The Gokyo - Kodokan vs. Mifune

Mifune was a wizard, and evidently a rebel.  He was the Harry Potter of Judo?

Did you guys know that Mifune had his own Gokyo (well... you would if you had read my review of his Canon of Judo).  Some interesting differences...  I don't have a ton of insight here just yet, but figured I would post this for those who are interested.  At some point I will post my color-coded Excel file which makes comparison between the two a bit easier.

# Kodokan Mifune
1-1 Deashi Barai Deashi Barai
1-2 Hiza Guruma Hiza Guruma
1-3 Sasae Tsurikomi Ashi Uki Goshi
1-4 Uki Goshi Sasae Tsurikomi Ashi
1-5 Ogoshi Osoto Gari
1-6 Osoto Gari Tsuri Goshi
1-7 Ouchi Gari Tai Otoshi
1-8 Seoi Nage Tsurikomi Goshi
2-1 Kosoto Gari Kouchi Gari
2-2 Kouchi Gari Koshi Guruma
2-3 Koshi Guruma Kosoto Gari
2-4 Tsurikomi Goshi Ogoshi
2-5 Okuriashi Barai Seoi Nage
2-6 Tai Otoshi Ouchi Gari
2-7 Harai Goshi Kosoto Gake
2-8 Uchi Mata Harai Goshi
3-1 Kosoto Gake Uchi Mata
3-2 Tsuri Goshi Hane Goshi
3-3 Yoko Otoshi Hane Makikomi
3-4 Ashi Guruma Harai Tsurikomi Ashi
3-5 Hane Goshi Tomoe Nage
3-6 Harai Tsurikomi Ashi Sukui Nage
3-7 Tomoe Nage Ashi Guruma
3-8 Kata Guruma Ushiro Goshi
4-1 Sumi Gaeshi Yoko Guruma
4-2 Tani Otoshi Osoto Guruma
4-3 Hane Makikomi Uki Otoshi
4-4 Sukui Nage Utsuri Goshi
4-5 Utsuri Goshi Uki Waza
4-6 O Guruma Tani Otoshi
4-7 Soto Makikomi Yoko Otoshi
4-8 Uki Otoshi Yoko Gake
5-1 Osoto Guruma Ura Nage
5-2 Uki Waza Sumi Otoshi
5-3 Yoko Wakare Yoko Wakare
5-4 Yoko Guruma O Guruma
5-5 Ushiro Goshi Okuriashi Barai
5-6 Ura Nage Sumi Gaeshi
5-7 Sumi Otoshi Kata Guruma
5-8 Yoko Gake Soto Makikomi

btemplates

20 comments:

Jacob said...

In the first set I'm seeing the basic attacks on:
How to attack the load bearing support.
How to attack the non-load bearing support
The three ways to control in koshiwaza
An otoshi
A guruma
And sasae, which I think is a little different as it tends to cause a throw by extending the opponent out past the center.
Id say that is a good foundation for that throws to come. This fits in nicely with my emerging theory on throwing concepts.

Chad Morrison said...

So the biggest question I have is "what the hell is the Gokyo supposed to be?" The thing I am most sure of is that it is meant to be a curriculum, so the order is somewhat important. But why are things ordered the way that they are? Why did he flip-flop Uki Goshi and Sasae, for instance? ...

kodokanjudo said...

The ko-gokyo-no-waza was compiled in 1895 by Kano and his senior students. By 1920 they realized that some techniques had fallen in out of favor and other new techniques were more popular. With Kano traveling often, the new gokyo-no-waza was not formalized until 1934. We often see the 1920 date attached to the gokyo, but for those fourteen years it must have been constantly re-arranged until Kano approved it(1934).
It is my understanding that Mifune released most of what was to later be his book in monthly Kodokan magazine publications prior to 1930 and later compiled and published his book in Japanese in 1937 (English in 1955), the same year he was promoted to ninth dan (thus the red silk belt on the B&W pictures).
In other words, Mifune's book was published after the kokyo was formalized but it was compiled prior to that. This must be Mifune's own version of what he believed the gokyo should have been.

kodokanjudo said...

