Martial Arts

Untying knotty problems in aikido and judo


For most knots, you cannot untie them by pulling on the free ends.  In fact pulling against the knot creates greater internal friction and allows the knot to bind tighter.  So how do you untie a knot?

You untie a knot by pushing the ends together, creating so much internal slack that the knot just comes apart.  You untie a knot by relaxing it.

So, applying this as an analogy for judo, if you have a knotty problem with your judo, can you resolve it by struggling against it?  No, you’ll make it tighter.  But if you go with it and create relaxation instead of tension associated with the knot, it will work itself out.

  • Can’t get the hang of forward airfalls?  Don’t do MORE of the thing you can’t handle, relax and practice things that build up toward that airfall using skills that are easy for you.
  • Can’t figure out an escape in newaza?  Don’t do more reps against tougher partners, relax and do more reps with a relaxed, loose, compliant partner and gradually, gradually build up toward a tougher partner.
  • Can’t get uke to fall like you want him to?  Stop trying to force him down and try to figure out how to work with him to get him to the ground comfortably and safely (which meets your goals too).

Categories: Martial Arts