6 Basic Judo Throws You Should Know

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A house is only as strong as its foundation and focusing on building strong Judo basics is a sure way to guarantee that you will be finding more and more success when going for a throw in a judo match.

The Art of Judo is filled with amazing, powerful  and dynamic throws that are on par with throws that you would see in a John Wick movie but it is the basics that generally are the most high % in success – especially for the average Judoka (Judo player).

Every Judo throw has countless variations and setups as well as can be added in combination with other throws in order to be used in an attack. There are several different types of Judo throws, some are Koshi Waza (hip based throws), some are Ashi Waza (foot based throws) some are Te Waza (hand based throws) and lastly there are Sutemi Waza (sacrifice throws).


The 6 easy judo throws emphasized in this article come from either Koshi Waza, Ashi Waza or Te Waza as Sutemi Waza techniques are a little more advanced in nature due to the fact that if not done properly will place the person doing the technique in a very disadvantageous position.

Here are Grapplezilla’s 6 basic judo throws you should know in order to build a solid judo foundation and start gaining more success in your attempts to throw your opponent to the ground. These are the best beginner judo throws that you should concentrate on.

Osoto Gari

We’ve all seen Osoto gari in action movies of yesteryear and it’s for a good reason, it’s simple and effective. Osoto Gari is not a fancy judo throw but it simply works. It is great for a street judo scenario as well as it keeps you relatively safe and without exposing your back for any type of choke, in simple terms, Osoto Gari is a type of trip and is an Ashi Waza technique.

Osoto gari is generally the first throw a child would learn in Judo as well as the first technique a white belt would learn, it does not require much athletic ability and when hit properly it places the opponent down on the mat for further ne-waza (ground fighting) techniques should need be.

Sasae Tsurikomi Ashi

Sasae Tsurikomi Ashi is a very visually good looking sweep and it is simple to do as well as very effective. It works best when you can time an opponent’s step properly. It is a great technique to use in combination with other techniques and especially when countering an opponent’s defence. Sasae Tsurikomi Ashi is one of the original 40 throws that Jigoro Kano placed within the Judo curriculum.

It is a foot blocking technique more than a sweep and leaves the opponent in an excellent position to start attacking on the ground, Sasae Tsurikomi Ashi is an Ashi Waza technique.


If there is one technique that is identified with Judo it would be Ogoshi. Many martial arts and grappling have a version of Ogoshi as it is throw that feels biomechanical natural. There are 3 really important phases of a good Ogoshi throw which are off balancing an opponent,  stepping and setting your hip in proper position and lastly finishing off the throw.

The Ogoshi is a really gross motor movement throw and when done properly it can offset an opponent quickly. Ogoshi is a Koshi Waza throwing technique.

Koshi Guruma

Very similar to Ogoshi is a throw called Koshi Guruma. The main difference between Koshi Guruma and Ogoshi is the position of the arm around the body of the opponent, Ogoshi works off an underhook and around the body of an opponent grabbing the belt while Koshi Guruma works off an overhook and around the head of the opponent. This throw is a Koshi Waza throw. 

Koshi Guruma is often seen in wrestling and known as a head and arm throw, it is a very high percentage throw and can lead to an easy entrance to Kesa-Gatame (scarf hold) for a very effective pinning position on the ground.

Tai Otoshi

An often overlooked beginner’s throw for Judo, Tai Otoshi is a Te Waza technique, it is a truly great throw that has a lot of self defense applications as you have a strong control of an opponent’s hand and collar. 

Tai Otoshi if done correctly can be quite a hard throw as well with a very hard landing and great control on the ground for arm locks as you have control of the opponent’s arm and collar after the throw is executed.

Ouchi Gari

Ouchi Gari is a fantastic Ashi Waza technique as you land straight in top position with the opponent’s hips squared to yours. This takedown can be seen in many other grappling arts such as wrestling, Sambo submission wrestling and even MMA as it works well when an opponent makes a larger step toward you with the same leg as your attacking leg.

In Conclusion

Judo is an amazing grappling based martial art with an incredibly deep amount of techniques, there are many throwing techniques and individual game plans a Judoka can develop to beat their opponent. Building solid fundamentals that you can always rely on is pivotal to building a solid Judo game and one that you can build up upon.


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