Getting Accustomed to high falls?
As I am nearing my 1st kyu exam I constantly find myself having trouble with the high falls. Its not that I can't do them, I know I can. My instructor stresses the importance of high falls. He is currently in his 70s, so he can only show me so much in terms of body mechanics, the rest I pick-up from youtube videos and other instructors. The high falls im talking about are mostly the fancy ones out of things like shiho-nage and kotegaeshi, where uke's legs fly up and he weirdly uses his hand to roll/slam on the ground.
I was wondering if there is a gradual way to build up practice to be able to take a high fall correctly. Currently what is presented to me is simply "do the fall", but I find that I can't simply jump into it with little prior experience. Are there any beggining exercises I could practice at home/dojo for me to improve my ability without taking an actual high fall? I just simply can't get to the actual fall, when I see that I have a solid 5 feet to land, my body tenses up and freezes. I have also tried taking it out of a hip-throw, and that just seems straight out impossible to me. How is one supposed to not only high fall but jump up at the same time?