Hane Makikomi Judo Throw: The Art and Mechanics of the Spiral Fall

The world of judo offers a vast landscape of techniques, each one a distinct brushstroke on the canvas of this martial art. Among these, one technique that holds a particularly special place in my heart is the Hane Makikomi or, as I like to call it, the “Spiral Fall”.

For those unfamiliar with the term, Hane Makikomi is a unique judo throw that masterfully combines timing, agility, and control. It’s a technique that demands both physical prowess and mental acumen, a delicate ballet of force and finesse. Its name, when translated from Japanese, means “spring wrap-around”.

So, how does one execute a Hane Makikomi judo throw? Let’s dive into the heart of this fascinating technique.

The Intricacies of Hane Makikomi

To understand the Hane Makikomi, one must first appreciate the basic elements of any judo throw. These are kuzushi (unbalancing the opponent), tsukuri (fitting in), and kake (execution). In the context of the Hane Makikomi judo throw, these elements take on their own unique characteristics.

The beauty of Hane Makikomi lies in the timing of these elements. You first create an opening by off-balancing your opponent (kuzushi), then swiftly fit into position (tsukuri), and finally, with a swift spring-like action, you execute the throw (kake).

While this may sound simple on paper, the real-life application of the Hane Makikomi judo throw is a complex interplay of these elements, requiring precision, strength, and keen understanding of your opponent’s movements.

The Stages of Hane Makikomi Execution

Stage One: Kuzushi (Unbalancing)

Hane Makikomi begins with kuzushi, where your goal is to destabilize your opponent. In an ideal scenario, your opponent steps forward with their right foot. This movement forms the perfect opportunity for initiating the Hane Makikomi judo throw. You need to respond to this movement by turning and positioning your own right foot between their feet, thereby creating an unbalance.

Stage Two: Tsukuri (Fitting in)

Next comes tsukuri, where you fit into the position for the throw. In the case of Hane Makikomi, this involves moving your left foot behind your opponent’s right foot while simultaneously pulling down on their sleeve and pushing up on their lapel with your right hand. This positioning puts you in the optimal position to execute the throw.

Stage Three: Kake (Execution)

The final stage is kake, or execution. With a spring-like motion, you execute the Hane Makikomi by hopping onto your right leg and bringing your left leg up to wrap around your opponent’s right leg. This disrupts their balance, and as you pull them over your wrapped leg, they spiral downwards in a beautifully controlled fall.

The Significance of Hane Makikomi

For me, the Hane Makikomi judo throw symbolizes the essence of judo itself. It beautifully demonstrates the principle of “ju”, or softness, overriding “go”, or hardness. Despite the physical strength involved in performing the throw, it’s the softer elements of timing and control that ensure its success.

Hane Makikomi teaches us the importance of fluidity, precision, and adaptability. Whether you’re a novice or a seasoned judoka, mastering this throw can elevate your practice and offer a deeper understanding of the underlying principles of judo.

My Experience with Hane Makikomi

The first time I executed a successful Hane Makikomi, it was an exhilarating experience. The sensation of synchronizing my movement with my opponent’s, anticipating their steps, and feeling the smooth flow from kuzushi to tsukuri to kake was nothing short of magical.

I’ve spent years perfecting the Hane Makikomi judo throw, and while it hasn’t always been an easy journey, the rewards have been worth the effort. The mastery of this technique has not only improved my judo practice but has also taught me invaluable lessons about patience, persistence, and the art of balance.


In conclusion, the Hane Makikomi judo throw, with its exquisite blend of strength and finesse, embodies the elegance and philosophy of judo. It’s a technique that demands more than just physical prowess; it calls for a deep understanding of balance, a keen sense of timing, and a touch of grace.

As a judoka, the pursuit of mastering the Hane Makikomi is a rewarding journey, a pathway towards refining one’s skills and deepening their appreciation for the art of judo. It’s a testament to the adage that in judo, as in life, it’s not brute strength that triumphs, but finesse, timing, and an unyielding spirit.

So, the next time you step onto the tatami, embrace the challenge of the Hane Makikomi, and let the “Spiral Fall” take you on a journey of growth, discovery, and above all, mastery of this ancient and beautiful martial art.