A nice short one today focusing on something I see a lot, or don’t see I suppose would be a better way to describe it.
This one applies primarily to ground or mat wrestling, you might call it “chain”, but can be applied to anywhere in a match that you might put a hold on someone.
I was watching a match the other day where two guys were going back and forth with wrestling holds and the technique was pretty good but for me it lacked something that would have elevated the performance. For me, as I watched, the selling was too wooden and prescriptive going through the same motions from both wrestlers for the same holds and neither of them were looking for a way out of the holds until it was their “turn” to do a hold.
My view is that part of the selling of a hold is looking for a way out of it even if you don’t reverse it right away. This applies to simple things like wristlocks, head locks and hammer locks but also to things like sleeper holds and chinlocks (see here for more on that) that you might want to put on later. You always want to look like you are trying to get out of a position of weakness.
How you do that will vary, possibly on the type of story you are telling, perhaps because of the differences between opponents, but you do want to think about it every time that you are in there. It adds legitimacy and realism and makes the hold seem stronger. If you do this for each other everyone in the match ends up looking better.