So You Think You Train Hard
"Tokio Hirano (1922-1993) 8th DanThe Man Who Revolutionized Judo"By Jim Chen, M.D . and Theodore Chen
Hirano 7th Dan At Age 42
Tokio Hirano (5'5", 75 kg), obtained Godan (5th dan) at age 19, is perhaps the greatest Judo technician of all time. He is probably the best known Japanese Judoka in Europe. In 1952, Hirano went to teach Judo in Europe. Within six years, he had accumulated over 4,300 wins. In order to promote Judo, Hirano would fight all black belts in the city where he taught Judo. In November 1954, in Mannheim, Germany, Hirano scored all ippons (knock out) in 34 minutes against 54 black belt opponents (1-3 dan).Traditional nage-waza (throwing techniques) were taught in the following sequence: kumu (gripping), tsukuru (the entry and proper fitting of your body into position taken just before the movement required for completion of your throwing technique), kakeru (completing), and nageru (throwing).Hirano revolutionized the order to tsukuru, kumu, kakeru and nageru. This is the current European style Judo. This is a proven method to defeat bigger opponents, as demonstrated by Hirano's stunning success. Wilhelm Ruska (Holland) 192 cm, 115 kg, was his most accomplished student. Ruska was the world heavyweight champion in 1967 and 1971 and runner up in 1969 (open weight). Wilhelm was the dual gold medalist in heavy and open weight class at the 1972 Munich Olympics. Win Against European Wrestling Champion
Hirano throwing Artz
In the spring of 1955, Hirano went to teach in Amsterdam, Holland. He was challenged by Peter Artz (four time European free style wrestling heavy weight champion). Hirano agreed to both a Judo and wrestling fight. Each match was for ten minutes. The wrestling match would be decided by pinning the back for ten seconds. The Judo match would decided by a clean throw. At the start of the wrestling match, Hirano was able to throw Artz several times, but was unable to pin him due to perspiration (they fought without a Judo gi). About six minutes into the fight, Hirano made a Kiai (yell). He jumped and grabbed Artz's head and threw him with a koshi-guruma (Head lock or Hip wheel throw), pinned him with kesa-gatame (Scarf Hold) for ten seconds; winning the wrestling match. In the Judo match, there was no contest. Within 30 seconds Hirano threw Artz cleanly with ippon seoinage (Shoulder throw).
Fourteen Wins At Kodokan - 1941
Hirano, age 19 During Judo's one hundred year history, the easiest way to get a rank promotion from Kodokan was to take part in the Ko-Haku Shiai (red-white team competition) which was held twice a year (Spring and Fall). By winning with 5 ippons one could receive a one dan promotion the same day. Hirano was born on August 6th, 1922 in Hyogo prefecture (near Kobe), Japan. Hirano obtained his first black belt by winning 22 ippons with osoto-gari. He graduated from Hei-an high school as 3rd dan, later he was recertified by Kodokan as 4th dan. He moved to Takushoku university in April 1941 under the recommendation of his Sensei Fukushima. During his seven months training at Takushoku University, he did nothing but newaza. Hardly did he have a chance to practice tachi-waza (throwing techniques).
