We had a great training on Sunday. Biggest turnout at our club so far. We've had lots of players converge at our dojo in the past but usually that was when we had training camps with players from other clubs joining us. This one was our own, normal Sunday practice with mainly our own members and a few guests.
Our training sessions are 3 hours long. The rationale for this:
i) We don't have the luxury of daily trainings so we make up for that with longer trainings.
ii) We need at least three hours just to cover all the areas we have planned (quite often we don't get to cover everything and have to push some stuff to the following week).
Most clubs start their training with warm ups, stretching, breakfalls, forward rolls, etc.. But at KL Judo we try to do something a little more interesting. Usually we do drills or games. For this week we decided to play a game we learned at The Dojo in Singapore. You can see the game in the video above. It's right at the start of the video.
We decided to do newaza first because normally, judo players naturally tend to prefer tachi-waza. So if we do tachi-waza first, by the time we do newaza, people have no more patience for newaza (or are too tired). But if we have newaza first, when they are fresh, it works out fine because people somehow are able to summon enough energy to do tachi-waza. I guess if you like something very much, you are able to do it, even if you are tired.
To prep their bodies for newaza, we did the "Keeping Down" drill where tori tries to keep uke on the ground. Uke's job is to get up. Not easy for both players.
The first technique taught to them was how to remove an entangled leg. This is such a common situation so they need to learn this basic move. After that we worked on obi-tori-gaeshi, or as we call it, the "Oshima Roll" named after Yuma Oshima.
To learn a technique you have to first go through the movement. I guess this is the uchikomi part. Then, you have to do the movement with your partner resisting, to give it a dose of realism. Of course the ultimate test is when you try it during randori.
For tachi-waza, we worked on koshi-guruma, which is in many ways a more practical beginner's throw than ogoshi because of the grip involved. It's much easier for a beginner to secure a headlock than for them to get a grip around the waist.
The player begin with uchikomi to get a feel of the entry. Then they did nagekomi on crash pads. Why crash pads? Because we want them to go all out in their throws. If you do that on the regular tatami, after a while uke will not be able to get up. With crash pads, uke can last much, much longer.
We had originally planned for ura-nage as well but many of the players were restless and so we decided to go straight to randori. By then it had already been two hours of training, so it was about time anyway since we like to get in at least an hour of randori each session.
Sometimes we have randori and shiai but with so many players on the mat we just did randori. We did it motodachi style with a few designated players standing out for two consecutive matches at a time. After that they are replaced with new players who also do two consecutive matches. And so on.
It was pretty tiring for everyone after just half an hour of randori. We weren't done yet though. We still had newaza to go. In retrospect, we should have done newaza first because after tachi-waza, most people were too tired to do newaza. But we did it anyway. Most were clearly too tired so next time, we start with newaza.
We're always happy when we get through a session without any injuries. We had one player who injured his elbow but it didn't seem too bad so we were thankful for that. The video above gives a pretty good overview of what we did on Sunday.