Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Can anyone tell me...

Why is it that in judo competition you get penalized for non-combativity when you stall or run when you are on your feet but when you are on the ground the main two strategies appear to be:
  • turtle up and be defensive until the ref gets bored and re-starts you standing
  • disengage and walk back to the starting line, ignoring the guy that just fell
I mean, I do understand that they think that groundwork is boring to watch and they want to encourage ippon judo and all that, but this particular glitch in the rules (or their interpretation by officials) is dumb.  If you think that stalling and fleeing is bad when you're standing then you should penalize it on the ground too.  If you think that ignoring the downed opponent or stalling on the ground is okay, then these strategies should be okay when you stand back up.
But then again, you can't have a judo match when one player is stalling and running and stiffarming and only playing defense, so IMO, we should have good, reasonable penalties for noncombativity both standing and on the ground.


  1. Man, I really wish the Judo competition rules would be revised to make for a little more realistic newaza. As the rules currently are, you almost have to look at competition Judo as "not really Judo", and schools that teach competition oriented Judo are doing a disservice.

  2. I agree with your statement.

    Although you got to take a look at it this way, you have to be an aggressive attacker to get into newaza judo, as you only have 5 seconds and 2 tries before you have to change tactics to maintain control on the ground.

    We practice transitions and attacking the turtle/sprawl. When given the turtle there are many attacks that can be done.

    I just think that perhaps schools don't focus enough on the transition and either practice from the knees or from standing.

    I just look at it this way, the rules say making progress. In this way, if you can get an armlock one way, then go into a pin, hold the pin, even for a few seconds then go to an armlock.

    It's just that people need to work on the transition zone more and more.

  3. Good advice, Ice. For that reason, we practice most of our throws into ukigatame and then practice most of our groundwork starting at ukigatame.

    Say, you aren't the infamous, opinionated "Eis Madschen" from the various judo fora on the net from a few years back, are you? ;-)

  4. This is something which i think Judo bodies should seriously revise. Original Judo competitions invloved a LOT more groundwork than is seen in todays Judo. No one would dare think of just diving on there fronts, waiting for mate when on the floor and is something that should be dealt with in todays Judo. It was a shame to see it happening in Beijing as it made Judo look like just a throwing art only. With the grappling boom thanks to MMA it seems people want to know see ne waza more so why is not Judo doing anything about it.

  5. This is something the "ippon judo" crowd needs to come to grips with. Emphasis on big throws isn't going to lead to more ne-waza, is it?

    Changing the rules would likely lead no where. People don't go for ne-waza now and the rules clearly allow for it. Nobody makes someone stand up or turtle. That's an individual choice.

    And with the emphasis on "big throws," who can blame them?

  6. I sorta get where your coming from, Formosa Dave, but I disagree. I think this particular problem could be solved to a large extent with a simple rule change. Consider the effects of implementing these 2 rules (there might have to be some tweaking of the wording to match the intent of the rules, but basically...):

    if you disengage from newaza before the ref calls matte or sonomama then you get a penalty.

    if you lie on the mat without making a visible attack or positive position change for x-number of seconds you get a penalty.

    voila no more stalling on the ground. I figure if a referee can judge when someone is stalling or fleeing standing up then they can judge when someone is stalling or fleeing on the ground.

    and you know, it might not even have to be as explicit as the above rules. right now, if you bore the ref, he stops groundwork and restarts standing. Maybe you could make a rule that if you bore the ref, he starts throwing out penalties.

    This would not go against the ippon ideal at all. It would just shut down unwillingness to compete on the ground.


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