What you need to know about wado tobikomizuki
Nukina sensei once told me, "Tobikomizuki is an application".
Although it can be argued if you can categorise it as an application, it's clear that it is basic practise in a more dynamic manner — more close to Renrakuwaza.
Let's start by breaking it down into:
- the meaning
- the stance
- and finally the important points that you should take into account.
Key points of tobikomizuki
Meaning of Tobikomizuki:
Tobikomi means to leap forward (Tobi means jump). That's why Tobikomizuki is a practical application of junte. It's Junzuki and Junzuki no Tsukkomi, but in a more dynamic manner.
Name of the stance:
The final posture is related to junzuki no tsukkomi and could be called junzuki no tsukkomi dachi. Anyways, the point is not to take that stance, but to cover distance and close the maai. The stance is the result of your body movement.
Having said that, in a book it should state "Junzuki No Tsukkomi Dachi" to provide a clear guideline – reality is a grey area.
- Push from your hips and relax your knee.
- Keep your back straight as you move and slide your foot like Suri Ashi.
- Squeeze your elbows and try to disengage the bicep muscle as much as possible (so don't raise your fists and than punch with your arm).
- Punch slightly from underneath and connect your hip to your chest to your shoulder and finally to your fist to punch with your body following a chain of events.
Take Hidari Shizentai (some teach Hanmi) Note that your front foot may be a bit more ahead of you.
Some will teach toe inline with heel, others with a fist-width gap for standardisation purposes. What's important is that you take the stance naturally.
Another point is circumstance. For example, when writing the book Wado No Michi I needed to make a clear difference between Shomen (facing forward) and Hanmi (angle).
When forcing your body to become Shomen your front foot will naturally slide back and the stance will become shorter.
Start moving by pushing your hips and relaxing your knee while keeping your back straight.
The 'knee thing' is not to bend drastically like dropping, but to allow your body move move forward smoothly.
As you move, bring your arms forward through centre line as shown. At the same time, it's best to wait as long as possible and not raise your arms straight away.
You can even emphasise the elbow movement as demonstrated here 👇
Learn more about The Hologram Series here (it's free).
Execute Tobikomizuki using Junzuki No Tsukkomi Dachi.
From the Hardcover Book: Wado No Michi
Move the body forward and bring the arms in position protecting seichusen. You should have the feeling as if moving the arms from the elbows. If you have the feeling of moving from the fist only the fist travels straight and the arm will just follow. The elbow is likely to open and it will become more difficult to concentrate your energy from the inside striking with the whole body.
Also, you can visualise to dive through a small hole, so move your arms straight towards the hole to fit through. Try to make seichusen as small as possible.
Tobi can mean jump, but also leap or dive.
Of course, you have to control your body and not sacrifice it, but visualise to dive in and strike with the body. Move the whole body forward at once, leave the arms hanging relaxed besides the body and then jump forward covering distance with yori ashi while thrusting your whole body weight forward channeling your energy through tobikomizuki.
Do not mistake the word jump with pushing the ground.
Use your body and the gravity to cover distance. Be careful, diving in swimming means head and hands first, but in Wado it is koshi first. Hence, push koshi forward slightly as you start to move, lead with koshi and not with the head. The head and upper body are actually a little later as part of the connected movement.
From hidari shizentai, koshi moves first with hiza no nuki, followed by a thrust of the left shoulder and the actual left jodanzuki.
The fist is the latest to moves and finishes last.
So, on a small scale the body has to move like a wave connecting all body parts. Disconnecting means not using the energy of the wave, wasting potential.