If Submission Moves Were Real Part 7: Hell's Gate/Gogoplata

Louie Babcock@Medic_LouieContributor IIIApril 14, 2012

If Submission Moves Were Real Part 7: Hell's Gate/Gogoplata

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    Welcome to Part 7 of my submission move series.

    In this installment, we will be looking at the Hell's Gate/Gogoplata.

    This move has been made famous by Undertaker and Daniel Bryan.

    This move is also a move that Mixed Martial Artists use to force their opponents to tap out.

    Normally, we look at the moves in this series from the view of what would happen if full pressure is applied.

    Since this move is a common MMA move, this article will explain what is really happening, since MMA competitors do apply full force.

Application of the Hold

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    The Hell's Gate is applied when the applier is on his back.

    When the opponent goes in to attack the man on the ground, the applier will quickly grab an arm of his opponent, pull him in, place the lower part of his leg in the throat of the opponent, and wrap the hands around the back of the opponent's head.

    The applier will then pull the head into the leg, while simultaneously pushing his leg into the throat of the opponent as well.

Anatomy of the Hold

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    The focus of this submission is on the larynx of the opponent.

    The larynx sits on top of the trachea and is made up of thyroid cartilage. This part of the body is commonly known as the Adam's Apple, in males. Females have the same cartilage.

    The reason that it is more prominent in males is because of how the vocal cords position themselves during puberty.

    When the diameter of the larynx is compressed, it becomes difficult for oxygen to pass through it to reach the trachea. The trachea is the bridge that brings oxygen into the lungs.

    Humans need to take in a specific amount of oxygen in order to maintain proper functioning of the body.

When Full Pressure Is Applied

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    When the larynx is compressed between the pulling of the head forward, and the pushing of the leg upward, pain is the first thing felt.

    When pain is felt in the body, one of the first involuntary reactions is the swallow reflex.

    When full pressure is applied, it is almost impossible to swallow, allowing saliva to begin filling up the mouth. This inability to swallow, leads to a panic response.

    During a panic response, the adrenal glands begin to produce hormones. These hormones make up the "fight or flight" response.

    During fight or flight, the heart rate and respiratory rate increase. At this point,the body needs more oxygen than normal to fuel the brain, and the rest of the body. The brain uses almost 20 percent of the oxygen that is taken into the lungs.

    With the larynx compressed, it is not possible to get an adequate amount of oxygen to the lungs.

    The person caught in the hold will begin to black out, and lose consciousness. This condition is known as Cerebral Hypoxia. It can take up to two minutes for a person to pass out from lack of oxygen to the brain.

    The brain can be oxygen deprived for four to six minutes, before brain damage begins to occur.

    This move is very dangerous. Permanent damage to the larynx can happen, causing permanent problems. Depending on the severity of the damage, surgery may be able to rebuild the larynx to the normal form.

    Death can also happen if this move is maintained for a prolonged period of time.

    Other parts of this series can be located by clicking the links below.

    Part 1  Part2  Part 3  Part 4  Part 5  Part 6

    Louie Babcock has over five years experience working in emergency medicine, and is studying biology and health science at the University of Minnesota.

    Follow me on Twitter@Medic_Louie