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#96572 - 03/01/04 09:41 AM Breakfalling without mats
Anonymous
Unregistered


Those of you that can breakfall (which doesn't include me yet, mine is still abysmal), how effective do you think it would be in a street situation? Has anyone ever had to breakfall on the pavement? What happened?
Sharon

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#96573 - 03/01/04 10:10 AM Re: Breakfalling without mats
immrtldragon Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/22/03
Posts: 1540
Loc: Just outside Philadelphia, PA
We do quite a lot of breakfalling in Judo...on the mat of course. I've never tried it on an extremely hard surface but I'm sure it would hurt...but it would not hurt as much as not knowing how to fall. Some Judoka in my school still can't fall without being stiff. It's all about relaxing and going with it. Once the fear of going down is gone, the falling is not bad. Just RELAX, go limp almost.

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#96574 - 03/01/04 10:16 AM Re: Breakfalling without mats
dazzler2 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/11/03
Posts: 148
Loc: england
Hi Sharon

in the street or in a bar or where ever...some breakfall awareness is definitely going to help although no guarantees you wont come out of it with a few bruises.

I've been rolling and breakfalling for years..when I did my jujitsu dan grade we were rolling without mats and its definitely not something I'd chose to do.

I guess the point is you dont always have a choice.

Good luck with it...I'm sure it will improve!

Cheers

D

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#96575 - 03/01/04 11:40 AM Re: Breakfalling without mats
Bossman Offline
Veteran

Registered: 08/25/03
Posts: 1785
Loc: Chatham Kent UK
Hi Sharon
We've never used mats and never found it a problem. In fact at a festival 2 yrs ago we did a demo out in a local high street with some ju jitsu guys.... they couldn't break fall without the mats and my guys were rolling everywhere - you would have thought that we were the ju jitsu! Got a film of it somewhere, will show you next time I see you.

Learning to fall on all terrain is not as difficult as you'd think. It's one of the first skills we teach the kids as most children's injuries in life are caused by falling badly.

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#96576 - 03/01/04 01:00 PM Re: Breakfalling without mats
schanne Offline
breaks things

Registered: 02/18/04
Posts: 4370
Loc: Woodbury NJ
Sharon, Training over time has tought me how to fall on most any surface but that doesn't mean that it still doesn't hurt. [IMG]http://www.fightingarts.com/forums/ubb/eek.gif[/IMG]

Bonzai

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#96577 - 03/01/04 04:00 PM Re: Breakfalling without mats
Anonymous
Unregistered


I have used breakfalls off the mat.
One was on concrete, fell face down. Other than slight tingling, redness on forerams, unhurt.

Other time was inside. The edge of carpet attacked me, causing me to trip. Managed to do perfect forward roll, right back up on to feet. I stopped, totaly shocked.

I wouldn't advocate practicing breakfalls or throwing w/o a mat, but they will eliminate or minimize injury off of mat.

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#96578 - 03/01/04 04:42 PM Re: Breakfalling without mats
the504mikey Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 06/19/03
Posts: 790
Loc: Louisiana, United States
I have heard others say that when breakfalling off the mat one should not slap as one would for a normal judo breakfall.

This is interesting to me because I have a shoulder injury that is aggravated by slapping.

Bossman, do you mostly roll when taking falls on hard surfaces or do you have a way to fall safely? I have experimented with rolling and with taking most of the impact on my feet-- I am very interested in any pointers or information you guys can provide about falling on hard surfaces.

I have a long way to go in this area...

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#96579 - 03/01/04 07:33 PM Re: Breakfalling without mats
Jamoni Offline
Veteran

Registered: 01/17/03
Posts: 1514
Loc: St. Louis, MO, USA
As a lifelong skateboarder, I can tell you that learning to roll and breakfall is absolutely necessary for falls on concrete. You will still probably hurt yourself, but road rash and tweaked wrists are better than broken elbows and cracked skulls. When breakfalling on concrete, keep your elbows from hitting, and tuck your head TIGHT. The impact is harder, and so you are more likely to untuck that head and crack it anyway. Take as much impact on your butt/thighs as you can.
I once did a flying leap from the top of a picnic table, flew about 20 feet, and tucked into a perfect roll on dirt and rocks, coming up on my feet, blind drunk. And then had to stop my untrained drunker buddy from trying it. Would I try that TODAY?....

