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New images of the Conde Koma

Discussion in 'Grappling Technique' started by quio, Aug 8, 2016.

  1. quio White Belt

    Oct 16, 2008
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    New images of the Conde Koma

    Book Review “Defensa personal o el Ju Jiutsu al alcance de todos”

    Many people may be wondering why do the review of a book that was released in 2015 and it was a very short commented on the internet? Before answering this question, simply analyze the current media circus of MMA and finds that a large part of the "news" are ephemeral, fabricated and has little or no positive impact and real in the lives of the appreciators of martial arts. On the other hand, the pioneers are increasingly forgotten and considered outdated. So this review somewhat delayed is an attempt to encourage teachers, practitioners and all involved in the martial arts to investigate more deeply the issues that had a real relevance in the fight community.

    Re-released in 2015 January by the Spanish Publisher Shinden Ediciones, the book "DEFENSA PERSONAL -EL JU JIUTSU AL ALCANCE DE TODOS" brought to light a large amount of unseen photos of Mitsuyo Maeda or Conde Koma. Originally printed in 1913 in San Salvador was translated at the time by Alberto García Dechent, who also wrote the preface of the book.

    The original book was written after the presentations of Maeda in "Japanese Circus" in San Salvador on January 02, 1913. The Maeda’stroupe had a pre-established format combined struggles among members who certainly had as main objective the presentation of Judo techniques and also wrestling style that Maeda later absorbed since his departure from Japan in 1906, through the United States, Britain, Belgium, Spain, Cuba and Mexico. Usually at the end of the presentations was made a challenge to anyone in the public and then the Conde Koma challenged any "professional" local fighter to prove the effectiveness of Maeda’s technique.

    The presentations caused such furor that Maeda was invited to teach the city's military. In addition to the practical lessons, local authorities were concerned to prepare a manual with hundreds of photos of the main positions and exercises that reflected the importance that Conde Koma gave the defensive potential that his Judo provided.

    The relevance of this photographic record allows researchers and more attentive readers to findings, conclusions and even deductions that fill the biography of this important character of the martial arts universe. Containing 72 new photos (more than the total amount already disclosed on the Internet today), some facts can be noted immediately on the cover.

    Even taking into account the difficulty of transcribing the Japanese phoneme, spelling "JIUTSU" presented not only on the cover but throughout the book is possibly the only occurrence of many used in the West in the early twentieth century. The photo chosen for the cover shows the Conde Koma in Western dress applying a self-defense technique. During this period Maeda appeared in El Salvador with a Cuban named Perez and Nishimura who played the role of "uke".

    The prologue of Fernando Aixa, the current publication editor, sums up the life of Conde Koma followed by a preface written in 1913 by Alberto Garcia Dechent referred to as Conde Koma "Yamato Maida world champion of Ju-Jiutsu". Extremely important observations are cited as the purpose of the work is the physical health of young people, as well as providing means to defend themselves against unexpected attacks. Dechent also makes clear that the pictures can help practice the "Ju-Jiutsu," but not enough to form an expert.

    At the introductory chapter it is possible to note the importance given to replacing the use of force by scientific methods of defense as well as the knowledge of human anatomy that makes exploring the most vulnerable regions. Again, the text makes clear that the techniques are ideal for use against thugs and bullies and makes no mention of sports competitions.

    Also in this chapter we note the concern of Maeda with aspects that went beyond the fighting techniques and also addressed a healthy life as not drinking alcohol or use of tobacco. In addition to these common guidelines in the martial arts, draws attention in the text to two points which, coincidentally or not, were taught decades later by Carlos Gracie: a restricted diet and parsimony in sexual practices.

    We can see the first unprecedented photo of Maeda wearing the typical Japanese clothing called "hakama". This same picture, but with ideograms "kanji", also appears in a publication of the Argentine Oscar Vila in the book "Leciones practicss de Jiu Jitsu" of 1914. The year of publication is further evidence that Maeda went through Argentina, probably after leaving Peru, to finally get to Brazil.

    In the next chapter we have the clearest picture of the Maeda’s physical. Standing shirtless can see the Conde Koma with approximate 34 years, but still at the peak of his physical condition. They are presented individual basic postures and observations to guide the reader.

    The so-called compound exercises Maeda and Nishimura wearing gis sleeves and shorter pants as current kimonos. They are showing some exercises that explore the development of balance.

    The most extensive chapter covers personal defense and most of the techniques are depicted with them wearing Western clothes. Some techniques would become quite widespread in the Judo katas, but at times we can see typical Aiki Do’s twists and even traumatic blows.

    Another curiosity is the adaptation techniques for the type of costumes and accessories of the old times and the use of stick as leverage, the use of the hat as a distraction element and the defense of eventual strangulation from behind using a cloth or scarf.

    Finally in Throws chapter the only mention of the term "Judo". The text is limited to clarifying that Judo is how the Japanese call the "Jiu-Jiutsu" modern. In the pictures we can see the teaching methodology applied in the Kodokan and that continues to the present day. Evolutionarily are shown "ukemi" (bearings), "kumi kata" (grip) and throws as Osoto Gari, Koshi Guruma and Yoko Tomoe Nage. There are also shown solo techniques like Juji gatame (arm lock), Ude gatame, Ude Garame and even Ryo Ashi Hishiji (foot switch).

    Obviously Maeda was influenced by the various fighting styles he met on his journey, especially wrestling, but when we face with this precious find is clear that their training in Kodokan Judo has always been the basis of his evolution. The same happened with the Jiu Jitsu that although descended directly from Judo also found other ways to evolve to get to what we know today as Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

    The book provides a little information written about the life of Conde Koma, but is the richest photographic record of fighting techniques of the most traveled the world in his time and who was responsible for creating the fastest growing sport on the Planet.

    Source: Fabio Quio Takao - http://blogs.oglobo.globo.com/mma/p...sonal-o-el-ju-jiutsu-al-alcance-de-todos.html

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