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Judo Hiza Guruma (Knee Wheel) Throw

Judo Hiza Guruma (Knee Wheel) Throw

A Comprehensive Guide to the Hiza Guruma Throw

In the world of Judo, mastering a technique requires more than just physical strength; it demands precision, balance, and finesse. One such technique that has captivated practitioners for generations is the "Hiza Guruma" throw, commonly known as the "Knee Wheel" throw. In this article, we explore an instructional video featuring Steve Cunningham as the instructor (tori) and Fred Spaeth as the demonstrator (uke), offering valuable insights into the subtleties of this dynamic Judo move.

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The Hiza Guruma, or Knee Wheel throw, is a captivating technique that exemplifies the grace and power of Judo. This article delves into an instructional video that aims to elucidate the finer points of executing this technique, offering practitioners a valuable resource to refine their skills.

Instructor and Demonstrator

Steve Cunningham, an accomplished Judo practitioner, takes on the role of instructor in the video. As the tori (the person executing the Judo technique), Steve's expertise shines through as he breaks down the mechanics of the Hiza Guruma throw. On the other side of the equation is Fred Spaeth, who plays a pivotal role as the uke (the receiver of the technique). Fred's willingness to participate in the demonstration allows viewers to witness the technique's practical application.

Focus on Technique Demonstration

The instructional video's primary objective is to provide a step-by-step demonstration of the Hiza Guruma throw. It invites viewers to follow along closely, emphasizing key elements necessary for the successful execution of this Judo move.

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Breaking Down the Technique

Hiza Guruma, a combination of "Hiza" (Knee) and "Guruma" (Wheel), resembles a whirling motion, much like a wheel or, interestingly, a car in the Japanese language. The essence of this technique lies in the artful execution of pulling the opponent's knee slightly to the right front corner and, through a well-timed maneuver, causing them to trip over a low obstacle.

Hiza Guruma is categorized as an Ashiwaza, a foot technique. This throw's intriguing history reveals its significance in Judo's evolution, as it was a favourite of Jiu-Jitsu master Takamatsu Sensei, a close friend of Judo's founder, Jigoro Kano. Kano was so impressed by the technique that he incorporated it into the Judo syllabus.

The heart of the Hiza Guruma throw lies in generating a significant amount of power to unbalance the opponent. This is achieved through a well-timed hip swing, creating a circular motion to draw the uke off-balance and overextended. A simple lateral step won't suffice; practitioners must move in a circular motion to ensure the desired effect.

Initiates The Technique

The tori initiates the technique from a normal grip with the uke's right foot slightly behind. To pull off Hiza Guruma successfully, the tori begins by pulling off the end of the uke's shoulder, swinging the hips around to draw them forward, thus utilizing their body weight as a counterweight. This movement is pivotal in drawing the uke out and off-balance.

One critical aspect is to stop the uke's knee from bending as it can spoil the technique. Two methods are employed to prevent this - the tori can either push underneath the knee or lock the knee by applying pressure. This knee control only needs to be maintained for a brief moment to ensure the throw's success.

Crucial to this technique is the positioning of the standing foot. It should point at the foot that will be attacked, enabling the tori to complete the throw to the front. Turning the standing foot is essential, as it facilitates a broad, sweeping hip motion that creates the necessary off-balance (Kazushi) for the technique.

Showcases The Beauty And Effectiveness

Hiza Guruma throw, with its intricate details and reliance on perfect timing, showcases the beauty and effectiveness of Judo techniques. The instructional video featuring Steve Cunningham and Fred Spaeth offers invaluable guidance for Judo enthusiasts eager to refine their understanding and execution of this dynamic throw. As you delve deeper into the world of Judo, remember that mastery is not about brute force, but finesse and precision - principles exemplified by the Hiza Guruma.

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