T Nation

Training with Ishii

From my (online) buddy Denis (bigD),

quick rundown of who he is (by him):

[i]OK here’s a quick rundown of the story. I was doing BJJ, Muay Thai, Boxing and Wrestling in Australia and had just fought pro. My wrestling coach was trying to convince me I could make the Olympics if I concentrated on Wrestling and went overseas to train. I was at the national training camp which was being run by Toshio Asakura (former world champ who’d medaled in both Greco and freestyle at worlds and was Kokushian’s head coach) After training with him for a few days he offerd me a scholarship to his university on the condition that I passed a exam and interview in Japanese. A bit after the camp I won the ADCC South Pacific trials and went off to America to compete in ADCC 2005. When I returned I quit my job with the Australian Federal Police Protective Service to study Japanese. I had 3 months from then till I had to pass my test and interview. So I got a tutor, studied 8 hours a day for 3 months straight, passed my tests and here I am.

I haven’t worked a day since mid 2005. My scholarship provides my school fees, about half my food, and my appartment. I also get a bit of funding from the Aus Olympic and Commonwealth Games comittee.[/i]

Can’t rave enough about the guy he’s cool as balls. Will be a FORCE when he moves into the MMA arena. I’m just thanking god that he’s not in my weight class lol. Hopefully we’ll get to train together next time he makes it to the states.



There’s been a bit of talk about Satoshi Ishii deciding to he wants quit Judo and fight MMA, and people found it interesting when I trained subs with Ishii before… so I figured people might find this interesting too.

Yesterday 3 guys from Kokushikan’s Judo team came over and trained with the wrestling team. 130kg guy, a 97kg guy and an 80kg guy. We had a good session and I enjoyed it a lot becuase they were using techniques that I don’t get to see in wrestling much so it made for fun and interesting wrestling. Anyways they invite me to train with the Judo club today… but when I turned up it turns out they were having a day off, watching match footage. So the same 3 guys, plus Satoshi Ishii and a light weight decided to come and do wrestling today.

So yeah we did a bunch of live wrestling. I was really keen to see how Ishii was on his feet without the gi. So I did a bunch of rounds with him. He was pretty strong and had good balance. And as a Judoka was waaaaaaay unorthadox compared to your average wrestler. I couldn’t seem to use a lot of my favourite techniques because of this, but he left himself open to a bunch of other ones instead. All in all I scored a lot of points as he didn’t have much of an idea of leg defence. He kept trying to work foot sweeps, inside trips and uchimatas. But in about 7 minutes of wrestling only scored once when I went for an outside hook from underhook (hard technique to explain) and he countered it well with a nice uchimata. He also tried to do a bunch of singles and doubles, but you could tell he didn’t really know how yet.

Anyways after training he wanted to learn how to shoot a good double, so I and another wrestler took him through it. He was pretty much terrible at first, but I shit you not within like 8 minutes he was doing the most perfect massive powerful doublelegs!!! Fuck!!! Never seen someone pick up a technique so fast and well in my life! Everytime I corrected or added in a detail he picked it up and did it properly from then on. Amazingly talented!

It was great watching him spar with the other guys cos everytime he got a big throw he’d scream like the Judo guys do when they throw for Ippon, which is way out of place on our wrestling mat but he didn’t seem to mind and I thought it was great :slight_smile: Screaming stuff like “AAAIIII!!! SHYAAAAAH!!!” Or “YOISHAAAAAH!!!” And during sparrign with me he kept saying “SHYAAH!!” which is kinda like a fighting cheer of encouragement to yoruself. Good stuff :slight_smile:

Anyways after we were done training we started talking MMA. He wants to do a bunch of MMA training with me which should be heaps cool. He’s already been training at an MMA gym (forget which one) And has been doing BJJ at the same club as me for maybe 6 months now and is a brown belt there (Awarded on his first day I think) He already has boxing gloves, shin guards n stuff, so is keen to get into technique and sparring. So yeah we traded numbers and will start training together sometime soon.

Watching this guy train it’s obvious to see why he’s so good at Judo. He is a coaches dream student. From seeing him in Judo practice and from treaching him a bit tonight, he does anything a coach tells him. Doesn’t complain just does it no questions. And he seems to out train everyone else! I used to hear stories of how he would finish training at Kokushikan for like 3 hours (probably the hardest trainings I’ve ever done in my life) and then head off to another top university and do their full training too.

After training he said I should come to Judo training sometime and he will give me a gi with an Australian emblem embroided on it which was cool. So I said he could have the wrestling shoes I’d lent him (A coach gave them to me new but they were still in a box unworn cos they were too small for me)

Anyways he seems a pretty cool guy and is a super hard worker!!! So I’m really keen to start training with him. Hopefully I can learn some usefull Judo techniques :slight_smile:

I took a bunch of photos so I’ll have to upload them later.

