One reason I think a lot of people who are initially excited about judo eventually quit is that it gets to be like Groundhog Day - remember that movie where he woke up every day and had the same day over and over? So, the first time you learn a shoulder throw or even how to fall it might seem cool but after having had essentially the same lesson twelve times during the year, it gets old.
Here, pulled out of my bag of tricks is a really simple thing. Instead of practicing back breakfalls or side falls, have your partner grab both lapels and lower you down close to the mat, then, without warning, let go. You practice turning out of pins.
When Erin and Bradley are doing it in this video, I am telling him to let go but that's just for a demonstration. You really just let go whenever you feel like it.
Some older instructors are opposed to turning out of throws because they are worried people will get injured. My answer to that is:
- People are probably going to try to turn out in competition anyway they're less likely to get injured if they practice it.
- I'd rather get injured than lose (says the woman with a total knee replacement). Still, most the people I know who won far less than me got injured at some point, too, including people who just did kata, so I don't think it's fair to blame my competitive streak.
Yes, this is just a simple little drill that if you practice it a few times each takes about a minute. Here's the thing, though - I have a very large bag of tricks, so I can pull out five new ideas every practice.
Shameless plugs - you can find more cool stuff like this in the book from me and Jim Pedro, Sr. WINNING ON THE GROUND
for the Kindle, here
the Nook, here or
Sony or other ereaders, here
You can get it in the iTunes store, too. And it comes out on paperback in March, those of you into dead tree media can order it in paper back from Black Belt here
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