Saturday, January 3, 2015

Takato's Kouchi

My recent postings on Takato's yoko-sutemi and utsuri-goshi highlighted the rather unusual aspects of his judo. His next two techniques I will be highlighting (kouchi-gari and sode-tsuri-komi-goshi) are considerably more conventional. But he does them so well.

We start first by looking at his kouchi which is done really as a gari (reap) rather than a gake (hook) or wrap (makikikomi).

As a left hander, Takato normally takes quite an extreme left handed grip. Since he faces righties more often than lefties, most of the time he ends up in an extreme kenka-yotsu (opposing stances) situation. From there, he does a little skip towards his opponent's left leg and reaps his opponent's left heel.

This is not unlikely the way Neil Adams used to do his kouchi-gari and is a very elegant yet effective movement. Like Adams, in the early days Takato used to incorporate a leg grab after reaping the heel but today, of course, that is illegal so he doesn't do it anymore.

As you can see from the video clip below, he attacks with this technique a lot and scores quite often too. Sometimes even for ippon.

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