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Old 11-04-2011, 01:52 PM   #26
graham christian
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Bien Nguyen wrote: View Post
Thank you Katherine!

Graham, just interested in seeing how different styles and different people doing breakfall and general ukemi for that matter. I'm a student of the art so i'm interested in these kinds of things. I'm not here to criticize or have I any other motives, i'm here to learn. Would you be so kind? Other clips you posted on youtube were a lot longer, a breakfall would not take that long with the same equipment used.
Bien. If that is true then please clarify. The two points here are rolling with the mat or basically being splattered down. Which would you like to see?

Secondly if the camera was still working, which it isn't, or if I was to get a mobile footage are you saying that in the future, maybe a weeks time you want to see it?

Thirdly, on clarifying which you want to see I could go look and point you to the precise time in a particular video that point is demonstrated.

Regards.G.
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Old 11-04-2011, 02:11 PM   #27
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Just because the mass of the planet pulls us toward it, doesn't mean that everything is "straight down".
"And a horse can't give milk and a cow can't whinny and down is up and sideways is straight ahead"... but what exactly does that have to do with the discussion? I mean if you don't have anything to add that might help people who want to learn to do that why post on the thread? I don't believe anyone said everything is straight down.

Some of us here are interested in understanding the mechanics of breakfall and what the good and bad points might be. Others seem to be against teaching them at all. Well that's ok too. But if you are can you at least give some useful discussion as to why and hey how about you make us a video on how to deal with something like say a fast koshi without taking one?

Last edited by Shadowfax : 11-04-2011 at 02:14 PM.
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Old 11-04-2011, 02:17 PM   #28
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Then there's the question of me. Now that's creepy. I could give you hundreds of examples to go look at on film of Aikido, judo, even wwf wrestling where those principles are in use so what's the infatuation with me.
You started the thread with the claim that almost everyone seems to be lacking in a basic understanding of what a "high breakfall" is and what it entails:
Quote:
I believe by reading answers given on the subject that all are missing the basic concept and basic purpose of break-falls and even more so the concept and purpose of high break-falls but are unaware of this fact.
So it's *your* understanding that people are interested in.

*shrug* My own view of ukemi is that it isn't really helpful to spend a lot of time categorizing different types. Work on relaxation and harmonizing with energy (yours, your partner's, gravity) and trust your body to know what to do. Especially in ukemi, committing to a particular form often just picks the place where you're going to store tension.

Katherine
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Old 11-04-2011, 02:30 PM   #29
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Graham Christian wrote: View Post
I like it, well said. When I said earlier how it saved me breaking my back or neck the circumstance was not too dissimilar to your examples.

It's going back a bit now but it must have been about nine years ago. I was doing a painting job with my friend but we had been asked to do the high metal rafters in a closed factory. My friend had gone to get a 'tower' to work from as they were too high to work safely from ladders. However, thinking I'm smart I got the triple extension ladder and thought I'd just go up and get started while waiting for him to get back.

While up there some paper moved as I touched it and made me jerk back a bit thinkong for some reason there was a rat under it. Anyway, brush in one hand paint pot in the other suddenly realizing I was on a ladder and oh ***** too late, I was falling backwards. The experience was amazing though in retrospect. It was like total acceptance, no time for worry or panick, in fact time slowed. I hit the ground flat on my back, one paint brush hand out and the other hand in over my chest complete with paint all over my chest and face and floor. I actually stayed there in that position for a few seconds not moving in case anything was broken until surprisingly it felt all was ok. Then I got up went over to the window and sat on a box feeling stupid.

I did at the time end up laughing at how funny it would have looked if candid camera was there.

Thus I got first extreme reality on the effectiveness of harmonizing with the ground. Once again Aikido had helped me for real.