BTW, I love how he tied his obi in that picture!
Mifune, the rebel indeed!

kodokanjudo said...

It might also be a good idea to compare Mifune's gokyo to the ko-gokyo.

Jacob said...

continuing my original thought... it seems like the order is important, at least in terms of the sets. the swapping of Uki Goshi and Sasae may be important, or incidental, I don't know. In looking at the first set though it appears like the throws - in concept - are diverse, and yet each is somewhat foundational (see my first comment).

Jacob said...

,Looking at the differences between kodokan and mifune

These throws appear in different sets:
Tai Otoshi
Tsurikomi Goshi
Ogoshi
Seoi Nage
Ouchi Gari
Kosoto Gake
Uchi Mata
Hane Makikomi
Sukui Nage
Yoko Guruma
Osoto Guruma
Uki Waza
Yoko Otoshi
Yoko Gake
O Guruma
Sumi Gaeshi
Soto Makikomi

These throws differ, and are apart by more than one set:
Tsuri Goshi
Ushiro Goshi
Okuriashi Barai
Kata Guruma

I think i get why Tsuri Goshi is that different (see my first comment). The others, I don't get. I'd guess that since he was a little guy, he felt that Kata Guruma was more difficult. However by that logic moving Ushiro before utsuri makes no sense. Moving Okuriashi Barai to the end - after Harai Tsurikomi Ashi - is totally wack. A lot of the other differences make sense to me though.

Maybe things in the last set are there because of multiple factors. In addition to difficulty, perhaps Mifune believed that they add the least to your judo - incrementally speaking. That is to say they do not differ from other throws as much. e.g. once you know de ashi what more is really being added to your skill set with the addition of Okuriashi. Harai Tsurikomi Ashi adds quite a bit, maybe Magical Mister Mifune didn't think it was as hard as I think it is.

Jacob said...

... now that I think about it moving ushiro before utsuri does make sense .... if your not cheating.... I'm a cheater.

Patrick Parker said...

I'm enjoying this conversation and line of thought. I'm letting it marinate for a while before I jump in. ;-)

kodokanjudo said...

This is what I see in Mifune's gokyo:
The eight techniques that were omitted from the ko-gokyo are not in Mifune's list, meaning that his list was compiled during the last stages of the final draft of the 1934 gokyo.
Mifune's list may have been just that; his very own opinion on how the order of the new gokyo should be. We do not have any material from Kano's other advanced students translated to English, but I would like to have known what Nagaoka, Yamashita, Samura and the others had to say about it.
It may have been a simple case of this group that I mentioned won and Mifune lost in Kano's final decision.

kodokanjudo said...

Mifune was an interesting character. He was a student of Yokojama-sensei (7th dan), who was a bit of a loose cannon himself. There's a story about him confronting a ninja-like thief that had been stealing food nightly from the Kodokan's storage area, and after the ensuing battle, the thief never again returned. Also one story about Yokojama and a younger Mifune thrashing a dozen ruffians that were about to steal their coats and hats. Yokojama wrote a book, Judo Kyohan in 1914 but died prior to the book's publishing in 1921. By then Mifune was already a Kodokan instructor (5th dan).
Kano traveled a lot in those days, and while the other Kodokan instructors were happy just teaching judo as Kano wanted then to do, Mifune always stayed busy trying to create new judo techniques and other material, like his gonosen-no-kata and adding to the isutsu-no-kata (his favorite). As Kano returned from his trips, Mifune would always have new things for Kano to approve, or not, in most cases.
I suspect that his gokyo may have been one of those things that Kano did not approved of, instead, taking more conservative advice from his judo top instructor, Yamashita.
Taking nothing away from Mifune, it was Yamashita who was with Kano from the early days of the Kodokan, whom Kano awarded a Menkyo-Katen in Kyto-Ryu, Tenshin-Shinio-Ryu and was the first man promoted to ju-dan in 1937, even if it was two days after his death while Kano was away.
All this been said, Kano also saw Mifune's potential and promoted him to kyu-dan just prior to his own death in 1937.

