dropping shoulder throw

In Seoi-otoshi (dropping shoulder throw), Uke is pulled to the ground over Tori’s shoulder by the momentum of Tori’s dropping to his knee. It doesn’t matter whether Tori performs the throw on one or both knees.

  • In this variation, Tori loads Uke onto his back, just like in Ippon-seoi-nage.
  • Tori moves directly in front of Uke into a stable position with his knee planted.
  • Tori pulls Uke straight downwards with both hands.



(dropping shoulder throw)

Technique description

Tori breaks Uke’s balance directly forward or to the right front corner. He loads Uke onto his back and, while dropping one or both knees onto the mat, throws him by pulling him down.


Tori and Uke grapple in right natural posture. Tori steps back with his right, left, then right foot, and pulls Uke forward, so that his balance begins to break. Uke responds by stepping his left foot forward, then right foot, then left foot again, and begins to further step forward with his right foot to maintain his balance.


Tori moves his left foot back diagonally, moving himself away from Uke at the moment Uke steps forward with his right foot. He moves his right foot close to the inside of Uke’s right foot. At the same time, he lifts up with the right hand, raises his left elbow, and lifts Uke up to the right front corner.


Tori bends his knees, lowers his waist, and while maintaining a firm grip in both hands, turns left by pivoting on the tip of the right foot, and steps the left foot back, closer to the inside of Uke’s left foot, so that his back is turned towards Uke. He inserts his right arm through Uke’s right armpit and puts it on his right shoulder. He pulls with his right arm over Uke’s right arm, brings Uke’s chest tight against his back, and loads Uke onto his back in the ippon-seoi-nage form. At the same time, Tori inserts the right leg deep inside Uke’s right leg and drops to the right knee. In one stroke, he lowers his body and throws Uke over his right shoulder, pulling him straight down with both hands.

Key points

It is important to understand and acquire seoi-otoshi entirely because of its similarity in the loading and throwing form to ippon-seoi-nage. At the moment uke’s balance breaks completely over the tips of both feet, tori drops down to uke’s feet in a stable posture, and uses the height difference to pull uke down sharply in one stroke. Uke loses the target in front of him, and is unable to respond as he is thrown forward in a rotation.


In another technique, tori steps his right leg deep outside uke’s right leg, drops to the right knee, and pulls uke down to throw him. This action emphasizes the importance of proper positioning and timing in executing the technique effectively.

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