Judo (gentle way) is the name that Jigoro Kano gave to the art he created in 1882. A master of several forms of jujitsu and other martial arts, Kano adapted many classical jujitsu throwing and grappling techniques, basing each new technique on scientific principles of mechanical efficiency and removing dangerous and lethal elements. He required techniques to begin by grasping the opponent’s clothing, giving the participants a more pronounced mechanical advantage and the ability to guide the technique to a safe completion. He systematized the teaching of all elements necessary to training, including ukemi (falling) so that the art could be taught and learned with minimum physical danger. He codified rules of combat so that even competitive matches could be conducted safely.
Judo teaches the martial artist to:
• Fall safely
• Develop body strength
• Feel a weakness in a partner’s balance
• Flow ki downward
• Fight in close combat
• Understand how leverage allows the small person to overcome the larger
• Understand realistic self-defense
• Develop stamina
• Understand the philosophy and techniques of judo
• Improve expertise and become a well-rounded martial artist
Basic judo techniques are composed of standing techniques (Tachi waza) and falling techniques (Sutemi waza). More advanced techniques include grappling techniques (Katame waza or Ne waza), techniques performed in a lying-down position. There are three types of Katame waza: the pinning techniques Osae waza, in which you pin your partner down; the strangle techniques, Shime waza, in which you get strangle holds on your partner; and the joint techniques Kansetsu waza, in which you seize one of your partner’s joints and bend it back. All of these are ways of controlling your partner’s freedom of movement.
Atemi waza, body-strike techniques, are the most advanced in judo. These consist of arm strikes, ude ate, and leg strikes, ashi ate. Body-strike techniques are never used in free-style fighting or in matches. The only way for you to learn them is through judo formal training (prearranged and with full control).
All standing judo techniques begin similarly and have common rules. You must keep your stance relaxed and sink down, keeping your belt at or below your opponent’s belt level. Using the outer three fingers of each hand (not the thumb or index finger), you must grasp your opponent’s uniform with both hands at sleeve cuffs, above elbow, or at the lapel.
Footwork is generally simple. If pushed, pivot on one foot (Open Door Principle). If pulled, step diagonally. However, the key to most judo techniques is kuzushi, or off-balancing. The first motion in each technique causes the opponent to lose balance and be vulnerable, thus potentially negating any size and strength advantage that the opponent had.
The following lists describe the major judo throwing techniques, several of which have been adapted for Cuong Nhu training.
• Tai otoshi (body drop): foot tripping throw with opposite leg.
• Sumi otoshi (corner drop): off-balance opponent to their rear corner.
• Kata guruma (shoulder whirl): fireman’s carry throw.
• Seoi nage (back/shoulder throw).
• Ippon seio nage (one arm back/shoulder throw).
• Sukui nage (scoop throw): backward throw.
• Morote gari (two arm clip): forward tackle throw into opponent’s chest and clip legs to make the throw.
• Uki otoshi (floating drop): sink twisting throw.
• Harai goshi (hip sweep): opposite foot sweep.
• Uki goshi (rising hip throw): both feet on ground, hand on belt.
• Hane goshi (hip spring): opposite foot in front.
• Uchi mata (thigh throw): foot inside between partner’s legs.
• Ogoshi (hip roll): hand on belt.
• Koshi guruma (hip whirl): hand behind neck.
• Ushiro goshi (rear hip/lift throw).
• Ashi guruma (leg whirl).
• Okuri ashi barai (assisted foot sweep): outside foot sweep.
• Kosoto gari (small outside clip): behind heel.
• Kouchi gari (small inside clip): behind heel.
• Kosoto gake (small outside hook): behind
• Hiza guruma (knee whirl): same side foot sweep at knee level.
• Osoto guruma (big outside whirl): outside hook behind both legs.
Rear Fall Throws
• Tomoe nage (round throw): sacrifice throw.
• Uki waza (floating throw): sideways throw.
• Sumi gaeshi (corner reversal): foot inside between partner’s legs.
• Yoko gake (side hook): off-balance opponent to side, placing foot to back of opponent’s foot and bring opponent down by falling sideways.
• Yoko guruma (side whirl): draw opponent to you and place foot between his legs, fall while turning to make the throw.
• Yoko otoshi (side drop): extend whole leg to outside of opponent’s foot and side drop to make throw.
• Tani otoshi (valley drop): back tripping throw. Bring yourself close to opponent’s side, when opponent attempts a hip throw, clip both of opponent’s feet from behind to throw (shoving him down and sideways.)