Ikkyō

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Ikkyō literally translates as “first teaching,” because this is the first move taught in aikidō. Within Goshin-Jutsu, it is referred to as an arm lever after the principle governing the technique -- that the arm can be used as a lever to manipulate the body through the shoulder joint’s limited ability to reach backwards. This is achieved by controlling the opponent’s wrist or forearms, and by pressing on the back of the opponent’s upper arm or shoulder joint.

There are many ways to implement this concept; several of them are listed below. We encourage you to experiment in your leisure.

Inside arm lever

7-3 inside with an outside shutō block, immediately followed by a same-side grasping block. Twist outside and shoot your opposite-side hand through the opponent’s armpit and out behind them. Then, simultaneously:

  • Twsit your hips to the inside.
  • Hook behind the opponent’s shoulder with a thumb-knuckle block, pulling it down.
  • Raise your same-side hand to push the opponent’s arm down into their shoulder.

This will force the opponent to bend over at the waist, setting up a knee kicks to the head or throat, and/or downward elbow strikes to the neck or spine.

[video of inside arm lever, fast and slow, from various angles]

Outside arm lever

7-3 outside with an outside shutō block, immediately followed by a same-side grasping block. Then, simultaneously:

  • Twist your hips to the inside.
  • Press down against the crook of the opponent’s shoulder with your palm or an ude-uke.
  • Raise your same-side hand to push the opponent’s arm down into their shoulder.

This will force the opponent to bend over at the waist, setting up a knee kicks to the head or throat, and/or downward elbow strikes to the neck or spine.

[video of outside arm lever, fast and slow, from various angles]

Ikkyō-omote

This is aikidō’s forward, or inside, version of ikkyō. This is one of the more practical aikidō moves. Many other aikidō techniques, like nikkyō-omote and gokkyō, are variations of ikkyō. As such, 10-15% of aikidō training is devoted to training this one technique, over and over.

Cross-hand grab the opponent’s wrist, and slightly pull their wrist towards you. As the opponent pulls back to resist, raise your hand; the opponent’s arm will arc upwards. 7-3 inside and hook your same-side thumb under the opponent’s elbow. Push the opponent’s elbow forward, into their nose, to off-balance them.

[photo]

Step forward, rolling the opponent’s arm downward to bend them over.

From here, you can diagonally step-slide forward and into the opponent to off-balance them with a hip-check, then diagonally step-slide forward and away from the opponent, tugging on their arm, to pull them into the ground.

[video of ikkyo-omote, fast and slow, from various angles]

Once the opponent’s chest hits the mat, kneel in seiza, placing your inside knee in the opponent’s armpit. Hold the opponent’s arm out in front of you, perpendicular to their torso, and press straight down with both hands. One hand must be above the elbow, and one hand must be below the elbow; this, combined with the limited range of the shoulder joint will pin the opponent to the ground until the police can come collect them. For best results, roll the opponent’s arm forward for a locking pin. For a bonus wrist lock, bend the opponent’s wrist so their fingers point up.

Alternately, you can sit in seiza atop of the opponent’s arms, with one knee above their elbow, and one knee below the elbow. This will leave your hands free so you can dig through your pockets or purse for your cell phone to call the police.

Ikkyō-ura

This is aikidō’s rear, or outside, version of ikkyō. This is one of the more visually-stunning takedowns.

Again, cross-hand grab the opponent’s wrist, and slightly pull their wrist towards you. As the opponent pulls back to resist, raise your hand; the opponent’s arm will arc upwards. 7-3 outside into a sanchin-dachi, and hook your same-side thumb under the opponent’s elbow. Push the opponent’s elbow forward, into their nose, to off-balance them.

[photo]

Tenkan outside and extend your arms; point the opponent’s forearm diagonally downward, with their elbow on your centerline. This will send the opponent spiraling into the ground.

[video of ikkyo-ura, fast and slow, from various angles]

Once the opponent’s chest hits the mat, kneel in seiza, placing your inside knee in the opponent’s armpit. Hold the opponent’s arm out in front of you, perpendicular to their torso, and press straight down with both hands. One hand must be above the elbow, and one hand must be below the elbow; this, combined with the limited range of the shoulder joint will pin the opponent to the ground until the police can come collect them. For best results, roll the opponent’s arm forward for a locking pin. For a bonus wrist lock, bend the opponent’s wrist so their fingers point up.

Alternately, you can sit in seiza atop of the opponent’s arms, with one knee above their elbow, and one knee below the elbow. This will leave your hands free so you can dig through your pockets or purse for your cell phone to call the police.