Glossary

This glossary of karate terms is organised alphabetically into several sections for ease of access – Hand and Arm Techniques, Leg Techniques, Stances and Miscellaneous.Hand and Arm Techniques – [Tsuki (punches), Uchi (strikes) and Uke (blocks)]

 

Age-zuki                                  Rising punch

Age-uke                                   Rising block

Choku-zuki                             Straight punch

Empi                                        Elbow

Empi-uchi (Hiji-ate)              Elbow strike   

Gedan Barai                           Downward block

Gyaku-zuki                             Reverse punch

Haishu                                     Back Hand

Haishu-uchi                            Backhand strike

Haishu-uke                             Backhand block

imagesFQ3T37ME  haishu  440px-Haishu

Haito                                        Ridge hand/inner knife hand

Haito-uchi                               Ridge hand strike

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Hiraken                                    Four knuckle

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Hiraken-zuki                           Four knuckle fist straight punch

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Ippon-ken                                One knuckle fist

Ippon-ken zuki                       One knuckle fist straight punch

Ippon-nukite                           One finger spear hand

Juji-uke                                     X block

Kagi-zuki                                  Hook punch

Kake-te                                      Hook hand

Kake-uke                                   Hooking block

Kakiwake-uke                          Wedge block

Kakuto                                       Bent wrist

Kakuto-uke                               Bent wrist block

Keito                                           Chicken head wrist

Keito-uke                                   Chicken head wrist block 

Koken                                         Wrist

Kote                                             Forearm

Kumade                                      Bear claw hand

Mawashi-zuki                            Roundhouse punch

Moroto-uke                                Augmented forearm block

Moroto-zuki                                Double fist punch

Nakadate-ippon-ken                 Middle finger one-knuckle fist

nakadaka-ken  ippon-ken-nakadaka

Nihon-nukite                              Two finger spear hand

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Nukite                                          Spear hand straight thrust

Oi-zuki                                         Lunge punch

Osae-uke                                      Pressing block

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Oyayubi-ipponken                     Thumb one-finger fist

Seiken                                           Forefist

Seiken-choku-zuki                      Forefist straight punch

Seiryuto                                        Ox-jaw hand

Shuto                                             Knife hand

Shuto-uchi                                    Knife hand strike

Shuto-uke                                      Knife hand block

Soto-uke                                         Block from outside inwards

Sukui-uke                                       Scooping block

Teisho                                              Palm heel

Teisho-uchi                                     Palm heel strike

Teisho-uke                                      Palm heel block

Teisho-zuki                                     Palm heel straight punch

Tettsui                                              Hammer fist (bottom fist)

Tettsui-uke                                      Hammer fist block

Tettsui-uchi                                     Hammer fist strike

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Tsukami-uke                                   Grasping block

Uchi-uke                                           Block from inside outwards

Ude                                                    Forearm

Ude-uke                                            Forearm block

Ura-zuki                                           Close punch

Uraken                                              Backfist

Uraken-uchi                                     Backfist strike

Yama-zuki                                        U punch

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Leg Techniques

Ashi-barai                                          Leg sweep

Ashigatana                                        Footsword (Outer edge of foot)

Chusoku                                             Ball of the foot

Fumikomi                                          Stamping kick

Fumi-waza                                         Stamping techniques

Haisoku                                               Instep

Hiza                                                     Knee

Hiza-geri                                             Knee kick

Hittsui                                                  Knee

Hittsui-geri                                          Knee kick

Kakato                                                  Heel

Kakato-geri                                          Heel kick

Kansetsu-geri                                      Side kick to knee, shin, etc

Keri-waza                                             Kicking techniques

Kin-geri                                                 Groin kick

Koshi                                                      Ball of the foot

Mae-geri                                                Front kick

Mae-geri-keage                                     Front snap kick

Mae-geri-kekomi                                  Front thrust kick

Mawashi-geri                                        Roundhouse kick

Mikazuki-geri                                        Crescent kick

Mikazuki-geri-uke                                Crescent kick block

Naka-ashi                                               Ball of the foot

Soko-ashi                                                Arch of the foot

Sokuto                                                     Foot edge

Tobi-mae-geri                                        Flying front kick

Tobi-yoko-geri                                       Flying side kick

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Teisoku                                                    Sole of foot

Ushiro-geri                                              Back kick

Yoko-geri                                                 Side kick

Yoko-geri-kekomi                                  Side thrust kick

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Yoko-geri-keage                                     Side snap kick

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Stances (Dachi)

The importance of correct stance in karate cannot be over-emphasised. As explained in his seminal 1966 book “Dynamic Karate”, Master Masatoshi Nakayama, then Chief Instructor of the Japan Karate Association, “if the body lacks balance and stability, offensive and defensive techniques will be ineffective. The ability to defend against an attack under any circumstances depends largely upon the maintenance of correct form. Stance in karate is mainly concerned with the position of the lower part of the body. Powerful, fast, accurate, and smoothly executed techniques can be performed only from a strong and stable base”.

Within the Shotokan style, the following are the main stances, divisible into two broad categories – Shizen-tai (natural position where the body remains relaxed but alert, with the potential for moving into a position of attack or defence) and Fighting stances (from which a variety of appropriate techniques can be delivered).

Heisoku-dachi          Informal attention stance (feet parallel and touching)

Musubi-dachi           Informal attention stance (heels together, feet turned out)

Hachiji-dachi            Open leg stance (heels hip width apart, feet turned out at 45 degrees)

Uchi-hachiji-dachi   Inverted open leg stance (as above, but feet turned in at 45 degrees)

Heiko-dachi               Parallel stance (similar to open leg stance, but with feet parallel)

Teiji-dachi                  T stance (T shaped feet, back foot turned slightly inward)

Renoji- dachi             L stance (L shaped feet, line bisecting front foot passing rear heel)

Zenkutsu-dachi         Front stance (knee over front foot, back leg straight, hip width apart)

Kokutsu-dachi           Back stance (heels in line, rear knee turned outwards)

imagesZDGWQV83 0f0057b19cee3eeaa5671ded3b4ce33b

Kiba-dachi                  Straddle leg/Horse-riding stance (knees bent and feet parallel)

Shiko-dachi                Square stance (As above, but feet turned out and lower hip position)

Sochin-dachi              Rooted stance (Fudo-dachi) (combines Front and Straddle positions)

Neko-ashi-dachi        Cat stance (Short back stance with front heel raised)

Sanchin-dachi            Hour-glass stance (knees bent and turned inward, toe/heel in line)

Hangetsu-dachi         Half-moon stance (midway between Front and Hour-glass, knees in)

 

(The undernoted diagrams are included with acknowledgement to Masatoshi Nakayama)

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Miscellaneous

Dojo                                    Training place (literally “the place of the Way)

Hajime                               The command “Begin”

Jiyu-ippon-kumite           Semi-freestyle one blow sparring

Jiyu-kumite                       Freestyle sparring

Karate-gi                            Karate suit

Kamae                                The command “On guard”

Kihon-kumite                    Basic sparring 

Kime                                    Focus or Ki (concentration of strength)

Kumite                                Sparring

Ma-ai                                   Distancing

Makiwara                           Punching board    

Mawate                               The command “Turn” 

Misu-no-kokoro                 “A mind like water” (fluid thinking)

Rei                                         Bow 

Ritsu – Rei / Za – Rei          Standing Bow  / Kneeling Bow            

Seiza                                     The command “Kneel”

Yoi                                         The command “Ready”

Yame                                     The command “Stop”

                                                 

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