Hirano Trains with Fukushima 9th dan
On October 19, 1941, Hirano participated in the Ko-haku shiai. That morning he received a bag of several persimmons, a gift from Wushijima Sensei. During the training session, Wushijima was so fierceful that everybody was afraid of him. On the other hand he was so kind and thoughtful, almost like a tender loving father. Hirano was very grateful for the teaching and kindness from Wushijima Sensei. He swore to do the best in the Ko-haku Shiai. Hirano defeated a Kodokan record 14 opponents. All of his opponents were 4th dan, and were defeated with ippon seoinage, juji gatame (arm lock), kamishiho-gatame (upper four corner pin), tai-otoshi (body drop), ouchi-gari (small inner leg reap), tsurikomi-goshi (lifting hip throw) or osoto-gari (Big outer leg reap). He fought to a draw with his 15th opponent. All Japan Collegiate Judo Championship 1941-42
On October 31, 1941 , Hirano participated in the All Japan Collegiate Judo Championship. In the fourth round he won by tsurikomi-goshi, fifth round by tai-otoshi; and sixth round by juji-gatame. His final opponent was Yasuichi Matsumoto (187 cm, 90 kg, All Japan Champion in 1948, famous for Tenri style osoto-gari) . Matsumoto attacked Hirano with osoto-gari. Hirano countered with osoto-gari and tai-otoshi. Neither scored a point when time was up. Hirano managed to throw Matsumoto immediately during the overtime with seoi-nage (both should throw) to obtain his first major title. All of the matches after the fourth round to final were decided by Ippon. Techniques used included osoto-gari, uchi-mata (inner thigh throw), tai-otoshi, seoi-nage, tsurikomi-goshi, hane-goshi (spring hip throw) and juji-gatame. It was an amazingly high quality competition. The following year, Hirano took the title again with five ippons. In the semi-finals, he had a tough fight against Okubo (182 cm,104 kg) 5th dan. Hirano managed to throw him with seoi-nage and scored a wazaari (half point). In the final match, Hirano defeated Tsunoda with osoto-gari. In 1943 Hirano met Okubo again at the Judo Championship 5th dan division, sponsored by The Department of Imperial Affairs. Like their previous match, no points were scored for the first seven minutes. During the overtime, Hirano eventually won by ippon with an ouchi-gari and seoinage combination.
Third National Athletic Judo Championship - 1947
Hirano took part in the individual championship held on November 2, 1947. Kimura , Ishikawa (champion in 1948, '49), Hirosei (champion in 1943) and Matsumoto decided not to compete in this meet and allow one of the rookies to win the major title. How gracious they were. Nevertheless, Yoshimatsu (champion in 1952, '53 and '55) and Daigo (champion in '51, '56) were among the contenders. In the third round Hirano won by seoi-nage. In the semi-finals he won by tai-otoshi. His final opponent was Hadori (170 cm, 95kg, famous for tsurikomi-goshi and kouchi-gari). Hadori defeated Daigo by ura-nage (back arch throw) at the semi-finals. Hadori proved to be a formidable fighter. Hadori attacked with tsurikomi-goshi, and seoi-nage while Hirano applied his osoto-gari and tai-otoshi with no result. With time running out, Hirano managed to score a wazaari with osoto-gari, thus winning the championship.
Jigoku Kego - Hell Training with Wushijima
In high school, Hirano practiced Judo six hours a day and would randori for two hours. Between 8:30pm and 11pm at Yoshikatakai Ziku, he would randori against 3-4 th dan opponents from Bushen (Academy of Martial Arts). Every night he slept around 1:00am.The following morning he awoke at 5:30am and repeated the routine again. He started with one hundred and fifty push-ups, then jogged and sprinted for 2km, and finished with 40 minutes of randori.Hard training paid off even though he was small and inexperienced as a 2nd dan. Every so often he was able to throw 3rd and 4th dan opponents from Bushen. When Hirano moved to Tokyo and trained under Wushijima Sensei (Wushijima 9th dan, two time All Japan champion) at Takushoku University, he finally realized what Jigoku Kego really was! It consisted of five minutes of warm-ups, 3-4 hours of continuous Ne Waza. This was "Hell Training!" It was considered disgraceful to surrender while being choked. As a result, a typical scene at Takushoku Dojo was 4-5 people passed out, unconscious from chokes. While Hirano was a student in Takushoku University, he went to the Metropolitan police dojo to practice. In 3 hours of continuous randori, he had accumulated approx 500 ippons on 60 black belts. Pre-WWII Judoka felt that a winning or losing was not a matter of talent but rather that of hard training. "Attack Till Your Heart Stop Beating" was Wushijima Sensei's MottoHirano obtained his first black belt by winning 22 ippons, at the high school team competition at the National athletic championship held on November 3, 1939. In the semifinals, Hirano and his opponent fell from the 2 meter high stage to the ground. Despite the doctor's orders to stop, Hirano refused to forfeit. The match was fought to a draw. In the final match Hirano faced a 4th dan opponent. Again the match ended with a draw, following the match, Hirano passed out. The doctor later determined that Hirano had a dislocated left shoulder and two broken ribs. Hirano possessed this fighting spirit even before Wushijima's hell training.Judo was not a sport to those pre WWII Judoka. It was more of a Samurai duel. In order to win the shiai, vigorous training was absolutely necessary. Five hundred push ups, randori 6 hours, plus tachi-ki-wuchikomi (repetition against a tree) was a common training regiment for success. Training was so intense enough that Hirano once dreamt of collapsing the tallest building with his osoto-gari.
