I’ll start off by saying I love throws, if you’ve read any of my other articles you’ve probably figured that out haha, but the Tai Otoshi (or Body Drop) has eluded me thus far. But being on the receiving end of countless Tai Otoshis I can safely say it is an incredibly powerful throw. Just because I can’t get it to work for me yet, does not mean it is not worth others pursuing, so many of my long legged training partners have dropped me square on my back with this throw and it can be one of the hardest throws even though there is no lift.

The Tai Otoshi is classified as a hand technique in the Kodokan. It can generate tremendous amounts of force using very little contact. As I mentioned earlier, it creates one of the hardest falls in Judo but uses very little lift, it is all from the Kuzushi (off balancing) and timing of the throw. The fast and powerful rotating action drives your opponent straight into the mat. It can suck pretty hard.

This clip with four time Olympian and 2012 Olympic coach Jimmy Pedro has helped me breakdown and understand what I’m missing to make this technique work. Note how him entering in is already breaking his opponents balance, his initial pull already has his Uke up on his toes making the finish easy and efficient. And as he shows, with a quick simple modification Tai Otoshi can be made even better for Jiu-Jitsu maximizing body control and landing you right in the modified Kesa Gatame. And you should know how I feel about Kesa already.

Tai Otoshi is my favorite throw that I can’t really do. I see how awesome a throw it is and I strive to be able to add it into my arsenal. And if you have any inclination of adding throws to your game, Tai Otoshi is a great option. Some will pick it up quite naturally and others, like myself, are going to have to work hard and really break down the technique. But it should not be ignored if you are struggling, it’s too great a throw. Let’s go up our throw game and I’ll see you on the mats. Oss.


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