There are many movements within any given technique. At times, my Judo instructor Bryan, will isolate one of those movements, and structure the class around that movement. He will use analogies and stories to illustrate his point. One analogy he uses is the moon’s power over the surf.
The moon’s gravity will pull the waves away from the beach and then allow them to crash back onto the beach. He uses this to explain the timing and sensation of pulling someone forward, off of their center of balance, and then pushing them backward to take them down. As you pull them forward, they resist by pulling away from you. When they start pulling away, you then push in the direction that they are pulling away. The movement creates a rocking motion. There is this big “AHA” moment, when your partner gets the movement correct and you actually feel like you are being rocked by the waves in the ocean. It was a really cool sensation (that is until I hit the mat). 🙂
It was a good reminder of how it’s the little details that make up the whole. One should never stop perfecting a technique. A technique should be repeatedly taken apart, and the details analyzed. That little micro movement that is off, should be polished until it “feels” right. There’s nothing like that feeling you get when you do a technique and it is “technically sound”. It’s so smooth and effortless. It just feels right.