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Mat Techniques

Guard Kuta Punch

Reference: Guard

A closed guard can leave vulnerable points open to strikes. We like to start with a strike so whatever we do this is a good place to start.

Fig. 1 Start Fig. 2 Strike Groin Fig. 3 Strike Face

  1. Fig. 1 shows the start position. The critical thing here is posture. Nage must be sitting up so that Uke cannot sit up and strike or grab Nage's face or neck. It is also necessary for Nage to post Uke to keep Uke down. This is done by grabbing Uke's belt or pants and pushing down and towards Uke's face on the lower edge of Uke's rib cage. Nage's right hand is doing this because the left hand is striking. Nage should have a Kuta hand with the holding hand with the palm facing Uke's head so that Uke has maximum difficulty pulling Nage's hand towards Uke's head.
  2. Fig. 2 shows the groin strike. This strike must be done without drawing up.
  3. Fig. 3 shows the strike to the face. When Uke reaches down in response to the groin strike the face is exposed. The strike to the face is dangerous because if Uke can trap Nage's arm, Uke may get an armbar and break Nage's elbow. Be careful!

The theory of this attack is that if Nage can punish Uke enough Uke will release the legs and try a different strategy. The strikes might finish Uke! If not a finish, then at this point Nage can go to controlling the hips and passing the legs. Punching Uke has four obvious drawbacks:

  1. In some situations Nage might be increasing the level of aggression. Someone swinging at one's head is obviously launching a serious attack. Someone grappling with you may be playing or they may intend to break joints or choke you to death or break your neck. A grappling attack can be many things including lethal.
  2. Nage is only posting Uke with one hand. This is obviously not as strong as posting with both hands.
  3. When Nage strikes at Uke's face Nage is exposed to an armbar. A single armbar is more difficult and basically slower than a double armbar but it is still dangerous. Be careful.
  4. Nage is messing around punching Uke when Nage could be getting up. This slows Nage down some. I like to punch first and ask questions later. My inclination in a serious threat situation would be to strike the groin as I go into the post and then do the Superman. Do not take the time or risk to strike the face unless it seems really easy.

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Last Update 12/8/2008