T Nation

First Judo Tournament


#1

I am competing in my first judo tournament in 3 weeks, it is standard USJF rules.I have not spoken to my sensei about it in depth yet, I will when I see him again on tuesday. I'm just looking for any extra advice anyone can offer from any martial art.

Background: I have trained for a year total and have an orange belt. It is a very small local tournament and the weight classes are just light, medium, heavy; how the weight classes depends on how many heavies show up. I expect to weigh in at 180ish and might end up being a medium. My competition throws are tai otoshi and koshi guruma I guess, these are just the ones that I have had most success with in randori. I can make drop seoi work but its not my goto. I have had success with kosoto gake and kouchi makikomi as well. I sometimes find it difficult getting in close enough for harai goshi/hane goshi, but I can make them work when I do. My uchi mata is not strong.

I do not know what the sensei will be having me practice at the dojo in these next few weeks but I believe there will be a lot of drilling counters, transition from standing to newaza, grip fighting, and my competition throws right and lefty

My weights/cardio routine is:
Jump rope 15-20mins everyday

weights monday wednesday friday:

Military press:
ramp to 1x6
backoff set 1x15
Pullups: 40-60 total reps
Dips: 50 total reps
Band Pull Aparts: 150-200 Total reps
Snatch grip deadlift: ramp to heavy single, 1x15-20 back off set

On saturday I run up a big hill for a mile

My specific questions are what should I do the week before the tournament? Stop lifting? Increase cardio? Just do pushups/ band pullaparts for upper body conditioning and jump rope? I will definitely be doing more agility/footwork drills outside the dojo. How should I eat the day before the tournament?

Beyond those questions I have no idea what to expect so all advice is appreciated


#2

For the last week:

Cut lifting poundages down to 60% and volume down to 50%. This may also mean skipping the gym on Friday. Actually, that would be a great idea.
Eat well. This means healthy food in appropriate quantities. If you feel bloated or hungry, something is off.
Sleep well.
Four times within the last two weeks, replace skipping with “100 burpees afap”. Burpees have a load of carryover to grappling.
Design a straightforward game plan. It seems like you have been doing this already, so good work.
The night before, just eat a decent meal two hours before you go to bed; also, prep food for the competition (hint: fruit works pretty well). Then read or take a walk. Then go to bed. If you are worried about sleeping in, put the alarm clock in the opposite corner of your bedroom.


#3

Does your school have a comp. class?

If so, go to that if you can.


#4

Tournaments are super fun, but sometimes they are a little disorganized. Sometimes you have 2 matches almost back to back. Other times there is a break in the middle that slows things down for awhile.

You just have to relax and stay cool, but still be ready. Don’t be sleeping when they call you on deck, but don’t spend the entire day figeting around nervously “warming up.” Stay loose between matches. Don’t tire yourself out trying to maintain 8 Mile soundtrack intensity non-stop, the whole day. Remember to drink water.

You gotta eat! You may be a little nervous for your first tournament event. You may worry about having a “heavy stomach” during your next match. But you have to get some food in, sometime. Eating right after a match means maximum time to digest before your next match. Obviously drink lots of water.

Fresh underwear if you’re going to get sweaty. Dry is comfortable.

Women weaken the legs, so focus on judo.

Have fun! Respect your opponent and his team/school.


#5

I’m at the '98 New York Section 6, State Quailification Wrestling Tournament. I’m nervously stretching out before my weight class gets going.

I’m all worried about warming up too much, or stretching too little. Just a head case, shitting my pants.

Nearby, Rashad Evans is pumping out reps in the overhead press on an old Universal Machine. Cold as ice, getting a little work in before his wrestling match! I couldn’t believe it.

Years later, dude was the Champion of the World! I don’t know if it was the calmness or the military pressing.

Also, how’s your grip? Its hard to hold onto the other guy for an entire match. Then do it all over.


#6

What nighthawk said. Too easy. Its your first tourney so , just relax as much as possible you will have a difficult time keeping your HR under a 100 standing around the first couple hours. Listen to your coach, do what he asks. If he is not there hook up with a buddy from your school and be there for each other to encourage and warm up. Eat light in the AM , no dairy, then be ready to eat small but steadily all day bagels are great some honey jelly. have a sports drink at some point or two if you have more than three matches. Bring a hoody for under your gee while just walking around to isolate you from sights and sounds as needed. Don’t watch others warm up, you have it your way , they have it there way. Now is not the time to experiment or overthink your game plan. be professional and the best in everything you do that day , represent your school well. And fight well.


