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  1. blackmonk is online now
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    Posted On:
    1/22/2014 10:54am

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    Entering for throws with maximum speed

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    Yet another thread where I want to bounce some ideas around...

    Let's take kata guruma/firemans carry/мельница as the first example (hence the picture above). I used to hit firemans a ridiculous amount, almost at will, even against very good opponents. Now, I hit it rarely. The openings are clearly still there, though, but now that my training partners are expecting it, my window of opportunity is much smaller. Thus, I need to become faster. Here is an example of a fucking blisteringly fast firemans in sambo...



    We'll use drop seoi nage as the second example. I have never been an arm throw kinda guy, but after I hit a few really smooth ones in competition practice, my coach recommended this throw for me, stating that I was "very creative with it". My drop seois have always felt very slow, though. My typical entry was just a flop to the knees + backwards cannonball, but then I saw a friend of mine's son hitting a few at the Panamerican Sambo Championships in Colombia, and he is very fast, in addition to using a precise economy of movement. His entry isn't even a full two steps... It's like a step with a sweeping drop.



    So the question is twofold:

    1. I have modeled my drop seoi after Nikolay's, and am now hitting them all the time. Super smooth. It's a cross-step entry under the trapped arm, and then a sweeping back step simultaneous with the drop. What entry should I use for the firemans to make it as efficient? Where does the initial step take place?

    2. How should I train for speed? Weightlifting is my field of expertise, so I'm good there. I'm talking about sport-specific methods.


  2. BKR is online now
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    Posted On:
    1/22/2014 11:58am

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    Quote Originally Posted by blackmonk View Post
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    Yet another thread where I want to bounce some ideas around...

    Let's take kata guruma/firemans carry/мельница as the first example (hence the picture above). I used to hit firemans a ridiculous amount, almost at will, even against very good opponents. Now, I hit it rarely. The openings are clearly still there, though, but now that my training partners are expecting it, my window of opportunity is much smaller. Thus, I need to become faster. Here is an example of a fucking blisteringly fast firemans in sambo...



    We'll use drop seoi nage as the second example. I have never been an arm throw kinda guy, but after I hit a few really smooth ones in competition practice, my coach recommended this throw for me, stating that I was "very creative with it". My drop seois have always felt very slow, though. My typical entry was just a flop to the knees + backwards cannonball, but then I saw a friend of mine's son hitting a few at the Panamerican Sambo Championships in Colombia, and he is very fast, in addition to using a precise economy of movement. His entry isn't even a full two steps... It's like a step with a sweeping drop.



    So the question is twofold:

    1. I have modeled my drop seoi after Nikolay's, and am now hitting them all the time. Super smooth. It's a cross-step entry under the trapped arm, and then a sweeping back step simultaneous with the drop. What entry should I use for the firemans to make it as efficient? Where does the initial step take place?

    2. How should I train for speed? Weightlifting is my field of expertise, so I'm good there. I'm talking about sport-specific methods.


    OK, I can't really comment on how to do Kata Guruma, as it is a not a throw I ever did much or specialized in. I will make a comment about the general speed of what I saw in the video.

    It wasn't really that fast, is all I can say. He telegraphed it pretty badly. This isn't to criticize the guy, just an observation based on my experience.

    Seoi Otoshi/drop seoi nage though, is a throw that I have some experience with, both as a long time practitioner and coach.

    First though, comments on "speed" in general. There are a couple of components that I think of (not a kineseologist, LOL).

    One is the ability to sense opportunity for the throw. That comes from training. Lots of randori, lots of situational drilling, lots of just plain technique work. Probably less all out sparring/randori than most people think, and more working with an excellent uke who can give the reactions that typically occur in competition. Having the timing and technical aspects of the throw down make a person look/seem "fast".

    Then there is the physical speed, which I think you were alluding to with your expertise in weigh training. Part of that is genetic, part training...muscle fiber type ratios, blah blah blah.

