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Old 06-08-2007, 10:50 AM   #9
cguzik
Location: Tulsa, OK
Join Date: Aug 2000
Posts: 166
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Re: Yokomenuchi eplaination please

Gianluigi,

We have not met, but I am sure we will... I will make it up for a Saturday practice one of these days.

Here is how I think of it: the horizontal component of the strike can range anywhere from zero to ninety degrees, where zero degrees would be straight down from directly overhead and ninety degrees would be a flat, horizontal, circular strike.

I have seen yokomenuchi executed at both ends of this range. Keeping the arc of the strike of constant radius and completely circular, as the horizontal component approaches ninety degrees, uke gives tori a flatter, more horizontal circle, which makes entering and taking the center correspondingly more straightforward.

This is mitigated by uke changing the arc such that it is no longer a circle, but rather an arc that straightens out as it moves, leaving only a very tight circle at the beginning of the movement. Done with proper maai this can be just as hard to enter into -- perhaps harder -- as the purely vertical strike.

With this understanding, I relate the (tight) horizontal version with the type of shomen uchi in which uke delivers a quick impact strike to his target, and the downward vertical cut to the larger cutting-through version. This is because for the tight version of yokomenuchi, the body mechanics do not readily lend themselves to a big follow-through -- but for a strike to the temple one doesn't need that. However if one is to cleave one's partner in two, something of a vertical component is useful..

As far as these two variations of shomen uchi go, my understanding is that technically speaking, the cutting through version is kiri oroshi (dropping cut) and that the quick impact version is more appropriately called shomen uchi. That said, I know we tend to practice the cutting through version more often and that it does not matter what it is called in the end.


Best,

Chris

Last edited by cguzik : 06-08-2007 at 11:05 AM.
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