First Judo Tournament

Discussion in 'Jujutsu / Judo' started by PiedmontChun, Mar 28, 2017.

  1. PiedmontChun

    PiedmontChun Blue Belt

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    In a couple weeks I'll be attending and competing in my first Judo tournament. I'm a white belt with literally only a couple months experience and a handful of techniques. Its mainly for experience and certainly not going to beat myself up if I lose, but I hate fear of the unknown as I'm not totally sure what to expect.

    I mean, what bit of randori I've done (with yellow and green belts mostly) has been trying to fend off some pretty standard throws, no huge surprises, and its been explorative and cooperative to some degree (don't fight the throw too much if they really have it on you etc). I know competition is a different beast. I anticipate a lot more fighting for position while standing, fighting to get a grip and keep it, fighting to not have my grip used to move me and compromise my balance. I anticipate getting worn out more, and need to try and do some cardio over the next 2 weeks for what its worth.

    Wing Tsun, which I have done to an intermediate level, while being primarily a striking art, has taught me to be sensitive to force of others and not fight against it even though I am a big guy with decent strength. So I am thinking one of my focuses will be making it harder to get a reaction from me to setup a throw. I know enough to keep a wide enough base, don't cross my feet, keep feet in contact with mat when moving. What I don't know how to prepare for are guys in my weight class (I'm in the 220+) that are measurably bigger than me and are going to be really hard to deal with in terms of strength.

    That is kind of rambling, but any thoughts?
     
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  2. Langenschwert

    Langenschwert Master Black Belt

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    I'm a Judoka (only three years) who doesn't do Judo tournaments but I still do a lot of HEMA tournaments.

    My main advice is to have a plan going in. With the new rules a wazari isn't as useful as it once was. Control the opponent if you land a throw and go right into newaza just in case if you can. There are four ways to win a Judo match, and three of them are on the ground.

    Have your lapel a bit loose so your opponent doesn't grab a fistful of skin and hair. Once you get a grip, make his life miserable, and stay moving. Kumi kata (grip fighting) is extremely important. Move his head around with your lapel hand.

    Commit to the technique. If you're doing a foot sweep, and you have to hop 360 degrees to get him down, do it. It doesn't have to look pretty to be an Ippon.

    It's your first tournament, so keep yourself safe and just get some experience.
     
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  3. Kung Fu Wang

    Kung Fu Wang Grandmaster

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    I'm not a Judo guy but a Chinese wrestler. I'll suggest you to spend 80% of your effort not to let your opponent to get a good grip on you.

    If you have

    1. 1 grip and your opponent has no grip, you move in, look for your 2nd grip on your way in, and apply your throw.
    2. 2 grip and your opponent has 1 grip, you apply your throw right way.
    3. 2 grips and your opponent also has 2 grips, give up your own grip, break away your opponent's grip/grips, and start all over again.

    If your opponent can't get good grips on you, he can't throw you. Your next step will be "how to make your opponent to feel uncomfortable about his grips on you". The "grip fight" is treated seriously in Olympic level.
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2017
  4. Langenschwert

    Langenschwert Master Black Belt

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    Too much grip stripping may get you a shido for effectively "delay of game". If you do strip grips, go right back in like gangbusters.
     
  5. Kung Fu Wang

    Kung Fu Wang Grandmaster

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    Many years ago in Taiwan, there was a national level Judo tournament. After the game started, a western wrestler moved in and took his opponent down by "single leg". The judge didn't know how to call that. From what I was told (not sure it's true or not), the Judo game does not start until both persons have grips on each other. Does this mean that you "have to" let your opponent to get grips on you?

    The "grip fight" is like "your opponent tries to punch you and you try to block his punch". If you move around and avoid fighting that's one thing, if in fighting, your opponent can't land his hands on your body, that's something else. In the "sport" of boxing, if your opponent's fist can't land on your body, that should be his problem and not yours.

    The "simply" version of the "grip fight" can be seen in no-gi wrestling. If you are a right hand person, you first tried to get a left hand control on your opponent's right arm (usually it's your left hand control on his right elbow joint). You then fight your right hand with his left hand and looking for a dominate control (usually it's your right hand control on his left elbow joint). The moment you have achieved that, you move in and apply your throw.

    IMO, if you let your opponent to get whatever grips on you that he may want. Your opponent also will let you to get whatever grips that you may want. That will not be a realistic training. It may develop some laziness in the long run.
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2017
  6. Tony Dismukes

    Tony Dismukes Senior Master

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    No, grip fighting is a huge part of Judo competition. You want to get superior grips and avoid letting your opponent get good grips on you.

    What Langenschwert was referring to was that you can be penalized for being too defensive - i.e. if you only focus on stopping your opponent's grips without aggressively attempting to establish your own grips and set up a throw.
     
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  7. PiedmontChun

    PiedmontChun Blue Belt

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    From what I understand, the tourney will use the new IJF rules which don't allow the leg to be grabbed while standing, only once it has gone to ground can a leg grab be used. I understand there are mixed reactions to that rule change. With me being brand new, I really have no stake or opinion on it; if anything I am relieved I won't have a relative novice Judoka but with years of collegiate wrestling trying to use that on me though since I have no wrestling background myself.
     
  8. JP3

    JP3 Master Black Belt

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    Advice point #1, "Go to have fun."
    Advice point #2, "Go, expecting to lose. And, don't sweat it. It is a learning experience."
    Advice point #3, "Go and pay attention to the other matches, some great learning happens at tournaments watching botht he really good, experienced guys/gals, and comparing it with the lower ranked folks. Especially watch the Masters (old folks), there's always some Really Good Judo in Masters.."
     
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