    I see a LOT of drop seoi in competitons, especially at lighter weights in Judo. Just saw a ton in Regina, SK last weekend. A few observations:

    1.) I saw some VERY fast kids attempting the throw. many of those attempts were with good timing, but the technique itself failed for one reason or the other, usually due to lack of control of uke (who was also usually very gymnastic and with fast reaction times). The entry of the whole body was super fast, but the hands/upper body of uke was not controlled.

    2.) Bad timing, but fast. In this case, the kid (these were all u21 and younger) the timing was off. The opportunity just was not there, or the window was too small. Tori had "sensed" something and fired of an attempt at a sub-optimal time.

    3.) Good timing, decent technique, but uke was so gymnastic and flexible they reduced or eliminated the score. Going onto the knees has that danger, as you can get stuck down there...it's hard to have any more mobility once on the knees with uke weight on you.

    My personal experience with "drop seoi nage".

    I'm short (5'7") and light (competed at -65 kg, then -66, then -73, but really better at lighter weights). I have short, strong legs and long arms (relatively), I'm very quick, fast reaction times, but not and never was very strong (despite extensive weight training and specific training for "explosiveness".

    So naturally I gravitated towards Seoi Nage. Then I blew my knee out, and could no longer do the deeper squatting versions of Seoi Nage that I had been working on, and had to start going to one or both knees. I could still practice normal seoi nage (standing), but in competition and randori, I had to drop. So I had a very nice, technical standing seoi nage, and a wickedly fast and low drop version (otoshi).

    What I found was that the better I got at the standing version, the better I got at the drop version. I NEVER did uchikomi for seoi otoshi. Too hard on the knees, and too terminal. Yet I consistently threw people with the otoshi version in competition and randori.

    The same elements necessary for a successful standing Seoi Nage are necessary for the otoshi versions. That being the timing, and control of uke upper body with your hand positioning and use. You need a very solid connection or uke will get away by gymnastics or just stuff your attempt.

    In the video you posted, tori had a good sense of opportunity (although it was very obvious, as uke posture was ripe for a forward throw). His first step forward combined with the connection to his upper body (pushing/jolting) caused uke to brace and push, then the big back step to finish the entry and throw. That's the basic idea/opportunity for Seoi Nage/otoshi.

    Frankly, it won't often work on higher level opponents. The principle still applies, though.
    Falling for Judo since 1980
  3. blackmonk is online now
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    Posted On:
    1/22/2014 12:55pm

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    The kata guruma itself wasn't very fast in that video, that is true. But the initial dropstep was extremely fast... That's obviously more of a wrestling sort of entry, because it was set up like a shot.

    I'm not sure if you are suggesting that seoi otoshi doesn't work at higher levels, or just that particular entry, but I probably see more seoi otoshi than any other throw at high-level judo and sambo tournaments. I'm guessing you're speaking of the entry.

    So I guess I could do uchikomi for speed for standing seoi?
  4. BKR is online now
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    Posted On:
    1/22/2014 1:37pm

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    Quote Originally Posted by blackmonk View Post
    The kata guruma itself wasn't very fast in that video, that is true. But the initial dropstep was extremely fast... That's obviously more of a wrestling sort of entry, because it was set up like a shot.

    I'm not sure if you are suggesting that seoi otoshi doesn't work at higher levels, or just that particular entry, but I probably see more seoi otoshi than any other throw at high-level judo and sambo tournaments. I'm guessing you're speaking of the entry.

    So I guess I could do uchikomi for speed for standing seoi?
    Yeah, the initial shot was quick for sure. It was useful for Kata Guruma when it was a "legal" in comp Judo throw. There are a lot of entries that were used in Judo, no doubt adopted/adapted from wrestling. Most had uke/tori already tied up in grips of one sort or another, so weren't "shots" in the classical sense of wrestling, but definitely level changes.

    LOL at Seoi Otoshi not working at higher levels of Judo...no, I was just referring to that basic entry in the video you posted. Seoi Otoshi works at the highest levels of judo competition. It kinda combines a sutemi waza with a forward throw, adding more momentum due to uke radically changing levels. The whole body can by dropped/turned as a unit very quickly, and into a smaller space than when stretched out standing up. Tomoe Nage in reverse, LOL ?