Regards.G.
Interesting that our experiences were so similar. My dad sent me up the ladder with a tape measure to give to my uncle. The ladder was a tad short and I was only on the roof from the waist up, with my feet on the ladder. My dad came along and took the ladder out from under me. Ordinarily, I probably would have been able to pull myself up, but with the pitch of the roof and the fact that shingles weren't on it yet, I sat there in limbo for a few minutes, yelling for help and saying I was about to fall. No one believed me till they heard the thud. Like you, time slowed down for me. It was almost like a dreamlike state and I was hyper aware of everything. Honestly, the landing felt more to me like a parent laying a child down in their bed. I remember no trauma what so ever.

It was a same experience for the lawn mower too. I was so focused on missing the huge sign and the ditch and when I missed those and bailed, I first thought of a roll and realized "That is NOT going to work!!" and just sort of relaxed and accepted the inevitable. My dad (interesting he was involved in both of these huh!?!) said it was the scariest thing he saw when he looked in the rearview mirror of the pick up.

Both instances were incredibly stupid and should have been avoided. We laughed after the fact at both and wished we had video and I am just glad my ukemi saved me. I used to joke with one of my old isntructors that I had tested height and speed and officially approved the ukemi she taught.

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Old 11-04-2011, 02:35 PM   #30
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Cherie Cornmesser wrote: View Post
"And a horse can't give milk and a cow can't whinny and down is up and sideways is straight ahead"... but what exactly does that have to do with the discussion? I mean if you don't have anything to add that might help people who want to learn to do that why post on the thread? I don't believe anyone said everything is straight down.

Some of us here are interested in understanding the mechanics of breakfall and what the good and bad points might be. Others seem to be against teaching them at all. Well that's ok too. But if you are can you at least give some useful discussion as to why and hey how about you make us a video on how to deal with something like say a fast koshi without taking one?
Oh, heavens me. Cherie, I'm sorry that you felt my allusion to physics was an attack on your beliefs about breakfalls. It really had nothing to do with you.
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Old 11-04-2011, 03:01 PM   #31
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Re: More on High Break-falls

Anytime Graham. High break-falls please, title of the thread you started. Just want to see how it is done and if I like it, I'll add it to my training.
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Old 11-04-2011, 03:25 PM   #32
graham christian
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
You started the thread with the claim that almost everyone seems to be lacking in a basic understanding of what a "high breakfall" is and what it entails:

So it's *your* understanding that people are interested in.

*shrug* My own view of ukemi is that it isn't really helpful to spend a lot of time categorizing different types. Work on relaxation and harmonizing with energy (yours, your partner's, gravity) and trust your body to know what to do. Especially in ukemi, committing to a particular form often just picks the place where you're going to store tension.

Katherine
In that case discuss my presented understanding no? Share your perspective no? First and foremost try to understand the words and concepts I have presented no?

Just coming in saying I wanna see a film of it makes no sense to me. A film of which particular point? Just coming in with no particular contribution or indication of whether you agree, disagree, or whatever makes even less sense to me.

If they are interested in my understanding as you put it then a little explanation with their request might help or do they think I've got a library of demo videos at hand? Or even that going making a film is normal to a thread? I don't get it.

However you have given a view of how you see break-falls here. That's good. I'd find it strange to ask you for a video myself.

In a past thread you said you liked an experiential example and the one of me falling off a ladder should fit that I hope.

I too don't see the point in spending lots of time categorizing all types and forms and some I have done in the past I've never seen anywhere else. That's why I stuck to the two basics that apply to all types. One where you have the opportunity to roll or turn with the ground and one where you don't.

These two things if understood then I would say the person wouldn't need any precise film for they would be able to watch any film and see if the person was either a) rolling, turning with/on the ground or b) relaxing into the ground with no roll. You could even spin sideways in the air or flip over and land on your knees but the whole point is the landing. Did you roll off the knees or did you sink down through the knees, a) or b)? Did you land and roll or land and disperse the energy.

They are the points of breaking the fall thus they are the important bits.

That's what I'm giving import to and that's what I haven't seen mentioned or given import to before. That's all.

