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Training is done inside a dojo on a tatami, which serves as a mat to cushion the falls (ukemi). When entering and leaving the tatami the opponents bow to greet each other.

The adversary is called uke and the one who throws tori.

The judo practitioner (judoka) adopts several postures (shizei) to aid in the proper application of the techniques. Displacement and defensive positions are used.

The judoka must shift quickly at ease without crossing his feet (shintai) and rotate (tai-sabaki) in a natural way to perform the techniques efficiently.

He should seek to unbalance the opponent (kusachi) using eight possible directions (front, right front, right-lateral, rear, rear-right, rear-left, left-lateral, left-front) and must attempt to throw him in the same direction in which his balance is momentarily unstable.

Stylized exercises (kata) are done to teach the basics of the techniques of Judo. Training usually ends in free fighting without winners or time limits (randori).