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Old 03-09-2008, 09:08 PM   #11
Al Williams
Location: Hobart Tasmania
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 31
Re: Free Breakfalls and Frustration to Boot

Firstly, I find it worrying that people think you need to jump into a break fall. If you are throw properly, that is you have no conscious choice to break fall, then you won't have time to jump. Excepting that high tempo techniques should only be done with experienced Aikidoka, when an effective throw is executed nage has completely captured uke.
This is not able being hard or brutal. It's about effective cutting. To throw, we cut. Therefore, our hand, hips and centre and going DOWN. A true throw will only occur if nage is under uke's hips and centre. If this is the case- why do we need to jump over something that lower then we are. If you are being asked to break fall and you don't feel you need to- then just say you don't feel you need to. When receiving the ground is our friend, the ground is safe. Once your there you can't fall any further. Why then jump away from the thing that makes us safe?
Secondly, a break fall is simply a dynamic roll in whatever direction. To think of it any other way complicates matters. When we roll our head goes down towards the mat. So it is with break falling. Head goes down, trunk is relaxed and our hips flick over. If you jump- head goes up, body doesn't bend and our hips, legs, arms and head all flatten out half a second before you HIT the ground.
Finally, an uke only needs to break fall if their centre line is cut. If uke is completely extended, off balance and nage does not cut uke centre line then no break fall should occur, only a simple fall. If nage allow uke to regain balance and then break fall the technique was staged.

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