Chad Morrison said...

Re: the Gokyo - I think I've shared this story before, but it captures my understanding of essence the Gokyo. Which is not much.

I taught a "throw of the month" for the BJJ class, where, once per week, I'd take the last 15 minutes of class and teach a throw. I'd teach variants of the same throw for the whole month.

Not knowing where to get started, I asked folks to do some standing work and looked for the biggest gaps in their game. As they didn't spend a lot of time falling, I didn't want to do anything too... big. And, given that this was a BJJ class, I didn't want them to end in a position that wasn't advantageous to groundwork. So those were my criteria: easy to fall safely, immediately useful, and easy to transition.

My first throw, given how they were moving, was Deashi. Everyone was begging to be swept. After the each month, I reassessed. Hiza was the next most useful. Then Sasae... All in all, my first 7 throws were all in the first set. So... My guess is that similar criteria played a role in the formation of the Gokyo.

I wonder what else...

kodokanjudo said...

That was good thinking Chad. I feel that Kano and his top students handed down a set of techniques for us to teach and we can not go wrong if we use the gokyo.
BTW, the spelling that I used for Yokojama is the oldest spelling of that name that I have found. In most cases you will find Yokoyama instead, and sometimes even Yokohama (like the city).

Jacob said...

so these throws were not in the 1895 version (along with the # of the set they in now). So, this is changing the conversation a bit but.... of all the "new judo" these throws were the ones Kano approved of.

Ouchi Gari, 1
Kosoto Gake,3
Hane Makikomi ,4
Sukui Nage, 4
O Guruma , 4
Sumi Otoshi, 5

Patrick Parker said...

"So what the hell is the gokyo supposed to be?" Chad says a curriculum - so the order is important.

And I tend to think that way too, although the reasoning for some of the ordering is unclear.

but something else that might play a role - kano-san was an educator so he likely thought in terms of curriculum and scope&sequence, etc...

mifune-san was a newspaper guy and an advertising guy and an economics guy - so he may not have thought in terms of curriculum...

kodokanjudo said...

Very good points sensei.
Kano envisioned judo as a method of education based on self defense, meaning education first and physical technique second.

Patrick Parker said...

Another interesting tidbit - there seems to be more flux between these two gokyo in the higher kyo. the first kyo is mostly similar with just a couple of transpositions of order - but one of the major(ish) changes is the substitution of tsurigoshi for ogoshi.

because mifune's gokyo appears to be an older form, that reminds me of Nick's lesson about the historical development of koshiwaza (apparently tsurigoshi was a more primitive form that eventually evolved into ogoshi) - i think this is the video where he talks about that topic... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q0IuuiKY8XE

kodokanjudo said...

Basic forms of both uki-goshi and tsuri-goshi (holding the loincloth) had been used in sumo since ancient times, but there is evidence that a proto form of o-goshi evolved as a shino-shinto-ryu modification named koshi-nage.
Everything in the video makes perfect sense to me except the timeline. Instead of the 1930's, we need to go further back to the 1890's and the 1900's to see those koshi-waza modifications. Yokoyama's book Judo-Kyohan (1915) already covered those techniques in their more modern forms. It is also evident that tsuri-komi-goshi was added to the ko-gokyo at about 1900.
There are pictures of both Tomita and Yamoshita demonstrating tsurikomi-goshi circa 1902-1905 during their trips to the US.

kodokanjudo said...

Yamashita doing tsurikomi-goshi, ca. 1904 during his trip to the US.
http://www.library.umass.edu/spcoll/images/findingaids/muph006/muph006_08.jpg

Brian Jester said...

You've done your research!