Friday, July 24, 2020

Old School Wrist Twist Technique

This blog has become a lightening rod for sharing memories about Jan de Jong and his martial arts teaaching.

The latest is by Sensei Dan Newcombe, founder of Self Defence Central Dojo and Tsutsumi Hozan Ryu International, who forwarded a number of photographs taken in the 1950s when his father and uncle trained under JDJ.

Dan is the second of three generations of his family that have trained/studied the jujutsu taught by Jan de Jong. He is continuing on in the truest tradition of JDJ by establishing his own school, modifying the grading system so as to improve the outcomes for students, upholding the integrity and standards that JDJ espoused, and attempting to internationalise JDJ teachings.

Dan described the above photo as an 'interesting wrist twist knife pinning on the ground.'

Here is a history lesson for students of the JDJ tradition. That is the original finishing position of a wrist twist technique that JDJ taught. The wrist twist joint locking technique was applied to take the opponent to the ground and then continued in order to apply a wrist twist lock on the ground.

A similar technique is seen in Jiu-Jitsu: El Efectivo Metodo Japones de Autodefensa by Katsukuma Higashi in the early 1900s.

EN3. Higashi began his professional wrestling career in New York City, where he became the subject of articles and books by Irving Hancock and Robert Edgren. See, for example, H. Irving Hancock and Katsukuma Higashi, The Complete Kano Jiu-jitsu (New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1924) and Robert Edgren, "The Fearful Art of Jiujitsu," Higashi's style, by the way, was not Kodokan judo but Tsutsumi Hozan Ryu jujutsu. 

JDJ changed the finishing to this technique because of the risks inherent in the opponent being on their back with legs and one arm free to attack if the joint lock is not applied expediently and effectively. He changed it to the current form where the opponent is turned over onto their front.

Now for the technical lesson. The evolved/tactically improved/later version of the wrist twist technique means that the wrist twist joint locking technique is now solely a takedown technique and the finishing technique is either a wrist crush or straight arm lock while the opponent is prone (lying on their front).

FYI. The wrist twist technique is never in itself a throwing technique as Shioda increasingly described in his books on aikido. One of his earliest books explained that tori had to jump to avoid injuring their wrist, which is technically not a throw.

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