Improving Your Competition Judo.


Sometimes, people get the idea that they have to learn dozens of throws to correspond with each weakness in their opponent… He spreads his legs too far, Uchimata… he steps too far forward, Kouchigari… he side steps with his feet too close, Okuriashibarai… and so on.

And while in some respects, this can be true - that there are slightly more -appropriate- throws for some given situations, a competent Judoka is going to be able to force uke to give up the opening he needs for whatever throw he wants to do.

I recall watching Ramon Riviera for a number of years - he always threw his opponents with Uchimata. In fact, the one time he didn’t, was a memorable event, and I can still recall to this day when he threw his opponent with Osotogari. He did so, I suspect, because his opponent had just scored a wazaari against him with Osotogari.

Everyone knew that Ramon was going to throw them with Uchimata, and simply couldn’t stop him. Now, granted, Ramon was a superb Judoka, winning at the national level, but if you look around, you’ll see that most Judoka are ‘known’ for just a few techniques.

While you should learn as much as you can about Judo, you shouldn’t fall into the trap of thinking that you need dozens of competition techniques. Many International and Olympic competitors get by with less than the number of fingers they have on their right hand.

So take your favorite few techniques, and drill ‘em until you can do them in any direction, and regardless of whether your opponent takes a right hand grip, or a left hand grip. This is where uchikomi, particularly dynamic uchikomi can help.  Practice your techniques moving - in all directions.