A Kimura is a variation of ude garami in which uke’s shoulders are not being held to the ground. In fact, uke may be sitting up or have one shoulder off the floor while laying on his side.
In order to achieve the joint lock, uke’s upper arm should be moved away from his body, making a 90 degree angle to his body, and the forearm positioned to make a 90 degree angle to the upper arm. Using a figure-four grip on the wrist, uke’s arm is then torqued, pushing the wrist rearwards until submission is achieved.
Photo number 2 above has Hardy having turned almost completely onto his stomach as GSP is close to having Hardy’s arm at right angles to his body. This is the closest that GSP came to having the Kimura, but it only lasted a fraction of a second as GSP yanked on the arm. It wasn’t a stable position and Hardy worked to move his arm to a more favourable position seen in the photo below.
In photo number three above, GSP has lost the 90 degree angle and separation from Hardy’s body, which is crucial to achieving this joint lock. Hardy is fighting the right angles by pushing his arm to the ground behind him, causing his arm to be too straight to apply the Kimura. GSP needed to pull the arm upwards, closer to his own body, to separate the arm a bit from, and to put the arm at right angles to, Hardy’s body. In order to do this, he needed to sit up taller. Because GSP has moved further down Hardy’s torso, his own arm is impinging on the Kimura: GSP can’t let the range of motion required to lift Hardy’s arm to get the correct angle because he himself is in the way.
To get the correct angle, Hardy’s arm needs to be away from his body, not behind it, but rather to the side, and then retain the 90 degree angle at the elbow. There are actually two 90 degree angles: one involves having the arm at 90 degrees from the body; the other involves bending the elbow to achieve a 90 degree angle for the forearm in relation to the arm. (There is a third version of ude garami in which the arm is straight and the joint lock is placed at the elbow with the entire arm at 90 degrees from the body. See our videos for the examples.)
Classic ude garami has uke on the ground with tori‘s weight holding uke‘s torso and shoulders down. Once the shoulders are controlled and the arm is manipulated to 90 degrees from the side of the body and then again at the elbow with the hand either pointing up to the head or down to the feet, the joint lock comes on relatively easily and quite strongly. The Kimura positioning can be difficult because uke’s body is not controlled well. In addition, in this particular case, uke (Hardy) has been able to move so much, that tori (GSP) has moved himself too far over uke causing him to stretch out the arm instead of retaining the 90 degree angle.
April 6, 2010