Japanese Terminology

Click on the individual Japanese word links to hear audio pronunciations

A

Ai
Harmony
Ai-gamae
Matching stances
Aiki
Harmony of Spirit
Aikido
Way of Harmony of Spirit
Aikidoka
Person who practises Aikido
Aiki-Ken
Aikido Sword techniques
Ashi
Leg or Foot
Atemi
Strike
Atemi-waza
Striking techniques.

B

Barai
Sweep
Bokken
Wooden Sword used in Aikido and Kendo training
Budo
Martial Way

C

Chudan
Middle
Chudan-no-kamae
Basic posture
Chudan-uke
Middle block

D

Dan
Degree ranking for Black Belt
Do
The Way or Path
Dogi
Aikidogi traditional clothing worn when training
Dojo
Training Hall or Place of the Way
Dori
Hold or Grasp

E

Eri Dori
Collar held

F

Furitsuki
Slashing thrust (Normally with a knife)

G

Gassho no renshu
Blocking exercise with the hands joined together
Gedan
Low
Gedan-no-kamae
Low posture
Gedan-uke
Low block
Go
Five
Go-no-sen
Attacking after you have been attacked
Gyaku
Opposite / Reverse
Gyaku-gamae
Opposite stances

H

Hachi
Eight
Hantai
Change
Hara
A point in the lower abdomen
Hasso
High sword posture
Hidari
Left
Hidari-gamae
Left stance with the left foot forward.
Hiji
Elbow
Hiji waza
Elbow techniques
Hikitate-geiko
Middle level of competition
Hyaku
One Hundred

I

Iai-do
Art of Sword Drawing
Ichi
One
Idoryoku
locomotive power; the power of movement
Irimi
Entering principle
Irimi-nage
Entering throw

J

Jo
Short staff about 4′ long
Jodan
High
Jodan-no-kamae
High posture
Jodan-uke
High block
Jujitsu
Ancient Japanese martial art
Ju-nana-hon waza
17 basic techniques of Tomiki Aikido
Jushin
Balance / Center of gravity
Jyu
Ten
Jyu-Ichi
Eleven
Jyu-Ni
Twelve and so on

K

Kakari-geiko
Lowest level of competition
Kamae
Stance / Posture
Kansetsu
Joints
Kansetsu-waza
Joint techniques
Kata
Pre-arranged techniques, Form or Shoulder
Kata-Dori-Men-Uchi
Strike to the head while holding the shoulder
Kata-Dori
Shoulder held
Katate
Single hand
Katate-Dori
One hand held
Keiko-gi
Kit/Uniform
Ken
Sword
Kendo
The way of the Sword
Ki
Spirit or Energy
Kime-waza
Final locking technique
Kiritsu
Stand to attention
Kissaki
Point or Tip of the Sword
Kohai
Junior Student
Kokyu
Blending – Fitting in with a movement
Kokyu-Dosa
Breath Exercise
Kokyu-Nage
Breath Throw
Koryu-no-kata
Pre-arranged traditional techniques in kata form
Koshi
Hips or lower back
Koshi-Nage
Hip Throw
Kotai
Switch/Change
Kote
Wrist also called Tekubi
Kote-Gaeshi
Outer wrist throw – Wrist twist
Ku
Nine
Kyu
Ranking for belts below black belt
Kuzushi
Break balance
Kyudo
Japanese Archery

M

Mae
Forward, front
Ma-ai
Correct distance
Marui
Circular / Round
Men
Sword cut to the center of the head
Me-tsuke
Eye contact, one focuses on the opponent’s eyes
Migi
Right
Migi-gamae
Right posture with the right foot forward
Mochi
Grasp or hold with hands
Morote Dori
One hand held by two hands
Mu-gamae
Without stance.
Mushin
Without emotion
Mune
Chest

N

Nage
Throw / Technique
Nana-hon nage kuzushi
Kuzushi training exercise comprised of seven throws
Ni
Two
Ni-Jyu-Ichi
Twenty one
Ni-Jyu-Ni
Twenty two and so on

O

Obi
Belt worn over the Gi
Omote
Front
O-Sensei
Great Teacher (Reference to the Founder)
Otoshi
Drop

R

Randori
Freeplay
Randori-no-Kata
Basic 17 techniques in the Tomiki system of Aikido
Rei
Bow
Ritsu-rei
Standing Bow
Rokku
Six
Ryo-Kata-Dori
Both shoulders held
Ryote-Dori
Both hands held
San
Three
Seichu-Sen
Center line of one’s body
Seiza
Sitting Properly
Sempai
Senior Student
Sen
Initiating an attack slightly before your opponent
Sensei
Teacher
Sensei-ni-rei
Bow to the teacher
Sen-sen-no-sen
Sensing and preparing for your opponent’s attack
Shi
Four
Shiai
Tournament, Competition
Shichi
Seven
Shichihon-no-kuzushi
7 Balance breaking techniques
Shihan
A master teacher/ teacher of teachers
Shiho-nage
Four Directional Throw
Shikko
Knee walking
Shime
Lock
Shinkokyu
Deep breathing exercise at the end of practice
Shite
Defender also called Tori
Shizentai
Natural standing position
Shomen
Front also called Omote
Shomen ni rei
Bow to the front
Shomen-Uchi
Strike to top of the head
Shotei-awase
Tension exercise
Sode
Sleeve
Suwari-waza
Sitting Techniques from Seiza position

T

Tachi-waza
Standing techniques
Tai-sabaki
Evasion of an attack by avoidance
Taiso
Warm-up calisthenics
Tandoku-undo
Foot and hand movements exercises
Tanto
Knife
Te
Hand
Tegatana
Hand blade
Tegatana-awase
Hand blade exercise
Tekubi
Wrist also know as Kote
Tekubi waza
Wrist techniques.
Tenkan
Absorption principle
Tentai
Hip-turn
Tori
The defender / Person doing the technique
Tsuki
Thrust
Tsugi-ashi
Sliding feet

U

Uchi
Hand strike
Uke
Attacker / Person being thrown
Ukemi
Break falls
Uki-waza
Floating or timing techniques
Ura
Back
Uraken
Back fist
Unsoku
Foot movements (Avoidance) exercises
Ushiro
Backward, behind

W

Waza
Technique
Waki-gamae
Low Sword posture

Y

Yoi
Prepare
Yoko
Side
Yokomen
Temple area of the face
Yokomen-uchi
Side strike to the opponent’s temple

Z

Zanshin
Awareness
Za-rei
Sitting bow
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