    I suggest you examine your "normal" seoi nage for improvement needs and go from there. That would include speed and accuracy of entry, control of uke, and timing of opportunity. Uchikomi are useable, but make sure you are not short-cutting yourself in order to speed up. Usually what happens is that tori will trade upper body control for speed of footwork.

    I practice footwork/tai sabaki for seoi nage as solo training as well. You can do back turn, front turn, from static to dynamic (moving different directions). Whatever footwork/entry you want to focus upon. You have to maintain good form though, head up, hips down, hand high (I use the cue "head up, butt down", and "head up, hands up, butt down).

    Of course, do drill work by actually going to your knees as well, however, you basically will be throwing uke if you do it correctly. Depending on your mat situation, that might be more or less practical from uke point of view.

    In summary, training speed in isolation for a specific technique is going to be tough. There are more variables involved in having a fast entry than simply speed of movement, and you are going to have to train them all, from the basic technique to situational drills for the throw opportunities you want to work on.
    Falling for Judo since 1980
  5. blackmonk is online now
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    Posted On:
    1/22/2014 2:05pm

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    Quote Originally Posted by BKR View Post

    LOL at Seoi Otoshi not working at higher levels of Judo...no, I was just referring to that basic entry in the video you posted. Seoi Otoshi works at the highest levels of judo competition.
    Yeah, of course it does. That's why I was saying, "Errr.... You must be talking about the entry."

    According to a muscle fiber test, I'm predominantly fast-twitch. I am also very strong for my size, and am even on-par in some areas with world-level sambists and judokas at my weight (squat, deadlift, and grip are actually better than average)... according to Igor Kurinnoy's Physical Development DVD. It has a battery of tests, and pits you against the averages compiled from world-level players.

    I do lack in speed, though. I would assume that since I have some decent athletic markers, I could probably develop that sort of speed with some practice. Hence the thread.

    Right now, efficiency of the movements is my primary goal.
  6. BKR is online now
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    Posted On:
    1/22/2014 2:18pm

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    Quote Originally Posted by blackmonk View Post
    Yeah, of course it does. That's why I was saying, "Errr.... You must be talking about the entry."

    According to a muscle fiber test, I'm predominantly fast-twitch. I am also very strong for my size, and am even on-par in some areas with world-level sambists and judokas at my weight (squat, deadlift, and grip are actually better than average)... according to Igor Kurinnoy's Physical Development DVD. It has a battery of tests, and pits you against the averages compiled from world-level players.

    I do lack in speed, though. I would assume that since I have some decent athletic markers, I could probably develop that sort of speed with some practice. Hence the thread.

    Right now, efficiency of the movements is my primary goal.
    As you are probably aware, there are drills for overall or general speed/agility you can do, test for baseline, and work for improvements. Specifics are outside my range of expertise, though. So train for general speed and agility, and, as you put it, train efficiency of your movements specific to judo/sambo. The latter was pretty much what I was addressing in my post.

    You sound like you have a strong base genetically and via your training, which is great !
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  7. sambosteve is offline
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    Posted On:
    1/23/2014 10:19am

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    Quote Originally Posted by blackmonk View Post
    Yeah, of course it does. That's why I was saying, "Errr.... You must be talking about the entry."

    According to a muscle fiber test, I'm predominantly fast-twitch. I am also very strong for my size, and am even on-par in some areas with world-level sambists and judokas at my weight (squat, deadlift, and grip are actually better than average)... according to Igor Kurinnoy's Physical Development DVD. It has a battery of tests, and pits you against the averages compiled from world-level players.

    I do lack in speed, though. I would assume that since I have some decent athletic markers, I could probably develop that sort of speed with some practice. Hence the thread.

