Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Tourament Proof Tuesday: What Mistakes in Judo Look Like

The above is from March of 2011. I hadn't competed since the previous August.
I'd just finished a round of BJJ tournaments but opted to compete anyway b/c time on the mat is always good time.

I'm the smaller/shorter player (wearing the white belt) and this was the next weight division up from my natural weight class.
You can tell immediately my legs are much too far apart rather than adopting an upright stance.
You can see clearly that had my opponent been a competent uchimata player, I would have been toast in about 7 seconds.

I'm also lazy about my cross gripping (feeding the opponent's lapel to my dominant hand with my rear hand) and as a result I end up in neutral grips with my opponent (where we each have a hand on the other's sleeve and lapel). Neither of us is anywhere near optimal throwing range and position, hampered even further by his being taller yet playing more bent over than I, the shorter player.

Compounding that fact is that my style of play makes clear I don't really know how or what I want to do. My feet aren't moving (foot sweeps) and I'm lost out there as we move around the mat. My timing is off and I'm not really setting anything up except for the occasional over the back grip his posture gives me.

You can also see I make virtually zero effort to transition to mat work even when in top position.

The referee calls "matte" (stop) and I relax, then my opponent hits a semi-suplex. I'm hoping to pull a penalty or something else to get him to open up his game as he's playing even more bent over than I am.

At any rate, at 3:08 I hit an uchimata-counter to an outside trip for a waza ari (half point).

You'll notice in the 2 scoring attacks by me (at 3:08 and 4:20) I control his left grip at the outset of the gripping exchange. When he adjusts his grip, I adopt my position-ally stronger grip, throw, and score.

I neglected to follow the gripping sequence. I simply walked forward, and put my hands out to grab my opponent. My gripping was lazy. I didn't circle, move my feet, I went for virtually no foot sweeps. My posture was atrocious. 
And on a technical/game planning level, I simply did not have one. I had not decided and specifically trained the combinations that are tested at the local level of tournaments.
It was an ugly match on my part and proof that the fundamentals create the opportunities for good Judo and avoid many of the positions and situations that lead to losing matches.
I was fortunate my changes in gripping for stronger grips led to 2 scoring opportunities.

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