Tag Archives: Tachiwaza

Hug a Judoka, today!

I visited a new club yesterday (after taking a bit of a detour due to some intriguing satnav behaviour).

A pure technique session, which was very handy. And it has helped highlight some of the flaws I need to work on. The sad thing is, I’m aware of these, but really need a repeated kicking until I address them properly:

  1. Body contact for throws. Enough said. As a long limbed player, I tend to fight at a distance, but it is important to close this distance when throwing to make things effective.
  2. SLOW DOWN in Uchikomi. It’s not a race. Get the basics down correct first. Employing the correct stepping patterns etc.
  3. Be a better Uke. This generally falls under the RELAX mantra.

I am mostly working on being left-handed right now. I was shown a neat gripping variant of Ippon Seoinage. From a standard left-handed grip, come in for a right-sided attack (in other words, Tori is pulling Uke’s lapel with their left hand, as their right hand releases Uke’s sleeve and comes in under the shoulder).

This would appear to be a technique employed by Toshihiko Koga. I thought it seemed eerily familiar.

Anyway, it feels very natural to me, and due to the lapel grip, ensures close body contact as well.

Here’s a video highlighting this version:

And, as Koga is pretty awesome with this throw in general, here’s a highlight!

As a taller player, I don’t tend to employ shoulder throws too much in Randori at all — but I love the feel of them when practising.

Judo: Left-handed ground techniques, leg encircling guard pass and more

Training again last night. I’m still not into a proper routine as I’m not back at work yet, so I still don’t feel fit to any degree. The whole deal will kick off next Wednesday (I’m writing this to give myself precious little weasel room when that time comes).

Again, not enough movement… but at least I was trying things, even if they weren’t working out.

In Newaza, it is interesting that if I put on a left-handed hold my instincts aren’t in place, as they are for a right-handed hold. For example, assume Kesa Gatame is in place, and Uke decides to bridge. Right-handed, I have no problem posting on an arm to prevent this and slipping into a new position to compensate. Left-handed, it was if it was the first time I’ve done the hold, as I just held on for dear life until I ended up on my back…

So taking some time to drill holds left-handed would be beneficial.

I did employ the guard-pass I was shown recently, which works when Uke has not pulled you into their guard securely. It’s pretty simple: Encircle their legs with your arms (now you can see why this doesn’t work if their guard _is_ secure), bear down, then just move round at your leisure. It’s something I used to (still will?) get caught by all the time.

In Tachiwaza, there was some more crash-mat work (primarily a deep-entry Ippon Seoinage, although I worked on my left Uchi Mata as well).

Randori showed that I MUST ensure deep entry with my version of that throw. Having long legs is great for attacking from a distance, but if that distance isn’t closed quickly, I am exceptionally prone to leg-grab counters!

Pre-Christmas Judo

Well, that was the final session before Christmas. Although I am happy that this club doesn’t like having large breaks — back on the mat next week! Hmm, if I can remember which day…

Main thing I took away from Newaza was more on strangles (Finishing when hooked in from behind by exerting leverage… another way is to push own left arm deep behind the head so that Tori’s shoulder effectively works as a block).

Tachiwaza concentrated on defenses against a high collar/back grip. I liked these. A good one being to clamp down on the arm (to force to to bend, thus becoming weak), then stepping round and pulling to upset balance then throwing as appropriate. But NOT letting go into order to use BOTH hands to bend it… that would be bad.

It is important to actually PULL when stepping round. If you don’t, you just move around Uke but Uke remains nicely on-balance.

Makikomi was touched on. A throw I think would be quite good for me but needs a lot of work. It’s a hard landing. After a demo I lost the ability to see the colour blue correctly for a few moments… oops!

Pre-Christmas but a full mat!

It was the usual Tuesday session, and surprisingly (considering the run-up to Christmas) it was the busiest I have seen it for ages! Mainly because our sister club was down, so other seniors to play with.

It was a Randori-centric session, and I got a good work-out (mainly because I felt unfit and just “out of it”… I really need to push myself harder when this happens).

Some notes based on this:


Got some good pins on, but generally I was sluggish and not moving fast enough. A typical example was letting someone pin my arm when I was trying to take back control. Firstly, I shouldn’t have let this happen, and secondly, should have fixed the situation with movement rather than just working on force.

Got some nice sweeps to work. Again though, also got stuck underneath in a terrible stalemate (someone trying to strangle, I blocked, that’s it!). Should have used more movement to try and turn that around. Far too much strength involved, so hellooooo bicep burn!

So, the summary there (and you will see this as a regular theme in this blog), is that more movement is required.


A little disappointed in myself. The throws I got to work were my sacrifice staples (Tani Otoshi, bastardised Yoko Otoshi, Obi Tori Gaeshi). Far too much reliance there, rather than the techniques I am trying to work on now, such as Uchi Mata, Ouchi Gari and Osoto Gari.

Why? See Newaza – just too slow, not setting up throws, not fighting for grips spiritly enough. Sluggish. I partly do this to stop getting tired but this also means I won’t get any fitter. I REALLY need to step it up a gear properly.

However, an enjoyable session, and I’ve got things to think about.