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Ukemi is the art of breakfalling, of falling or being thrown at the ground and of not getting hurt. The central aim of all breakfalls is to protect the head, neck and spine.


Uke is the name of one of the two roles played by partners practicing Aikido technique together.

Koho Ukemi (Back Breakfalls)

#1 Simple Back breakfall

#2 Back breakfall with hitting

#3 Side back breakfall

E.g. as required by Uke in Sokumen Iriminage (Side step-in throw)

#4 Dropping straight down

E.g. as required by Uke in Shihonage (All-direction throw/pin)

#5 Defensive standup

Forward roll

Back breakfall with standing back up in a defensive position (leg swings back through).

Zenpo Kaiten Ukemi (Forward Rolls)

Front Roll #1

Simple, soft front roll from kneeling

Back leg bends during the roll to tuck in underneath the body

Front Roll #2

Like #1 but with hitting

Front Roll #3

From standing, with hitting

Back leg straight throughout the roll

Pop back up to kamae facing your partner

Zenpo Hiyaku Ukemi (Jumping front breakfall)

Jumping front flip, with the arms tied up

Front breakfall with Judo/BJJ landing

"Splat" landing, as produced during clinched takedowns

Koho Kaiten Ukemi (Backwards Rolls)

From sitting

From standing

Jumping back breakfall

Soft jumping back breakfall, as produced during strongly applied Shomen Iriminage (Front step-in throw)

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