Suwari Kokyuho
(Kokyu Dosa)

Variations of the basic aikido exercise


Suwari kokyuho (also called kokyu dosa) is a basic exercise in aikido. The video above shows several variations of it. Explanations below.



       It is very common in aikido to finish every class with the exercise suwari kokyuho. Tori (the one doing the technique) practices being unstoppable, and uke (the one being thrown) practices being immovable. Thus, they help each other improve.

       On this video, I show different versions of suwari kokyuho. There are many more. I recommend not practicing just one of them, even if its the one preferred. The version I practice the most is the first one on the video, but I do try others regularly.


Breathing

Suwari means seated, as in suwariwaza. Kokyuho means breathing method. So, the technique should be done as an expression of breath. The breathing should be abdominal, which is diaphragmatic, focused on ones center (tanden).

       It is a deep breathing technique used in all budo, adding power to ones movements. In aikido, its often referred to as kokyu ryoku, which simply means breath power.

       Kokyu dosa says just about the same thing. Dosa means movement. So, breath movement moving with the power of ones breath.


Develop the center

Id say suwari kokyuho is mainly an exercise to develop the center (tanden) and the power it brings to ones aikido. Both tori and uke exercise their centers in this technique, the latter by resisting from his or her center and the former by pursuing from the center.

       The last part of the video shows how to resist.

       Of course, suwari kokyuho can also be practiced very softly, without conflicting forces. The video contains examples of that, as well.



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