what is hiza no nuki?
Hiza No Nuki means to drop all power from the knee. Actually it is the technical method to use Tobokuho (falling tree method) to facilitate correct movement.
The objective of Hiza No Nuki is to bend the knee(s), move smoothly using the gravity, moving the whole body forward. Hence, relax the knee(s) instantly. Take care, bending caused by bending is a common error, you should bend by unblocking.
Ultimately, this should be done naturally.
If you bend because of bending you will tend to support the body with the upper leg muscles. It is the upper leg muscles that together with the knee need to be shut down temporarily to let your body drop drastically or allow your body to move smoothly.
"Like the pulse of a heart beat" is what Nukina sensei said about Kime and Nukeru and this applies just as much to Hiza No Nuki.
You'll see exactly how in this video and learn some easy yet effective methods to develop this yourself.
methods to improve hiza no nuki
In Karate there are two main problems.
Either you don't use your body or you do and then you can't control it well.
This method allows you to avoid both issues at the same time using Hiza No Nuki.
Strictly speaking, in Budo it is not necessary (and not advised) to always move at maximum speed as is often seen in tournaments. More fundamentally though, you need to be able to move slow, smooth and fast without any excuse of why you don't need this or are not able to. Going from one stage into the other comes down to accelerating your movement. Your knee has a tremendous part to play in this and it this video I will teach you how to use that to your advantage.
Here's how to develop Hiza No Nuki dropping movement and add it to your Mawatte Gedan Barai.
Awareness first. Feeling your knee. Then control - learn to turn your knee 'on and off' with specific exercises. These videos are from my seminar on Hiza No Nuki where I introduced key methods. Methods I learned from Nukina sensei. It all starts here...
I still remember Nukina sensei doing this for the first time. As if he was skating on ice — that smooth.
This method creates dropping awareness if you do it right. Checkout this footage from my seminar in 2018.
Stances always have a purpose. A reason to be used. Naihanchi Dachi is excellent if you want to develop dropping movement and connect it to your strike. How this works? It's not so complicated by you have to know what to pay attention to.
At some point, you need to let certain methods go and break free.
After all, when it comes to combat you need to be able to move. This method is the bridge between static Hiza No Nuki practise and dynamic movement.
If there's one thing you want to avoid it's "Isolated Knowlegde".
That's what Yokoyama Kancho called knowledge that only exists in certain situations. It's not holistic.
Make your knowledge holistic so you can apply it in any situation and benefit from that skill each and every time.
Your knee or knees play an important role so it's really important to know the what, why and how. That will allow you to move faster in any movement.
Let's finalise this article with methods from my seminar in Germany
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