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Old 05-16-2010, 02:40 PM   #1
Mikemac
 
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Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

OK....So I'm practicing Ukemi at home for when I get tested. I decided to do it on cement with a thin yoga mat on top.

I must say, it actually forces me to do the Ukemi correctly, as leaning a little to one side or the other on the finish will smash either of my of my posterior pelvic spine regions (The two nubs that stick out in the back.). The hard surfaces forces me to roll along the back center line which feels perfect.

Try it sometime..........(Ouch!!)

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Old 05-16-2010, 04:16 PM   #2
Mark Uttech
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Onegaishimasu. When we are young we devise all kinds of cool ukemi exercises for ourselves, if we are lucky we survive that reckless stage. I can't say that that type of practice is useful to encourage anyone to try. There will come accidental times in our lives when we have to practice reckless ukemi anyway...

In gassho,

Mark

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Old 05-16-2010, 06:18 PM   #3
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Osu! Concrete break fall club...still have fond memories doing some 'after class training' during a weekend long seminar in Quebec and having my mentor toss me around on the sidewalk in front of our hotel...

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Old 05-16-2010, 06:28 PM   #4
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

That's funny Adam!

I should have myself a bit clearer on this. I meant to say that the pain from rolling incorrectly comes from the pinching of the skin against the pelvic bone, and the roll was begun slowly at first as a cautionary measure.

I'm not advocating cement Ukemi exactly. however, if you ever do have a real life encounter where you need to roll, you might want to consider what it would feel like without the security of a mat.

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Old 05-16-2010, 09:33 PM   #5
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

I think doing ukemi on cement is stupid. MY opinion. Even if you fall perfectly, with the widest legs, and as perfectly as possible, you are slowly wearing your body down. You are slowly wearing your body down on a mat too...making concrete even worse.
I want to prolong my career... thus I advise against rolling on concrete.
I can't tell you how many people I've talked to who have been doing this for decades. They all say the same thing; if they had it to do again, they would of been nicer to their bodies. They might of not taken that break fall when it wasn't absolutely needed, or they might of invested in floating floors for the tatami, instead of just lining it on concrete. I've talked to people who definitely miss their cartilage, and wish they took more caution to preserve it. I take these comments as a warning for training. If i want to be doing this into my old age, I have to be nicer to myself as far as ukemi.

You might once in your entire life have to roll on cement for a real situation. Learn to roll and roll well.. Don't take more rolls on cement than you have to. I'm not going to train for a "rolling" encounter on the side walk that might never happen. I'm going to focus on the more probable and save myself from serious health issues.

Last edited by RED : 05-16-2010 at 09:36 PM.

MM
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Old 05-16-2010, 10:43 PM   #6
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Michael,

I certainly don't advocate ukemi on concrete as a standard method of training. I do understand what you are talking about with rolling on harder surfaces making you understand your rolling lines better. Please understand that a Yoga mat will mostly just protect you from abrasions and does little to protect from dynamic impact. Its a great training tool, but used sparingly while in your formative stages of learning to roll. You should not do it too often in your case so as not to cause some kind of injury.

Some suggestions:
try rolling from one knee down, with your arms in that 'aiki circle' type position/unbendable arm position with the lead arm on top. From there roll forward and immediately in reverse to find out what natural lines you roll on and can adjust from there (as you probably well know from your yoga mat experiment..but this works out really well on a regular mat). On the mat, maybe find a line in the tatami and try to roll directly on that line. But be wary of injuring your pelvis. You could try rolling in grass...if you have a yard...but that's kind of iffy b/c of grass stains, plus grass is often on uneven ground and you can't really see little holes and stuff. The putting green on a golf course would be sweet, but you'd get some odd looks!

I just noticed you are an AWA member! I spent a long weekend training with Sato Sensei last month...he's a great guy. I hope you had a chance to make it to the AWA Spring Seminar in Georgia this last weekend. My teacher was a guest instructor there for the weekend. All the best to you guys!

Concrete breakfall: I did that as an expression of celebration and spiritual expression for it being my last seminar as an uchideshi/otomo, passing my shodan test, and my teacher being promoted to 8th dan. That was probably 6 years ago and I don't think I've done ukemi on concrete since then.