#7

Thanks for all the replies. Definitely a lot of good advice in here. I will check back in here to let you all know how it went


#8

Listen to your coach… and just relax.

Really tournaments are awesome, and there is allot to take in the first time dont get worked up about it - just enjoy it.
Id echo the advice to ramp down training and just get there feeling fresh and ready.

They can make for a long day, plan on bringing enough food- and stuff to drink.
Good luck - soon you’l be training your ass off for the next one.

The best feeling is training hard piling in a car with too many people from your team or Dojo
having a good tournament road trip and piling in that same car covered in Icy hot and an ice pack.
best.shit.ever


#9

[quote]brotardscience wrote:
Listen to your coach… and just relax.

Really tournaments are awesome, and there is allot to take in the first time dont get worked up about it - just enjoy it.
Id echo the advice to ramp down training and just get there feeling fresh and ready.

They can make for a long day, plan on bringing enough food- and stuff to drink.
Good luck - soon you’l be training your ass off for the next one.

The best feeling is training hard piling in a car with too many people from your team or Dojo
having a good tournament road trip and piling in that same car covered in Icy hot and an ice pack.
best.shit.ever[/quote]

I think ‘enjoy it’ may be the best advice so far. Don’t try to do the perfect prep and be stressed out about it - staying loose is the best way to approach it.


#10

[quote]nighthawkz wrote:

[quote]brotardscience wrote:
Listen to your coach… and just relax.

Really tournaments are awesome, and there is allot to take in the first time dont get worked up about it - just enjoy it.
Id echo the advice to ramp down training and just get there feeling fresh and ready.

They can make for a long day, plan on bringing enough food- and stuff to drink.
Good luck - soon you’l be training your ass off for the next one.

The best feeling is training hard piling in a car with too many people from your team or Dojo
having a good tournament road trip and piling in that same car covered in Icy hot and an ice pack.
best.shit.ever[/quote]

I think ‘enjoy it’ may be the best advice so far. Don’t try to do the perfect prep and be stressed out about it - staying loose is the best way to approach it.
[/quote]

I wouldn’t say I’m stressed per se. There’s another tournament in June I also want to do, so I’m trying to avoid pitfalls like lifting heavy the week before or coming in with jacked up Achilles from running or skipping, then getting injured in the tournament. I’ve already got a couple nagging injuries I need to get healed before then.

All around great advice from everyone. Especially burpees, I forgot about those. it will be a lot of fun


#11

Forgot to update this.

I took 3rd place in my division. First match I won with a kosoto gake, scored ippon. 2nd match lost, opponent got ippon with an ouchi gari. 3rd match, I scored a wazari with a sloppy tai otoshi. After that it was just scrambling until the clock ran out. In the novice division matches were only one round.

Thanks for all the advice guys!


#12

Well done. Are you hooked?


#13

[quote]Dude623 wrote:
Well done. Are you hooked?[/quote]

lol yeah, I already was. next tournament is in june


#14

Great work!

How well do you feel like your training prepared you for competition?
Did you learn anything? Or get into a situation you were unprepared for?
Will you train the same, or do you feel like you need to make any adjustments?


#15

[quote]FlatsFarmer wrote:
Great work!

How well do you feel like your training prepared you for competition?
Did you learn anything? Or get into a situation you were unprepared for?
Will you train the same, or do you feel like you need to make any adjustments?[/quote]

I will do the same strength and conditioning work. overall I felt strong for my weight class and I didn’t gas out at all in the one longer match. Felt good to be able to go all the way. I really should add more footwork/agility stuff.

I was just unprepared for the pace being way faster than any randori sessions. But having now done the tournament, I’ve found that in randori at my club I can react faster and think more about what I’m doing. So I need to use that to plan out better sweep/throw combinations and practice better/harder counters


#16

It’s great that your strength and conditioning are where you want them. Ahead of everyone else. It’s such an advantage just to know that the other guy won’t be able to over power you, or outlast you. There is that initial exchange, where you first make contact. The first scramble you get into. You know right there, who is stronger and what the pace will be like. Its good to be confident at that moment.

And it sounds like you know just what to work on. The “speed” of a match is different than randori (practice?). You need those setups and combinations and counters that kinda flow into each other, instead of just “doing moves.”

Anyway, great job. I hope training goes well.