Nage Waza

what is nage waza?

Nage Waza are throwing techniques or takedowns.

  • Nage = Throw
  • Waza = Technique

In Wado, there are many Kumite that IMPLY Nagewaza, without actually throwing.

This one for example...

It's the last move of Kumite Gata #10, ending in a position where the opponent needs a lot of musclar effort to stay in the postion.

My posture is 100% stable, while he is totally compromised.

It would take little effort to take him down... 

So how does it work?

3 elements of nage waza

In Judo, they teach a takedown or Nagewaza in 3 steps

  1. Kuzushi
  2. Tsukuri
  3. Nage (in Judo "Kake")

Kuzushi is to destabilise the opponent. It does not have to be off-balance though...

It must be a position where the opponent is busy to keep his balance. And while you keep him in such a state from your strong line, it's easy to take him down. 

Tsukuri is the term used in Judo to 'position' the opponent on say "the edge of Kuzushi" while posiitoning himself for the planned Nage waza.

In Karate, taking the opponent down is not the primary goal—not in the way it's emphasised in Judo. It means we may use a little Kuzushi, just enough to create the opportunity to strike hard as the opponent deals with his state of Kuzushi.

Nage (or Kake in Judo) is the actual throw. The execution.

I used "Nage" on the whiteboard as it was a Wado seminar and I don't pretend to explain the way how it's taught in Judo. What is important is HOW the throw is excuted through full manipulation.

Your Nage Waza fails when:

  • You're not operating from your strong line, or you're not attacking your opponents weak line.
  • Your positioning and trajectory of movement is off allowing (or causing) your opponent to escape or resist.
  • You didn't setup your throw properly —generally meaning you move in and "get ready" without "getting the opponent ready" for the throw (i.e. no Kuzushi/Tsukuri)

Do you want to prevent your throw from failing?

Or worse: getting countered and ending up on the ground yourself...

Study (and practise) the Mini Series "Nailinig Nagewaza" ⤵️


Discover how to execute kihon kumite correctly and know the underlying principles so you never worry about "the correct way" ever again — including hidden techniques revealed by sakagami sensei

the mini series
nailing nagewaza

December 2018, our trip to the UK was a bit different from the usual.  We had a private session with Richard Ford Sensei. During our training and Karate talk he said: "You have to start somewhere". 

Spot on. And exactly why I designed this Ippon Kumite: So you can internalise the underlying principle through physical training.

The ideal Ippon Kumite for proper Nage Waza

The finer points of Nage Waza (how to make it work even if your opponent resists).

The underlying principle


Karate contains a lot of takedowns — and especially Wado due to it's Jujutsu lineage. The takedowns are effective as well as fun to know and practise... BUT:

You have to get in the position and distance to actually make it happen.

The key of any Uke Waza or "block" is to setup the next movement so what just as important as the throw itself, is how you get to the position to throw in the first place.

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