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Hiza - Guruma: The Knee Wheel Where everybody Ignores The Knee

Hiza - Guruma: A Knee Wheel, Not Behind The Knee Wheel

When I first learned Hiza - Guruma as a junior I was convinced that the object was to place my foot on the side of the knee and turn my toes into the back of the knee to try and force it to bend. In this way, I believed, the idea was that my opponent would lose their balance and I would take them down with my hands and arms. It is Supprising to me now that this actually worked for me, quite often.

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Clearly, nobody noticed but I was doing it wrong and I was not shown any different ways to do Hiza - Guruma until I was a senior. What is even more surprising is the number of students that I still get from other clubs, that I have to teach this out of. The above is clearly a common misconception. The reality is that the side of the knee is not where you should place your foot.

I suppose I should not say it was wrong, after all, it actually worked much of the time and that is probably why so many others have the same misconception. So the fact that it worked means that perhaps it is not so much wrong as inefficient.

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The Videos Below

From the videos below you should be clearly able to see the correct placement of the foot; in front of the knee just above the knee cap. But the other thing I learned from doing it inefficiently all those years is the importance of following through with your arm movement. So based on that, let me say, please when you watch the videos watch the arm movements as well. They are critical to the success of the throw.

There is a big danger however when doing the more efficient version. You must be careful to place the foot as you draw the arms. Not only do the arms introduce the Kasushi but if you do the action at the same time you will usually avoid kicking the knee.

Not only is kicking the knee going to get you a bad reputation with your Uke or your opponent it could get you disqualified from competition or worse, injure the knee of your fellow Judoka. As long as you practice with your arms and legs as a single movement there should be no issues.

I have included 2 videos because the first one included some very clear instructions but it is not very clear visually speaking and the second is very clear visually but has no verbal instructions at all.

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