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Judo...NOT what I read in the brochure....

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As Mick and the boys (Rolling Stones) used to sing, "You can't always get what you want...but if you try sometime, you just might get what you need."

Well into my early forties, I took the headlong plunge (followed by a rather neat rolling breakfall) into learning judo.

Having dabbled in sub grappling and other martial arts (including judo) for a few years, I thought it was time to settle down and focus on one(ish) martial art at a time and develop some skills.

Self defence, fitness, the chance to compete in tournaments, greater sense of balance (?), upper body strength all came as standard in the judo package, so why wait any longer?

And in the months since January 2011 what have I discovered in the midst of all my judo?

Did I get what I want or even what I needed? Or did I just get into a pair of white pyjamas and hit the mat (with my face at some points).

Here's my first report on what judo has done to / for me…

Self defence

Now I'm big and ugly enough to put most people off from picking a fight (certainly a lot of the smaller guys who I have trained with at clubs go all 'shy' with me when it comes to randori time ;-(

Add to this, I've picked up a smattering of Muay Thai, Boxing, sub grappling and even some cage fighting skills over the years so I guess I had the self defence box 'ticked'.

That is until judo came into my life…

Now, please let me be clear, I don't EVER want to get into an uncontrolled and angry contretemps with anyone.

Apart from the potential for damaging myself or even the other person there's all that legal paperwork flooding in should someone decide that they want to 'take a pop'.

So after several months of judo training, I'm now ready for any self defence 'situation' that might raise its ugly head?

Errr not quite…Now call me over analytical or it might just be my position on the 'learning curve' but my attention is much more fixed on getting entries to throws and kuzushi.

Instead I want to do, be and get better when I train.

I want to get over the (almost constant) frustration of not being able to do tai otoshi in randori.

And I value (oh so much) the patience, persistence and eye for detail that I'm developing as I train in the 'gentle way'.

I'd take that over being ready for a 'punch up'.

Who knows, the fighting ability might, just might, follow too.

So I haven't got all that I wanted, but I might be getting just what I needed.

Watch this space and let's find out...

2 Comments On This Entry

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04 April 2011 - 04:02 PM
Nice - I started up again (prior MA experience, but this is my first serious go at Judo) a month back at 40, so I'm definitely interested in what you have to say...looking forward to future entries.


29 October 2011 - 11:16 AM
Good luck to you both :hap:
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