These to me are two basic principles that need to be understood in order to even ask yourself the right question when seeing someone fall or be thrown.

From this you would therefore be observing how the person got up from the fall. This and only this will tell you if those basics were in at least 905 of the time anyway.

Once they're in then you can work on form of break-fall or even necessity or not of such forms.

I think I have the right to point this out and also to say what I have observed in past discussions for I have witnessed there and in my experience emphasis too much on form and virtually none on those basics especially in Aikido. It's as if 'we don't do that it's judo' type mentality or just plain and simple 'I don't like them'. 'Them' being the harmonize with the mat without rolling times.

You do a nikkyo and the persons complaining ouch my knees. That's actually an example of bad break-fall.

How many have ever looked at it that way? I doubt many so I think my original observations in the op are quite correct.

I also hope people see the difference and have someone show them how to apply it properly and thus prevent injuries rather than cause them through blaming wrong things.

Sorry to go on there but I do know many have never considered these things. In fact one student it was quite amusing to me that I kind of rescued him from an Aikido place that is very good at damaging bodies with their 'solid' break-falls.

Regards.G.
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Old 11-04-2011, 03:28 PM   #33
graham christian
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Bien Nguyen wrote: View Post
Anytime Graham. High break-falls please, title of the thread you started. Just want to see how it is done and if I like it, I'll add it to my training.
Going up in the air? No. Out of luck. No film. Going down hard? Yes, will that do?

Regards.G
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Old 11-04-2011, 03:29 PM   #34
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Oh, heavens me. Cherie, I'm sorry that you felt my allusion to physics was an attack on your beliefs about breakfalls. It really had nothing to do with you.
I have not seen it as an attack on anything at all. I am still just waiting for you to use it to say something that might be seen as a useful contribution to the discussion so that perhaps I might learn something from you.

Since it was my post you quoted I took it that it was me to whom you were directing your comment.
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Old 11-04-2011, 03:35 PM   #35
graham christian
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Ashley Carter wrote: View Post
Interesting that our experiences were so similar. My dad sent me up the ladder with a tape measure to give to my uncle. The ladder was a tad short and I was only on the roof from the waist up, with my feet on the ladder. My dad came along and took the ladder out from under me. Ordinarily, I probably would have been able to pull myself up, but with the pitch of the roof and the fact that shingles weren't on it yet, I sat there in limbo for a few minutes, yelling for help and saying I was about to fall. No one believed me till they heard the thud. Like you, time slowed down for me. It was almost like a dreamlike state and I was hyper aware of everything. Honestly, the landing felt more to me like a parent laying a child down in their bed. I remember no trauma what so ever.

It was a same experience for the lawn mower too. I was so focused on missing the huge sign and the ditch and when I missed those and bailed, I first thought of a roll and realized "That is NOT going to work!!" and just sort of relaxed and accepted the inevitable. My dad (interesting he was involved in both of these huh!?!) said it was the scariest thing he saw when he looked in the rearview mirror of the pick up.

Both instances were incredibly stupid and should have been avoided. We laughed after the fact at both and wished we had video and I am just glad my ukemi saved me. I used to joke with one of my old isntructors that I had tested height and speed and officially approved the ukemi she taught.
Thanks. Great examples. I hoped others would see the concepts I described as clearly as you.

Thanks for sharing them.

Regards.G.
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Old 11-04-2011, 03:51 PM   #36
graham christian
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Bien Nguyen wrote: View Post
Anytime Graham. High break-falls please, title of the thread you started. Just want to see how it is done and if I like it, I'll add it to my training.
Actually just thought of something. Go find some wwf video and watch a high body slam. Even though it's on sprung canvas study how the person lands and disperses the energy. They even use the soles of their feet too as well as arms out dispersing the impact as they hit the canvas.

However I dont see how you'll add it to your training without proper instruction. Why not just stand still and throw yourself back splatt on the mat dispersing the energy with your arms slapping the mat how I described in the o/p? But even then you probably need supervision unless you're competent already.

