Re: Poll: How often do you actively slap the ground with your arms/hands when you fall during aikido training?
Everyone already knows what I'm saying, but I think one learns various ukemi. Then, when things are hot and heavy you don't have time to think about which fall to take. You take one - and most times our instincts are right on and we don't get hurt. I like falls where I have no choice but to go (well, or choose to fight and get hurt) then I think about energy running out the bottoms of my feet, and no matter how hard I fall, if my joints are clear, hitting the mat is displaced out my elongated body. If you are not being held by uke - all the wonders of soft ukemi become more available.
Doug (the cat) used to roll out of throws that put him high enough in the air you could shikko under him (if you were really really fast!) Of course, the mats at the university SUCK.