Monday, April 25, 2011


Throws can be devastating.

Because we learn how to fall properly--on mats--it is easy to forget how powerful a well executed throw can be.

On a hard surface such as concrete, it could mean broken bones, concussions or even fatal/damaging injuries.

This last result is why we have to be aware of the threat level, for both legal and moral reasons. Remember, we study defense tactics that are not to be used lightly. This is easy to forget. Ultimately, we must remember that possessing discipline, and not using one's skills unnecessarily is always the best outcome for everybody involved.

But back to throws.

It is my thinking that in any close quarter system, throws can prove to be more valuable than one might think. Along with the impact of the throw itself, the thrower (tori) also achieves a huge advantage in position following the technique.

Many of the arguments against throws that I have heard are based from fans of sport-fighting, such as the UFC, where throws aren't so common (albeit effective when used). Often, the judo guys don't get the throwing opportunities without a gi (shirt) to grab onto, and that is a big disadvantage for them. However, what no one points out is that on the street we don't normally go around without a shirt on (true, streakers can be hard to get hold of and subdue). Nor are we abnormally sweaty and slippery (again, this applies to most of us).

And another thing that is overlooked is the fact that many judo throws are cleaned up or banned in competition, and many traditional jiu-jitsu throws occur following a joint lock and/or bone break.

These differences are, in my opinion, game changers.


  1. In a basic self defense course my workplace made my attend I saw a lady carried away on a stretcher for the most basic of and lightest of throws.

    I have seen many news articles about people falling over and hitting their heads and dying. after a little research i found 13,322 people died in 2000 from falls. Simple falls, not throws. Put a little intention behind a throw and it gets dangerous. I focus on throws with easy falls. for this reason.

    I have heard that at one time the Ippon score of judo was supposed to be equal to a fight ending technique.

    it is one of the things that would change a lot of MMA. What if the ground were concrete? That would make a throw a really big deal.

  2. I do think that throws are underrated. People don't realize how damaging they can be. Likely it is simply from the fact that most throws are viewed in a competition setting. A lack of exposure and understanding, I suspect.

    Real throws can be quick and devastating, as you've mentioned. That fact that they are normally combined with another technique makes them even more effective. Good post.

  3. good comments.... it would change MMA wouldn't it..?