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Nage no kata (the kata of throws)

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This stems from the Kodokan style of Judo and is divided into two sections: the first three sets (tachi-waza), which are taught to purple belts, are all performed from standing, and the last two sets, taught to light-blue belts, which involve throwing yourself to the ground to bring off an effective throw (sutemi-waza).

The five sets are:

  1. Te-waza: uki-otoshi, ippon-seoi-nage and kata-guruma
  2. Koshi-waza: uki-goshi, harai-goshi, tsuri-komi-goshi
  3. Ashi-waza: okuri ashi-barai, sasae-tsuri-komi ashi, uchi-mata
  4. Ma-sutemi waza: tomoe-nage, ura-nage, sumi-gaeshi
  5. Yoko-sutemi waza: yoko-gake, yoko-guruma, uki-waza
  • At the beginning of the kata, you rei onto the mat then into the area designated for demonstrating the kata. This is typically a square anywhere between two and four mat-lengths on each side. You enter from opposite corners, taking a right-footed step into the kata area.
  • Next, you rei to the instructor and then to each other.
  • Finally, you take a sliding right-step into the square towards one another. You should have decided already which of you is to perform the first throw and who is to be thrown. The one being thrown is the uke, the other tori
  • Tori paces across the mat to uke; at no point should his or her feet leave the mat when pacing. You pause briefly then take each other in a right-handed grip. Tori throws uke for the first set of throws, alternating between right- and left-sided throws for every technique. Afterwards, you return to your respective corners, pacing across the mat, then turning to face one another.
  • Tori and uke now swap roles, the new tori now completing the first set of throws as before. You repeat this procedure for all the sets in the kata.
  • When you have both completed the sets, you return to your respective corners as before. You then rei to each other and then to the instructor, before rei-ing out of the kata square. If necessary, you may then rei off the mat.

Nage no kata is a demonstration not just of throwing, but also of falling. Even getting onto your feet is done with style and flowing movement — at no point during the kata should either partner lose contact with the other. To do this, you must work together. A perfect nage no kata results in no ruffling of your clothing.

Common mistakes:

  • Forgetting the order of throws
  • Forgetting the differences between the standard throw and the nage no kata version
  • Forgetting to do both left and right sides and to alternate between thrower and throwee
  • Failing to maintain contact throughout
  • Not being cooperative enough with your partner

Teaching phases

Nnk June 07

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