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Author: Hitoshi Sugai
Pub: 1991 by Ippon Books
Pages: 112
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.

 Foreword .................. 6
 Uchimata: A Personal View . 7
 A History of Uchimata .... 12
 Techniques ............... 15
 Combinations ............. 6O
 Defences and Counters .... 75
 Training for Uchimata .... 89
 Competition Uchimata ..... 94
 Index ................... 111



Uchimata is one of the most common throws in the judo repertoire, yet there was no doubt over the choice of author for Judo Masterclass Techniques. Hitoshi Sugai, the Japanese lightheavyweight from Tokai University made an unforgettable impression with his uchimata upon international judo in the world championships of 1985 and 1987 which he won. What is all the more extraordinary is that Sugai does not display obvious characteristics of an outstanding champion. Off the mat, he is diffident in his manner and he is much the same on the mat. Time and time again he surprised his opponents -- especially those from abroad, many of whom exhibited greater signs of physical strength and fighting urgency than this slightly chubby man from Tokai. But throughout his career, Sugai was a technician who relied on the basic principles of judo, especially Ju yoku go o sei suru (softness overcomes hardness) to win at the highest level. At a time when strength seemed to play an increasingly important part in judo competition, Sugai demonstrated that, in the end, technical excellence and technical precision, when allied to an unswerving fighting spirit, can pay off. It is an ideal we can all strive for.

Nicolas Soames
Masterclass Series Editor.


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