Colin Oates is a left handed fighter. When up against same stance opponents, those also in a left stance, his only thought as he took to the mat was ‘stop the left hand’.
He did this initially by targeting his partner’s left shoulder and chest, before transitioning down to a sleeve grip.
Here, he demonstrates the difference in size of target between the sleeve and the chest area - the focus is always on the chest. The sleeve is too small a target, he says. Especially when Uke is on the move.
Instead he hits the left side of their chest, which has about four to five times the contact area. This also prevents his partner from moving in the direction they would prefer to attack and throw.
Going into any contest against left handed opponents, Oates’s pre-fight mantra was ‘stop the left hand, dominate the sleeve’. Once chest contact is made, he applies pressure, and then starts to construct his grips.
To build towards Tachi Waza, he first takes a strong sleeve grip with his right hand before bringing the left hand into play. This strategy works against even the strongest of opponents, where the idea is to meet them
at the chest.
He does this by sinking his weight and his own words ‘having a strong connection with the floor. After stopping the left arm he wastes no time in getting onto their sleeve. Notice how he drives off the back foot as he sinks his weight. This allows for maximum input from his body, and maximum return.
Finally, here it is in a realistic grip-fighting situation.