Multiple World medallist Kirill Denisov is a left handed fighter. When up against opponents who are also left handed, Denisov’s prime target is to catch and then neutralise their power hand, before he does anything else.
As his opponents will not give up their sleeve easily, Denisov’s strategy is to come out in a right handed stance and grip the left lapel.
From this position he has two gripping sequences that end with him catching the left sleeve.
The first one involves a big pull using both hands and the strength of the upper body. This allows him to come onto the sleeve and take a high collar grip, whilst switching to a left stance.
The second variation includes Ashi waza and a circular movement, before finishing in the same position.
When up against a left hander who likes to throw a high cross grip, commonly known as the ‘Russian arm’, Denisov circles and pushes away his opponent.
But if he is really able to anticipate the Russian arm, he catches it at the elbow point, clamping on with his left arm and turning into his opponent.
He then moves down to the sleeve and takes his favoured collar grip.
As mentioned, Denisov’s main objective against same stance opponents is to neutralise the power hand.
If a left handed opponent leads with their right arm, and aims for his lapel, Denisov catches the hand before it’s able to establish a strong grip
Don’t miss out on your chance to learn these very unique and effective gripping strategies from one of the modern greats of heavyweight Russian judo.
Up Next in Watch All
Catching The Sleeve | Kumi Kata Left ...
Kirill Denisov says that whenever he fights left handed opponents, his first thought is always to have control of their left arm.
‘How do I catch the left arm’, he says. ‘How do I control it’.
With his opponents aware of his game-plan, they do as much as possible to prevent Denisov from catchin...
Preventing Cross Grips | Kumi Kata Le...
When Kirill Denisov is up against an opponent who takes a high cross grip, or ‘the Russian arm’, he has two very efficient ways of quickly dealing with this dangerous grip.
The Russian arm is very threatening, as an attack usually follows in quick succession.
Denisov’s response, therefore, has...
Adapting To Switch Of Stance | Kumi K...
If Kirill Denisov is up against a left handed opponent who targets his lapel with their right hand, he has a very effective way of turning defence into attack.
With the opponent switching their upper body stance from left to right, Denisov’s main objective is to prevent his left lapel from being...