Learning the Single Leg Takedown Wrestling Move

This offensive wrestling technique can help you take control of your opponent and drive them to the mat.

April 09, 2019

By having the right moves in your arsenal, you can put yourself in position to score points during a match. And, you can even set up a pin.


The single leg takedown is an offensive technique used by wrestlers of all skill levels. When done quickly, it can put your opponent on their back.


“[A single leg takedown] is a basic takedown where you're attacking only one of your opponent’s legs and your head will be on the inside of their leg,” former national team assistant coach Erin Vandiver says.




Remember to be in a good stance when setting up for a single leg takedown. To perform the move:

  • Use a deep penetration step to get your body to your opponent’s leg.
  • Keep your head up, your back straight and your hips in.
  • Hook your arms around your opponent’s leg. Your lock should be behind their knee.
  • Your body should be in a straight line from your shoulder, to your hip, down to your knee. There shouldn’t be any space between your body and your opponent’s body.
  • Use your trail leg to drive you back up to your feet.

“A single leg takedown is a highly effective technique and works best when executed quickly,” Vandiver says.


There are a variety of takedowns you can use to score points on the wrestling mat. The double leg takedown is a popular technique that can help you score two points. You perform the move by attacking both of your opponent’s legs.