Aiki studies – Balance breaking for shoulder grabs

ian-grant-katadoriIn the absence of full cooperation, an aikido technique can generally only be created if the uke’s balance is first broken.  This principle equally applies when responding to an attack in the form of a shoulder grab (Katadori).

For many students, breaking a uke’s balance from a shoulder grab to sufficiently facilitate the creation of a technique can at times be quite challenging. This is particularly so where the nage wishes to apply a technique relying on an ikkyo (first teaching) intent.

In the below video, Ian Grant and Jeremy Gehrke Sensei demonstrate an Aiki option that may be used to break a uke’s balance from a static attack position. The application involves using kokyu principles to enhance the traditional balance breaking approach that is ordinarily is used for static katadori applications where there is an ikkyo intent.

Also included in the video is a demonstration of how we typically break the balance of the uke using kokyu principles where the shoulder grab attack is more dynamic and under motion. The principles underpinning this method are discussed further in the “Additional Notes”.



  • Katadori – Aiki principles

In the below video Chicko Xerri Sensei (6th Dan AKI, Aikikai) explores some of the key Aiki principles that underpin higher level practice of katadori. The principles discussed are particularly applicable to Aiki responses to a shoulder grab where there is an ikkyo intent.

Our dojo is an AKI Fudoshin Dojo operating under the guidance and mentorship of Chicko Sensei.

All the best

Ian Grant
Dojo Cho
Aikido Warrior Fudoshin Dojo

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