How to Escape a Full Nelson Hold

    Begin with your opponent grabbing you from behind, snaking his arms beneath your armpits, and then interlocking his fingers back behind your neck. From here, your opponent will exert pressure to push your head down and forward. This can be done to force you into submission or to put you down to the ground. This hold keeps your arms up, preventing you from reaching back behind yourself to grab your opponent.

    Raise your arms up, elbows out the sides, with the tips of your fingers touching the inside of your opposite wrists. Form your hands into hooks and clench them closed around one another to form a single horizontal bar out of both your arms. Place the back of one of your hands against your forehead and flex your arms, pushing backward with enough pressure to halt your opponent’s attempts to push your head forward. By doing so, you have partially thwarted this hold in that your opponent has less control.

    Take a wide step to your left with your left foot, bending at the knees to drop your center of gravity. Place your weight on your left foot and take a step with your right foot. It should form a U shape, traveling to your left, around your opponent’s left foot, and then out to your right to extend behind both his legs. At this point, you are in a perfect position to break the hold as your legs are right behind your opponent’s knees. Often your opponent will realize the danger of his position and release you of his own volition. If he does not, simply continue to Step 4.

    Bend forward, bending deeply at the knees and digging into the back of your opponent’s legs. Grab hold of your opponent’s pants just above his knees. Straighten your back while lowering your body as if you were sitting in a chair to pick him clean off the ground. His weight is being largely supported by the hold around your neck, so lifting his lower body should not be difficult, even if he is larger than you. From this position, your can pivot on your right foot while twisting at the waist. Release at the appropriate moment to send your opponent flying in a sideways spin off to your right. Alternatively, you could simply fall backward, squashing your opponent between your back and the ground.

About the Author

John Albers has been a freelance writer since 2007. He's successfully published articles in the "American Psychological Association Journal" and online at Garden Guides, Title Goes Here, Mindflights Magazine and many others. He's currently expanding into creative writing and quickly gaining ground. John holds dual Bachelor of Arts degrees from the University of Central Florida in English literature and psychology.