Impulse/Shock & Jump (Upd: Oct 23, ’22)

Impulse is like a spark. A spark can engage and/or shock. At one end, this spark can enable quite of a shock if fought against. If embraced, it can act as a magical seed.

The impulse or shock is connected to string as it is a force.

Quick movement derived from a spark can draw attention because it plays with time.

The shock comes unexpectedly or out of not being able to sustain the sheer amount of potential energy. What caused the impulse or shock? This is not empty movement, but something forced upon us. Essential movement.

We can resonate with the spark by aligning ourselves with the principles of Noguchi Taiso, which proposes that movement is the natural result of a spark from within ourselves or from earth. Once the spark arises, the body reacts naturally. The muscles act as sensors not actors.¹ If we manage to simply let ourselves react, to embrace gravity, and our body weight, we may find that we will become more energy-efficient and fluid, which will inadvertently put us into a state of nurture or sustainability.

An impulse or shock can affect the body either in succession, e.g. from one part of the body to the other like a wave, or instantaneously like a whole-body shock.

If the shock is looped, this can bring on shaking.

Exercise 1: Isolated Impulse

Limit the shock or sudden movement to just one part of the body, e.g. shoulder or left cheek. While walking or in a tame state, try suddenly contracting the muscle(s) that pertain to one tiny part of the body. One could even think of a fly landing on a part of the body and the body response that results.

Exercise 2: Shock Training

Have participants in frozen, walking, or dancing state while you hit two sticks together at random. The stimulus will instruct the dancer to shock for a second or two before returning to their movement. You can vary the shock lengths as shorter or longer. Recommended: Encourage water body, which is the relaxed body reacting to the shock that comes his or her way.

Exercise 3: Cheap Jump Scene

Like the first exercise, when there is a sensitive moment of attention where one is either frozen or in slow movement, suddenly run savagely directly toward the audience either on two feet or as a quadruped. Option to suddenly freeze again once almost reaching the audience.


A jump can be perceived as a large impulse/shock. In regards to the legs, the most important thing to remember is to always keep the knees in line with the ankles and to always make sure to bend the knees upon landing. The jumps of various animals can be observed such as frogs, cats, and rabbits. All jumps can end with any number of falls.

Exercise 1: Maximum Excitement

Since high excitement is associated with jumping, take excited jumping into the level of absurd. One can even go into child excitement.

Exercise 2: Bouncy Ball

Mimic the ball as it decreases its bounce.

Exercise 3: Jump as an Impulse to a Force

Whether it is somebody who has crept up to you without you knowing or a creature has snuck up on you, impulse jump! Think of how cats do it when something surprises them.

Qualia-world examples for shock/impulse butoh-fu

The following are real life examples that can be used to get the body into a various shocks/impulses or jumps.

  1. Impulse reaction of a muscle after a fly lands on a body part
  2. reaction to a loud noise such has a train horn or explosion
  3. the impulse of waking back up after dozing off into sleep
  4. a sudden wake up from a nightmare, e.g. falling in a dream
  5. a throw-up contraction
  6. popcorn
  7. fish on land
  8. being hit by cold water
  9. Tourettes
  10. sitting on a cactus

¹ Gillum, Julie Becton. Noguchi Taiso workshop series from Life Resonance Tour. July – Sept, 2019.
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