Learn to Trip, Throw, and Slideby with Hudson Taylor
Greco-Roman wrestling has one objective: score against your opponent without using their legs. As a result, you’ll often see two competitors using various ties and set-ups to get the other person off-balance. Often considered the “red headed stepchild” between freestyle and folkstyle in terms of popularity, Greco-Roman actually preceded freestyle at the Olympics, with the former debuting in 1896 and latter appearing in 1908. It’s with this lineage that many grapplers, no matter what discipline, can modify techniques related to Greco-Roman to succeed.
With so much emphasis on upper-body takedowns, it’s important to know the basics that can be used across disciplines. In the video below, former Columbia University wrestling coach Hudson Taylor describes the central points of the trip, throw, and slideby.
Upper-body takedowns require you to connect to your opponent with pressure and proximity. Taylor’s connections in the video include the underhook, the 2-on-1, or the collar tie. Each of these have their own versatility in setting up the takedowns, but the common trend is manipulating a portion of your opponent’s body to create responses. A trip or slideby based off the 2-on-1 or collar tie relies on getting your opponent to move forward from your pressure, but the premise is the same: connect to your opponent.
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Your hips may be the most important body parts in wrestling. Movement, defense, and leverage are all based on where your hips are located in relativity to your opponent. As Taylor mentions, these three takedowns worth best with upper-body control and “lower body positional dominance.” His recommendation here is to keep your hips in front of your opponent. It makes sense, as you need this angle in order to hit an effective throw. This will not be an easy feat, as your opponent may look to continually step in front of you to negate this angle. So there will be many moments where you two will be “foot fighting” for position, but persistence will pay off.
The first line of defense for your opponent is their head, especially in an underhook scenario. They are going to be looking to keep their head to the inside (or against your as a worst-case scenario). The same goes with the 2-on-1 or collar tie. Your ability to get proper hip positioning and finishing the upper-body takedown is dependent on you having your head to the inside or at an advantageous angle. The same can be said if you are faced with these connections. As the opponent gets proper head position with an underhook, you can move your head against their temple and get separation or pummel in.
No matter what form of wrestling you use, upper-body throws are essential to your arsenal. To reiterate Hudson Taylor’s main points, being able to hit the trip, throw, or slideby may seem dissimilar but they have common themes that lead to success. With proper connections such as the 2-on-1, underhook, or collar tie bolstered by dominant hip position and inside head control, you will have the pressure and angles necessary to bring your opponent to the mat.
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