How is your ukemi? If you are friends with the tatami you will attack without reservation as the fear of being countered is not there. I strongly suggest every lesson you do 10 minutes various ukemi training. I am not saying you have this fear. It may be a reason for part of your attack problem?
Shadow uchikomi. Have you any experience of this type of practice, its invaluable under good supervision.
Regarding kicking your partner in ashi waza this is because you are not turning your sweeping foot at the ankle. You need to shadow practice this action to develop the correct angle of attack for your sweeping foot.
If you are being trown a lot with uchimata and harai one of the key areas of defence may be missing? NEVER allow your partner to control your head. Don't allow your partner to bend you forward at the hips but totally contrary to what you see in modern day judo make your body a banana with the convex shaper toward your partner. If your partner has you in a concave shape or form this is how tori can get under you and throw.
You need to practice maintaining your posture upright, this needs good stomach muscles and a strong neck.
Study as much as you can regarding the significance of shizenhontai. Combine this study with the practice of happo no kuzushi.
upon completion of a throw, you being tori, do you have your head up or arse back and head down?
If you have any queries with this question please feel free to ask for clarification. I will do all I am able to support you.
Wow Mike- thanks. Ok first off- my Ukemi is actually quite decent. I can get thrown- HARD- and I'm fine. My Ukemi is kind of solid actually. Not perfect by any means- but probably NOT my issue.
If I'm scared it's because I get thrown so much, so often, that honestly i think my ego gets tired. I do attack- in fact I'm mostly about attacking- but my attacking is just so incredibly ineffectual. I get blown up when I attack (and when I don't lol). In fact, having decent Ukemi (again: decent
) is the only "Sankyu" thing about me. I fall like a Sankyu.
worse than a white belt, however. How can I possibly say worse
? Because white belts attack with a kind of ease that I don't have. They "fit in" better. Sure- they're thrown
easier than I am (yes, my defense/balance is better than a white belt's)- but their throwing motion/tsukuri
is far more natural; they're not so thought-filled/burdened as I am, they don't have ingrained bad habits like I do, they don't get in their own way.
Let me put it this way: I have NEVER thrown- i.e., thrown via an offensive, purposeful attack- a higher belt than myself (i.e., a Judoka higher than Sankyu) in Randori- and this in over two years of Judo. I have thrown lower belts- but even that is tough for me. It's not like I get a yellow belt and start rag-dolling him (like what used to happen to me when I was a yellow belt lol). I can't throw a lower belt at will- or anything even close to it. And occasionally I can't even throw a lower belt at all- which makes me feel terrible.
Indeed, the only legitimate, Ippon-scoring throw I ever get against a black belt in full-on Randori is a counter- and it's the same one every time: basically, Uke misses with Uchimata and I put myself perpendicular to him (with my left leg behind him) and, in a sort of side-on bear hug, drop down to the mat, twisting and turning in the air so that when we hit the mat I'm facing downwards and Uke's facing upwards, with my arm across his chest.
Kosoto Gake Makikomi perhaps?
This is literally the one and only throw I EVER get in real (not light) Randori- and this happens maybe once every twenty opponents.
As far as my Judo goes, do not listen to Genetic Judoka. Look, him and I haven't met in person, but we've had some serious correspondence over the past few months, and he is someone whom I consider a budding friend. He is also a person who is incredibly encouraging- but he has never played Judo with me and he doesn't get it: I honestly AM this bad.
He doesn't believe me because it seems so unlikely. Plus, he's talented at our sport- as well as big, athletic, a fighter, and a lefty (none of which I am
), so in no way, shape, or form will he ever experience what I go through, Judo-wise.
When/if we (hopefully) meet at Judo camp this summer, THEN maybe he'll get it lol.
I watch other players and even the ones who haven't been doing it as long as I have "fit in" far faster and more naturally. Picture a guy popping in for Ippon Seoi Nage- quickly- with purpose- looking very much like a Judo player. The guy may not get the throw- in fact, most of the time he doesn't- but his movement is fluid and you can tell that it's only a matter of time before he's throwing people with it. These are people I see at my dojo. Now picture a guy who trie to throw Tai Otoshi by doing the leg-stick-out thing- which Uke of course dutifully steps over, again and again and again, ad infinitum.
I may not be good at Judo but- and I know this may sound strange- but, believe it or not, I do have a good eye. I can see progress in others- whereas I seem to be either regressing or at least remaining in a holding pattern- like some sort of Groundhog Day Judo limbo where I do the same thing over and over again (because it's what I know) and expect different results.
I didn't want to post all this because it seems so self-indulgent to drone on and on about oneself, but what can I say- you asked, so I'm telling you.
I'm a weird player- a guy who on the surface seems like he should be decent at judo- meaning, I don't appear gangly or uncoordinated when I step on the Tatami- yet when you play me you say "Jesus this guy is terrible. He attacks with right Tai Otoshi and lapel-side Sasae all day, but I know what's coming and his Kuzushi's non-existent. He strains and makes grunting noises as he's coming in and stiffens up- he's his own worst enemy. Plus, I can bait him, break his posture, and then just straight blow him up
with Harai Goshi or Uchimata!"
It must be fun to play me because I get thrown with the BIG, highlight-reel throws. Really. The ones where people say "whoaaaa..."
I am not exaggerating one word of this. Why would I make it up?
So what don't
I suck at, Judo-wise? Well....I'm maybe slightly better on the ground (I said SLIGHTLY) than i am standing in that I'm a bit more relaxed and don't think as much. When I chicken-fight from the knees in Newaza I'm usually not dominated the way I am standing. If I face someone my rank or lower I don't get worked the same way I do standing. in fact, one guy at our club- a taller, far more athletic guy who's 15 years younger and whose Tachi-waza is DEFINITELY better than mine (even though I've been doing Judo for half a year more then him)- a guy who throws me in Randori more than i throw him- a guy who gets the sport more than I do- well, when we go at it from the knees it's even: I pin him (or get him down, or get him in Kesa) as much as he does it to me. Obviously this doesn't make me good at Newaza or anything- just a bit better than I am at Tachi-Waza.
Also- I am probably slightly harder to throw than I used to be- meaning, not everything the other guy does works every time- but eventually it does (whereas nothing of mine does, ever lol).
That thing you said about sticking your stomach out is what Sensei says. It's true, of course; I am regularly bent over in Randori, pulled down, and then thrown (often with Uchimata). I've been told I really need to stay more upright on many occasions. That and "relax- you're SO tense!!!." Oh and "you've got to bend more at the knees- you really must."
As to your last question: when I finish a throw my head I think my head is down and my ass up- but like I said I don't ever actually hit any throws so I'm not really sure...
Also, I should probably find another throw besides Tai Otoshi- I just love that throw so much and I want it SO badly- but everyone says it's a tough throw to initially attack with. Then again, for me, what throw isn't lol...
A Japanese guy whose Judo I love said to me last class "you know, when I was in Tokyo, sometimes Sensei would make us do two hours of Uchikomi. JUST Uchikomi- for two hours-nothing else. I hated it- but you know what- it helped. Things like that made my Judo more natural- I didn't have to thnk about moves- I just did them." I think that this is what I need- problem is I'd probably do the Uchikomis wrong lol...
Please understand that I'm not getting down on myself- nor am I being unduly harsh. I truly wish I was better than I'm letting on; unfortunately, it's just not the case.