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Matt Ashley
08-20-2002, 05:04 PM
I have heard many explanations of why shiho nage has its present name, but I still don't completely understand. One sempai told me that uke is thrown in four different directions by executing the throw from the left and right sides along with both omote and ura variations for each.

I have also heard that nage's footwork can be described by two perpendicular lines on the mat, thus four directions.

I have seen a more convincing explanation that says that shiho nage allows nage to throw uke in four different directions (or generically, many directions). However, the outcome depends on uke's tai-sabaki. I assume that the "four directions" are the four cardinal directions. Can anybody explain further?


Kevin Wilbanks
08-20-2002, 06:31 PM
I'm just guessing, but if you do the technique classically, without forcing uke to move around you, it seems you generally turn 270 degrees. If you started facing north, you'd end up facing all four directions before you are finished.

As an aside, Peter Ralston's art, Cheng Hsin, has many Aikido techniques in it, yet he calls them made up metaphorical or practical names. They are kind of interesting to hear after being used to Japanese names with little intuitive meaning to me. Shihonage is called "Spinning Brush Stroke", taking into account the spin and the throwing motion.

08-20-2002, 07:36 PM
Adapted from the Shodokan Honbu web site.

'Shiho' means four directions, or loosely, many directions. The direction of the throw is dependent on the Uke's original Taisabaki. As they also point out the four direction throw can refer to many other techniques and that is why they use a more precise name. Nothing to do with Nage's turn.

or my personal favourite.

Shio means salt. The throw refers to how uke feels after being put down like a bag of salt (thud).

08-20-2002, 08:58 PM
I have trained with more than one sensei (none shodokan) and it seems universal that there are 4 basic shihonage throws (all four for either side). If you start facing N then from the same attack you can throw N ("ura"), E or W depending on what side you start on ("omote"), W or E (no name), or S (no name). I have only commonly practiced omote and ura and from what I can remember, the other 2 involve either an extremely deep entry in one case or really good ukemi in the other.

Hope that helps and is somewhat accurate..

--Jonathan W