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#96580 - 03/02/04 03:55 AM Re: Breakfalling without mats
Bossman Offline
Veteran

Registered: 08/25/03
Posts: 1785
Loc: Chatham Kent UK
[QUOTE]Originally posted by the504mikey:

Bossman, do you mostly roll when taking falls on hard surfaces or do you have a way to fall safely? I have experimented with rolling and with taking most of the impact on my feet-- I am very interested in any pointers or information you guys can provide about falling on hard surfaces.

I have a long way to go in this area...

[/QUOTE]

We roll (until we are standing) or "collapse downwards" to a defended position, to "slap" a hard surface would be madness.

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#96581 - 03/04/04 12:25 AM Re: Breakfalling without mats
Anonymous
Unregistered


[QUOTE]Originally posted by Bossman:
We roll (until we are standing) or "collapse downwards" to a defended position, to "slap" a hard surface would be madness. [/QUOTE]


I'm with Bossman on this. We started off with the mats in order to get the movements correct - then on the Dojo floor (wood - no mats)... then in progression to higher belts we do them on gravel once in a blue moon.... with your arms and legs covered by the material of a Gi its no big deal.

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#96582 - 03/04/04 07:39 AM Re: Breakfalling without mats
Lo C'hi Offline
Member

Registered: 10/27/02
Posts: 88
Loc: L.I.,N.Y.
I was always taught that the purpose of a "slap out" was to redistribute the force of a fall over a greater surface area and prevent serious injuries. It also positions the body for shoulder and back rolls and controls the momentum of the fall to spring back up or to assume a ground fighting guard position.

That would make it even more important to slap a hard surface.
I will take the bumps and bruises over broken bones anyday, and throw a few kicks and attempt my favorite monkey foot technique while I am down there.

Train hard and be well.

Al

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#96583 - 03/04/04 05:11 PM Re: Breakfalling without mats
Jamoni Offline
Veteran

Registered: 01/17/03
Posts: 1514
Loc: St. Louis, MO, USA
LoChi, true, it is important to slap, but you cant do it the way you would on a mat. First, you should ROLL if at all possible, until your momentum is low enough to make slapping feasible. If you HAVE to breakfall, you have to protect your head first, then joints and bones, then worry about meat. So when you slap, don't do it flat armed like on a mat, try to keep your elbow from hitting, cause it WILL break. Same with knees. Its better to "slap" with the bottom of your shoe than the side. Ankle damage, dontchaknow.

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#96584 - 03/08/04 02:55 PM Re: Breakfalling without mats
Lo C'hi Offline
Member

Registered: 10/27/02
Posts: 88
Loc: L.I.,N.Y.
Hi Jamoni,
I agree about breakfalling adaptations on hard surfaces but my only adjustment is to make sure I use the palm of my hand to hit the ground rather than the back of my hand , which I sometimes use in class. Using the back of the hand positions the point of your elbow to make contact with the ground and that is not a good idea, as you mentioned.
My slap outs include my chin tucked into my chest and a half roll to absorb the force of the fall without having to take my eyes off the opponent.
I feel rolling too soon during or after a fall is a very vulnerable position. I know that if I was the one to throw or drop a dangerous opponent, I will be following closely while he is in the air, and striking when he hits the ground.
I think that the direction more than the momentum of the throw determines whether to roll or slap. If you are thrown straight down, like in a major reap, I would think a roll is not the best option.

Train hard and be well.

Al

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#96585 - 03/08/04 03:08 PM Re: Breakfalling without mats
JohnL Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 03/24/03
Posts: 4309
Loc: NY, NY, USA
The adjustment you suggest is un-necessary.

No slapping on a breakfall should be done with the back of your hand. It should always be done with the palm down.

If you have to make the adjustment you said, you're doing it wrong in the first place.