Maggie,
I agree that falling on concrete is a pretty stupid thing to do! I've never been injured doing it...but there is such a low level of forgiveness any mistake in the technique and one could probably be injured. I prefer an austere level of spiritual and physical training in my personal and technical growth as an aikidoka. While concrete falling isn't one that anyone in my group would advocate to students, it is somewhat indicative of this mindset. I am sure you wouldn't approve of some of our Kenshu; or, say, the Senshusei program in Japan, training evolutions for your personal training...it can certainly be rough on the body at times...but I think everybody is entitled to their own path of training: Ueshiba Sensei's original dojo was nicknamed "Hell Dojo" after all! But at the same time, as you alluded to, you only get one body. All the best!

PS Oh yeah, Maggie. What did you mean by landing with wide legs? I'm having trouble visualizing what that is exactly...don't want to miss out on a training tip I can steal!

Last edited by Adam Huss : 05-16-2010 at 10:45 PM. Reason: ...

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Old 05-16-2010, 10:58 PM   #7
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Quote:
Adam Huss wrote: View Post
Osu! Concrete break fall club...still have fond memories doing some 'after class training' during a weekend long seminar in Quebec and having my mentor toss me around on the sidewalk in front of our hotel...
After learning how to do breakfalls ( this is 24 years ago ) Sensei took three of us off the mat and had us doing breakfalls on the wooden floor of the health club we practiced at, then he took us outside and had us doing breakfalls on the concrete apron in front of the health club. Not low slow breakfalls but high fast breakfalls ( the higher faster breakfalls were easier to do ). Since then I have never been afraid of falling on any surface and have had to and survived with nothing more than some scrapes.

The physical problems I am having now have to do with football, wrestling, breaking horses as a youngster and the various outdoor jobs I had most of my adult life. I don't have any ongoing injury that I can attribute to Aikido practice.

However you should always be cautious.

David

Last edited by dps : 05-16-2010 at 11:05 PM.
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Old 05-17-2010, 07:16 AM   #8
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
I think doing ukemi on cement is stupid.
Then there are LOTS of stupid people out there doing and learning ACTUAL ukemi.
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Old 05-17-2010, 08:33 AM   #9
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Quote:
Alejandro Villanueva wrote: View Post
Then there are LOTS of stupid people out there doing and learning ACTUAL ukemi.
Yes, there are

MM
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Old 05-17-2010, 08:43 AM   #10
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Quote:
Maggie,
I agree that falling on concrete is a pretty stupid thing to do! I've never been injured doing it...but there is such a low level of forgiveness any mistake in the technique and one could probably be injured. I prefer an austere level of spiritual and physical training in my personal and technical growth as an aikidoka. While concrete falling isn't one that anyone in my group would advocate to students, it is somewhat indicative of this mindset. I am sure you wouldn't approve of some of our Kenshu; or, say, the Senshusei program in Japan, training evolutions for your personal training...it can certainly be rough on the body at times...but I think everybody is entitled to their own path of training: Ueshiba Sensei's original dojo was nicknamed "Hell Dojo" after all! But at the same time, as you alluded to, you only get one body. All the best!

PS Oh yeah, Maggie. What did you mean by landing with wide legs? I'm having trouble visualizing what that is exactly...don't want to miss out on a training tip I can steal!
I'm not saying that landing on cement is stupid, so much as purposely wanting to land on cement. I just know too many people who regret ever training like that now that they are in their 50's and 60's.

Wide-legged ukemi, sometimes called soft ukemi. It was developed so for Aikidoka that train several classes a day, because standard ukemi frankly wrecks your body. So if you have to take a lot of classes, soft ukemi is a good thing to learn to extend your Aikido career.
It is an ukemi style that involves wide-legged technique. For back rolls, you fall more to the side with your arm guiding you, and less through the spine like traditional back falls. you don't rotate over your shoulder, you roll across the shoulders and land wide-legged, in a seated position, which is easy to rotate and pop up from. Forward ukemi is sort of the opposite way. Go over the shoulder, rotate across the back/shoulder, not down the back. And land in a wide legged/seat position on the ground. The position takes a little longer than traditional ukemi to pop up from, so it isn't great for randori. but it is easy to pop up from in a typical class.
There are book out there on it. Donovan Waite has written a few. lol

MM
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Old 05-17-2010, 09:04 AM   #11
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
Yes, there are
Passive-aggressive again. Jun, a ration of ban for me here.
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Old 05-17-2010, 09:19 AM   #12
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Quote:
Adam Huss wrote: View Post
PS Oh yeah, Maggie. What did you mean by landing with wide legs? I'm having trouble visualizing what that is exactly...don't want to miss out on a training tip I can steal!
methink, the ukemi in this video is what she meant http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b5U2E0kA8_8
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Old 05-17-2010, 09:26 AM   #13
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Quote:
Phi Truong wrote: View Post
methink, the ukemi in this video is what she meant http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b5U2E0kA8_8
I've heard of the feather guys, Never trained in this though. It is really similar though to what we do, not exactly the soft ukemi we do though.. Our school teaches Donovan Waite's ukemi.