Regards.G.
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Old 11-04-2011, 04:32 PM   #37
Lyle Laizure
 
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Re: More on High Break-falls

You explained in such detail in your original post. Putting it all together on a short video clip will allow me to connect the dots and understand more clearly what you are explaining. What do you think?

Lyle Laizure
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Old 11-04-2011, 04:53 PM   #38
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Actually just thought of something. Go find some wwf video and watch a high body slam. Even though it's on sprung canvas study how the person lands and disperses the energy. They even use the soles of their feet too as well as arms out dispersing the impact as they hit the canvas.

However I dont see how you'll add it to your training without proper instruction. Why not just stand still and throw yourself back splatt on the mat dispersing the energy with your arms slapping the mat how I described in the o/p? But even then you probably need supervision unless you're competent already.

Regards.G.
wwf is not aikido Graham, I've asked to see a clip of you showing a breakfall in your style of aikido and have come up short. This thread has no use for me.

Have a great day everyone!
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Old 11-04-2011, 05:04 PM   #39
graham christian
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Lyle Laizure wrote: View Post
You explained in such detail in your original post. Putting it all together on a short video clip will allow me to connect the dots and understand more clearly what you are explaining. What do you think?
It would be a pleasure one day but not now. Words will have to suffice for now.

Regards.G.
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Old 11-04-2011, 05:31 PM   #40
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Ashley Carter wrote: View Post
Most people who end up getting hurt with these are because they are full of fear. They tighten up and anticipate the impact and end up fighting gravity the entire way down and splat onto the mat. Instead, they need to relax, stay calm and think more along the lines of welcoming the mat with vigor.
I remember hearing about a study of cats with broken legs from falling various heights in which there seemed to be less chance of injury on slightly higher elevations than some lesser heights. The reason given for why was that initially cats tended to tense up in anticipation, but past a certain height they had enough time to begin to relax.

Creating larger surface areas during impact and translating down momentum laterally is my basic approach. If I'm rotating through the air I'm basically expanding my limbs to eat up momentum, which also facilitates reaching for the ground to help control the way my body moves as I land.

How not to land: no purposeful/meaingful lateral rolling of kinetic down force.

Gambarimashyo!
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Old 11-04-2011, 05:45 PM   #41
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Re: More on High Break-falls

While not "high" falls, I suppose that these videos are indicative of the OP's attitude to ukemi.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q9NA7Ll2P3M#t=4m00s
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q9NA7Ll2P3M#t=3m47s
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFVoNfkLNL0#t=3m28s
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFVoNfkLNL0#t=3m34s

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Old 11-04-2011, 06:01 PM   #42
graham christian
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Re: More on High Break-falls

A little additive here. Three people seem to be intent on seeing 'high' break-fall done by me. That makes me believe they have not understood the thread.

As I pointed out in the op that too many focus on the high, on the going up part and thus completely miss the point.

Therefore they are missing this vital point and that is that there is no such thing really as a high break-fall. The break-fall is what happens when you reach the mat.

That is defined in the op. It doesn't take film to help understand that, just fall down straight like a toppled tree and you'll see for yourself.

It's like saying how to land an aircraft has something to do with how it takes off.

This thread isn't about the take off point or the in flight point but the end point, the actual break-fall.

So there would probably be four parts to look at for the overall term generally used as break-fall.

1) The initial harmonizing with the attempted throw.
2) The take off.
3) The flight
4) The landing.

This thread is on part four and goes further by saying that's the actual break-fall part. The rest is on the journey towards it thus you end up with form of.

Now the fact that in other martial arts like judo the emphasis is placed on the how to land and widely in my opinion recognised as such as the basic after which they can focus on the form then these responses seem to me to validate what I thought and said, that in Aikido generally it seems to be an alien concept. Thus from my point of view a missing view.

