Soto Uke is a basic blockage that we often learn in his karate debut. However Soto Uke has been forgot basic kata like the Taikyoku and the Heian. It is found only in the Ten-no-kata, which is a Kata very little taught, and not before Bassaï Daï in advanced kata.
Is it an oversight, is it voluntary? If one of the readers has a beginning of answer that he does not hesitate to share with us in a comment.
Anyway, you must know and master Soto Uke. He is from the same family as Uchi Uke - Lateral locking of the forearm (Ude Uke), but in a substantially opposite movement, ie from the outside to the inside.
Soto Uke will allow to deflect a frontal attack by a circular movement of the forearm from outside to inside the body. You block with the outer edge of the forearm. The entire forearm is used, from the hand hammer (Tetsui) to the fleshy part near the elbow.
Soto Uke can be used at both Jodan and Chudan levels.
Decomposition of Soto Uke:
The arm should not be too high and you should not pull it too far back; The humerus remains in the plane of the shoulders.
In fact it is the chest which turns to the maximum towards the back, thus creating a torsion of the trunk with stretching of the muscular chains in diagonal (Pectoral, oblique Abdominal)
Now your technique will start from your Hara (belly). You will do a quick rotation of the hips in the direction of the technique.
This rotation will propagate up to the shoulders that will come to realign on the hips: you pull the arm that were in front doing Ikité as if you wanted to pull your opponent towards you and in this same rotation, your front- arm (the other of course!) sweeps the space in front of you from the outside to the inside by a horizontal circular motion (and not descending).
Rotation should continue until your arm has passed the axis of your body in front of you, but not much more. If you stop before, you have not protected yourself enough and if you go much further, you risk endangering your side or back.
Your arm should not be too tight in front or too tight against you. The angle at the elbow is about 90 °.
At the moment of kime, we must synchronize:
- the locking of the hips (by an abdominal contraction),
- the rotation of the wrist (whiplash),
- and contraction under the armpits (bodily connection).
With experience we will be able to do without turning the chest to the back and we can do Soto Uke in a much more direct way, but the rotation of the hips will always precede a little rotation of the shoulders still creating the torsion of the bust.
Travel and preparatory phase:
We just saw Soto Uke without displacement, but it will often be coupled with a displacement and we will see that in this case the preparatory phase is a little different.
When moving, you will no longer need to turn your chest backwards during the preparatory phase; it will be enough that your chest is late on the displacement and the rotation of your hips so that the torsion of the trunk is realized naturally.
I had already discussed this notion of torsion of the trunk in my article: Oi-Zuki and the work of the spine.
We are here in the same case: The hips turn and the upper body is behind this rotation. It follows a torsion of the bust and a stretching of the oblique anterior muscle chains that will be used in the blocking phase itself to add speed to the technique.
I'll show you this more in detail on the video and we'll do exercises to make you feel this twist when moving.
I now propose that we go to practice and that we train a little
I let you go to the cloakroom to put your kimono, then ...
… a little warm up and I find you right now on the video !
>>> Download the video
Here I hope you have grasped the principle of torsion of the bust and the importance of the work of the hips in Soto-Uke. I wait your comments with impatience.
See you soon,
"How to succeed your grade passes"