6.7.17

BJJ / Grappling tips: Foot Sweeps - sasae tsurikomi ashi combinations

Both jiujitsu and judo have an extensive repertoire of standing techniques. Gracie jiujitsu mainly concerns itself with defensive techniques and tactics that allow you to close the distance against an armed or unarmed opponent, sportive jiujitsu focuses on transitioning to the ground (mainly) and while that is also the focus of judo, the international judo federation rules add an element of explosiveness and finality to the standing portion: A good throw that lands the opponent flat on their back will not just score highly in judo, it will end the match!

Studying for me black belt theory in judo, I read that while jiujitsu had always been a fighting and, consequently, battlefield art, it never quite developed the foot sweeps much. Hip- and hand-throws (such as O goshi and Seoi nage, respectively) were king and queen. It was only with the focus of judo on indoor training on tatami (traditional straw-mats) that they flourished. Always training and competing on predictably flat and smooth terrain meant judoka could design competition strategies that centered around the timing-based foot sweeps or ashi barai.*

One such technique is the sasae foot sweep: Sasae Tsuri Komi Ashi. A beautiful technique centering around correct timing and weight distribution disrubtion. Here's a nice demonstration of the throw by none less than BJ Penn:


With that said, foot sweeps, or any other technique, work best in combination and since Sasae is a forward throwing technique, it's best combined with a technique that throws the opponent backwards such as O soto gari:




The best part of Sasae? No matter how much you commit to the technique, even if you do not throw the opponent, you lose very little and can immediately commit to your next level of attack and when you do nail it, the opponent will fall right next to your feet (often) with an arm dangling up.

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*They existed within koryo (old school) jiuitsu, but not as thoroughly developed and studied as within judo.

ZHOO ZHITSU IS FOR EVERYONE!

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