At our dojo learning to breakfall is an accepted part of our training culture. The ability to breakfall is something we learn and develop to make sure we stay safe in our practice and to enable us to practice Aikido at its more advanced levels.
Most classes include a breakfalling skills development component. The focus of the training tends to be on traditional breakfalling, as this form of ukemi can be universally applied to receive any technique. In addition, some seniors also venture down the supplemental path of what is sometimes referred to as “feather rolling”.
A key aspect of our training is to not only focus on the uke, but also the nage. Given that the decision as to whether the uke is to breakfall generally lies with the nage, it is important that the nage has the skills to not only remain stable and anchored (if for no other reason so as not to fall on their uke), but also support and turn the uke to assist them in landing safely and correctly.
The below video shows a selection of some of the breakfalling exercises that we commonly do at the dojo. While some may appear daunting at first look, they are surprisingly easy to pick up with the appropriate instruction. They are also a lot of fun. You will note from the video that they are being practised by persons of varied ages, sizes and experience levels.
Have a great weekend