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Author: Neil Adams
Pub: 1996 by Ippon Books
Pages: 96
Ranking:Five star Rating
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This is one of the 'Judo Masterclass Techniques' series of books. If you don't already own these books, start saving up right now... Ippon Books charges a pretty penny for these, I got lucky on a Christmas sale and picked up all 14 of them for $225. They are all at least as good as anything you'll be able to find anywhere else, and mostly superior. They are all written by acknowledged experts of the techniques being discussed. You simply cannot go wrong on any of the "Masterclass Techniques" books. I have my favorites among the 14 listed books, but they simply reflect my tokuiwaza, and no other reason.


 A Personal View ........... 8 
 History of Tai-Otoshi .... 13
 The Basics ............... 17
 Variations ............... 26 
 Combinations and Counters .53
 Training ................. 65 
 Competition Tai-Otoshi ... 81
 Epilogue ................. 91



Tai-Otoshi is one of the great classical judo throws. There, along with seoi-nage, osoto-gari and uchimata is tai-otoshi. One reason is that it is a throw that can be done -- and is done -- by all weight categories. It is a throw that a small person can do by uti-lizing his speed to whip over an opponent; it is a throw that a large person can do by utilizing his upper body control and drawing a lighter opponent over.

Few world champions can be said to have such a mastery of the technique as Britain's 1981 world light middleweight champion, Neil Adams. He threw most of his opponents at one time or another with tai-otoshi, either as a direct attack, or in combination with one of his other major throws, such as uchimata or kouchi-gari. And it was significant that his very last throw in competition -- in the 1988 Olympics in Seoul -- was tai-otoshi. He scored ippon.

Adams studied the technique ever since, as a teenager, his father ordered him to switch from morote-seoi-nage which was damaging his back. This decision to change was one of the great stepping-stones on the way to a top competition career which encompassed two Olympic silver medals and six European titles.

Adams is regarded, even now, as one of the great stylists of our time. Yet, interestingly, he points out that his way of executing tai-otoshi is not totally classical. He made a virtue of the wide, flat stance, combining, in a totally balanced way, speed into the technique, hand control and finishing power. Certainly, no one who has experienced his tai-otoshi will ever forget the sense of inevitability in that flash of a moment before the technique actually connected.

It is perhaps because of this that Adams is the ideal person to detail the rich field of tai-otoshi, from the most traditional to the latest in attacking moves and attacking grips. Fifteen years at the very top of the competition ladder, and now growing experience as a leading international coach, can only result in the definitive book on the subject.

Nicolas Soames
Masterclass Series Editor


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