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Tenchi Nage in Aikido - "Heaven and Earth Throw"

Updated on June 4, 2013

The main features of Tenchi Nage, literally translated as the "Heaven-Earth throw", are that your circular motion will extend Uke out on one side, and will be followed by that motion which you will use to cut him down on his rear diagonal side with a single flowing motion in space resembling a horizontal inverted ā€œSā€ Your body, as usual, will lead the entire action, but your arms in diagonal extension forward will operate like the wings of a glider, describing a diagonal spiralling loop toward the ground.

Tenchi Nage by Anno Sensei
Tenchi Nage by Anno Sensei

This projection is particularly adaptable to the neutralization of almost any form of frontal attack, as you capture its extension and lead the Unified Power of Attack of Uke into the pattern most suitable to your final aim ā€“ bringing him to the mat.

In this case the original force of his attack will be led out and back down to his rear diagonal side. The angle of his projection will be a narrow one; his fall, consequently, will be somewhat angular. If the technique is performed properly, however, he will be able to roll easily and safely across the mat.

Your own action will consist of a large, lateral step to his side for the purpose of extending him out in unbalance, followed by another large step, low and to his rear. Both your arms, openly extended, will perform the following functions: lead his captured arms out into unbalance, and cut the flight of his unbalanced body down, to his rear. The entire action must be performed smoothly and without any jarring motions.

Katate Dori Gyaku Hanmi Tenchi Nage
Katate Dori Gyaku Hanmi Tenchi Nage

The most simple form of Tenchi Nage is illustrated above with same hand grab, or Katate Dori Gyaku Hanmi.

As uke grabs your left wrist with his right hand, you will take a long step diagonally to your left side, leading his hand down and out in the same direction. (You may grasp his right wrist, if you wish, to insure his extension.) You will spread your arms, the left one leading uke out and down into a condition of unbalance on his right side, the right stretching across and over his left shoulder under his chin. His lateral extension will allow you to slide close to his unbalanced right side with a long step on your right leg to his right-rear side. You will swing both arms out and down, extending your well-balanced body behind them and propelling uke down to the mat. (This projection may also be applied in the tenkan variation)

Do not attempt to "load him up" onto your hips. His complete unbalance and the spin of his reversed motion should be more than sufficient to whirl him into the final aiki roll.

Tenchi Nage is one of the best exercises to understand the Aikido "unbendable arm"
Tenchi Nage is one of the best exercises to understand the Aikido "unbendable arm"

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    • profile image

      Mande 

      3 years ago

      A minute saved is a minute earedn, and this saved hours!

    • profile image

      Nicoly 

      3 years ago

      I appreciate your kind and geneorus advice a lot!. I have been trying it hardly and did not get those amazing results!. It is nice to see that you got my comment in a good way!God bless you!VA:F [1.9.10_1130]please wait VA:F [1.9.10_1130](from 0 votes)

    • ZungTran profile imageAUTHOR

      Tran Z 

      5 years ago from Singapore

      Agreed. In the same manner, the suwari waza version of kokyu ho also holds lots of similarities and is an ultimate exercise of Ki extension. Although it's not easy to master, I think it should be taught to all newcomers just as well as basic movements.

    • jpcmc profile image

      JP Carlos 

      5 years ago from Quezon CIty, Phlippines

      Yes, that's right, many first time Aikidoka will learn the "unbendable arm" and this is a great way to illustrate how it is used as well as the power of extending the ki.

    • ZungTran profile imageAUTHOR

      Tran Z 

      5 years ago from Singapore

      That's right, incorrect use of ki extension is one of the common mistakes when executing this technique, the advice to newcomers is always when you shift your center forward, your arms move with you extended, not bent.

    • jpcmc profile image

      JP Carlos 

      5 years ago from Quezon CIty, Phlippines

      This technique is a great example of extending ki. Proper timing is important. Students must remember to use their ki and not just push. This will not be effective. Proper body posture is likewise important.

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