punching.

If you’re a little confused, now, don’t worry. As you contrast the difference between the two days, you’ll immediately see what I’m talking about.

I think the separation of drills into two days will do your skills good. In this instance, you’ll be able to use the strikes both in an attack and as a defense more effectively. It’s just a theory that I have … and that I want you to test.

Remember, lock-hit, today. Escape-hit, tomorrow.


[headline_georgia_small_left color=”#000000″]2. Ouch, That Hurt![/headline_georgia_small_left]

If I just say “glands,” half of you would click away.

I want you to think about this for a minute … think about your glandular areas on your body, behind the jaw, below the ear.  Ouch.

How about in the armpit?  Or just as bad, in front of the arm pit, toward the pectorals?

Do you know about the glands on the inner thigh?

What we are really talking about are your “Lymph Nodes.”

Got it?

These are important, but often overlooked, targets for martial artists.

Today, we’re going to use them a bit differently. Okay?

Think lymph nodes.


[headline_georgia_small_left color=”#000000″]3. Today’s Exercise Sequence[/headline_georgia_small_left]

Get a practice partner. One of you will be wrist locking, the other receiving. Are you ready? Here are the steps to practice:

a) Put a loose wrist lock on your partner; any lock will do. Don’t effect pain, yet.

b) While the one hand holds the loose lock, your other hand (fist) experiments to see which lymph nodes you can reach with a quick strike. Choose the best targets for this lock position.

c) While still holding the loose wrist lock, practice efficiently punching “to the node.” Careful; don’t actually hurt your partner. Those are tender spots. Do this for at least ten minutes.

d) Now, you’ll tighten your lock, for this exercise: You snap on a lock. As your partner feels pain, he or she resists. The instant you feel the resistance, you prevent the escape with a jab to the closest lymph node … the spot you practiced hitting so much, it now feels automatic to stop the escape attempt.

e) As a last step, set up a few realistic situations, where your response would be to go into this very lock. The minute you feel any resistance … “if” you feel the escape attempt … you respond without thinking. You “nudge” them back into compliance.

And that’s enough for today.

Tomorrow …


[headline_georgia_small_left color=”#000000″]4. Tomorrow’s “Flip-Side” Sequence[/headline_georgia_small_left]


Obviously, you don’t have to limit the above practice to one wrist lock. You could do this every week for an entire summer, for example. Each week, choose a couple of different locks or controls. Vary which lymph nodes you punch.

Now, after you have given the above exercise a break of at least a day, you’ll try the flip side of the coin/exercise.

This time, the person being locked will use those lymph nodes to effect an escape … and turn around the situation:

a) Grab your partner in a loose lock, just like yesterday. No pain … yet.

b) This time, your partner will explore all of the reachable lymph nodes on your body. Which can ‘she’ (I’ll practice this with my wife) reach with a speed hit? Which spots have no impediments? Direct shots only. (Yesterday, you did the hitting; today, your partner hits, to escape.)

c) Have your partner practice those hits over and over, until boredom really sets in. You want those hits as automatic as possible. No pauses in between the start of the lock and the escape response hit.

d) Now, you tighten the wrist lock, simulating a real situation … and your partner escapes with a hit (careful in practice) to your lymph node. Do this repeatedly.

e) Have your partner practice variations on follow-ups after the lymph-hit. The person shunning the wrist lock needs to escape and then either run … or get control of the situation. Practice for this.

f) Be sure to practice both parts. You need a chance to try to escape, too.


Any questions comments additions, deletions, and or completions?



PS Right now, “Wrist Locks” (revised) is only available as a soft cover. Would you prefer that it stay that way, or should it be published on Kindle? Would you prefer Nook?



Wrist Locks Reader Response

One subscriber responded to the most recent wrist locks blog post. You might find his insights helpful:


Hey Keith,

Really enjoyed this article on wrist locks and the video clips as well. I really really hope that everyone will pay close attention and apply the different keys that you pointed out.


Daily stretching is a must if one wants to have healthy and able wrists to have a higher success rate in applying wrist locks. Also I have found that applying wrist locks, like you said, has always been a very sneaky stunt to pull when I am sparring against a wrestler or Jiujitsu practitioner.


I find it interesting how many of those who do Brazilian Jiujitsu seem to not know how to counter a wrist lock. I think it very well may have to do with the fact that they are more in for the sport of it. The whole time they will be focus on forcing an armbar, triangle choke, omoplata,… but the entire time they are already grabbing each other!


[features_box_light_green width=”75%” + border=”2px”]Editor’s Note: I know a few of them who have bought Wrist Locks (revised) and incorporated some of the reversals and counters.[/features_box_light_green]
If that ain’t the perfect opportunity for a wrist lock I don’t know what is. And of course, like you say, we ought always to be open minded to strike vulnerable target areas, whether it be to assist applying a wrist lock, or even simply to end the fight all together. Lol, like I need to be telling you that.


