Monday, January 6, 2014

Choi Min-Ho - The original reverse seoi-nage man

Before the "reverse seoi-nage" was called that, it was commonly referred to as the "Korean seoi-nage". And that's because it was first popularized by the South Koreans, most notably Choi Min-Ho, who had begun using it in the mid-2000s.

Here, you can see him throwing Britain's Craig Fallon in the final of the -60kg in the 2003 Osaka World Championships. The throw was so uncommon then the referee didn't recognize it and did not award it a score (Choi still won the gold medal in the end, though).

Although this could have easily been an ippon, the referee didn't even score it.

Choi used it to good effect the following year, in the 2004 Athens Olympics, where he won a bronze medal. Unlike in 2003, this time, his technique was recognized and he scored with it.

He is so fast with the reverse seoi, his opponents have no idea what hit them.

Later, Choi used the reverse seoi on his way to his greatest achievement, winning the 2008 Beijing Olympics. At the time, the technique was still fairly uncommon although his compatriot, Lee Kyu-Won, would go on to win a gold medal in the 2009 Rotterdam World Championships using that very same technique. It would only be around 2010 that the Japanese players would start picking it up in a big way.

By the time of the Beijing Games, Choi had become a master of the reverse seoi.

Let's have a look at how he turns into the technique.

He starts with a right-hand grip on his partner's left lapel.

He grabs that same lapel with his other hand as he drops.

He spins anti-clockwise, which is confusing for his partner.

With two hands on one lapel, he is able to pull down hard.

Now, let's take a closer look at his unusual entry and turn into the technique.

He secures a right-hand grip on his partner's right lapel.

Now, he has two hands on one lapel, as he drops down.

Notice how he turns away from his partner as he drops.

See how far he's turn in an anti-clockwise direction.


  1. JudoAttitude: Good job with judocrazy and your Youtube account. I follow both. Congratulations!!!

    1. Thanks. I appreciate your work too! :)

  2. He is already kneeling down. This isn't a clean form of Ippon.

  3. He is already kneeling down. This isn't a clean form of Ippon.