The Joy of Judo

Today was the most dreaded day of the month in women’s Jiu-Jitsu class…Throwing Sunday. This is the day Amy forces us to do Judo. We whine about how much it sucks, and she reminds us of how much we suck, and therefore need more practice. She sometimes tells us that we need to keep doing a particular throw until we do a good one, and it never fails that after she says this our throws just keep getting progressively worse…and worse…and worse. Amy claims it took a year of Throwing Sundays just to teach me how to get thrown, let alone how to throw someone. I believe I may be the worst Judo student of all time.

So it came as quite a surprise today when we started off with a series of throws of our choice, and after most of mine all Amy had to say was “Looks good.” Wha?! No “You need more hips. Get lower, more rotation. You suck at throwing more than anyone I have ever seen or could possibly imagine.”? It was also a surprise when at the end of class she had Skyler and I do a best two out three throwing randori, and I scored two ippons to zero. The best part is I didn’t try to plan or anticipate anything, I just did what the kuzushi told me to do.

However, I received no greater Judo-related shock this week than at the end of Jiu-Jitsu on Thursday when I told Cap’n Sensei that I felt like I had bull-dogged my partner a little bit to get him down and he said “So? In Jiu-Jitsu that’s allowed, right? It doesn’t matter how you get them down you still get the points, so it doesn’t have to be perfect Judo. Your throw still looked good.” I never thought I would hear a Judo Sensei (particularly that one) say any of those things. Especially the last part!

Slowly but surely, Amy’s evil plan is working. Along with Conan’s request for The Cap’n Sensei to share his vast knowledge with the Jiu-Jitsu class, the world of throwing doesn’t seem quite so intimidating anymore. I think I’m even starting to get the hang of it’s magic. I told you that resisting The Judo Borg was futile…if you won’t go to their class, they will bring the Judo to you! Yet they aren’t asking us to assimilate, they just want to help make our Jiu-Jitsu the best it can be.

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