Intermediate Aikido Striking Tips : Aikido Striking Tips: Shomen Uchi


A Shomen Uchi strike is a strike to the top
of the head. A lot of styles will teach a formal, I’m going to do it towards the camera,
very formal style here, up, and then down. That comes from sword work. So, we would start
just like this, very formal, up and down. And they strike for the forehead. You step
in with this strike, so as this hand comes up, I’m stepping in, boom. And dropping down.
Couple of things I don’t like about the traditional way to do it is I’m not going to strike anybody’s
forehead with my hand. I want to go for the collarbone, the top of the collarbone. If
I strike into the collarbone I can break the collarbone. So if you’re in a situation and
you need to learn how to strike, you better hit here instead of hitting up here. If I
am going to hit to the top of the head, I’ll hit over to the side right above the eyebrow.
Okay. You’ll see him blink a little bit from that, and that’s the idea. I’m not going to
drop on the crown on his head, ’cause that’s where it’s very strong. Or go right over the
ridge of the eyebrow. But my preference, what I tell my basic students and my beginner students,
is always aim for the collarbone. Never aim for the top of the skull. As you go to strike
it’s up, and then down, just right here. Keep the hands up again, don’t just do this, because
if he’s going to perry this or whatever, and then your hands are down, you want to always
learn to strike as you would if you needed to learn to strike someone. Not just to give
him something to work with, when you’re striking someone, you need to actually be practicing
your strikes as well. Not just, just not an exercise in futility I think. Instead it’s
up, down, just like this. Now when we’re practicing I may not strike that fast, but my intent
is always there. I am always going this point or this point right on the collarbone, and
if he doesn’t get out of the way, I will hit him. I’m not going to hit him hard, it’ll
be something like this. It’s not going to cause damage, but he’ll know that I tapped
him, he’ll know that he needs to learn to get out of the way. If I always draw my strike,
he’s never going to learn from that. He’ll think oh, well I don’t need to really get
out the way, except consciously, it’ll translate to anything else that he does.

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