Ryotedori seio otoshi

Free form ukemi training

o-sensei,throw,Training in how to safely receive technique (ukemi) is something that is particularly emphasised at our dojo.  In every class time is set aside to develop and refine our ukemi skills.  Everyone participates, however, the level and intensity of the practice varies consistent with each student’s experience and skills.

One form of ukemi practice  that we have a lot of fun doing is what we call “free form ukemi training”.  Basically the uke repeatedly receives different variations of the same technique which, depending on the variation, result in unpredictable and different falling outcomes.

Ian Grant - Aikido UkemiRyotadori seoi otoshi is a favourite technique for this sort of training. Subtle changes in the application of the technique result in the uke having to unpredictably roll or breakfall from the left or right hand side while in an unbalance position.  They also result in alterations in the space between the uke and nage, as well as the extent to which the some or all of the nage’s body operates to sever the uke’s connection to the ground.

The use of ryotadori seoi otoshi  for this sort of training is demonstrated in the video below.



  • Video Library: Falling and uke arts

For further videos and posts on ukemi training, including how to forward roll, see Video Library: Falling and uke arts.


  • Ryotadori seoi otoshi – the basic elements

In the below video, Peter Kelly Sensei, International Instructor for Aikido Yuishinkai, demonstrates the shape and footwork for ryotadori seoi otoshi as practised in our school. As noted in the lead-in commentary for the featured video, in order to produce different ukemi outcomes for training purposesparticipants made subtle (and maybe at times not so subtle) amendments to the execution of the technique.


  • Training methods for learning to breakfall

For examples of training methods that we use to develop our breakfalling skills (one aspect of ukemi) see the below video.  More detailed information on ukemi training can be found in the Video Library: Falling and uke arts.


Have a great week.

Ian Grant
Head Instructor
Aikido Warrior Dojo

Training notes: Ryotedori seoi otoshi

While by no means the most commonly practised “drop” technique, seoi otoshi (or “shoulder drop”) has been part of Aikido since its early days.

In the below video, students from our dojo are practising the technique from a traditional where both of the nage’s wrists are grabbed (ryotedori). This form of practice is excellent for ukemi training and developing aerobic fitness for the nage.



  • Technical notes

In the following video Peter Kelly Sensei of Aikido Yuishinkai (Tasmania) provides technical instruction for the technique.



  • Ryotedori kokyu nage

The set up for ryotedori seoi otoshi (as demonstrated in the video) is the same as for ryotedori kokyu nage.  For notes on ryotedori kokyu nage (including its set up) – see Training notes: Ryotedoru kokyu nage (and koshi nage).

  • Difference between seio otoshi and seio nage

Seio otoshi - Ian Grant SenseiThe difference between a seio otoshi (shoulder drop) and seio nage (shoulder throw)  is often a source of confusion. For discussion on the technical differences between the two technique types see – Seio otoshi and seio nage – Whats the difference?

Have a great week.

Ian Grant
Head Instructor
Aikido Warrior Dojo, Brisbane