Harai Goshi

Focusing on the basics helps you win championships

How was Harai Goshi taught to you?

There are a lot of different ways Harai Goshi gets taught. I hope you find some of these tips helpful. I know a lot of coaches around the world have found value from the teaching of Kelita Zupancic! Even you don’t like Harai Goshi or feel like it’s not the throw for you make sure you watch the video at the bottom.

The fundamental principles of the throw are what the key takeaway from this video is! Pay close attention to the key details that Kelita talks about in this video. Don’t assume that this is the same as every other person teaching. Also, make sure when you are drilling you focus on the small parts of the throw. If you can’t get the basics right then you won’t be able to apply it effectively.

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Harai Ogoshi

Kelita Zupancic is a 2x Olympian from Canada who is teaching you how she likes to utilize Harai Goshi. Make sure you pay close attention to the grips that she is using as well as how she gets the proper reactions from her opponents. Kelita has been using this technique for years on the International Circuit. Here are some of the key details that this former World #1 athlete has when doing this technique:

Harai Ogoshi Step 1

Harai Goshi, Judo, Judo Throws, Kelita Zupancic, fuji sports, fuji, fuji mats, bjj takedown

The first step to Harai Goshi is starting with a proper grip! The hand on the sleeve should be rolled underneath your opponent’s arm rather than on top. Also, notice that Kelita likes to pull the head down so that her partner is forced to stand up. If you are struggling to get to this grip click here: GETTING A HIGH GRIP. When you’re first starting out with Harai Goshi it’s easiest to learn standing in a static position with our partners not moving. As we get better and you think you might be ready for randori take a moment and try it moving first. Having great timing is what really makes this throw so powerful. 

Harai Ogoshi Step 2

Harai Goshi, Judo, Judo Throws, Kelita Zupancic, fuji sports, fuji, fuji mats, bjj takedown

Once her opponent starts to stand, she focuses on a big high pull, using her opponent’s momentum against them. You really have to focus on pulling up not pulling forward. We do not want our opponents reacting in a backward direction. Which will be the case if we pull. An upward pull will get our opponents to squat or try and move out of the way. 

Harai Ogoshi Step 3

Harai Goshi, Judo, Judo Throws, Kelita Zupancic, fuji sports, fuji, fuji mats, bjj takedown

Make sure that your back is to your partner’s chest and you sweep low on the leg to finish the technique. This is the number one most common mistake for most people. The key to getting this throw is to make sure you have a good strong rotation into the throw. Now while we are trying to do randori we may not need a full rotation to score. It’s important to note that when your drill you have to train a full range of motion. This will ensure that we strength all the possible muscles needed in order to get the technique to work. 

Training Harai Goshi

There are a lot of different ways to do Harai Goshi. Every elite level athlete takes the basics and tweaks them just a little to fit their own body and the strengths that they bring to the table.  Kelita always brings the focus of each technique back to its roots, focusing on the basics to make it work. If a technique is not working for you make sure you take a step back and look at the basic principles to see where you went wrong.


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