Thread: Grip fighting
03-10-2005, 13:54 #1
What is your opinion on the importance of grip fighting in randori/shiai? Is it being done excessively in 'competition' judo?Ash Jacobs
03-10-2005, 14:31 #2
Grip fighting is a crucial element at higher levels of competition, and therefore must be studied and practiced. Every competitive judoka should have a gripping strategy and must incorporate that strategy into their throwing style and match it to their favorite techniques. Under current judo rules, you can win a match, solely by outgripping your opponent (your opponent gets penalized for stalling). In my dojo, beginer students learn throws from traditional grips, and randori without much grip fighting, but senior level judoka spend a good deal of time grip fighting in randori, and practicing uchi komi with their gripping "style" in mind. Top judo schools spend a lot of time with grip fighting (for example Cohen Judo in Illinos, who has had several Olympic level athletes) has developed complex drills to develop the necessary skills.
This being said, I personally don't like grip fighting, and I think it has evolved to the detriment to "pure" or traditional judo. I have developed some skill as a grip fighter, and can beat, or more accurately not lose to, more technically skilled players just by out gripping them so they cannot get their grip to throw.Matt Dublin
03-10-2005, 14:34 #3
- Dennis P. McGeehan
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At the top levels of competition, grip fighting has become almost the be all and end all, this along with bent over stances. For a judoka, they will need to know how THEY will deal with it, as each persons fighting method will be their own. Some will deal with it by grip fighting themselves. Others will allow their opponent to take a grip and then go for their own. In a combat sense, grip fighting is close to the origins of judo, I certainly would not allow my opponent to grab me as he desires in a street fight. That said, I am an upright fighter on the mat, trying to use taisabaki to negate attacks and set up my attacks. Emphasis on TRY!
DennisOnly a Cowardly Loser hurts an innocent, defenseless person.
Dennis P. McGeehan
03-15-2005, 12:56 #4
I thought grip fighting was a manifestation of modern competition judo but I read recently something vague about Kimura expecting his opponent to take a specific grip so perhaps this assumption was wrong.
I also try to fight as upright and with as little excess strength in my arms as possible (This is right no?) and it frustrates me to no end people who squeeze tight grips or push with stiff arms from positions they themselves cannot even throw from. Seeing as though I only started training again one month ago this seems to be an issue but I hope it will go away soon with more experience - I go to a very competition orientated club.Ash Jacobs
03-15-2005, 13:20 #5
The stiff arm is the first line of defense that you must overcome to throw successfully. Grip fighting is just the name given to your offensive techinque for getting around or past the stiff arm. For example, my gripping strategy is to always get my dominant right handed grip and never try to throw without it. Once I have my grip, I try to overpower you with that and take you off balance, prevent you from getting your preferred grip, and possibly force you to fight with a lefty grip/stance. If you stiff arm to keep me from getting my preferred grip (which for me = control of your right sleeve with my left hand, and a high collar grasp with my right), I will always revert to removing your opposing/stiff arming hand from my lapel, and KEEPING it trapped/grasped with my left hand and then immmediately going for my right grip. If at any point you stiff arm or otherwise impede my power side (right) I will release whatever grip I have at that point, and start the exercise over again, trap your right hand with my left, etc. This is the gripping strategy that is taught at my dojo, and is rather methodical.
If 2 experienced judoka fight, it is usually the one that gets tired, or thinks "I can throw this guy with this lefty grip" that gets thrown first.
So, to simplify, if you are being stiff armed, you have not obtained "your" grip, and need to start the gripping procedure over. I hope this makes sense. It took me a long time to successfully employ this strategy and to stop trying to throw with whatever grip my opponent allowed me to have.
Last edited by Chicago Iceman; 03-15-2005 at 13:23.Matt Dublin
03-15-2005, 13:42 #6
Thanks for the advice, I think I have a good mental picture of what you are describing. Couple of things though...
1) I practice to be able to throw from left grip as well and I find this comes in handy.
2) One of the methods I have recently acquired (perhaps temporary) is to grip opponents left lapel with my left hand, pull it in and then swop that hand with the right. Seems to work quite effectively as the left hand is rarely blocked as efficiently as the right. Sometimes I swop the order as to try a left-sided tai otoshi or osotogari. Is this partially correct technique/theory wise?Ash Jacobs
03-15-2005, 14:20 #7
Originally Posted by infinity
Modern "elite" sports practitioners (I get this from Martin Boonzaayer 2x Olympian, and a member of my club), compete and train under the assumption that you naturally have a stronger side (usually the right), and that in competition you should not compete or attempt throws except when using your strong side (with exceptions that we won't get into here). For example, if we are both stronger on the right, and simply by out gripping you I can force you to compete lefty, I should have a major advantage over you as my strong side is probably stronger and better trained than your week side, whereas you may be better and/or stronger than me right side to right side. Make any sense?
As for your cross lapel grip, and "feeding" a grip to the opposite hand are all good methods and are frequently used. You need to come up with a grip that works for you and practice it alot, and practice throwing your techinques from this grip. Just remember that the main principle is to control your opponents power side so that he cannot throw you, while keeping your power side free from his grip to allow you to acquire your preferred grip and your subsequent ability to throw.Matt Dublin