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OneKickWonder
Purple Belt
Purple Belt

Joined: 17 Feb 2018
Posts: 513

Styles: Tang soo do

PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2018 3:09 am    Post subject: Judo for older folks? Reply with quote

Hi all.

I know that there's a gaping hole in my martial arts coverage. If I were in a fight, and it went to the ground and for whatever reason I couldn't bounce back up immediately, then my martial arts would Cound for very little. Sure we have some grappling but it's very limited, and mostly geared towards throwing people down rather than being the throwee.

So I want to add in some ground based stuff.

In my town, for grappling and ground stuff, there's BJJ or Judo. Sadly the stuff I hear from the BJJ folks is pure attitude. It's all about inflicting pain for sport and trophies from what I gather (not BJJ in general, just what I hear from people I know in this one club). So that leaves Judo.

Do we think an older guy can do Judo without getting smashed into little pieces?
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singularity6
Pre-Black Belt
Pre-Black Belt

Joined: 26 Jun 2017
Posts: 958
Location: Michigan
Styles: Jidokwan Taekwondo and Hapkido, Yoshokai Aikido, ZNIR Iaido, Kendo

PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2018 4:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Probably, depending on the school. Some folks claim that aikido can be "softer," which could be an option.
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OneKickWonder
Purple Belt
Purple Belt

Joined: 17 Feb 2018
Posts: 513

Styles: Tang soo do

PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

singularity6 wrote:
Probably, depending on the school. Some folks claim that aikido can be "softer," which could be an option.


I did aikido for a while and thoroughly enjoyed it. But I found that it wasn't really giving me much that I wasn't already getting from tang soo do. TSD has joint locks and take downs and such already. And like TSD, I found that aikido didn't really cover ground based fighting very much. Sure, in aikido you spend quite a bit of time down, but only doing falls and rolls mostly.

What I really want to cover is the worst case scenario. That you are on the floor with somebody pinning you down smashing your face in. In TSD were taught to get back up ASAP and try to keep it a stand up fight until you can escape. Fair enough. I'm happy with that. But what I'm after is the practice of getting back up when someone is physically trying to prevent you doing so.
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Wado Heretic
Green Belt
Green Belt

Joined: 23 May 2014
Posts: 387
Location: United Kingdom, England, Shropshire
Styles: Wado-Ryu , Kobayashi Shorin-Ryu (Kodokan), RyuKyu Kobojutsu

PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2018 7:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Judo is the foundation of my approach to grappling, and it has served me relatively well. I would add the caveat that I have not studied it in a formal manner significantly. In my late teens/early adulthood, I worked out practically every day with a couple of friends. One is an Amateur Wrestler (and a coach now), and the other a Judoka. We exchanged skills and sparred and so forth, with my contribution being my kick-boxing and striking skills. Now, I did spend around a year at a University club where I trained 3-4 times a week, and it was a competitive club and the training quite intense, but again for only a year. I still do some Randori, and roll, with my students at least once a week, and I try to get to a nearby Judo/Wrestling club at least every other week, but I would not call myself a Judoka.

Now, I would like to argue that Judo is probably most well-rounded grappling base you can find beside SOMBO. This is for a few reasons:

1. It has a takedown game and is built around throwing. It will provide you the fundamentals of putting your opponent on the floor and will teach you a lot about how to avoid being put on the floor. As so much is done from the clinch as well as the standard grip, you will learn many counters to throws, sweeps, and arm drags which can frustrate Nak Muay, Greco-Roman Wrestlers, and Karateka whom often build their take down game around such tactics. Similarly, this knowledge is readily applied against the controlling methods used by violent criminals as detailed in models such as the HAPV and so on.

2. It has a submission game, and despite popular thought, a lot of techniques which are easily applied without Keikogi. It’s ground game also features the use of the guard, and leg wrestling, despite leg locks being an illegal manoeuvre. Similarly, with the focus on pinning and submissions, it can teach you a lot about avoiding being held down and the fundamentals of positional work. As such, it covers all the fundamental bases.

3. The use of the Keikogi, and the necessity of grip fighting, translates relatively well to defence in general. If you can prevent your opponent gripping you, then you can usually adapt that skill to avoid being hit too. I have found that the basic defence of Judoka is generally better than No-Gi Players, although on average No-Gi players have much better positional control and wrestling ability.

With all the above said, I would say Judo has several holes that you will need to fill to make it effective as a self-defence base:

1. The lack of the technical stand-up. This is rarely taught in Judo circles these days and for simple reasons. There is a 30 second limit on the ground phase if there is no active attempt at fighting, as such to avoid fighting on the ground one can simply turtle and prevent the fight continuing. There is no impetus to get off the ground to stop the ground fight.

2. A limited guard game; there is a guard game, but you rarely fight from anything except closed guard. This is because once one Player is on the ground the fight is generally stopped, and the ground phase only begins if both players go to the ground. In a Judo match, if both players go down, they are usually entangled in such a way that they have given their back away, or they land in half-guard or closed-guard. Similarly, pulling guard is the quickest way to lose a Judo match.

