Jumps & Falls (Updated: 02/07/18)


The most important thing to remember about jumping (either with both legs or one) is to always keep the knees in line with the ankles and to always make sure you bend your knees upon landing. If leaping from one leg, put a good amount of awareness on the down step of the hind leg. Same applies with hopping. Observe and copy the various animal jumps (such as frogs, cats, and rabbits). All jumps can end with any number of falls (see further in page).

Exercise 1: Butoh Jump Rope

Jump rope and make great use of reduction & regeneration by X.

Exercise 2: Maximum Excitement

Since high excitement is associated with jumping, take excited jumping into the level of absurd.

Exercise 3: Bouncy Ball

Mimic the ball as it decreases its bounce.


Falling Safety

Figure 17, Asymptotic Curves

When falling, always keep your awareness above your body. Think “up.” This will soften your movements. Fall as if the floor is more fragile than you. You can also fall utilizing the asymptotic curve. An asymptote is a vertical or horizontal curve but at the last moment approaches 0 but never gets there.

Falling is one of the Four Butoh Spices: (1) Shock; (2) Sway; (3) Collapse; (4) Die.

Rotational Fall

Turn leg medially then tuck behind the other leg while going down.

Cut String Fall

Whole Body Collapse

A string pulls your arm. You are suspended by only this string and your body is completely immoble. Then somebody cuts this string and your entire body collapses.

Cascading Collapse

The string is cut and your body collapses beginning from the fingertips and then trailing down to the floor. This effect is like dominoes, a chain reaction.


Divide your fall in half, then try in three, then more. Also try while utilizing exhalation. For instance, if you fall five times, expel the breath five times.

Slow Motion Fall

Model a slow motion fall out of one of your real time falls. The slower you can go the better. Ten minutes even. The most important thing to remember about the slow motion fall is the low level. It is much more difficult to sustain the lower you go. Keep in mind also that there is a moment of gold that happens inches from the ground. Do not lose your awareness even at the last millisecond. Sustain.


Splat on the floor like an egg. You can find something else that resonates also such as a fruit or carton of milk. You can even dance (physically or not) any fluids that pour out as a result.

Fall Across Space

This is an exercise of simply extending a fall across space. The lengthier the space, the better.