Talk about a Cinderella story! A baby girl squirms inside her mother’s womb, inadvertently wrapping her umbilical cord around her neck. Suffering from a lack of oxygen, she clings to life long enough to emerge into the world and be freed from the entanglement. She doesn’t speak until she’s 6 years old. Meanwhile, her dad constantly reminds her, “You’re a sleeper — you’ll show everybody.”
That “sleeper” was, of course, Ronda Rousey: MMA fighter and Olympic judoka known throughout the martial arts world for her impressive judo techniques (such as the sankaku-jime, demonstrated in the video below) and formidable MMA skills.
Her proficiency in judo moves (such as the customized “Juji Squishi Roll” and her take on the Cuban sankaku-jime) began to take shape at age 10, when she fell in love with absorbing judo info.
Ronda Rousey, MMA Fighter and Olympic Judoka, Demonstrates a Modified Sankaku-Jime (Triangle Choke)
Read Stephen Quadros' EXCLUSIVE interview with Ronda in this FREE download!
Ronda Rousey: An Exclusive Interview With the Gene LeBell Protégé,
Olympic Judo Medalist and MMA Fighter
Fast-forward to 2008: Standing on the dais at the Beijing Olympics, Ronda Rousey, now 21, has a bronze medal draped around her neck. She’s the first American woman to take home any Olympic medal in judo.
Her father was right: Ronda Rousey's career has garnered accolades such as a world judo championship, record-creating Olympic performances, the Strikeforce bantamweight championship and induction into the Black Belt Hall of Fame as the 2008 Judoka of the Year.
For the May 2012 issue of Black Belt, Ronda Rousey sat down with us for a candid interview about judo moves and filmed several online judo videos, such as the sankaku-jime video featured on this page.
In celebration of judo in the 2012 Olympic Games, here are a couple of Olympic-related Q&A excerpts from her interview:
RONDA ROUSEY — MMA FIGHTER AND OLYMPIC JUDOKA — ON WHETHER THE OLYMPIC DREAM WAS ALWAYS THERE OR CAME ABOUT AFTER YEARS OF TRAINING: "It was definitely always there," Ronda Rousey says. "I was born with my umbilical cord around my neck and suffered from hypoxia. I didn’t talk or anything until I was 6 years old. My dad was behind me the whole time: He was like, “You’re a sleeper — you’ll show everybody.” You know how your parents always tell you you’re going to win the Olympics or become president? Well, he said I was going to win the Olympics in swimming one day, and that was it. It was instilled into my head from the beginning: You can do whatever you want, but you should do it to become the best at it."
Did you enjoy learning about sankaku-jime from Ronda Rousey?
Learn judo moves from another great judo master in this FREE download!
The Neil Adams Guide to Judo Throws
RONDA ROUSEY — JUDO VIDEOS PERSONALITY AND JUDO MOVES EXPERT — ON WHAT IT WAS LIKE TO COMPETE IN THE OLYMPIC GAMES: "There was a big difference between my first Olympics and my second one," Ronda Rousey says. "For the first one, I didn’t even expect to make the team. I kind of slipped in at the last minute. I was awe-struck because I’d never been to a tournament that size. By the time I went to my second Olympics, I’d gotten second at the World Championships and won the Pan-American Games, so I was more used to it. I was more focused.
"It’s awesome being in the [Olympic] Village. It’s kind of like being in limbo: The second you get there, it feels like it was a million years ago when you were anywhere else. And the second you leave, it feels like it was a million years ago when you were there. [The Village] is its own little world where your food and your lodging are all taken care of. And I fought in the first week, so I had the whole rest of the month to be like, What do you want to do now?
Also, all the athletes, no matter how famous they are, have to stay in the Village. I’d be like, 'That’s Kobe Bryant!' or 'That’s Michael Phelps!'"
More Ronda Rousey MMA!
Visit the Ronda Rousey MMA homepage at rondamma.com!
If Ronda Rousey's sankaku-jime demonstration piqued your interest, check out more judo videos and judo info from BlackBeltMag.com!
- The Neil Adams Guide to Judo Throws!
- Recent Ronda Rousey MMA/Judo Videos: Learn How to Execute Effective Arm Locks
- More Ronda Rousey Judo Videos: Learn the “Juji Squish Roll”
- Judo Videos and Much More! — BlackBeltMag.com’s “Judo” Page
- Gary Goltz Judo Videos: How to Master the Foot Sweep
- Recent Gary Goltz Judo Videos: The USJA President Performs a Hybridized Judo-Aikido Kata
- Kayla Harrison Judo Videos: The Olympic Judoka Shows You Judo’s Ouchi Gari (Major Inner Reaping Throw) Technique