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Karate Terminology


Term                                                                                     Meaning


Age Enpi                                                                               Rising Elbow Strike

Age Uke                                                                               Rising block

Chudan                                                                                Region of attack between sternum and groin

Dachi                                                                                    Stance

Dojo                                                                                      Training hall. Place of the way

Empi                                                                                     Elbow

Fumikomi                                                                            thrust kick to knee level

Geri (keri)                                                                            kick

Gedan                                                                                  Region of attack groin and below

Gedan Barai                                                                        Low block

Gi                                                                                          uniform (suit)

Gohon Kumite                                                                     Five-step sparring

Gyaku                                                                                   Reverse

Gyaku Zuki                                                                          Reverse punch

Haito                                                                                     Ridge hand

Hajime                                                                                  Command to begin

Ippon Kumite                                                                      one-step sparring

Jiyu-ippon kumite                                                             Semi free sparring

Jiyu kumite                                                                         free sparring (freestyle)

Jodan                                                                                   region of attack face and head

Juji-uke                                                                               x block or cross block

Karate-do                                                                            empty hand way

Karateka                                                                              practitioner of Karate

Kata                                                                                      form (pattern of movements)

Keage (yoko geri)                                                              Side snapping kick using the side of the foot

Kekomi (yoko geri)                                                            side thrusting kick using the heel of the foot

Kiai                                                                                       shout of self-assertion to maximise strength

Kiba dachi                                                                           Horse stance (straddle stance)

Kime                                                                                     Breathing, focus

Kizami zuki                                                                         front snapping punch

Kokutsu dachi                                                                     back stance

Mae-geri                                                                              front kick

Mae-geri keagi                                                                   front snap kick

Mae-geri kekomi                                                               front thrust kick

Mawashi geri                                                                      roundhouse kick

Morote uke                                                                         augmented block (supported with another arm)

Nukite                                                                                  spear hand strike

Oi-zuki                                                                                 lunge (stepping) punch

Rei                                                                                        command to bow

Sanbon oi-zuki                                                                   lunge punch using 3 consecutive punches

Seiza                                                                                    kneeling position when performing ceremonial bow

Sensei                                                                                 Teacher or Instructor

Shotokan                                                                            style or type of karate founded by Gichin Funakoshi

Shuto                                                                                   sword or knife hand

Shuto-uke                                                                           sword/knife hand block

Soto ude uke                                                                      outside forearm block

Taisho                                                                                   palm of the hand

Tetsui                                                                                    hammer fist using bottom of fist

Toyakwai                                                                              Holy mountain club

Tsuki                                                                                     punch

Uchi uke                                                                               inside forearm block

Ura                                                                                         back or reverse (gyaku)

Ura mawashi geri                                                               reverse roundhouse kick

Ushiro                                                                                   spinning, turning

Ushiro geri                                                                           spinning kick

Yame                                                                                     command to stop

Yoi                                                                                         command to prepare

Yoko                                                                                     Side

Zanshin                                                                                mental awareness/alertness

Zenkutsu dachi                                                                   Front Stance

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