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There is a well known concept in aikido that it’s almost impossible to be unfamiliar with. Chances are that you came across it during your first lesson. We usually refer to that concept as the ‘Line of Attack’ (LoA). It’s a basic idea that forms a fundamental principle within our art and likely several others as well. The LoA is an imaginary line that connects uke with nage and is the line along which uke attacks. It is generally considered to be straight and the shortest distance between uke and…

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Kaiten nage is a fascinating technique. We can learn many lessons while performing it but I think we often miss one of the most important. It takes place during the uchi form but not the soto. Rather, it is more obvious in the uchi form. It concerns where the elbow in kaiten nage goes. The specific part of the form that we are going to examine here is after the entry under the arm. Just at the point where nage turns to face the same direction as uke but before…

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Irimi nage means ‘entering throw’. Many aikidoka are successful at the second part – throwing, but less so at the entering. What amazes me is the sheer number of aikidoka that don’t actually enter when doing irimi nage. This is one of the greatest technical pitfalls and it is actually very easy to determine why. The majority of aikidoka fail to begin irimi nage with a step deep enough to carry them behind the uke. Proper entry in irimi nage involves being behind the uke. The problem is that nage…

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The Problem Kote gaeshi is a fundamental technique that is taught to all aikidoka. Despite this there are numerous issues that arise with it’s correct execution. This is because as well as being fundamental, it’s also difficult. This post is going to examine one of the biggest problems with correctly applying Kote Gaeshi. Where the nage’s hands go in relation to the uke’s wrist. It is quite common to for a nage to place their fingers on the uke’s wrist when applying kote gaeshi. This is a mistake that occurs…

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