Shotokan Karate Terminology


This list of Japanese words and their English translations is not comprehensive. Peter Lindsay's web site was the original source for the material on this web page. This material has been duplicated here with his permission. For more details please visit http://www.shotokankarate.ca.

GENERAL TERMS

karate do - empty handed way
shihan - master
sensei - teacher
sempai - senior student
kohai - junior student
dojo- training hall
obi - belt
seiza - kneel
mokuso - meditate
rei - bow
yoi - ready
hajime - begin
yame - stop
naote - relax
hidari - left
migi - right
jodan - upper
chudan - middle
gedan - lower
dachi - stance
zuki - punch
uchi - strike
uke - block
geri - kick
tai sabaki - body shifting
yori ashi - foot shifting

BLOCKS

jodan age uke - upper rising block
jodan tetsui zuki - upper hammer fist
gedan uke - lower block
kake wake uke - reverse wedge block
haishu-uke - back hand block
soto uke - inward middle block
uchi uke - outward middle block
morote uke - augmented block
teisho oshi uke - pressing palm heal block
shuto-uke - sword hand block
juji-uke - X block

STANCES

zenkutsu dachi - front stance
kokutsu dachi - back stance
kiba dachi - horse stance
fudo dachi - rooted stance
neko ashi dachi - cat stance
hangetsu dachi - hourglass stance

STRIKES

kazama zuki - jab
choku zuki - straight punch
oi zuki - lunge punch
gyaku zuki - reverse punch
yama zuki - mountain punch
yoko zuki - side punch
shita zuki - inverted punch
ippon ken - one knuckle strike
uraken - back fist
tetsui - hammer fist
empi uchi - elbow strike
nukite-zuki - spear hand strike
shuto - knife hand
shuto-zuki - sword hand strike


KICKS

hiza geri - knee strike
mae geri - front kick
yoko geri keage - side snap kick
yoko geri kekomi - side thrust kick
fumakomi - stomp kick
mika zuki geri - crescent kick
mawashi geri - round kick
tobi geri - jump kick
ni mae geri - double front kick
ushiro geri kekomi- back thrust kick

KATA TERMS

gedan-barai - down block
chudan oi zuki - middle lunge punch
chudan uchi uke - inside outward block
tetsui zuki - hammer fist strike
shuto uke - sword hand block
shuto zuki - sword hand strike
gedan-barai - down block
tai-sabaki - body shifting
jodan oi zuki - upper lunge punch
jodan age uke - upper rising block
yoko geri keage - side snapping kick
mae geri keage - front snapping kick
chudan uraken - middle back fist
chudan nukite zuki - middle spear hand strike
chudan gyaku zuki - middle reverse punch
morote chudan uchi uke - augmented middle inside outward block
jodan soto uke - upper forearm strike
morote gedan uchi uke - augmented lower inside outward block
morote shita zuki - augmented upper inverted punch
chudan teisho yoko uke - middle side palm heel block
chudan yoko zuki - middle side punch
ni jodan shita zuki - double inverted upper punch
chudan tsukami uke - middle grasping block
chudan osae uke - middle pressing block
chudan mae empi uchi - middle forward elbow strike
chudan keito uke - middle chicken head block
hitosashiyubi gedan nukite - lower index finger spear hand
shuto gedan barai - lower sword hand strike
washide jodan uchi - upper eagle strike
jodan mae geri keage - upper front snapping kick
chudan uraken - middle back fist
chudan hiza geri - middle knee strike
chudan mika zuki geri - middle crescent kick
chudan mawashi zuki - middle round house punch
jodan shuto juji uke - upper open hand X block
ni yoko chudan zuki - double middle side punch
chudan-tate-shuto-uchi-uke -middle level vertical inside outward sword hand block
chudan choku zuki - middle straight punch
ni jodan uke - double rising block
hidari ashi dachi - left legged stance
chudan uchi otoshi - middle falling block
jodan yoko uchi barai - upper side sweeping block
sho koko bo uke - tiger mouth block
chudan oi zuki maeude hineri - middle lunge punch with turning forearm
jodan tate mawashi uchi - upper vertical roundhouse strike
naname shita ni oshinobasu - double downward oblique push
gedan gassho uke - lower double palm heel block
sankaku tobi - triangle jump
chudan nakadaka ippon ken - middle one knuckle strike
jodan age nihon nukite-zuki - upper two finger spear hand strike
haishu uke - back hand block
jodan kensei - upper palm feint