Anyways hope that was interesting to you guys.

PS NOBODY TURN THIS INTO A JUDO VS BJJ/WRESTLING OR WHATEVER THREAD!!! TROLLS BEWARE!!! Although Train Judo, you often crack me up so say what you will :wink:


[i] Just finished Judo and holy fuck I’m broken! My fingers, toes and all through my core are so sore. Was a hard training session. Went for 2h45m and was mostly randori. I went a lot better than I did than the last time I came which was about 2 years ago. I think mostly just cos I have way better movement, balance and general scrambling ability now. I didn’t get to train with Ishii, but I did train with his main training partner… and he fucking killed me. I couldn’t get one good grip on the guy… it went like this. we approach eachother, he gets good grips, I get shitty grips… we move a bit… he throws me and screams AISHYAAAAH!!! Stand up rinse repeat :slight_smile: I went OK with some of the other guys though. I was making an effort to try and do Judo instead of using wrestling, but didn’t have much luck with Judo techniques… So every so often I’d blast them with a head in the chest double and took them to their backs. most of the other leg attacks I attempted gave them an opportunity to just drop to their stomaches.

I think I did 5 consecutive 5 minute rounds with fresh guys, then 5 3 minute rounds… then did a bunch of newaza. It was kinda funny cos these two guys were helping me out with standing techniques all night and I was obviously new to them, then they showed me some real basic ground positions n stuff, and I didn’t wann be like “yeah yeah I know this stuff”… but when we started grappling I was tapping or sweeping and pinning them probably every 20 -30 seconds. So they started getting all these other guys to roll with me but it was pretty much the same with all of them. But still I didn’t get to go with Ishii :confused:

Anyways after training Ishii said he wants to start training striking with me tomorrow. Said he really wants to learn some technique. So yeah I’m happy to do that. I’m thinking he wants to train with me because it’s convenient as we go to the same school and everything. But I really hope after he graduates in 5 months or so that he joinds a propper team. I’m gonna tell him tomorrow that I’m hapy to show him anything he wants to learn, but that he really needs to seek out the best possible coaches he can find in each of the areas he neds to cover. Luckily our university Wrestling coach Takahiro Wada is the Olympic coach, so he’s got that covered… But I hope he gets the best possible stand up coach too. I can show him good basics as I initially started training in Muay Thai as my first disciplin back in 98, and used to train one on one with the Australian Amature Boxing heavyweight champ 3 times a week back in Australia… But yeah I’d feel waaaaaay more comfortable knowing he was getting top notch striking training elsewhere. I feel a bit inqualified and kinda don’t wanna feel responsible for handling someone with so much talent and potential. So yeah I guess I can give him a bit of an introduction to some solid basics, and then after graduating hopefully he’ll be training with the best.

It’s the Kokushikan team’s Judo dojo. Kokushikan is the number one university team in Japan, and has produced gold medalists at the last 2 Olympics. So it’s a very high level club as far as Judo goes.

I’m a purple belt in BJJ. I’m a bit rusty though cos as I’ve been concentraining on wrestling so much since coming here, I stopped training for like 8 months, then trained for 2 months, then stopped again for 15 months… and started again in june, and have been training once to twice a week since then.


Installment 3:

Anyways… I trained with Ishii this morning for an hour and a half. He sayd he’s been training standup at an MMA gym here every day for 2 weeks. I asked him to show me what he had learned so far. which was basic movement and some straight punches. We then spent the whole time working on his straight punches and movement trying to make everything tight. Getting his footwork down, keeping his guard up, chin tucked, and making sure he extended all his punches properly. Just taking baby steps for now as I just want to show him pure basics and make sure he is doing everything perfect. He is a fast learner and has some serious power… But being so built he is pretty tight… So I was really focussing on making his punches fluid and snap with good extension as he seemed very stiff and robotic at first. I swear his body shape reminds me so mch of Mike Tyson. Not to say he’ll be a puncher like him but that he just has such a similar shape and so much natural power.

He is very keen to learn and does everything I say without hesitation. Perfect student really. I turned up early to get ready and he was already sitting there ready and waiting with all his gear on. He seemed very happy and appreciative at the end of training, and was looking forward to the next session. I’m Looking forward to seeing how his striking develops over the next few months. I feel pretty honored to be able to help him out and really wanna give him my best effort.

Great post(s), Xen. Cheers for sharing.

Awesome info, thanks Xen!!

And Ishii earned his BJJ Brown Belt on his first day of training? That’s incredible!

Honorary thing I think… and you’re all welcome, just keepin the forum interesting :-p

Great read… thanks Xen

Thanks for that Xen! Damn, you just know everybody and everything going on…

Sounds like more good news to me…