JohnL

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#96586 - 03/09/04 09:25 AM Re: Breakfalling without mats
Lo C'hi Offline
Member

Registered: 10/27/02
Posts: 88
Loc: L.I.,N.Y.
Well, John, I can not say that I agree with you this time. There are times when the back of the hand is the best choice.
My first response was for a full weight drop and we agree that palm down is the way to go (if you can not roll), but I did recall times in class when I used the back of my hand to slap out. It did not seem like a bright thing to do on hard surfaces, so to reply to Sharon's question I wanted to make the point that palm down is safer, but since one school that I work out in is a concrete floor with minimal padding I tried to recall when the back of the hand worked for me.

The first example that comes to mind is when there is an arm wrap involved and your full weight will not hit the ground but you want to get as much space as possible between your body and the punches that will be thrown. In this case it would look like a crane's wrist strike to the floor and I will be using my weight and momentum to pull the attacker to the ground with me before he can strike, like a side roll. The back of the hand sets up the roll to that side.
If I see the palm down when I have unbalanced an opponent with an arm wrap and sweep, I will push in that direction to bend the fingers and wrist in the wrong direction.

Al

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#96587 - 03/09/04 09:49 AM Re: Breakfalling without mats
JohnL Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 03/24/03
Posts: 4309
Loc: NY, NY, USA
Hi Lo C'hi

Thanks for the reply, but I do not accept what you say.

I have never seen, nor seen taught, a breakfall where you slap out with the back of your hand. All you will succeed in doing is breaking the bones of your hand due to the lack of padding on the back.

As for locking your opponents wrist when he slaps out. The chances of you recognising when someone slaps out palm up/down and being able to take advantage of it are miniscule. In any case the wrist locks in both directions so it wouldn't matter.

As such, I believe the advice you're giving to be flawed and could result in injuries by the people that take it.

JohnL

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#96588 - 03/09/04 12:13 PM Re: Breakfalling without mats
Lo C'hi Offline
Member

Registered: 10/27/02
Posts: 88
Loc: L.I.,N.Y.
I understand your position John, and do not expect to change your mind about the validity of this technique but I am not advising anyone to use the back of the hand for EVERY breakfall. That was just an example to show it can work in the right situation to disagree with your claim that it should never be done. I know it can work because I have used it on many occasions, many indoor and some outdoor.
During a normal class, I will be hitting the floor 50-100 times as well as throwing other people the same number. I have been practicing consistently for the past 10 years with no major injuries and considering I am 5'6", 140 lbs, and 48 years old, I may be doing something right. Very few students are smaller than me and even fewer are older so if my methods were that dangerous, I would not have survived this long.

In my second reply I made sure inexperienced people knew the palm is safer because no previous replies made that clear.

I would expect people to keep an open mind and practice new techniques in a controlled environment where there is less risk of injury and they can decide on their own if it can work for them.

There is not much else I can add to this topic, so y'all have a great day.

Al

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#96589 - 03/09/04 04:11 PM Re: Breakfalling without mats
Jamoni Offline
Veteran

Registered: 01/17/03
Posts: 1514
Loc: St. Louis, MO, USA
This was the first warm dry weekend in some time, so I took the opportunity to go "practice my rolls and breakfalls". Got out the skateboard and tore up the town. And my elbow. And knee. Considering the speeds I was working with, I think my field testing shows my technique to be quite advanced. I think I'll start a thread on non martial applications of martial arts training.

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#96590 - 03/09/04 04:51 PM Re: Breakfalling without mats
csinca Offline
former moderator

Registered: 04/16/03
Posts: 672
Loc: Southern California
Rolling and taking breakfalls on grass are great fun. The trick is not to slide...

My sensei and I once visited a Karate studio and ended up showing a few throws to the class. Thankfully after the first breakfall on the wood, my sensei rolled me out of everything else. It hurt but nothing was broken and I didn't modify my fall at all.

Did I mention that it hurt?

Chris

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#96591 - 03/09/04 05:35 PM Re: Breakfalling without mats
Energy Master Offline
Member

Registered: 02/17/04
Posts: 76
Loc: VA
Well, I wouldn't try it on concrete until you get use to the motion and how it feels. You should probably start with like a mat. And then grass, then dirt. You know. Until you get use to it.

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