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Ukemi - 受身

ukemi breakfalls judo aikido bjj

uke - 受 - receive;  mi - 身 -   body.

In daily 合気道 practice. We do a lot of break falling that we refer to in Japanese as "ukemi". Ukemi can be understood to literally mean; receiving body , or receive with the body. It is what uke (受) ; whoever receives the technique;  does when nage (投げ thrower) or tori (取り, grabber) applies a technique.


Basic Breakfalls in the Tomiki Aikido Syllabus include:-

  • ushiro ukemi:  (後ろ 受身 ) Backward breakfall (kata breakfall)
  • yoko ukemi:  (横 ) Side Breakfall 
  • zenpo kaiten ukemi - Forward rolling breakfall. 
  • tobi ukemi: (飛 Flying ukemi.  (or tobi zenpo kaiten ukemi: flying forward roll or tobi mae ukemi: flying forward breakfall)
  • hiyaku zenpo kaiten ukemi (kote gaeshi ukemi? ) - leaping forward rolling breakfall;  (飛躍 hiyaku - jump, leap). Involves uke leaving their feet without first making contact with the ground with their hand. The first kanji (飛) also happens to be the one for the tobi of tobi or tobu ukemi.
  • koho kaiten ukemi:  backward rolling breakfall
  • yoko kaiten ukemi:  Sideways rolling breakfall
  • mae ukemi:   forward falling /breakfall  (judo)
  • Ha-ochi ukemi? (葉落ち ) : floating leaf breakfall   ....  Fuyū ha (浮遊葉)?

Pictures/videos...... coming soon... :)

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