The jūji-gatame (十字固, rendered as “Ude-Hishigi-Juji-Gatame”), also sometimes used interchangeably with the terms “armbar” or “straight armbar”, is an official Kodokan Judo technique. The English word “bar” is used here to signify the opponent’s extended arm, while the Japanese word “jūji” (十字) refers to the armbar’s visual resemblance to the number 10 as written in kanji, 十. The word jūji is also found in “jūjika” (十字架), meaning a cross. In general, the practitioner secures an arm at the wrist of the opponent, trapping it by squeezing the knees together. To initiate the submission one of the legs will be across the chest of the opponent, the second leg’s calf will cross face the opponent, with the hips tight into the armpit, with the arm held between the thighs, with the elbow pointing against the thigh or hips. By holding the opponent’s wrist to the attacker’s chest with the pinky finger on the sternum and the thumb facing up (arm semi-supinated or semi-pronated), the practitioner can easily extend the opponent’s arm and hyperextend the opponent’s elbow. The attacker can further increase the pressure on the elbow joint by arching his hips against the elbow.

       

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“Freestyle” has no style. Innovation and evolution emerge when any martial art is pitted against another and forced to adapt to its disadvantages against another form. That is the essence of true freestyle judo.


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