[three_columns_1]I think one more thing that I would want others to be aware of in their own training in wrist locks (or any technique for that matter esp. control techniques) is that it’s easy (especially for young martial artists in a controlled environment) to have in our minds that a wrist lock seems to magically give us complete control over our attacker’s body.[/three_columns_1] [three_columns_2]The important thing to always remember, aside the proper body mechanics of the technique, is while the wrist lock gives me an advantage of dominance and superiority I must actually take that position and actually “take control”. We must always keep in mind that our attacker isn’t all too interested in being the loser and will be fighting just to prove it. There is a point in applying a lock when our opponent’s body will start to react with a spinal reflex.[/three_columns_2] [three_columns_3] 

No matter how strong or stubborn the human mind may be, at this point, his body will begin to act like an injured body, if it isn’t already, and without choice his reaction will be to help protect his own body rather than attack yours. It is at this point that you really have the control of the fight as you take away his ability to continue on. We have to remember that we have to actually “take control” and the wrist lock, or whatever you are applying, offers us the position to do that.
I remember getting so frustrated with myself when I first began studying Chin Na….



It wasn’t until this finally sunk in that I saw a dramatic change in my success rate as a martial artist. I think if Bruce Lee were here today he would say something like, “It isn’t enough to be given an ability, but to do something with that which was given, otherwise, all becomes meaningless.” (Note: I didn’t take a direct quote from him but it sure sounds like something he would say.)


Anyway, it just seems to be something that I see often in martial artists today is a lack of purpose and intent, yet it is this very thing that ought to make us who we are.


Nobody becomes great by accident.


Once again, thanks Keith for writing this article. You’re the best.


Just another martial artist,


Jason Ohler


wrist locks counters video tip

If you like wrist locks and crave free video tips, here’s a quick video that was posted on another web site.

Take a look. It will give you a quick tip or two about lock counters and reversals.



[headline_georgia_medium_centered color=”#000000″]Wrist Locks Video Tip[/headline_georgia_medium_centered]



Let me know what you think,



Keith (Pascal)

jiu jitsu for dummies

Jiu Jitsu For Dummies

Knowing that such a book didn’t exist in the published world, I thought this would be a unique title for an article. Little did I know that the word “dummies” would be used to lure martial artists to search-engine listings on Mixed Martial Arts (MMA), Brazilian J.J., and more.

There is even a facebook fan page devoted to Jiu Jitsu For Dummies.

It’s funny that so many would flock to what used to be a derogatory designation. Calling someone a dummy was fightin’ words.

My point in using that title for the article was to help those who were having problems with their jiu-jitsu progress. I have a way to get better, faster …

Martial Arts In A Nutshell, Not Really

You can’t master a martial-arts style in two weeks … or even two months. And if we are talking true mastery, then two years isn’t enough, either.

If you want to master something in a nutshell, then I suggest that you pick the aspect that interests you the most, and focus on it. You won’t get the whole system, but you might learn to throw anyone trying to tackle you (for example).

It’s interesting: For those who do want to perfect and become competent at their entire style, my advice is very similar to those who want the easy, short version….

Jiu Jitsu Black Belts

If you want to get a lot better at jiu jitsu, you should focus on one area of study, at first. Don’t forgo all other facets of the style; do focus on the area that can help you the most, right now.

For most people practicing Chin Na, BJJ, Small Circle, or any jiu jitsu art, I recommend a focus on wrist locks and joint locks.

Note: I know that I am known as the “wrist locks guy,” but I have logical reasoning behind my recommendation.

If you are studying toward eventually earning your black belt, then you will have to perfect wrist locks anyway, right?

They will, pardon the pun, go hand in hand with all your other martial studies. By learning them now, they will help you control the speed of an altercation. You’ll be able to gain control at some point in the scuffle.

You’ll also be able to continue your other martial responses in the middle of, or from, a wrist lock. For example, you can continue hitting while locking, and you can take a joint lock into a judo throw of some type.

The Locking Advantage

If you want a locking advantage while you progress in your martial-arts studies, I suggest that you spend a concentrated amount of time pursuing counters and reversals.

This will give you an edge over your peers, and in some cases, allow you to play with the more advanced practitioners. Just think, they start to lock you, and BAM … in an instant, they find themselves tangled, and in pain, in a joint lock of your doing.

This is manipulation at its finest.

By the way, I made a quick video on counters and reversals. It lasts under three minutes and has a secret tip. If you have a few minutes, and want a counter and reversal tip, then click here:

wrist locks tip on counters and reversals