The separation principle
My leg lock system has around ten core principles that give it its character. One of those principles is the separation principle. This is the idea that if we are to excel in leg locking we must separate the mechanism of CONTROL (Ashi Garami) from the mechanism of BREAKING (the heel hook, toe hold, Achilles lock etc). As a general rule we favor implementing the control mechanism first and the breaking mechanism second - though there are some exceptions to that rule. Once you start to implement the separation principle, interesting things start happening. You can start holding and pinning opponents with the Ashi Garami for long periods of time, switching from one form of Ashi Garami to another - in other words - USING ASHI GARAMI AS A TYPE OF PIN - EXACTLY AS YOU WOULD USE DIFFERENT UPPER BODY PINS IN CONVENTIONAL JIU JITSU. You will see that there is a hierarchy among the various ashi garami variations, just as there is among upper body pins; and that you can hold them at will and establish your control/position prior to attempting the submission- just as you would for upper body pins. Thus the separation principle opens the door for a control/positional approach to leg locking that in some important ways mirror the basic philosophy and methodology of classic BJJ. Here, Nicky Ryan drills ashi garami variations with senpai Garry Tonon shortly before his victory over Geo Martinez. Note how he has established complete control over both legs (double trouble principle) in ways that enable him to dominate movement while not even concerned with breaking - that comes later - at a time and intensity of his choosing, since he is in complete control of his partners movement.