Judo Basics – which of our books are best for beginners?
Judo basics are important to get right. They form the foundation to everything you will learn later.
But, where to start?
This was a question I was asked recently by a parent whose child had just started judo:
Which of the judo books are best for beginners?
I suggest judo beginners should start with these two judo books that cover the judo basics about Hold Downs and Breakfalls:
Read on to find out more about each book, about how they cover the judo basics and how they can can help your child learn more about judo.
Learn Judo Breakfalls is a 40 page entry-level book aimed at beginner judoka, aged approximately 5-9 years old.
This book shows kids how to fall and roll safely and correctly, and this is a really important skill to have in judo.
Firstly, it helps to avoid injuries.
But also, as you learn to fall and roll without fear you also boost confidence – and this helps children improve their attacking and throwing skills too.
After tutorials on each breakfall (forwards, backwards, sideways and a rolling ukemi) there are 10 agility tests.
These are designed by world judo champion, Nik Fairbrother, 7th Dan to learn key movement patterns and improve coordination skills.
All in all, an ideal starter book – that goes hand in hand with this next book:
Book 2: 10 Holds Downs and 10 Challenges
10 Judo Hold Downs teaches one of the most important groundwork skills any judoka can have: Osaekomi! That means hold downs in Japanese.
This books steps the beginner/intermediate judoka through the judo basics, showing clearly how to do ten different hold downs.
There are tips on groundwork judo, how to win by holding your opponent down, how to move from hold to hold and how to escape!
This 45 page book ends with 10 groundwork challenges – exercises judoka can have fun as they learn.
This book will help judoka understand groundwork judo basics.
Judo Basics – your questions answered
What is a judo roll?
A judo roll is called a judo breakfall or ukemi in Japanese.
How many types of judo breakfalls are there?
There are four main breakfalls (ukemi) to learn; to the front, to the side, to the back and a rolling breakfall. We go into detail how to do each one in Learn Judo Breakfalls & 10 Agility Tests.
How to learn a judo breakfall?
Start at your dojo (judo hall) with guidance from your sensei (judo coach). You can make learning the judo basics of each ukemi easier by starting from a seated or crouched position. As you roll remember always to tuck your chin in and hit the mat with an open palm.
Why do judoka hit the mat when they breakfall?
It absorbs the impact of the throw. As we hit the mat with our open palm the impact of landing on the mat is spread, softening the fall.
Why do we need to learn to fall?
We learn to roll and fall safely to avoid injuries. Also by learning how to fall correctly we lose the fear of falling and rolling. This in turn boosts confidence and helps with learning judo techniques and judo throws like Morote Seoi Nage or O-Goshi.
Does judo have groundwork?
Yes! Groundwork is a key part of judo from children learning judo basics to Olympic level judo.
What is groundwork judo?
Groundwork judo is known as Ne-waza in Japanese. It includes hold downs and turnovers at junior level.
What does Osaekomi mean?
Osaekomi means hold-downs in Japanese. In 10 Holds Judo Hold Downs & 10 Groundwork Challenges we look at the ten main Osaekomi judoka need to learn to grade up through the belts.
How to pin someone down?
In judo the pin or hold counts as long as the person being held down is mainly on their back. The hold is broken as soon as the person being held turns onto their stomach or manages to grab the leg of their opponent, trapping it between their own legs.
Judo holds for beginners?
The first three hold downs judoka will often learn are Kesa-Gatame, Yoko Shiho-Gatame and Tate-Shiho-Gatame.
How to win at groundwork judo?
You can score an ippon (maximum win) in judo by holding your opponent down for 25 seconds.
Our judo books are also available as Ebooks
Both Learn Judo Breakfalls & 10 Agility Tests and 10 Holds Judo Hold Downs & 10 Groundwork Challenges are available as ebooks, that you can buy on Amazon.
Just download the free app to see them on your smartphone, tablet or computer. You don’t need a dedicated device to read them.