Hirano trains Ruska
Ruska once asked Hirano the key to strong Judo. Hirano replied that there was no such medicine. Hirano advised Ruska to train for hand grip power whenever possible, stair climbing and hip strengthening. Ten days before the 1967 world Judo championships, Hirano practiced with Ruska. Hirano felt that Ruska's tachi?waza was only second class (Pre WWII Japanese standard). Ruska's newaza was fifth class. At that time Hirano was able to apply choke or osaekomi (pinning) very easily. When Ruska won the heavy weight champion title, Hirano was very happy that his student was so successful. On the other hand, he was very sad that Japanese Judo had declined to a level he could not imagine.
Judo World Loses Two Giants Kimura And Hirano In 1993
Wushijima sensei nurtured and trained two Judo great, Masahiko Kimura and Tokio Hirano. Unfortunately Kimura died on April 18, 1993.Tokio Hirano returned to Japan in 1966 after Judo touring in Europe for 15 years. He later returned to Europe to conduct annual Judo clinics. Even at the age of 60, he practiced ne-waza with 20 years old varsity students. The great legendary technician died of cancer of liver on July 26, 1993. Through his two books, thousands of students, and memory of those incredible fights, this great legend will live forever.Hirano's trademark throw was a leaping tai-otoshi
Change is inevitable. Growth is optional.
Copyright 2003 www.thetruthaboutselfdefense.com ©
Damian Ross is the owner of Zenshin and instructor of Tekkenryu jujutsu and Kodokan Judo. He started competing in the combative sport of wrestling in 1975 at the age of 7 and began his study of Asian martial arts with Moo Duk Kwan Tae Kwon Do at the age of 16 in 1984. In 1989, Shinan Cestari gave a seminar at Sensei Ross's dojo. Sensei Ross has trained under Shinan Cestari's direction ever since. In addition to Tekkenryu Jujutsu, Judo and Tae Kwon Do, Sensei Ross has also studied Bando. Sensei Ross continues his study of Judo under the direction of 8th degree black belt Yoshisada Yonezuka and Tekkenryu Jujutsu under it's founder, Carl Cestari. Below are is a list of some of his title ranksYodan (fourth degree black belt) Tekkenryu Jujutsu under Carl CestariShodan (First degree black belt) Kodokan Judo under Yoshisada YonezukaVarsity Wrestling Lehigh University under Thad Turner2nd Degree Black Belt Tae Kwon Dohttp://www.thetruthaboutselfdefense.com
Interesting Facts on Samurai Sword Manufacture
A samurai's sword is his most sacred and prized possession. Not only did the samurai rely on his sword to defend him, but spiritually the sword held greater significance as the samurai actually believed his soul inhabited the sword. Therefore it comes as no surprise that the same discipline and respect in which the samurai wielded his sword, went into the actual making of the sword itself.
Is Aikido a Martial Art ?
Sensei Henry Ellis Co-Author of the new book Positive Aikido.- 2005. A direct student from 1957 of the legendary master Kenshiro Abbe Sensi 1915 - 1985..
Samurai Sword Facts
The first samurai swords we're actually straight bladed, single edged weapons imported from Korea and China known as chokuto, which were later replaced with the curved blade variety at the end of the 8th Century. The name of the curved blade swords which replaced them was Tachi. The reason for this transformation was samurai found that a curved sword could be drawn from the scabbard more swiftly and provided a far more effective cutting angle.
So You Think You Train Hard
"Tokio Hirano (1922-1993) 8th DanThe Man Who Revolutionized Judo"By Jim Chen, M.D . and Theodore Chen
The Shocking Truth About Stun Guns
If you are outside the world of law enforcement, chances are you haven't had much "hands on" work with stun guns. Stun guns are as popular today as they have ever been and with the newer smaller packages like cell phone/stun guns, their popularity continues to grow. But before you deploy a stun gun, there are a few misconceptions you may not know about.