Regards G.
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Old 11-04-2011, 06:34 PM   #43
graham christian
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Re: More on High Break-falls

O.K. You are persistent.

http://youtu.be/ttipyZQTguE

In this video I'll give more clarity for you. At 1-05 there is a more pertinent example, a no choice but to example.

At 3.55 similar.
At 4.30 there is an example of going over circularly but actually the landing is more as per straight down, ie: sinking into the mat with no roll.
At 5.10 similar to the last as from kotegaeshe but this time a complete roll,
Finally at 5.24 there's a mix. As the throw twisted and projected then the body landed going kind of sideways roll on impact but then rooted and put the arms out to in mid air to disperse the energy.

The examples you point to above I would say this. If the person is going down but still managing to roll, rock backwards then I class that as backward ukemi, a roll. If they go flat out then it's the other one.

Regards.G.
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Old 11-04-2011, 06:47 PM   #44
graham christian
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Matthew Gano wrote: View Post
I remember hearing about a study of cats with broken legs from falling various heights in which there seemed to be less chance of injury on slightly higher elevations than some lesser heights. The reason given for why was that initially cats tended to tense up in anticipation, but past a certain height they had enough time to begin to relax.

Creating larger surface areas during impact and translating down momentum laterally is my basic approach. If I'm rotating through the air I'm basically expanding my limbs to eat up momentum, which also facilitates reaching for the ground to help control the way my body moves as I land.

How not to land: no purposeful/meaingful lateral rolling of kinetic down force.
Hi Matthew.
Interesting, thanks.

I had a skydiver friend doing Aikido with me once, about 18 years ago now. After a few lessons he asked for a couple of private ones as he said he had a problem. This guy was a long term skydiver, I found their hierarchy went by numbers of jumps so they recognised each other by number or if someone they didn't know came along they would wonder what he was. Like was he a mere 33 or 100 or was he up with us in the thousands.

Anyway, this friend found he was petrified of the break-falls. Wow. That didn't make sense at all to me. Here's a fella that hurtles towards the ground at I don't know what speed and safely lands and rolls on whatever hard surface and he's scared of a soft mat from three feet. Go figure.

Anyway I got him through it but here's the thing. He told me that the one reality he had as a skydiver was that that thing, the ground, hurts! Now being up close and personal with it about to be thrown into it freaked him.

Thought you might like that one.

Regards.G.
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Old 11-04-2011, 06:51 PM   #45
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Re: More on High Break-falls

Thank you. These help me understand your take on the subject.

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Old 11-04-2011, 07:06 PM   #46
graham christian
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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David Soroko wrote: View Post
Thank you. These help me understand your take on the subject.
Thank you. As they say on british rail 'apologies for any inconvenience caused'

In the past on here the videos have been used by others merely to find fault even if I say to ask me a specific happening on any video and I'll explain. They didn't seem interested yet used them to tell me what was happening instead.

Thus a person asking for specific and then looking at that specific is a brand new experience.

Regards.G.
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Old 11-04-2011, 07:26 PM   #47
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Bien Nguyen wrote: View Post
wwf is not aikido Graham, I've asked to see a clip of you showing a breakfall in your style of aikido and have come up short. This thread has no use for me.
!
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Old 11-04-2011, 07:31 PM   #48
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Graham Christian wrote: View Post
I believe by reading answers given on the subject that all are missing the basic concept and basic purpose of break-falls and even more so the concept and purpose of high break-falls but are unaware of this fact.
First, and I apologize for going off-topic, but in the effort for promoting greater dialogue, I think describing how people don't "get it" detracts from the conversation...particularly when saying "all" people posting on the topic are missing something. A) Not everyone is posting all their knowledge, but are addressing aspects of it; B) and sincerely, I would think you'd be more sensitive about telling people they're missing key aspects of their training.

Quote:
Thus we see the fore-ward ukemi as something not often needed in life but useful whereas a backward roll or ukemi much more often needed or employed.
In my experience I've had about as much forward as backward "ukemi" in my life no and off the mat.