3. A caveat to point 1 in reasons for Judo being well-rounded. Rules on grips mean that deviating from the standard grip must immediately be followed by an attempt to throw. As such, you will rarely wrestle with your opponent holding a back-grip for example. Similarly; the nature of the rules, where hitting the floor with your back and shoulders is testament to a loss means you will rarely encounter techniques such as suplex from a back-hold. This means the throwing aspect is very skewed in comparison to other forms of wrestling, and grappling. You will encounter different holds, but they are not about control, but facilitating a technique.

4. Restrictions on techniques. On the ground there is a complete restriction on cranks and legs locks, and while all the legal submissions of Judo are Arm-Locks there are rules determining what is a legal arm-lock and what is an illegal arm-lock. There is also no “shooting” aspect. Unlike other forms of wrestling you are not permitted to grip the leg to secure a take down, thus eliminating completely techniques such as the single or double leg takedown. Now, what I would add is that the Ashi-garami, though forbidden in competition, is a recognised technique of Judo and thus a technical Judoka would be able to show you it and teach you it. Similarly, the Morote-gari (double-leg take down) is still an official Judo technique, if not allowed in Olympic style competition.

The short version of all the above, and what I want you to take away from it though, is that Judo is a good base, but you need to consider your self-defence focus. Frankly, for what you are detailing I would much rather recommend Gracie Combatives. I have loved my Judo experience, and as I said, as a base it has served me well. However, I had to round it out for my self defence purposes by looking at the punching-phases and guard theory of Gracie Combatives, and the holes in technique I have filled by training in Amateur Wrestling and Catch Wrestling.

With that said, you could still pursue Judo. What I would say is that it will depend on the club; if age is a concern, and the associated wear and tear, I would recommend finding a technical or traditional club. I would not recommend a University Club, or a group that meets at an MMA Gym, because they are likely to compete, and have quite intense training. They would also be more likely to throw you in the deep end and thus increase the chance of injury. Not because I think such places are reckless, but just because of the nature and attitude of the competitive side of martial arts.

For self-defence purposes as well, you should probably also consider a group that participates in Free-Style or “Kosen” rules, because they are more likely to better fit your needs. That is, your concerns about dealing with an aggressive attacker who has gained top position. They are more likely to incorporate more general wrestling, more sophisticated guard work, and techniques such as the technical stand up.

The only barrier really, is impatience and diving into the wrong environment. If the place you know about will let you move at your own pace, then as long as you play it safe, and give yourself a recovery orientated schedule it should be fine. End of the day; it is not a race to the finish.
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Last edited by Wado Heretic on Wed Apr 25, 2018 8:14 am; edited 1 time in total
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TJ-Jitsu
Blue Belt
Blue Belt

Joined: 30 Sep 2014
Posts: 316
Location: PA
Styles: Gracie Jiu Jitsu, Muay Thai

PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2018 7:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heres an 80 yr old demo'ing judo
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qsmx0p_X5RA

For the sake of simplicity, Judo and BJJ are the same thing with emphasis on two different phases of fighting. Theres more to it than that, but as I said keeping it simple...

Needless to say anyone of any age can do judo at any age
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bushido_man96
KF Sensei
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Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 27701
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE

PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2018 7:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree that anyone at any age can do Judo, but the older you are, the tougher it might be on your body. Getting thrown down a lot and getting up can be rough on an older body. But, don't let that stop you from at least giving it a try.
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OneKickWonder
Purple Belt
Purple Belt

Joined: 17 Feb 2018
Posts: 513

Styles: Tang soo do

PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2018 3:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think I'm going to give it a go. Perhaps not yet. My learning curve is already steep enough for now with tang soo do and tai chi. I'm still new to tai chi. Once I reach a point where I can do their short form (about 60 moves) fluently, then I think I'll start to have a bit of spare learning capacity again. Probably towards the end of this year. Then I'll do a bit of juggling of my training plan and somehow fit in judo for a while.

I don't really plan to go far in judo. I really just want to pinch some if their principles to incorporate into my training.
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sensei8
KF Sensei
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Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 14323
Location: Houston, TX
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2018 9:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

TJ-Jitsu wrote:
Heres an 80 yr old demo'ing judo
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qsmx0p_X5RA

For the sake of simplicity, Judo and BJJ are the same thing with emphasis on two different phases of fighting. Theres more to it than that, but as I said keeping it simple...

Needless to say anyone of any age can do judo at any age

Then there's the other side of doing a demo for an 80 year old practitioner...BEING THROWN ON THE GROUND!! A throw is a violent act; violent for the 80 year old body that won't like that whatsoever...not many young practitioners like being thrown around like a rag doll.



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Socksey
White Belt
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Joined: 18 Apr 2013
Posts: 6
Location: South Wales
Styles: Karate, jujutsu

PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2018 6:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

OP.... I've gone back to judo after an almost 25 year break (45 years old now) and I'm really enjoying it. I did make the instructor aware of old injuries and he doesn't expect the same level of athleticism he does from the younger guys (and girls)... my only regret is not having got back to it sooner... I'm loving it...
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sensei8
KF Sensei
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Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 14323
Location: Houston, TX
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2018 10:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Socksey wrote:
OP.... I've gone back to judo after an almost 25 year break (45 years old now) and I'm really enjoying it. I did make the instructor aware of old injuries and he doesn't expect the same level of athleticism he does from the younger guys (and girls)... my only regret is not having got back to it sooner... I'm loving it...

Welcome back, Socksey; glad to see you!!



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