Osotogari stands for "Major Outside Reaping." It is part of the 1st
Kyo of throws and is considered a leg throw
Although I came into the class at a time when Tomoenage was being taught, the
next class featured randori practice and Park sensei took me aside and worked on
kuzushi and this throw--Osotogari--and another--Ippon
The basic Osotogari involves breaking your opponent's balance, stepping in
with your left leg just past your opponent's right leg, then sweeping your
opponent's right leg with your own while pressing backward on his upper body
with your arm.
Several key points:
- Don't lean back as you move in. Keep your body slightly tilted
forward, leading with head and shoulder.
- The direction of the throw is a line perpendicular to your opponent's
feet. That's the direction it's easiest to throw them.
- It seemed odd, but Park sensei said to break the opponent's balance by
pulling, even though the direction of the throw will be away from you.
It seemed odd, but it seems to work.
- Make sure you get in far enough. Your hip should be close to your
opponent's hip before you start to sweep.
- Bring you hand holding your opponent's collar up and forward as you
sweep. If you can push against the jawline you'll get better leverage
and your opponent will go over easier.
- Direction, direction, direction. Make sure your sweep is coming back
in the same line but reversed direction with the push of your hands and
- When you swing your leg forward, point the toe, then keep it pointed as
you sweep. That way your heel makes a little "hook" that
makes it more difficult for your opponent to slip out of the sweep.
In other classes, we dealt with continuing action from a failed Osotogari.
Two main continuations were considered.
- First, if the opponent steps back with their left foot when you come in
for Osotogari, you can still do the Osotogari but the direction is
changed. Since the feet are in a new position you need to redirect the
throw so it is again perpendicular to a line between your opponent's feet.
- Second, if the opponent steps back with their right foot you can
shift to a different throw. In this case we did Sasae
Tsurikomi Ashi, which involves placing your
right foot on the instep of your opponent's left foot and pulling to the
right so that they turn over the foot you have just trapped.
Osotogari can also be done while moving. In fact, this is probably how
you will do it in randori or shiai. When you are moving toward
your opponent and he is moving away from you, take a double-quick step with your
left foot just as your opponent has completed stepping back with his left
foot. This should bring your left foot up alongside his before he can move
it back. If you time it right, you will be making your sweep just as your
opponent is shifting his weight to his back foot. The push, sweep, and his
own backward momentum combine to put him on his back. Over he goes.
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