Quote:
Add a bit of height to it and nothing changes, same principles, same solution. Less broken elbows, banged heads, bruised shoulders, cracked bones...... etc.etc.
I wouldn't say nothing changes: the need for good ukemi skills increases because momentum forces increase. A relative beginner can roll or break their fall from low heights pretty easily, but the greater the "down," the greater the need to harmonize yourself with the ground before the ground harmonizes you on its own non-considerate terms.

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Old 11-04-2011, 07:44 PM   #49
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Re: More on High Break-falls

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Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Hi Matthew.
Interesting, thanks.

I had a skydiver friend doing Aikido with me once, about 18 years ago now. After a few lessons he asked for a couple of private ones as he said he had a problem. This guy was a long term skydiver, I found their hierarchy went by numbers of jumps so they recognised each other by number or if someone they didn't know came along they would wonder what he was. Like was he a mere 33 or 100 or was he up with us in the thousands.

Anyway, this friend found he was petrified of the break-falls. Wow. That didn't make sense at all to me. Here's a fella that hurtles towards the ground at I don't know what speed and safely lands and rolls on whatever hard surface and he's scared of a soft mat from three feet. Go figure.

Anyway I got him through it but here's the thing. He told me that the one reality he had as a skydiver was that that thing, the ground, hurts! Now being up close and personal with it about to be thrown into it freaked him.

Thought you might like that one.

Regards.G.
Hi Graham,
That is kinda funny. I can see how the ground might take on a whole new meaning when you dive right at it. Ground = potential death if systems fail. It's different too when you have a quasi-wing above you to stall your decent; gives more sense of control I would think.
When I was a kid I fell from a variety of heights, which I think may have helped me at times. Somehow falling 10 feet from a treehouse puts 3 or 4 feet in a better perspective...not that it isn't still scary sometimes: i value what's left of my brain.

Gambarimashyo!
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Old 11-04-2011, 10:12 PM   #50
graham christian
Dojo: golden center aikido-highgate
Location: london
Join Date: Oct 2010
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Re: More on High Break-falls

Quote:
Matthew Gano wrote: View Post
First, and I apologize for going off-topic, but in the effort for promoting greater dialogue, I think describing how people don't "get it" detracts from the conversation...particularly when saying "all" people posting on the topic are missing something. A) Not everyone is posting all their knowledge, but are addressing aspects of it; B) and sincerely, I would think you'd be more sensitive about telling people they're missing key aspects of their training.

In my experience I've had about as much forward as backward "ukemi" in my life no and off the mat.

I wouldn't say nothing changes: the need for good ukemi skills increases because momentum forces increase. A relative beginner can roll or break their fall from low heights pretty easily, but the greater the "down," the greater the need to harmonize yourself with the ground before the ground harmonizes you on its own non-considerate terms.
Hi Matthew.
On your first point about promoting greater dialogue. It's still my view now. I don't think saying what I see is insensitive. If others disagree they would actually dialogue about it and tell me they use those points all the time. No one did.

In life regarding teaching Aikido I come across quite a few things that Aikidoka assume and have been taught until they meet me. I don't say to them 'you do know' I observe and then point out what they don't know and don't understand. Some points relate to all I've ever met from various styles. Therefore I conclude across the board. I'm quite open to others saying that's not true because we do that here.

On point b) it sounds reasonable as you put it but not so to me. I can see things missing and therefore can say. Again it's so easy to disprove by someone saying we do that here. What's the problem?

On the foreward and backward ukemi in life are you sure you are understanding what I said? If you did then I don't think that would be your response.

Your answer to the last point also makes me believe you have a misunderstanding on what I said also.

So there you are. Those last two points I am saying you don't understand what I said. That's not rude, it's not demeaning, it's opening the door to a) the possibility and probability from my view that there is a misunderstanding on your part or b) that the cause is my presentation.

I can say this because you are not communicating from the concept that I put foreward. So somewhere there's a misunderstanding going on.

Regards.G.
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