(Fumikomi = stomping)?
Fumikomi has been discussed a lot here in the site. Many very informative articles are posted likeFumikomi Mechanism and First Time Fumikomi.
But I've got a question about it. Quite often I hear about stomping (making noise, kicking the floor with the RIGHT foot) in the movement of fumikomi when striking.
Is this motion necessary in fumikomi? Can correct fumikomi be performed quite smooth with right foot touching floor without great sound?Answer:
Thanks for your question and good question as usual.Fumikomi
is translated as "stomping". And probably because of this, many people tr to "stomp" without thinking about why we do it.
We do kick the floor with the left foot (if we have a stance of "the right foot forward and the left foot behind the right foot"). So probably when you wrote "kicking the floor with the RIGHT foot", you meant the" left" foot. The right foot functions as it pulls body up and forward.
Now there is a word, fumikiri
. Often confused with fumikomi
refers to the function of the back foot.Fumikiru
is a verb form and it means "to kick the floor/ground in order to proceed far".
So when we complete in a long jump, we use the right foot or the left to jump off, right? That is the action of fumikiru
So if we use the left foot to kick the floor off, the left foot is the fumikiri
Now as written in Why fumikomi-ashi in kendō?
, with akatana
, we did not have this fumikomi
. But I think we had fumikiri
When we see iaido
, we do not see any fumikomi
in order to deliver our body forward to reach out.Fumikiri
gives us more reach and force to cut into our opponent. So we must have good fumikiri
* I have to warn you that I don't know if the term fumikiri
is used in iaido
This is a controversial part.
Many say Fumikomi
(stomping) must be performed in kendō
; otherwise, it is not called ki-ken-tai-icchi
. And others say the actual stomping part is not so important as long as practitioners have ki-ken-tai-icchi
, i.e. sliding forward is good enough as long as a practitioner shows good zanshin
These are completely different views.
Personally, I am in the latter group.
I have seen many people who started kendō
in their latter age and they have very hard time getting fumikomi
right. This is not something everyone can perform after 2 or 3 years of practice; even Japanese children take more than 5 years to perform sufficient "fumikomi
Many 8-dan and 9-dan sensei
do not do fumikomi
because they are not capable of doing it anymore. They are slow too. Yet, they can beat us with no problems.
I know it is an extreme example but the point I want to make here is… Fumikomi
is a result of "reaching from a distance fast". As long as we deliver our body forward nice and sharp with the back foot with ki-ken-tai-icchi
, I think "stomping" is not necessary.
Now I really have to make sure of this. This is my personal opinion. If your sensei
tells you to do it, you should not argue. Try your best.
You will get the hang of it.
Also try to concentrate on "delivering your body forward" rather than "stomping". In that way, you can keep the balance of your body while executing your cut.
Hope this helps.