Saturday, May 22, 2010

Gari vs. gake in judo

In judo ashiwaza (leg techniques or footsweeps) there are several distinct types of action that can be used to knock uke down, including...
  • slips - you make uke's foot slide farther than it should
  • trips - you stop uke's leg earlier than it should and he falls over it
  • reaps - you cut uke's weightbearing leg out from under him
In Japanese, the reaps are called gari, and there are four primary gari techniques:
  • osotogari
  • kosotogari
  • ouchigari
  • kouchigari
But there is another class of leg techniques that you can call gake (hooks). The main difference between gari and gake is where you are pushing and where you are pulling.
  • In anything named gari, you are generally pulling his upper body to you and pushing his lower body away from you.
  • In anything named gake you are generally pushing his upper body away as you pull his lower body toward you.
For example, consider kosotogari vs. kosotogake...
  • in kosotogari you pull his upper body toward you (and generally downward) as you use your leg to push his foot out from under him.
  • in kosotogake you are using your foot to either hold his foot in place or pull his foot toward you as you push his upper body away and downward.
The same sort of general push-pull actions apply to the osoto, ouchi, and kouchi versions of gari vs. gake.
More to come soon on gari vs. gake - stay tuned.
Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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