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Sometimes its harder being an Uke

Last night I was asked to be the uke for a friend prepping his Nage-No-Kata test. In all forms of practice short of Kata, being an uke is quite easy. You just show up and play dumb, with the ocassional jump or movement to make your Tori look good. But in Kata, being the Uke is a lot of work.

Unlike the katas in most Karate styles, which are performed solo, Judo's katas are all performed with a partner. (More than that, depending on the level of Black Belt you are shooting for, you need to show kata proficiency as either tori, uke, or both!). While I might get flamed for saying so, Kata in a sense is like a dance - each partner has a role, and each partner needs to learn it.

For Shodan (1st degree BB. AFAIK, in the US) you need to perform Nage-No-Kata as Tori. Interestingly enough, performing it as Uke is required for Nidan (2nd degree), and now that I am familiar with it, I understand why that was done!

Comments

Arne Midtlund said…
When I got my shodan I remember both Ura Nage and Yoko Gake. Very hard to be a good uke. A lot of power in both of the techniques. ;-)

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