It’s Okay to Fall
Don’t be afraid to fall with these falling techniques!
Falling is a part of life. Everyone falls down every now and then, especially when practicing martial arts. The important thing is knowing how to fall properly to avoid injuries. Here are a few falling techniques we teach at Bill Taylor’s Bushido School of Karate:
1. Front Fall
To practice the front fall, it’s best to start from a kneeling position. Turn your head to the side, raise your forearms in front of you and hold them flat, as if against a wall. From this position, try to straighten your legs, which will make you fall forward. The impact of the fall should be distributed along the forearms from the fingertips to elbows. Once you have mastered this fall from your knees, you can practice from a squatting position then from a standing position.
2. Back Fall
To practice the back fall, start from a seated position to get a feel for when to slap the mat. The slapping movement serves two purposes: to spread the impact of the fall over a wider area and to tighten the muscles of your back and sides to protect your ribs and spine. Beginning from a seated position, tuck your chin into your chest to avoid hitting your head on the floor. Then put your hands in front of you so it is easier to slap. Push yourself backward, maintaining a curve in your spine. As soon as your shoulder blades touch the ground, slap your hands as hard as you can on the ground next to you. Keep your arms close to your sides. Once you master the fall from the seated position, you can move on to a squat, standing, and, eventually, from a jump.
3. Side Fall
To practice the side fall, you can also start from a seated position. Again start by tucking your chin to your chest and bringing your slapping hand in front of you. Push yourself to the side so that you land on the side of your back. Landing on your back rather than completely on your side helps to prevent shoulder injuries. Practice this fall from the seated position before moving on to a squat, standing or jump.
Are your children interested in learning these falling techniques and more? Bill Taylor Karate is offering a FREE “How to Fall” Class for children ages 7 to 12. The seminar will take place at the Broad St. Location on Wednesday, Oct. 17 from 6-7 p.m. and at the Business Campus Dr. Location on Friday, Oct. 19 from 6-7 p.m. Spaces are limited so sign up your children soon to secure a spot!