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Old 06-16-2013, 03:30 PM   #108
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Dojo: Wasabi Dojo
Location: Houston, TX
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 291
Re: So I took a Judo class today...

Noted-read this old thread, and wanted to drop my penny's worth of input.

Stormcrow wrote, "Why do people always insist GJJ or BJJ exclusively focus on Ne-waza??

I don't know, but I can say that at the three BJJ clubs I've trained at (about 3 years worth is all) - quite good naewaza players all - they did NOT want to stand up to start. Only guys who cross-trained would, as it wasn't foreign to them, and because it was foreign, it was unknown, and because it was unknown, it was feared.

Don't mistake me, I don't mean fear in the sense of running screaming and crying, nah. BJJ guys/girls doen't usually strike me as the shrinking violet type. Just the, "No, I don't want to do that, even if it is helpful" sort of thing. Apprehension is a better word, but that's just a synonym for fear with the volume knob turned down. That's my personal impression, and opinions vary - I understand that.

I would guess that, at these three schools, one of a few things happened or are happening: 1) the head teacher/instructor doesn't know his "take-downs" (throws) well enough to be comfortable with that instruction (not terribly likely, though I'm sure it does happen sometimes); 2) the student body sort of passively-aggressively avoids throwing waza; or 3) there's actually a bit of narrow-mindedness going on in those schools - they have PLENTY to learn just on the ground. Naewaza can become it's own universe, if people let it be so. Problem is, fights usually start upright, right? Even competitions in BJJ, the opponents start standing up. So, at good schools, they work through the entire match, from tanding apart to the finishing spectrum.

As to the original post, I'm of the opinion that some serious and long-term training in a good, not totally competition directed (meaning going to tournaments on a regular gbasis) judo school is only helpful to aikido competence. For one thing, the judo throws can be very quick, and the tori can, but usually does not in friendly practice, control uke while falling so that they either do, or do NOT, fall properly. High-level skill, I get that, but very effective if one wished to hurt an attacker, yes?

Judo, in mindset at the schools I've trained at for the past two decades, is inherently competitive, as the "rules" are set up as a sport, points for this and that, disqualification/penalties for doing this or that "illegal" technique. Mind you, even if you are not at a tournament, and you are watching the old, gentle guys doing randori, there is an aspect of competition there. It IS supposed to be fun, some people seem to lose that in the drive to Win.

There is much worth in the checking of one's competence against someone else, as long as both have a good time, gain from the experience, and nobody gets hurt in practice. The original post's Russian judo instructor, while working with the kids' class, sounded just like any other "Coach," in that terms usual meaning, i.e. football, basketball, wrestling, drill instructor, etc. A person who sees his/her job as to get people to do things which they themselves do not think themselves capable. Specifically with kids, motivation can't really be on the adult level to get maximum response from the kids except in the rare circumstance of the very mature athletic child. Most kids need the push to get the most from them .... otherwise we would not HAVE coaches, there'd just be football Teachers. IMO.

Judo is great for me as a competitive outlet, even when playing very light, almost no resistance randori - move here, turn there, pull this/that, wait for technique to arrive... or not, don't force things, and see who can manipulate the chaos the better. It is fun. And, being inside that chaos in a controlled set of conditions, and in a comfortable place to learn, is translatable into the street defense situation. Has been for me.

Ok, all done.

I find it interesting that the kanji character for kuzushi illustrates a mountain falling on a house.
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