The uki waza are the last section of the seventeen basic techniques for competition (junanahon randori no kata). They are focused on projecting the opponent’s energy outward, away from you. Uki (浮) means “floating.” The initial kuzushi in each technique is a movement which makes the opponent lose their grounding, thus floating.
Always remember that the forms of techniques presented in the seventeen basics are adapted for the safety of both participants. The ukemi, particularly flying breakfalls, are safety measures. You do not throw your opponent into the ukemi. They take the ukemi to protect from injury.
There are three techniques in the set. All three are otoshi (落), literally meaning “to fall” but here having the sense of being dropped.
- Mae Otoshi (前落), Front Drop
- Sumi Otoshi (隅落), Back Corner Drop
- Hiki Otoshi (引き落), Pulling Drop
- Two of the techniques (mae otoshi and hiki otoshi) derive from joint breaks. They must be applied in a safe manner.
- All three techniques cross your opponent’s centerline. This means if your opponent has a weapon, you must have control of it.
- Footwork is extremely important in these techniques. Be spatially aware.
- In order to maintain control of your opponent’s balance, you have to manipulate distance and angles.