Leg Locks: Enter The System – John Danaher DVD Instructional

Ever since the release of the first EBI (Eddie Bravo Invitational) which boosted the ground BJJ scene, BJJ, in general, went deeper into this direction. With the release of the DVD instructional “Leg Locks: Enter The System” featuring John Danaher, a well-known coach, and instructor in the BJJ community, the audience is addressed with the most interesting aspect of Jiu-Jitsu, the submission holds.

John Danaher has been known to mentor a lot of great athletes, some of the famous ones being Gordon Ryan, Garry Tonon, Eddie Cummings, Travis Stevens, Tom DeBlass and the MMA legend, Georges St-Pierre.  The EBI was a prominent point for Danaher and his team, his Death Squad, as they showed great promise in their Jiu-Jitsu techniques when competing in the tournaments.

With Renzo Gracie being their academy coach, Danaher and his team made a name for themselves after their journey in the EBIs. One particular match between Garry Tonon and Eddie Cummings showed the people their knowledge about tremendous leg locking skills, most people would not have any idea of what these guys were doing at all. That’s when the interest in ground BJJ, specifically leglocks entered the spotlight with Danaher and his Death Squad being the pioneers. It is also safe to say that they had a huge influence on the grappling aspect of MMA as well.

Danaher’s team members, Tom DeBlass and Travis Stevens have also released their own great instructionals like nutrition programs and fundamentals of BJJ that have some influence from their mentor.

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About John Danaher’s DVDs

John Danaher first announced on his Instagram that he will be making a new DVD series for reaching a wider audience. He said that for the last 24 years he has been teaching in his mentor’s Dojo, the Renzo Gracie Academy and has been only able to train people in front of him. When his DVD was released, he was able to reach a wider audience and had a huge influence on the people around the world as he was previously unable to do with so much impact when he had either his Dojo classes or seminars.

There were also the issues when people would ask John Danaher to come and teach them but he couldn’t as he was too busy with the progress of his students in the Dojo and could not prioritize others. It was even worse for people abroad as John could not travel a lot because of problems in his body. During that phase he got his knee replaced and before that, he had gotten his hip replacement. It became evident that things were not looking good for him and he was not sure if he could demonstrate the BJJ moves either. The only option was to come to attend his classes at the Dojo or wait for a seminar.

The good news is that his students were able to perform the moves taught by Danaher throughout various competitions, either local tournaments or around the world like EBI etc.

Recording John Danaher DVD Instructional

Together with Bernardo Faria and Michale Zenga from BJJ Fanatics, John Danaher produced this DVD series. The content on the DVDs was divided into two systems, one told us about the Ashi Garami leg locking system and the other about Back Attacks. It is worth mentioning that this was the first ever DVD series by John Danaher, so you if you have not looked into it you are missing out.

As mentioned before, the purpose of these DVDs being produced was because Danaher being unable to travel or reach a wider audience but he also mentioned that Bernardo Faria, multiple times World Champion pushed him to do it.

Both of the DVD segments were filmed in the basement of BJJ Fanatics and are described as a marathon session that will be long and very informative. The first part, covering Ashi Garami, told us the full concept of this move and about leg attacks. The second laid emphasis on back attacks and gave some insight on the philosophy, tactics, and techniques of all kinds. Danaher also demonstrated everything that his students were taught and their executions in the competitions and seminars over the years. The reception was well received and people were eager to see more. Danaher said that he will continue working together with the people from BJJ Fanatics and give more as long as the success retains itself.

The lessons given in these DVDs aimed to reveal new techniques or raise some good athletes, as they could probably change the direction that BJJ is heading with new information on the leg locks and what the Danaher Death Squad was taught all these years.

Though before this, great athletes like Craig Jones influenced Danaher to go for leg locks training and his instructional came really close to the Danaher Death Squad leg locking system. Craig Jones’s was very influenced by the DDS leg attack system and their representations in tournaments.

John Danaher – Leg Locks: Enter The System DVD Content – Buy here

John Danaher emphasizes the importance of learning new skills to your BJJ arsenal. He says that he always does that with all of his students, whether they have been training under him for a long time or just joined. He told us how some athletes are able to learn and follow the same set of moves for years and when they incorporate new ones it refreshes them. They get bored and predictable with the usual moves but learning new ones gives them perspectives, skills that they can play with in addition to what they already know and be happy that they earn this achievement.

That is exactly what John Danaher wanted to teach you in his DVD. He gave us an example of his student Tom DeBlass, a great athlete who was very skilled and was able to learn new stuff. With his already existing skill set and the capability of incorporating more skills in his game, he was able to win many competitions like ADCC, US trials and even compete in World Championships. One such example of his feats could be seen in the Fight to Win pro tournament in Philadelphia where he was fighting in an inside position but did a Kuzushi to throw his opponent off balance and finally locked him with a perfect heel hook. You could see the perfect execution of his moves with a surprising duration of 30 seconds!

Another thing that Danaher tries to get across is that it is not necessary to follow a system early or from the beginning of your BJJ career as many of his successful athletes came to him later and had been training somewhere else before. Even though he had been trying to teach them his ways of fighting, this is exactly what he planned to do with his DVD instructional.

Leg Locks: Enter The System Techniques List


  • 4 Mechanical Pillars Of Jiu-jitsu
  • Lever
  • Directionality of Force
  • Kuzushi – Off Balancing Wedges
  • Review – 4 Mechanical Elements
  • 3 Families Of AshiGarami
  • Straight AshiGarami
  • Cross AshiGarami
  • Reverse AshiGarami
  • Grip and Inside Position
  • 2 on 1 Elbow Grip
  • Gripping For A Purpose
  • Theory of Gripping
  • Underhooks


  • Inside Position / Inside Control
  • Gripping Top Position
  • Negate Opponents Game
  • Pummeling To Inside Position
  • 3 Desirable Positions
  • Distance & Connection
  • Gravity Drills – Facing Opponent
  • Gravity Drills Facing Array
  • Gravity Drills – Rolling Inversion
  • Gravity Drills – Good Posture & Connection

DVD 3:

  • Straight AshiGarami
  • Straight AshiGarami Entries
  • Breaking Opponent Down To a hip
  • -Single Leg AshiGarami
  • -Double Leg AshiGarami
  • -X Guard To Reverse X Guard
  • Heel Exposure
  • Negation Resistance
  • Negation and Distance

DVD 4:

  • Breaking Mechanics
  • Creating Tension
  • Pros And Cons of Each Grip
  • Function outside Heel Hooks And Cycling of Our Legs in Breaking Opponents Legs
  • The Shared Spiral