The Basis of Teaching Methodology
by Juan Carlos Suarez (Head Coach of Seychelles National Judo Team, Professor of the Sport Sciences Faculty of Matanzas University, Cuba)
The elements of Judo Technique are coordinated and consecutive corporal segments of movement. The separate study of their phases facilitates the logical foundation of teaching and improvement of the specific Judo skills.
The analytical – synthetic methods utilization (for the professor when he makes a class plan) or fragmentary (when the pupil learns the techniques divided in parts) requires a deep knowledge of techniques phases. This knowledge avoids deviations from the ideal movement’s model parameters.
“The exploration of complete movement can be done… by analytical methods… This analysis gives us the possibility to divide the techniques in partial phases, (preparatory phase, main phase, and final phase” (1)
The Judo professor must know the anatomic position and corporal movements that are fundamentals and must define each one of the different skill phases. This allows him or her:
“The motor learning always must begin by simple and grounded skills of one structure and later pass to other structures more complicated” (2).
The correct methodology utilized during throwing technique teaching guarantees the efficiency of the teaching process. It permits the professor:
It is necessary to ask the next question:
What are the fundamental actions in Judo techniques?
If you have done a particular and integral analysis of the throwing techniques you can know that to obtain efficiency, the Judo athlete must execute in fluent form the following positions and movements:
This analysis is done from the start with the Judo principle Seiryoku Zenyo (Best use of energy) expressed by the master Jigoro Kano. The Judo technique actions are dynamic movement systems. The Japanese professor Kazuzo Kudo in the book title “Judo in Action: Throwing Techniques” says:
“As we have explained several times, to apply a technique to your opponent you must move together with him and push and pull in such a way that you force him into a position in which your attack is easy to make and in which he is easily thrown. This is what we call the preparatory moves or in Japanese, the Tsukuri” (3).
What is the importance of the attack position?
It is very important when the pupil is learning a new technique to begin to integrate Kumi Kata, Shizei, attack angle and the optimal distance from Uke.
To adopt an incorrect attack position determines the following mistakes:
We have integrated in the attack position idea concepts like kumi kata, shizei, attack angle and distance from Uke, because all of them connected determine the required conditions necessary to do the techniques.
The general technical requirements for each one of these elements are:
What is the importance of body movements for technical realization?
The Technical training objective during Tachi Waza preparation is to develop the skills to throw one opponent in combat context. The methodology that has no specific exercises to develop movement skills to facilitate the preparation to realize the actions in combat is not a complete methodology.
“Shintai. Under this single heading we include both the advance – retreat (Shintai) type of movement and turning movement (Tai-Sabaki). Advance-retreat movement, as goes without saying, are the vital fundamental movements that let you move your body straight forward, backward, left or right to get it into the required position. If the ways you move your feet and body are correct and if they agree with the various postures and methods of standing with your opponent when these movements appear in a technique, that technique will be correct and free of strain” (4).
The actual Judo is divided in two schools or styles:
What school has more Olympic and World Champions?
Are Tai-Sabaki and Kuzushi situated in the preparatory phase or in the principle phase?
It is known that it is impossible to make the opponent off balance without simultaneously doing the movement and body turning.
The off balance together with Tai-Sabaki (in the narrower sense) are parts of the fundamental elements of Judo Techniques.
“The Japanese words Tai-Sabaki are capable of two interpretations. In the wider sense they simply mean all natural body movements including the Tsugi-Ashi advance – retreat motions we have just been explaining. In the narrower sense they indicate the ways we manipulate and control our body’s motion. We will be using them in the latter sense”. (3).
The Tai-Sabaki helps Tori to do Kuzushi and a good Kuzushi helps him to do Tai-Sabaki. For example when one athlete does Tobi Komi Uchi Mata, the Kuzushi pulling helps him to do the leg and body movement, and the body movements facilitate Kuzushi. It is impossible during technique realization to separate Kuzushi and Tai-Sabaki. It is also incorrect to separate these actions when the pupils are learning the techniques. Kuzushi is the fundamental elements that permit application of the best use of energy Judo principles.
Finally the Throwing (Nage) phase
It is the final body movement. This phase finishes the leg extending, arm action, and body turns.
The objective to divide the technique in phases is to look for a correct learning methodology. We propose to group different elements of Tachi waza techniques in this form:
How do we propose to organize the technique learning process methodology?
We propose the following methodological steps during the Tachi Waza skills learning.
It is convenient to change the initial position of the technique (Kumi Kata movement etc.) to avoid the appearance of a coordination barrier.
This general methodological position is part of the research about the methodology of Judo technique learning. We need to further discuss these ideas with other coaches and interchange information about Judo.
(1)- Grosser Manfred; Neumaier August. “Tecnicas del entrenamiento. Teoria y practica de los deportes. Ediciones Roca S.A. Barcelona. 1990. p.15.
(2) -Grosser Manfred; Neumaier August. “Tecnicas del entrenamiento. Teoria y practica de los deportes. Ediciones Roca S.A. Barcelona. 1990. P.153.
(3)- Kudo Kazuzo. “Judo in Action”. Throwing techniques. Japan Publications Trading Company. Tokyo. 1977. P.20.
(4)- Kudo Kazuzo. “Judo in Action”. Throwing techniques. Japan Publications Trading Company. Tokyo. 1977. P.13.
(5)- Kudo Kazuzo. “Judo in Action”. Throwing techniques. Japan Publications Trading Company. Tokyo. 1977. P. 13