The Economics of Self Defense
The following is a recent email I received; I thought I should respond to the list rather than to the individual because this situation is common:
Martial Arts and The Zone
On the occasions you delivered the perfect strike; blocked without the need to think or performed a near flawless kata, did it feel difficult? Or did you get the sense it happened by itself? The 'zone' is a place where athletes describe this sort of experience. Studies suggest its a state of 'effortless merging of action and awareness'. So what stops us from getting there? Factors such as stress or attempts to try harder can interfere. Often our efforts to train harder result in unnecessary muscular responses that prevent us reaching the effortless state of the zone.
Tae Kwon Do As A Means To Stay In Shape
Becoming a martial artist is a fanatastic method of fitness. While there are many martial art forms to choose from, taekwondo is clearly the most beneficial, and the most practical. And while many realize the benefits of such exercise, the simple fact is most have no idea how to begin.
Have No Misconceptions
I just received an Email from a woman who has a child (3 year old) and about to have another. Considering my wife is in a similar situation, this question couldn't be more relevant. This idea can be expanded to those of us getting older, injured or of smaller stature. Keep in mind, a little common sense goes a long way.
Shigeru Kimura Sensei 9th Dan Tani-Ha Shitoryu Shukokai had a punch that was like getting hit with a cannonball.
Are You Frustrated Yet?
I was talking to a parent recently and they told me that their son was not going to compete in wrestling because they were afraid they would get frustrated when he lost. The parent felt the child was far too sensitive to handle the frustration of failure and may get 'burnt out'. My response was, "What will they do when they get frustrated in life?" What happens when that kid has got to suck it up and go forward when it REALLY counts? Being a new parent, my daughter is 2 and I have another on the way, I only want the best for my child. What parent doesn't? It's obvious this parent I mentioned loves their child, but that's not the issue. The issue is what's best for everyone involved. What this child is being taught is to quit when things get tough. In an effort to protect the child, the parent winds up doing a disservice to the child. The result is undermining the ultimate goal- the training of the child.
Samurai Swords ? Choosing a Sword to Buy
It's undeniable that a well placed and mounted samurai sword or samurai sword set looks fantastic and an ads character to any room of the home, but is it worth spending upwards of $650 on such a sword or sword set? This all depends on your reasons for buying a samurai sword.
5 Steps to Choosing the Right Martial Art for You
One of the questions I get asked most frequently, in several different variations is about which martial art an individual should study. Generally which martial art, and more importantly which school to choose are fundamental decisions someone should make. My answer is usually something along the lines of, "choose the school and the system that you are going to stick with and stay with it for the rest of your life."
Regular or De-escalated
We always stress that NOTHING occurs in a vacuum. There always exists stepping stones or a progression of events that lead up to a "situation". Whether YOU are AWARE of them or not is not the issue(it should be, but as they say "sh%& happens").
Learning the Modern Dynamics of Judo
You may have the erroneous idea that force is not necessary in judo, especially when you see a sixty-year-old instructor throwing many young- and strong men seemingly without effort. Dynamics, however, denies this illusion. A body begins to move only when an external force works on it, as will be explained later. A human body is a physical entity. Therefore, if you want to break your opponent's posture and make him fall down or hold him down on the mat;, you must apply the proper force to him.
Choosing a Self Defense / Martial Arts School: A Parents Guide
"Daddy, I want to take Karate!"
Content, Are We?
I asked a simple question at the last seminar:
About four years ago Carl recommended we start using the Bogu during our kumite (sparring practice). This method was developed in Okinawa and then found its way into mainland Japan and eventually to the U.S. where only a few clubs still do this. And even in those clubs, only a few members do it. I know there is other equipment out there that looks similar and I have used most of what's available. But it does not provide you with nearly the same overall effect that the bogu does. Rules in bogu training ? Any punch, any kick, save foot stomps, a strike to the spine and to the back of the neck. Throws and leg kicking is certainly allowed. Use, dare I say, your commonsense.
Women in the Martial Arts
1st Lady Assistant to Sensei Henry Ellis Ellis Schools of Traditional Aikido
Samurai - The Honourable & The Treacherous
The Japanese Samurai were warriors. Highly trained, skilled and efficient killers. Indeed, for many years the Samurai were the law of the land, a class of citizens above all except their Daimyo and the imperial Shogun. The samurai inhabited and roamed a land which was governed by the sword, and the samurai were masters of the sword.
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