Nage-waza (throwing technique):

Two additional sacrifice techniques (sutemi-waza), tomoe nage (whirling throw) and sumi gaeshi (corner reversal), were demonstrated.

The characteristic difference emphasized in class between tomoe nage and sumi gaeshi, besides leg placement, is the distance at which the techniques are performed. Namely, sumi gaeshi requires close contact whereas tomoe nage has modest separation between tori and uke.

Nage-waza (throwing technique):

Two sacrifice techniques (sutemi-waza) were demonstrated: tani otoshi (valley drop) and kani basami (crab pinch). These colourful names, which are different from the normal boring judo nomenclature, are typical of throws either preserved or reintroduced from traditional jujutsu styles. It’s worth noting, however, that kani basami is illegal in competition and is typically not used in randori to avoid knee injuries.

Nage-waza (throwing technique):

uh, yum.

A wraparound version of ko-uchi gari, the minor inner reap, was demonstrated. Unofficially, it is often also called ko-uchi makikomi because of the similarity of its wraparound action to throws such as soto-makikomi, o-soto makikomi, etc. As an aside, a good mnemonic to remember the meaning of “makikomi” is the “maki” root, which refers to rolls and comes up on sushi menus.

Because this variation of ko-uchi gari is done as a sacrifice technique (sutemi-waza), it can be a very powerful technique because it requires full commitment of balance in order to throw uke. Indeed, it was a favoured technique of Toshihiko Koga, a celebrated judoka, and complemented Koga’s predilection for ippon seoi nage, the one-arm shouldering throw. Entry into ko-uchi makikomi from ippon seoi nage was also demonstrated. Because this is a sacrifice technique, a hip-blocking stiff-arm counter combined with evasion was also demonstrated.


Ne-waza (ground technique):

Several armlocks were reviewed:

Ude-hishigi ude gatame – the arm-assisted armlock

Ude-hishigi translates as armlock, while ude means arm and gatame means hold.

Ude-hishigi juji gatame – the cross armlock.

A good mnemonic is the root of “juji” or “ju“, which refers to the written character for ten (十). That is, the body positions of tori and uke form something that looks like 十, hence an idiomatic translation is the cross armlock. One will also encounter juji in juji jime, the cross choke.

Ude-hishigi ashi gatame – the leg-assisted armlock

Ashi, like in de-ashi barai or okuri ashi barai, means leg.

Ude-hishigi waki gatame – the armpit armlock

Waki means armpit, and a good mnemonic is that it can come out of nowhere and whack you. Or that it’s wacky, your choice!

Please note that the techniques summarised below may not necessarily be identical or capture all that was taught in class.


Nage-waza (throwing technique):

Yasuhiro Yamashita – the scary kind-faced man

O-uchi gari (major inner reap) into uchi mata (inner thigh) was demonstrated. A good video of Yasuhiro Yamashita, 4-time gold medallist at the World Championships and Olympic gold medallist (and purportedly undefeated in competition), is shown below with him demonstrating the combination. In this video, Yamashita emphasises the hand motion particularly in the sleeve grip (hiki te, pulling hand) in forcing uke‘s head down. This complements the leg action of uchi mata because uke‘s head position inversely follows his/her leg position, like a see-saw.

Please note that the techniques summarised below may not necessarily be identical or capture all that was taught in class.


Nage-waza (throwing technique):

Hiza guruma (knee wheel) into tai otoshi (body drop).

Ne-waza (ground technique):

Turtle turnovers, using skirt-to-hand traps, into pins (osaekomi waza) and ude garami (entangled armlock).

Please note that the techniques summarised below may not necessarily be identical or capture all that was taught in class.


Nage-waza (throwing technique):

Two classical combination techniques (renraku-waza) involving o-soto gari, the major outer reap, were demonstrated. The first combination technique was o-soto gari into sasae tsurikomi ashi, the lifting pulling ankle block. A good written primer can be found on this blog, and two videos demonstrated the combination are included below.

The second combination is o-soto gari into harai goshi, the sweeping hip throw.

Please note that the techniques summarised below may not necessarily be identical or capture all that was taught in class.


Nage-waza (throwing technique):

Continuing on the theme of leg techniques (ashi-waza), kosoto gari (small outer reap) and kosoto gake (small outer hook) were demonstrated.

Please note that the techniques summarised below may not necessarily be identical or capture all that was taught in class.


Nage-waza (throwing technique):

Continuing from last class, okuri ashi barai was again demonstrated but in a circular displacement rather than the classical lateral displacement, which is less likely to occur in a randori (free sparring) or shiai (competition) context.

Please note that the techniques summarised below may not necessarily be identical or capture all that was taught in class.


Nage-waza (throwing technique):

Okuri ashi barai, often also spelled okuri ashi harai, was demonstrated to kick off the next series of techniques, specifically ashi-waza (leg techniques). The name of the technique literally translates to the sending-off leg/foot sweep, thus one can think of this foot sweep as a technique that sends both of uke‘s legs out to the side. Ultimately, one will need to be able to compare and contrast the mechanics of okuri ashi barai to de ashi barai (forward foot sweep) and harai tsurikomi ashi (lifting-pulling foot sweep), the other two foot sweeps in the Kodokan curriculum.

The lateral moving version of okuri ashi barai was specifically taught, and is the moving variation used in nage no kata. Useful points to keep in mind are timing, incorporating a lifting motion with the far hand as well as a pushing motion with the nearside (sweeping-side) grip, pushing the hips into the sweep and emphasizing sweep latitude.


Ne-waza (ground technique):

Several choke/strangulation techniques (shime-waza) were reviewed:

N.B. spoken Japanese often shifts sounds, so shime and jime refer to the same thing, much like koshi and goshi or barai and harai for example.

Please note that the techniques summarised below may not necessarily be identical or capture all that was taught in class.


Nage-waza (throwing technique):

Ashi guruma (leg wheel) and o guruma (big wheel) throws were demonstrated. Both ashi guruma and o guruma are leg techniques (ashi-waza), which are often confused with hip techniques (koshi-waza) and other superficially similar throws. Some points covered in class were:

  1. Like most guruma techniques, ashi guruma and o guruma function by providing a mostly fixed pivot point around which uke rotates. Consequently, there should be no or little back sweep of the leg like in harai goshi (sweeping hip throw).
  2. Tori‘s entry must offset him/herself to uke‘s side rather than remain in front of uke. That is, in order for uke to make contact with the leg pivot point, tori‘s body must not be in the way.
  3. Ashi guruma should be applied as uke steps back, and o guruma applied as uke steps forward.
  4. Twisting of the upper body finishes the throw, rather than something like sweeping back with the leg. While this may seem weak, this is not the case as Nick Ring demonstrates in the below gif. Note how the above points apply to his masterful application of o guruma, with only one grip and in a no-gi situation no less.

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