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Old 08-24-2004, 10:02 AM   #23
akiy's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 5,999
Re: How many instructors teach Ukemi Waza?

Devon Natario wrote:
If you do a throw or technique on someone over and over, they are going to change the way they react. To even assume that someone is going to act naturally after being hurt once is ludicrous. If you smack me in my face without warning, you can bet Im not going to let that happen again. It's only natural for a person to react when they are taking a technique over and over.
There's also an unfortunate, viscious cycle that some people fall into, especially when first learning breakfalls. If they do not receive proper attention in learning how to take breakfalls, some folks get hurt. Because they get hurt, they are now afraid of what might happen when they do another breakfall. Because they're now afraid, they tense up in anticipation of getting hurt when they do a breakfall. Since they tense up, they increase the possibility of getting hurt. And, often times, they get hurt again doing breakfalls, and the cycle continues.

I've seen this cycle happen mostly when people learn how to breakfall, but I've also seen it in many other kinds of rolling/falling, too. Breaking out of this cycle, especially for those who have been in it for a while, requires a slow "re-acclimitization" of proper, basic ukemi techniques.

Sure, there are some folks who are able to literally jump right into breakfalls and other kinds of rolls/falls without any problem. However, there are also many folks whom I've encountered who, due to their not having had a good foundation in how to roll and fall, have developed bad patterns and habits in their rolling/falling. I personally think it's avoidable for the most part.

Lastly, my thoughts on ukemi is that the rolling and falling part is just a small part of the big picture of what "ukemi" is all about. It's a big topic -- as big as the "nagewaza" portion of aikido, in my opinion.

Chuck Clark wrote:
Too bad, because the lack of appropriate and relaxed skillful ukemi has hurt many people's practice.

Looking forward to training with you, Chuck, in just a few short days!

-- Jun

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