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Old 11-19-2005, 07:04 AM   #1
Location: Victoria
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 132
Body position for receiving

Hi Everyone,
I've spent the last three odd months considering an interesting observation whilst practicing and wondered if anyone else has seen similar things or has any thoughts on the concept.

This started whilst filming a short documentary type piece at our local dojo. I was editing the footage and came to the jiyu waza footage.

At present I am the only person in our dojo with martial arts experience across a range of styles (karate, boxing, etc.); also having practiced a variant of Kyokushin Karate for about nine years. The other two participants in the jiyu waza (excluding nage (our sensei)) have not practiced anything but Aikido.

The other two participants were thrown from shomen and tsuki strikes with very similar results, and were most times able to high-breakfall out of techniques such as kote-gaeshi and shiho nage. On watching my own receiving, I found that most times I was not in the same position and was not off-balance in the same way, even though the technique had the same overall effect (me being thrown).

As the footage was shot in DV (Digital Video) I was able to slow it down significantly and found that the differing body positions had more to do with the extension of the tsuki or shomen strike by uke; where they threw their shoulders into the technique they were thrown more easily.

Since that time, I have found myself "feeling" receiving differently, and am more aware of the differences in distance and timing that my technique creates. This has been more than once frustrating as I find myself often a significant distance from nage and unable to perform a high breakfall, rather I have to backwards breakfall straight to the mat. As a practical example, I would often need to take at least one to two steps to high breakfall over my arm from kote-gaeshi.

My question is has anyone else observed a similar effect? Do you find that your body position and timing is quite different when you are uke than when you are nage? Does this have anything to do with the style of shomen or tsuki? Does experience in another martial art temper the way you practice Aikido? (okay more than one question, but I think you get the idea)

I find the differences intriguing and am always looking at little details like this to try and improve my developing understanding of Aikido. I am very interested to hear what other people think.
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