Animation of The Throw

kataguru Kata Guruma (Shoulder Wheel)

The Throw

katagur1 Kata Guruma (Shoulder Wheel)

After a great deal of hard work, Jigoro Kano devised this technique while he was still a young man studying at the Tenshin Shinyo Dojo. With him there was a certain Fukushima who was not only an advanced student but a large well-built man as well. It was a great source of displeasure to Kano that regardless of how hard he tried he could not beat this Fukushima. He worked day and night pouring over books on wrestling and sumo and finally came up with the kata guruma which one day enabled him to hurl mighty Fukushima to the floor.

In kata guruma, you get underneath your opponent's body, rest him on both shoulders, stand, and throw him forward.


  1. Maintain the pulling grip of your left hand.
  2. Stand, bringing them up with you.
  3. Throw him to your own front left.

masters12 Kata Guruma (Shoulder Wheel) Books

Pick-ups by Robert van de Walle is one of the Ippon Masterclass Series of books and the best source of information about this throw. The author, a 1980 Olympic champion, covers the techniques morote-gari, sukui-nage, ura-nage and kata-guruma, as well as a number of miscellaneous pick ups including obi-tori-ashi-dori, mawari-ashi-dori and hikoki-nage. It is an essential study guide for anyone involved in modern competition.


The kataguruma described here is the classic version. Here is a video of kataguruma. Of course there are many variations of this throw, including modern competition throws. However this throw is illegal and has been removed from the official throws of IJF.