    Right now, efficiency of the movements is my primary goal.
    SFP should make recommendations for you as to what to do to address the speed issue, no?
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  8. blackmonk is online now
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    Posted On:
    1/23/2014 12:43pm

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    Quote Originally Posted by sambosteve View Post
    SFP should make recommendations for you as to what to do to address the speed issue, no?
    From the perspective of physical prep, yes absolutely. Nothing about sport-specific drills, though.
  9. BKR is online now
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    Posted On:
    1/23/2014 1:30pm

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    Quote Originally Posted by blackmonk View Post
    From the perspective of physical prep, yes absolutely. Nothing about sport-specific drills, though.
    Are you planning on using Ippon Seoi Nage or Morote Seoi Nage as your base for the Seoi Otoshi? The Morote Seoi tends to be faster as you just keep both hands on. One sided varieties are useful for off the grip attacks, but offer (in general) less control.

    I've been trying to think of specific drills that might be helpful that I have done over the years.

    The difficulty is that in the end you have to put the whole package together (grip, movement, etc) with the throw. I tend to look at judo more holistically rather than broken down into parts, but part training has it's place (as in isolation of specific parts of a technique).

    One way to mitigate the issue of throwing your uke every time while doing uchikomi (this is for seoi otoshi to knees/aka drop seoi nage) is to do 3 person uchikomi (sannin in Japanese). You can work on the "whole body" entry statically while a 3rd person holds onto uke and keeps him from going over (sometimes you need 2 people holding uke, LOL). You will have to experiment on the best way to hold uke.

    You can isolate/focus on different aspects of the throw, while making sure your overall body mechanics are proper

    You can start off slow, and build speed as you get more coordinated.

    You can try to finish the throw with the 3rd (and or 4th) person holding uke. This will show how well your overall positioning and finishing movements are working. Your partners have to give the right amount of resistance at the right time.

    To address the more realistic dynamic "normal" situation, you can modify these to moving version, which although it looks a bit like a conga line is useful as well. Takes quite a bit of coordination between everyone but is worth the effort. That could include different angles, movement directions, and "set up" type action reaction efforts you apply to uke.

    The more control and overall coordination you develop, the more you will be able to do solo uchikomi and situational drills without making mistakes that will mess up the throw in competition. And be able to throw uke in training without smashing them.
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  10. BKR is online now
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    Posted On:
    1/23/2014 4:08pm

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    Quote Originally Posted by blackmonk View Post
    From the perspective of physical prep, yes absolutely. Nothing about sport-specific drills, though.
    Are you planning on using Ippon Seoi Nage or Morote Seoi Nage as your base for the Seoi Otoshi? The Morote Seoi tends to be faster as you just keep both hands on. One sided varieties are useful for off the grip attacks, but offer (in general) less control.

    I've been trying to think of specific drills that might be helpful that I have done over the years.

    The difficulty is that in the end you have to put the whole package together (grip, movement, etc) with the throw. I tend to look at judo more holistically rather than broken down into parts, but part training has it's place (as in isolation of specific parts of a technique).

    One way to mitigate the issue of throwing your uke every time while doing uchikomi (this is for seoi otoshi to knees/aka drop seoi nage) is to do 3 person uchikomi (sannin in Japanese). You can work on the "whole body" entry statically while a 3rd person holds onto uke and keeps him from going over (sometimes you need 2 people holding uke, LOL). You will have to experiment on the best way to hold uke.

    You can isolate/focus on different aspects of the throw, while making sure your overall body mechanics are proper

    You can start off slow, and build speed as you get more coordinated.

    You can try to finish the throw with the 3rd (and or 4th) person holding uke. This will show how well your overall positioning and finishing movements are working. Your partners have to give the right amount of resistance at the right time.

    To address the more realistic dynamic "normal" situation, you can modify these to moving version, which although it looks a bit like a conga line is useful as well. Takes quite a bit of coordination between everyone but is worth the effort. That could include different angles, movement directions, and "set up" type action reaction efforts you apply to uke.

    The more control and overall coordination you develop, the more you will be able to do solo uchikomi and situational drills without making mistakes that will mess up the throw in competition. And be able to throw uke in training without smashing them.
    Falling for Judo since 1980
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