• My thoughts on the DO

    Starting practice is one of the most precious moments. It can be very exciting and eventually leads to fabulous growth. Now is the very moment to decide if to go all the way through.

    When I started judo practice I decided, that I would have done it for the rest of my life and that my Master would have been a constant presence in my thoughts.

    Fundamental to the DO is one ingredient: COMMITMENT, indicating, that self-discipline and persistence must be kept regardless of how hard it is.

    Practice puts us under constant stress, but without it we would never be able to develop our personality.

    Commitment and self-discipline are precious as gold for those seeking the DO.

  • In the Sixties

    1960: Bruno Carmeni throwing his opponent with seoi nage

  • More than 40 years later!

    2007: Bruno Carmeni throwing his opponent with seoi nage

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Judo Techniques – A Study on The Ukemis

The historical origins of the ukemis may be found in the Sekiguchi School (jujutsu) and reading the studies of Professor Kano. Normally there is no sport, that teaches how to fall. In most the real skill is not to fall and therefore there is no methodology in order to learn it.

Judo Techniques - Sutemi or Ukemi?

When entering a judo dojo, one of the first judo techniques that are taught are the break-falls. But before starting, it is important to know the difference between Sutemi and Ukemi:

Sutemi = active action, the performer tori goes on the ground in order to throw the opponent.

Ukemi = passive action, one hits the ground with his body after having been thrown.

The falls can be divided into:

1) Traditional

Facial               Mae Ukemi

Forward            Zempo Kaiten Ukemi

Backward         Ko Ho Ukemi

Sideways          Soku Ho Ukemi

Judo Techniques - Forward Ukemi

2) Classical

Rotation forward            Mae Mawari Ukemi

Backward                     Ushiro Ukemi

Sideways                     Yoko Ukemi

3) Special in the Katas

Koshiki No Kata     Gyaku Yoko Ukemi

Itsutsu No Kata         Taoru Ukemi

Nage No Kata           Yoko Gake

4) Partial Bogyo Ukemi

Performed to avoid a disadvantage

Looking like a forward wheel

Half summersault backwards

Learning to fall is useful as it improves one’s physical agility, it strengthens the body, it helps to block attacks and to perform throwing techniques. The balance is maintained until the vertical line going through the center remains within the touching base, which for human beings is the area between the two feet. One falls by mistake, by choice and physic’s laws. In each case, it is better to know how to do it well. Everything is solved in a second’s fraction: it is for this reason that the ability to fall needs to become totally instinctive. It could represent an interior conflict between the need to obtain a good performance and the wish to punish oneself, the cause could be found in a distress within the family.

The main objectives are:

1. Defense – it helps to avoid damage in case of sudden falling. It strengthens the body and prepares to face any obstacles within every day’s life; 

2. Multi-values   –  a motion ability which becomes automatic and is then taken into other sport activities such as soccer, ski, cycling, athletics and so on;

3. Psychological Action – one learns to face new and sudden situations with greater calmness. Very often the one who practices is stopped because he is scared to fall and to hurt himself. The break-fall with forward rotation puts the one who practices in front of problems, once these are overcome he will gain self-confidence, which also means muscular distention and consequent possibility of better flowing movements;

4. Muscular Tone – it strengthens the muscles of the upper part (arms and shoulders), abdomen and back, and of the lower part (legs);

Oustanding judo technique with consequent fall

5. Balance – the break-falls develop the motion ability, which is necessary especially to maintain and regain the upright position (physical aspect). One becomes aware of the relationships of one’s body within the space and with the sustaining means (psychological aspect – self analysis). One learns speed and decisional readiness to intervene in order to maintain one’s balance, reacting immediately to unforeseen situations and therefore developing posture’s automatisms (psychological aspect – external analysis);

6. Posture’s Education – Balance exercises stimulate the upright reflexes which act on posture’s muscles, creating an opposite relationship between the extension muscles of the spine and the upright ones, as pyramids within the abdomen region, sideways in the outer regions and the lumbar ones in the back region of the abdomen and the lower region of the spine;

7. Laterality – the side fall is a complex exercise but outstanding to strengthen the sides, as the right falls ask for a left movement and the left fall asks for a right movement;

8. Orientation – in the falls with forward rotation and in the back ones with summersault space’s use and control are not typical as the body assumes unusual positions. The side fall, both to the right and to the left, is useful for orientation;

9. Coordination – falls are generally speaking complex exercises, that stimulate the neurotic motion coordination;

10. Ability – falls improve the development function (physical qualities), the perceptive function (psycho-motion qualities) and once both are fine tuned then it is possible to excel in progressive motion adjustment.


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