Wadoworld: Torimi & Ukemi by Reg Kear

General discussions on Wado Ryu karate and associated martial arts.
Posts: 51
Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2011 1:06 am

Wadoworld: Torimi & Ukemi by Reg Kear

Post by Tesshu »

Ah! A day off...
...so here's another from Wadoworld:

"Torimi & Ukemi

In wado practice of Kihon Kumite the essence of the practice is in the concept of KO BO ITTAI. Attack and defence are the same thing. Therefore the terms attacker and defender are incorrect and may mislead the practitioners. ie. one does not take a defensive posture if one steps back, rather the posture should always have Sente as its motivation. Kihon Kumite should be practised in such a way as to emphasise and promote this. It is advisable at times for both practitioners to step forward or both step back to understand the psychological and emotional effects implicit within body movement. Kihon Kumite should be seen as an exchange of techniques for the purpose of understanding the fundamentals of fighting in terms of mind body and spirit rather than a set of exercises to learn a few techniques.

Using the concept of ‘exchange’ the wado terms of Torimi and Ukemi become more appropriate.

Tori means "To take" so torimi is 'taking the attacks' and converting this into the counter.

Uke means: "To receive" so ukemi is the initial attacker who receives the counter.

It is quite possible that the initial transliteration from the Japanese language has often confused tori and uke with, what appears to be an attack and defence exercise and common usage has institutionalised this within western karate. Using western terminology tends to allocate the postures and mindset of defence and attack along with the designation.

In the Kihon Kumite Ipponme for instance: both Torimi and Ukemi must have the intention to attack as the primary motivation... even though one is taking a step backwards. Any movement in any direction must be performed with attack in mind and of course body and spirit.

In the final analysis it is only an instructional tool or explanation... the purpose of kihon is to absorb the fundamentals of fighting movement within the mind, body and spirit... so... even a deaf person can learn this without ever hearing either of the terms torimi or ukemi.

Reg Kear, 2002

© WadoWorld/Reg Kear"
Michael Matthews
Site Admin
Posts: 696
Joined: Sat Feb 26, 2011 10:38 am
Location: Bournemouth, Dorset, UK.

Re: Wadoworld: Torimi & Ukemi by Reg Kear

Post by wadoka »

I am writing a blog piece for my club website and have come back to this offering from Reg.

I never got to share a glass of red wine with him. Now with Covid-19 and the world using Zoom and other video conferencing tools, it would have been easier to do virtually.