Judo Training: Grading With What Works For Competition Only

What is this thing that some Judo instructors have with Judo training and grading only on things that work in competition.

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What do I mean by that?

Well Some Judo instructor only train and grade their students on throws that they believe work in a competition. The rest are discounted.

For example: we know that a combination using a sacrifice throw usually is a high risk move because the score may go against the thrower as they are the first on the ground in a competition. Hence some instructor wont teach these sort of throws.

Some instructors wont teach Kata either.

Let me make a few points:

Atemi Wasa (striking) & Judo For Self Defense

If we don't spend some time teaching the whole of Judo it eventually gets lost; Atemi Wasa (striking)for instance, is almost unknown in many clubs. We already are criticized by there rest of the MA (Martial Art) community for too much emphasis on the sporting side yet in Judo we retain all the self defense anybody would ever need.

Judo Training For Competition is Not For Everyone

A lot of Judoka have no interest in competition so why shouldn't they have these combinations counted towards their grading.

Judo Training For Kata Keeps Us On Track

Image of Judo training on sand
Judo Training For Kata Keeps Us On Track
I had a brown belt come and try out my club once and we were practicing some Kata at the start of the class instead of the traditional warm ups. He never came back and I found out why when I went to a state training conference some time later. He apparently tried to report me to the powers that be for teaching "weird stuff". When in fact Kata is critical to our credibility as a Martial Art because it makes sure we always look back at the basics. The basics that we know work thus preventing us from becoming like some modern MA clubs who only teach stuff that they think works; hence leading to some rubbish MA.

Judo Training In Only The Latest Can Corrupt

I may have said before; though I can't find were, that when I was a Ni Kyu we had another MA club visit. They had been taught many things by their instructor that he thought worked. But when those things were tried on even lower grades they just did not work. We had the advantage of knowing why and how what we did worked.

One of the other clubs black belts ended up taking his belt off and throwing it on the ground to express his disgust in what he had been taught. If you discard all the old for only the new you risk loosing your way.

Competition Throws Change

I met one of my students on the train once and he said to me that he was told that there were only a set number of throws used in competition so why would we learn all the others.

I told him that the problem with that idea is that competition throws change over time. What is popular now was unpopular just a season ago.

If you learn only one set of throws you end up at a disadvantage when the game changes.

I'm not suggesting that if you are a competition player that you should spend hours of your valuable training time to practice Kata or Atemi Wasa. I am saying that occasionally you should broaden your horizons. To be too exclusive means you loose more than you gain.

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