Getting the basics right – 3 steps to maximum efficient efficiency

Readiness:- Stance, posture, balance, awareness.
Action:- Falling, turning, sweeping, circling, lifting, blocking.
Efficiency:- Coordination, anticipation, speed, power, reaction.

1. The first step to learning a technique is having a good posture and being ready and willing to learn. If you’re facing an ‘opponent’, before engaging in contact you have to have an awareness, both of your position and of your opponents. They way you stand and your posture can have a big impact on both your mental state and theirs. Do you look prepared and confident? Are you relaxed and poised?
For judo, the ready stance is one foot slightly in front of the other, knees slightly bent, legs apart. Hands should be slightly raised, fingers spread, ready to take a grip or block an attack. Back is flat, shoulders down and relaxed. At first, when practicing techniques, you’ll often stand square on to your partner so they can turn in but this should be developed quickly into having to move your partner into the best position to throw.

2. The next basics are the ‘action’ basics. Falling correctly is essential for practise but also a useful skill to have in daily life. Being aware of your body in space and time is an integral part of judo. When learning and practicing techniques you will use your body in different ways. You will learn to twist and turn, be both flexible and stiff depending on the technique, and use your body to lift, throw, move and hold the other persons.

3. The 3rd step to good technique and efficient judo is combining all the elements by coordinating moments and getting the timing right. You start to perform techniques based on your opponents movements and reactions, and learn when to move and react. You develop a feel for combining the right grip with the right movement at the right time. You learn to use your body and your strength to it’s maximum capacity and to its maximum efficiency so even if you are smaller than your opponent you have a chance to beat them.