I am hopefully starting judo next week and was wondering about the tournaments, specifically groundfighting.

How does it happen? In other words do the competitors ever start from their knees, or does everything start standing and if a good throw isn't executed the fight continues on the ground?

How do you know to keep on going on the ground after the throw?


Never on the knees.

The match continues on the ground after a throw that isn't perfect. You can't flop to ground, or you'll eat penalties. You go on untill the ref tells you to stop or you decide that within the rules there is no chance to do a sub or pin.

Speaking of which you won't get much ground fighting in judo unless you severely outclass your opponents on the ground. Imagine this. You have to make progress towards victory every 5 second against an opponent that is usualy defending 100% and not trying anything. If you are making progress then you can stay on the ground till end of match.

your coach should prepare you completly for tournaments.

mainly you have to know that gound-time in judo is very limited. you have to make obvious progress to a pin or sub every 5 seconds as a rule of thumb. if there is any real pause, if you cannot pass his guard completly, or if you are unable to finish the armlock/choke the referee will stand you up.

you cannot do guard-flops. you cannot make poor attacks just in hopes of getting to the ground. you do NOT have to do ground-fighting-- you can just get up or stall out without penalty.

flying armlocks and chokes are okay, but standing chokes and armlocks must be done extremely carefully (opponent must go to knees before you. you cannot throw an opponent while applying a standing choke or armlock.

neckcranks, leglocks, wristlocks.. all ILLEGAL. cannot put your hands/feet/etc in the face either... cannot bend the spine either.
hope that helps.

Every 5 seconds?

Josh, is that what the "rule of thumb" is nowadays?

Ben R.

PS, sorry I'm a bit behind. We are on a big road trip and I don't get to a computer very often.