MM
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Old 05-17-2010, 10:30 AM   #14
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Phi,
Thanks for that...it was interesting.

Maggie,
I am curious to see how you guys do normal ukemi...I will do some google'n of Waite Sensei.

The first part of the video Phi linked to (where the lady is doing split leg rolls) I've actually seen at an AWA dojo I trained at for a few days. I just assumed it was some kind of stretch or general warmup. Interesting stuff.

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Old 05-17-2010, 10:41 AM   #15
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

I think this is what she was talking about:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lkqBo...eature=related

Around 2:20 I think is what she meant...the uke lands on one straight leg then transfers energy from the impact across his body to the other leg. Then go to like 3:10 and that guy is doing different style ukemi.

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Old 05-17-2010, 11:01 AM   #16
RED
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Quote:
Adam Huss wrote: View Post
I think this is what she was talking about:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lkqBo...eature=related

Around 2:20 I think is what she meant...the uke lands on one straight leg then transfers energy from the impact across his body to the other leg. Then go to like 3:10 and that guy is doing different style ukemi.
They seem to be doing the same style ukemi, just the 2nd guy seems to like to make that huge slap out. ouchie..
The first guy is what I was talking about.

MM
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Old 05-17-2010, 11:17 AM   #17
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

That 2nd guy has some nice soft break falls a few times in that video...sweet.

MM
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Old 05-17-2010, 12:48 PM   #18
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
They seem to be doing the same style ukemi, just the 2nd guy seems to like to make that huge slap out. ouchie..
FWIW, slapping can be a good way of dissipating the force of a fall and directing it away from the spine and vulnerable parts of the body; in the dojo, it shouldn't hurt. But, like other aspects of taking a fall, I find it takes practice.

Regards

David Henderson
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Old 05-17-2010, 12:50 PM   #19
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Quote:
Charles David Henderson wrote: View Post
FWIW, slapping can be a good way of dissipating the force of a fall and directing it away from the spine and vulnerable parts of the body; in the dojo, it shouldn't hurt. But, like other aspects of taking a fall, I find it takes practice.

Regards
I'm just reliving a time that I messed my arm up slapping out. something went, very wrong.

MM
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Old 05-17-2010, 01:10 PM   #20
Phil Van Treese
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Doing ukemi on the cement has got to be totally dumb. Just hit your head one time on the cement and you won't practice your falls on cement again. I believe in using your head but not like that!!!!
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Old 05-17-2010, 07:07 PM   #21
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

If I have leaned anything regarding Ukemi, it's that one 's head doesn't touch the ground. Problem solved....

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Old 05-17-2010, 07:40 PM   #22
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Not hitting your head is a good thing. However, it is naive to think that the head is the only part of the body that can suffer in ukemi. Your entire body suffers when taking ukemi on a mat, never mind the cement.
I'm not saying don't go throw yourself on the side walk, I'm just saying I've known elder Aikidoka that wish they never did.

MM
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Old 05-17-2010, 07:46 PM   #23
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Take a page from the founder of parkour and my favourite ukemi guy,
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jquXcwooV6A
If you know what you're doing... its all cool.

Draw strength from stillness. Learn to act without acting. And never underestimate a samurai cat.
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Old 05-17-2010, 08:05 PM   #24
Mikemac
 
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
Not hitting your head is a good thing. However, it is naive to think that the head is the only part of the body that can suffer in ukemi. Your entire body suffers when taking ukemi on a mat, never mind the cement.
I'm not saying don't go throw yourself on the side walk, I'm just saying I've known elder Aikidoka that wish they never did.
I think we need to have a compromise here Maggie. I'm only saying that knowing what it feels like to roll on the pavement just once is a reality check for when you MIGHT need to do so. Suppose you fell of a motorcycle or bike or whatever, and you knew you could roll off it. You might, in that split second, adjust yourself best to center your roll to avoid serious injury.

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure......

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Old 05-17-2010, 09:14 PM   #25
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Re: Mae Ukemi - Practicing the HARD way (Literally)

Quote:
Ahmad Abas wrote: View Post
Take a page from the founder of parkour and my favourite ukemi guy,
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jquXcwooV6A
If you know what you're doing... its all cool.
Very cool, thanks!

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