Thursday, November 24, 2011

Judo Tournament Observations

I noticed the following from my recent Judo tournament.

1.  Judo posture is no joke.  Regular Judo players have a rigidity that other grapplers don't often see.

2.  The roll-with-the-flow mindset didn't help me.  (This may be a winning game plan for some, but it wasn't for me this time.)  I noticed more strength being used by average players.  Sure, the higher-level guys made it look effortless, but a good many players looked like they were exerting a lot of strength.  When my matches went to the ground, a lot of muscle was used by my opponents.  This seems to be the natural because Judo allows pins.  Knowing that victories could be awarded via pin, made being on bottom particularly stressful.  In a recent BJJ class, H talked to me about being on bottom.  "Top guy is not threatening; there is in no real danger.  Ride out the storm, and stay patient," he said.  While I need to be more active on bottom, this can serve me well in BJJ--but not Judo, obviously (unless, of course, I have my opponent in guard).

3.  Judo throws can be tough on ya.  I planned to use ouchi gari in my matches, but I got scared of what could put my leg in bad positions, so I abandoned that plan.  I saw some wicked seoi nages:  one lady landed on her face; one dude landed on his head/neck, twice.  (He actually got counted out, and the doctor wouldn't let him compete in any of his other matches.)  There were also a couple of folks whose shoulders got jacked up by seoi nage.  Yikes!  Now, most matches were conducted with no injury, but the ones that went array were scary.  There's no real worry, here.  I'm sure the same is true with BJ tourneys.

4.  I really had a blast.  My performance stunk, but I didn't have high expectations.  I watched a lot of matches; I enjoyed seeing the kids compete, and I would like my daughter who does BJJ to enter a Judo tournament.

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