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By Bodo Roedel

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2010 9:48 Uhr Seite 56 AIKIDO – THE BASICS At the moment when Uke reaches Tori’s shoulder, Tori changes the direction of his movement by turning through a 90° angle. To do this he places his rear foot at an angle of 90° to his starting position. At the same time, Tori’s rear hand controls Uke’s forward shoulder. Uke is brought off-balance by Tori’s movements. His hand functions now as a “hand-off” prop against Tori, and Uke rolls over forwards. 2010 9:48 Uhr Seite 57 FOOT MOVEMENTS For clarity here are the foot movements once again – without Uke.

In the example shown here, Tori has increased the gap at the last moment before Uke attacks. 9 shikko Being able to move about on the knees is also a part of the basic foot techniques. 1). The leg muscles are also trained and the Aikido-ka can easily feel whether he is keeping his upper body upright. Basically, the following points are of note: • The toes are propped up. • The upper body is kept straight. • The bottom is resting as far as possible on the heels. • The heels are kept together as far as possible.

So, exercises with the stick and the sword are part of the historical heart of Aikido. However, the following aspects are possibly more interesting: Practicing with weapons serves to let the Aikido-ka understand several aspects. In Aikido, with or without weapons, the movements of the feet are the same or very similar. The same applies to the hand movements. Additionally, many Aikido techniques without weapons are executed with the feeling of a cutting or stabbing movement (not pulling or pushing) and this is identical to the work with the sword.

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