Aikido: Fall Down Seven, Stand Up Eight

Roberto Martucci Sensei, Photo Source:

Roberto Martucci Sensei,
Photo Source:

When we fall down or after we are thrown off balance, we instinctively try to regain balance. In accidents where people fall or have a concussion, it is the natural tendency to try to get up.

In Aikido, knowledge of this instinctive reaction becomes our advantage. We use it when we throw our uke in iriminage. Actually, we use it most of the time in the throwing techniques. That split second where we lose balance and try to regain it? We have to be sensitive to that. Be open. The losing of balance and the return to a stable position is part of the practice. It is all right to fall, as long as you get back up again. And keep moving. Because in movement arises the opportunities to enter, to throw, to regain balance , to shift the control.

In continuing practice, despite feeling that we are in a plateau, we could learn to see more, learn to feel more.

Learn to be more sensitive to the openings in movement.

Sometimes, when you are just watching, you see it. And sometimes, when you are the one doing, you feel it. Sometimes, you get lucky! And when you take it, a little light bulb lights up in your being for a split second, and you learn something exciting and new.

Waste one split second after recognizing that opening, then you lose it. Lose that opening, lose that eureka moment. Just like that, gone, snatched away. You try to recreate it, bring it back, but it doesn’t, and you go back to practice again. You return to that state of being open and sensitive.

It’s all right. Just get on the mats and just train. Your training will not betray you.

(Please also see: “Senshin: The Enlightened Mind“)


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