Control first or threat first? When attacking the back, we are normally always taught to establish position first, strangle second. There is a lot of wisdom to this approach. For most people, most of the time, it is the best option. Why? First, Because position scores, and you being on points means the opponent must now take greater risks to escape and get his own scores. Those risks will make him more vulnerable to subsequent attacks. Second, position allows you to make repeated over time. So if you experience initial failure you get to make second, third or fourth attempts at will until you achieve the breakthrough. Third, punishing like rear mount can fatigue an opponent over time and make later strangles easier. For these and other reasons it’s usually a good idea to on securing the position first and worry about strangles later. However, one problem with this approach that often appears at championship level is that opponents are mentally and physically tough (won’t fatigue or quit over time), tactically smart (often will prevent a score by denying a hook) and skilled at hand fighting defenses (can hold many over long stretches of time). In these cases it is often better to attack the strangle in those vital half seconds BEFORE you establish the position as your opponent is primarily concerned with defending the position and will often leave the neck momentarily open. Interestingly, his panicked reaction to a strong initial strangle threat will often make the subsequent battle for position easier. Flicking your wrist under his chin very early on in the attack can be a good alternative strategy to employ in these situations