Iriminage – A Duh Moment

In a recent post (December 18th – the one with the video of Christian Tissier Shinan doing iriminage something like 46 times) I mentioned that we had done iriminage in class that day, and it was the “first time I’d seen it live.”

If you read my blog here at (as opposed to on AikiWeb) you may have see this mention in the left-hand column: “Any inept or incorrect information is my own responsibility, and should not be a reflection on others. ” This is one of those times.

Tonight in class we did a very familiar technique that we’ve done dozens of times: iriminage.

<smacking forehead>

It wasn’t until I heard the name tonight that the lightbulb flickered on, and I realized the familiar technique and the new one I’d never seen before are the same thing.

The version we usually have done involves (roughly – not complete instructions here…) taking Uke off balance and into you while turning, and then stepping into them to put them into a backfall. The “new” one involved taking them nearly to the mat in a descending turn, so they have to catch themselves with a hand to keep from going down completely, and then releasing them a bit, and as they pop back up (as Tissier does) stepping into them to put them into a backfall.

So there. For anyone who’s been wondering how I could possibly have been training for 7th months without seeing iriminage, mystery solved. Note to self: Pay closer attention to the names of techniques in class. Sheesh…