How to perform the Forward Roll:
Designed for falling forward and/or broadening the distance between oneself and an attacker.
- Step forward, place lead arm down with elbow near leading foot (arm may touch surface).
- Tuck the head (looking back) push off with the rear leg.
- Allow your body to rock forward into the roll across from shoulder to the hip.
- Keep the feet tucked during the roll.
- Come out of the roll hands up turning to face the direction the roll was begun.
Forward Roll Tutorial
Video by Sensei Rick Tew
Forward Roll Applications:
- Creating Distance from opponent
- Close distance to Opponent
- Falling from a higher position such as roof or tree
- Picking up objects
- Getting pushed from behind, or tripped
- Rolling over and under objects
How to take up the shock in a Forward Roll
When performing a forward roll or a diving roll, it is often useful to use your hands as shocks (the same way you would use the balls of your feet and knees when jumping) to help decrease the impact of your roll.
What is often missed in self-defense is how much damage your environment can do to you too. When in a street combat situation you have to understand how dangerous the ground and structures or elements in your environment really are. Basic training can help to protect your immediate environment as well as help you to become more aware of your surroundings.
In this drill, you simply practice putting your hands forward first, in order to help take up that initial shock as you land or to help guide you into your roll.