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понедельник, 29 июня 2009 г.

Judo and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Training

There is so much discussion on the Internet about Judo and BJJ and there is a lot to discuss here. Some Youtube videos compare effectiveness, displaying fight videos of jiu jitsu practitioners going against famous judo players.
Others discuss the history behind the sports. In this post however I wanted to cover the training aspects of the two sports.

CURRICULUM

When you compare the two sports by attending a session in each, you cannot help noticing the similarities between the two. Judo and jiu jitsu have always been very similar. Both predominantly gi-focused sports and by that I mean most of the classes are taken with a gi (or kimono).

Both will have a typical warm-up session including grappling specific exercises like crawling and various hip movement drills. You will be practicing break-falling (ukemi) in both. Neck exercises and cardio exercises are also very common to both but I think here it also varies a lot with the teacher you have. Different instructors favor different exercises but all are fairly similar especially in terms of the muscles and abilities they aim develop.

Once the warm-up is over, typically the instructor demonstrates several techniques that are then practiced by students in pairs. The other core part of the session is normally sparring which can either be free sparring which is when anything goes or more goal-oriented sparring. By "goal-oriented" I mean when the teacher allows you to use only certain techniques in order to achieve a set goal. This can be for example passing the guard with a goal of pinning your opponent.

SO IF THEY ARE SO SIMILAR THEN WHY TRAIN IN BOTH?

I do my best to train in both of the martial arts and I am going to give my reasons here:

The #1 reason why to train in both is to become a well-rounded fighter.

Judo has its limitations in a number of areas.

First of all, it does not prepare you for every situation and only focuses deeply on one area of grappling. By practicing Judo you will quickly develop strong standing technique. You will learn a set of throws and takedowns which will make you a dangerous fighter while standing. Some of your throws however may be impractical under non-Judo rules.

The crucial part is landing on your back. A well-executed throw with the fighter being thrown directly onto his back results in an immediate win, known in Judo as the "Ippon". Under jiu jitsu rules however, takedowns give you two points but not a decisive victory. At the same time some throws such as for example the classic Ippon Seonage when not successfully completed may mean you end up with your opponent gaining control and securing the back-mount. (a highly disadvantageous position in jiu jitsu).

Learning Judo and developing your throwing technique will also surely improve your takedown defense.

"Leg Locks - the great equalizer"

The most obvious weakness of Judo however is the limited syllabus of groundfighting techniques. Judo disallows all of the leg locks available. This is a big one. Leg locks as Stephen Kesting says are the "Great Equalizer". Even if you are a strong Judo grappler, not knowing your leg lock defenses may mean you may be easily caught by ankle locks, toe holds and knee bars to name a few most common and effective techniques.

The other reason why leg locks are can be called "The Great Equalizer" is of course that beginner and intermediate practitioners sometimes develop their leg lock technique and trying to compensate with them their poor guard passing technique. Really they combine at a high enough level and should be developed together.

So what you find is that jiu jitsu takes your groundgame to the next level by incorporating bjj techniques and increasing the variety of techniques.

Cross training in Both?

So by practicing both brazilian jiu jitsu and judo it is obvious that your are improving both your standing-game (Judo) and ground-game (BJJ). The two arts complement each other and that is why cross training in these arts is so beneficial. Both are primarily gi martial arts and therefore if these arts you should become a great with-gi player.

Drawbacks?? Hey the only one is simply time. You must be dedicated to succeed in any martial art or sport and it is no different here. Both standing and groundwork require a long time and regular training.

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