The seoi nage is a great throw, and one that works at all levels of jiu-jitsu, but people often avoid it because they view it as too risky. They don’t want to miss the throw and end up in a bad position. Here, I show a version that maintains the effectiveness while eliminating the element of danger should you miss the throw with a traditional seoi nage.
I begin by mirroring my grips with Jesse’s in a traditional same-side lapel and elbow grip. The set-up for this throw begins by compromising Jesse’s posture by forcing him to bend forward and getting his shoulders out over his feet. Instead of abandoning the lapel grip–as in a traditional seoi nagi–to initiate the throw, I maintain the lapel grip but abandon the elbow grip. The hand that was once on the elbow swims overtop of the biceps and hooks the far side arm e.
Note that when I swim the arm that the lapel grip is used to lift Jesse and clear the pathway for my arm to come through. This detail is important and missing it will give you trouble.