View Full Version : Specific question on Ukemi

Please visit our sponsor:

Ken Zink
01-08-2007, 06:33 PM
Ok I have a question for you more experienced out there who have come to the point and moved past it (if it was ever a problem for you!). When being Uke I have been taught to attack Nage sincerely and that throughout the motion I should continue to maintain that sincerety of intention and stay connected and pay attention to any mistakes that Nage makes. Many times while in a motion I can feel those mistakes, which can be them backing up (which is simple to fill in) or more frequently I'll feel Nage pushing. When Nage pushes on me as Uke it of course grounds me but I don't know how to make use of that beyond being grounded and pushing that line of force myself. So my question is, how can you as Uke take advantage of Nage pushing on you during a technique without turning it into a pushing match?

Janet Rosen
01-08-2007, 06:44 PM
same way nage would if you were pushing him: recieve it and redirect it.

01-08-2007, 08:08 PM
Janet is right on the money.

In addition, while keeping in mind what Janet had to say (for the rest of your life actually), you might also want to never forget that ukemi is a skill that is learned in many ways - most of them being unexpected and nearly all of them being only identifiable in hindsight.

I find that if one can keep this in mind, one can be more open to the many different types of problems that every different uke brings to the training (i.e. not get stuck on them). This sometimes gives us the opportunity not feel pressured to fix every nage or to have every nage fix us. This is important because, especially at the earlier years of training, there is a whole lot of stuff that is problematic but that actually shouldn't be part of Aikido training at all (e.g. personality conflicts, ego problems - things often related to "pushing" matches). These things, in my experience, are often making problems where there should not be problems. Additionally, they are often best corrected by a strong teacher that says face to face in front of everyone, "Hey, enough with the ego, stop doing that now." However, you rarely get that (in most places). As such, with very good intentions, you are stuck dealing with false problems, often, and if you do not have some sort of "freeing" element to your training, you get stuck trying to solve these problems as if they are real EVERY SINGLE TIME THEY SHOW UP (which is all the time).

So, yes, train mindfully, but along the way, be mindful that nearly all problems (when training mindfully) reconcile themselves via the maturation process in a very natural (almost "hands-off") kind of way (especially when mindful).


Al Williams
01-08-2007, 10:43 PM
When taking ukemi it is important that you give as much as you take. That is- tell nage when they are open to counter or off balance. If you’re able, do this during the technique itself. You are uke to help nage address any problems with their throws etc.

One question- do you mean “push” with strength or “catch” with hip? If it’s push- do they leave themselves open to a counter?

Never ever give yourself to nage- make them capture your centre. Stand strong, according to the level of both aikidoka. If you’re not captured- don’t fall. Having a dance is fun but not akkido.

01-09-2007, 01:59 PM
How many times have I had a nage get mad at me for not falling!? Here I am, 5'2" and I get yelled at by men twice my size bcause I don't fall down if I don't have to fall down. I have been told to my face that this is Bad Ukemi.Well, if you give me my center back and I take it, whose fault is that? If you give me my center back and I can take yours, is that bad ukemi or good technique, or vice versa?

Aiki LV
01-09-2007, 02:07 PM
Nicely put Janet, short, to the point and right on the money as far as I'm concerned.

Janet Rosen
01-09-2007, 08:11 PM
short, to the point and right on the money
that's me :-) (G,D,R)

Rupert Atkinson
01-09-2007, 08:55 PM
So my question is, how can you as Uke take advantage of Nage pushing on you during a technique without turning it into a pushing match?

Pull :D

01-09-2007, 09:16 PM
... if you'e doing judo... ;)

When pulled, enter, when pushed... ??? ;)

raul rodrigo
01-09-2007, 09:24 PM
When pushed, turn.

Ken Zink
01-09-2007, 09:55 PM
Thank you for the responses, I had been stuck in the mindset that I needed to do something with the push other than aborb and redirect and turn. Gah so simple!