There will likely come a time in your Jiu Jitsu journey where your coach calls you up to the front of the class so that they can demonstrate the move of the day on you. Being an Uke or dummy for techniques can be stressful, especially if you’re new and not sure what is expected of you.
That is why we’ve put together this guide for how to be an Uke (dummy) for your professor. If you’re new to Jiu Jitsu, this guide will tell you everything you need to be a good Uke.(dummy)
What is an Uke?
An Uke in Jiu Jitsu is the person that the instructor picks to demonstrate a technique on. The instructor will put this student in a position and walk the class through how to perform it.
As an Uke or technique dummy, it is your job to relax and let the instructor demonstrate the technique.
Tips for being a good Uke
There’s a bit of an art to being a good Uke or dummy. When you’re a good one, your teammates will have a better understanding of how to do the technique. Here are some tips for how to be a good Uke.
You may be nervous if you’ve never been the technique dummy but the best thing you can do is just relax. You have to stay relaxed and just let your coach show the technique.
If you stay tense it makes it harder for your instructor to do the technique and you could hurt yourself. So remember to stay relaxed and let your instructor show the technique.
There is a middle ground to walk here, however. You don’t want to be so relaxed that you’re not giving realistic responses.
Listen to Your Coach
Another key to being a good Uke is being a good listener. Always listen to your coach, so you know exactly what they want you to do.
If you’re ever not clear on what your instructor wants, always ask questions. That way you’ll know exactly what they want from you.
One of the most important tips for being an Uke is knowing when to tap. Don’t try to be the tough guy and try to see if you can resist tapping during a demonstration. That’s how you end up going to sleep or getting hurt.
Tips for the Coach
Not only do Ukes need to work with their coach, but the coach also needs to be good to them. There are many coaches out there that don’t treat their Ukes well and that can cause friction in the class. Here are some tips for the coaches on how they should treat their Ukes.
The most important tip we can give is to be patient with your student. They may be new and not sure what to do, so you have to keep your cool.
If you consistently lose your cool and snap at your Ukes, your students will not want to learn from you.
If the student you picked is newer, you will have to carefully explain to them what you want to do. Always be clear with your directions, so that your student can be a good Uke. Your students aren’t mind readers, and a bit of instruction goes a long way.
Talk To Your Uke
As you’re demonstrating the technique, you should talk to your Uke as you’re doing the technique to see if they’re okay. This way, you won’t hurt them by putting too much pressure on them as you’re demonstrating something.
Don’t Hurt your Uke
It is really important to remember not to hurt your student when you’re demonstrating a technique. Don’t crank their limbs, lay down 100% pressure, or put them to sleep.
Now you’re ready to be an Uke!
Being an Uke or dummy symbolizes that the coach respects you and trusts you to demonstrate a technique. If you follow the tips above, you will be a good Uke and have no problems whenever your coach summons you.
Also, for the coaches out there, remember to communicate with your Uke and treat them with respect.