Tai Otoshi

"Body Drop." It is part of the 2nd Kyo of throws and is considered a hand throw.

This seems to me to be a pretty basic throw.  Basic, maybe but harder to pull off than it first appears.  I am told that this is a good throw for me, but it doesn't feel good.  Still, I have been working on it a lot and it seems to be coming better now.

You break your opponent's balance forward, either by using the kuzushi exercise or by executing it when he is stepping forward and, therefore, naturally has his balance broken.  You step in and pivot, then step out with your right leg so that your calf is in front of your opponent's shin.  Your heel should be turned outward so that your knee is pointing down--protecting the knee from injury should your opponent come down on your leg.  Then pulling horizontally forward on your opponent's sleeve and collar, you drop your body and they fall over your leg.

A couple of points that seem to help me with it.  Make sure that your pulls, both on the arm and on the lapel are up as well as back.  When you turn, in (assuming a turn to the left) keep your right shoulder relaxed so you don't push your opponent away.  As you near the completion of the turn push up and around with the right hand, pressing the heel of your hand against your opponent's jaw line.  That, combined with the pull (still up and now forward because of the turn) from your left hand will pull your opponent over.  In fact, it shouldn't matter much if your opponent manages to step over your leg.  Keep cranking with the hands and, presuming you did your job in taking his balance, he's still very likely to go over.  If he doesn't, you're well set up to shift to a rear throw such as Ouchigari.

A variation is when your opponent is stepping forward and you are backing up.  As the opponent steps forward, instead of stepping back you pull with your left arm and pivot, letting your opponent come in close to you while you tuck in just in front of him and to his left.  You then extend the right leg and bend your left knee.  This causes your body to drop. You continue the pull with your left arm and push with your right so they drop over your leg.

You can also do Tai Otoshi when you are moving forward and your opponent is backing up, or when you are moving to either side.  In fact, it's a very versatile throw.  Although I still don't feel at all comfortable with it, I am beginning to see some of the potential in this throw.

A companion throw to Tai Otoshi is Kosotogari.  If your opponent resists your pull as you step in, their backward resistance sets them up nicely for Kosotogari.

The classic combination, I am told, is Ouchigari combined with Tai Otoshi.  You come in for Ouchigari, but your opponent evades it by stepping over your sweeping leg.  You use that moment, just as he stops moving backward to pivot on around and apply Tai Otoshi.

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