Basic Terminology

It is important that you listen to your Sensei using the Japanese terminology. As you progress through the grades you will become more familiar with the wording. When you reach Shodan (black belt) you should know at least 90% of the terminology below.

Japanese English


Counting


ichi
one

ni two

san three

shi (yon) four

go five

roku six

shichi (nana) seven

hachi eight

kyu nine

ju ten

hyaku one hundred

 

General


go
hard

ju soft

ryu style

kara empty

te hand

sensei teacher

ki spirit, inner power

kiai shout used to unite inner power and ki

dan level

jodan upper level

chudan middle level

gedan lower level

hidari left

migi right

mawate turn

kaete change

hito person

rei bow

yoi ready

kamae combative posture

hajime begin

yame stop

hinari twist

kime focus

mokuso meditation

 

Stances


dachi
/tachi stance

fudo dachi free stance

heisoku dachi closed foot stance (feet together)

musubi dachi formal attention stance (heels together, feet at an angle)

heiko dachi parallel stance (feet shoulder width apart)

hachiji dachi natural stance (feet shoulder width apart, toes slightly pointed out)

kiba dachi horse riding stnace

shiko dachi straddle leg stance

sanchin dachi hourglass stance (back toes in line with front heel)

han zenkutsu dachi half front stance (back knee drop down to front toes)

zenkutsu dachi front stance (back knee drops down to front heel)

kokutsu dachi back stance

neko ashi dachi cat foot stance

renoji dachi the letter “re” stance

sesan dachi side facing straddle stance

 

Hand Techniques


tsuki
punch or thrust

uchi strike

nakadaka ken middle finger knuckle fist

ippon ken first finger knuckle fist

kuma de bear hand

washi de eagle hand

empi/hiji elbow

choku tsuki straight punch

nihon tsuki double punch

sanbon tsuki triple punch

kizame tsuki leading punch, jab

oi tsuki lunge punch

gyaku tsuki reverse punch

ura tsuki short punch (palm side up)

age tsuki rising punch

tate tsuki vertical punch

kagi tsuki short punch

furi tsuki circular punch

mawashi tsuki round hook punch

heiko tsuki parallel punch

hasami tsuki scissors punch

yama tsuki mountain punch

awase/so tsuki u-punch

nagashi tsuki flowing punch

shotei/teisho tsuki palm heel thrust

seiken tsuki fore fist strike

nukite tsuki finger thrust

ko uchi bent wrist strike

ura ken uchi back fist strike

shuto uchi knife hand srike

hiji uchi/ate elbow strike/smash

tettsui uchi bottom fist strike

shotei/teisho uchi palm heel strike

tsukame grab

 

Foot Techniques


geri
kick

ashi foot/leg

josokutei ball of the foot

sokuto foot edge

kakato heel

haisoku instep

tsumasaki tip of the toe

hiza knee

mae geri (kaegi) front snap kick

mae geri (kekomi) front thrust kick

mawashi geri round house kick

ushiro geri back thrust kick

yoko geri (keagi) side snap kick

yoko geri (kekomi) side thrust kick

kansetsu geri stamping kick, joint kick

hiza geri knee kick

nidan geri double front snap kick (back leg first)

ren geri double front snap kick (front leg first)

ashi barai foot sweep

mae tobi geri jumping front kick

yoko tobi geri jumping side thrust kick

 

Blocking Techniques


uke
block

age uke (jodan) rising block

chudan uke inside circular block

chudan uchi uke outside forearm block

gedan barai downward block

gedan uchi barai outside downward block (open block)

hiki uke pulling/grasping block

kake uke open handed block

shuto uke knife hand block

shotei uke palm heel block

ko uke wrist block

ura uke back hand block

uchi uke inside forarm block

morote uke augmented block (double handed)

mawashi uke round house block

tora guchi double handed open-hand circular block

hari uke archer block

hiji uke elbow block

kuri uke downward elbow block

hiza uke knee block

 

Practice Fighting


kumite
sparring

sandan gi basic sparring adapted from Gekisai kata

sanbon kumite three step sparring (three jodan, three chudan, three gedan)

ippon kumite one point sparring where the attacker defends, then counters after the attack

sandan kumite three step, three level sparring (one jodan, one chudan, one gedan)

sanbon tsuki three step sparring, blocking with one hand against a 3 punch combination

kihon ippon basic one step sparring

jiyu ippon one step sparring from ippon

randori slow and soft free style with emphasis on technique

jiyu kumite hard and fast controlled free style fighting

 

Opening Ceremony


Head Student: shugo line up

Head Student: ki o tsuke attention

Head Student: seiza kneel

Head Student: mokuso meditation

Head Student: mokuso yame finish meditation

Head Student: shomen ni, face front

Head Student: rei bow

Head Student: sensei ni face instructor

Head Student: rei bow

Everybody: onegai shimasu "will you please?" - In karate "Please teach me

Head Student: kiritsu stand up

 

Closing Ceremony


Head Student: shugo line up

Head Student: ki o tsuke attention

Head Student: seiza kneel

Head Student: mokuso meditation

Head Student: mokuso yame finish meditation

Head Student: dojo kun shouted by head student, then by everyone

Head Student: shinzen ni face shrine/founder

Head Student: rei bow

Head Student: sensei ni face instructor

Head Student: rei bow

Everybody: arigato gozaimashita "Thank you very much"

Head Student: otagai ni face each other

Head Student: rei bow

Everybody: arigato gozaimashita "Thank you very much"

Head Student: kiritsu stand up