General TermsInstructionsCountingStancesBlocksPunchesKicks|StrikesBelt ColorsBodyKataThe 15 Basic, Original, Shotokan Kata's WKF Referee Terms Dojo Kun Formal BowGichin FunakoshiDojo Etiquette 


General Terms

Okaigan Big Enlightenment OR Big eye opening (zen meaning)
Shotokan House of Shoto/Pine Sea Style
USA-NKF USA National Karate Federation. The National Governing Body for the Sport of Karate in the United States. In 1996 the (USOC) United States Olympic Committee sanctioned the USA-NKF as a member.
WKF World Karate Federation.
Shuri-Te Old name for the Shotokan Style
Karate Empty Hand
Gichin Funakoshi Founder of Shotokan Karate
Budo Martial Way (to prevent violence
Gashuku The gathering of an entire dojo for training
Do Way
Karate-Do The Way of Karate
Karate-Ka Karate Practitioner
Kata Practice Form
Bunkai Formal application of Kata techniques
OYO The full analysis; multiple applications; alternate meanings
Sensei Teacher
O' Sensei "O" Means "Great"
Sempai Assistant Instructor
Shihan Master Instructor 6th Dan or higher
Ikken Hissatsu To kill with one blow
Osu Used for respect of acknowledgement (only in the dojo)
Ryu Karate Style
Sun-Dome End technique 3cm. Before point of contact
Kiai Spirit Yell
Dojo School or training hall
Obi Belt
Kyu Colored Belt Level
Dan Black Belt Rank
Gi Karate Uniform
Embusen Performance Line of a kata
Kihon Basic Techniques
Jodan Head Level
Chudan Mid-Level/Abdomen
Gedan Low Level/Belt or groin area
Maai Distance
Kumite Sparring
Jiyu Kumite Free style sparring
Ippon Kumite One-Step Sparring
Gohan Kumite Five-Step Sparring
Waza Technique
Reigi Etiquette
Mokuso Deep breathing meditation

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Yoi Ready
Rei Bow
Onaji-Waza Same Technique
Keiretsu Line up by rank
Narande Line up
Naore Return to Shizen-tai (ready position)
Hajime Begin
Yame Stop
Yasume Relax
Shomen Ni Rei Bow to the front (of the dojo)
Sensei Ni Rei Bow to the Sensei
Otaigai Ni Rei Bow to one another
Seiza Formal Japanese Sitting Position
Age-te Hands up
Kamae-te Guard up/fighting position
Matte Wait
Migi Right
Hidari Left
Kamae Posture
Mawatte (Kaette) Turn around
Naname 45 Degree Angle
Zenshin Forward
Koshin Backward
Maee Step up
Kaete Switch
Motono ichi Original Position
KI HA KU Projection of Spirit "KI"

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2 NI
5 GO
9 KU
10 JU
12 JU-NI
15 JU-GO
19 JU-KU
20 NI-JU

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Zenkutsu Dachi Front Stance
Kokutsu Dachi Back Stance
Kiba Dachi Straddle Stance
Shiko Dachi Square Stance- Feet point at 45 degree angle
Fudo Dachi Fighting Stance- aka "Rooted Stance"
Musubi Dachi Informal Attention Stance (Heels together-V) (Bowing Stance)
Heisoku Dachi Parralel Attention Stance-Feet together
Hachiji Dachi Ready Stance-Feet Apart (Yoi Position)
Shizen-Tai Dachi Natural Stance-Feet Apart
Gyaku Hanmi Dachi Reverse Half Front Facing Position (Heian Nidan)

Neko Ashi Dachi Cat Stance
Kosa Dachi Cross Legged Stance
Hangetsu Dachi Wide Hourglass Stance (Hangetsu/Half Moon)
Sanchin Dachi Hourglass Stance
Sochin Dachi Diagonal Straddle Stance
Tsuru Dachi One legged Stance (Gankaku)
Renoji Dachi "L" Stance
Sagi Ashi Dachi Crane Stance (Jitte)

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Age Uke Rising Block
Gedan Uke Down Block
Soto Ude Uke Outside Forearm Block
Uchi Ude Uke Inside Forearm Block
Shuto Uke Knife Hand Block

Morote Uke Augmented Block
Juji Uke "X" Block
Gyaku Uke Reverse -Form Block
Yama Uke Mountain Block
Kakiwake Uke Wedge Block
Gedan Shuto Uke Low Knife Hand Block
Teisho Uke Palm Heel Block
Tate Shuto Uke Vertical Knife Hand Block
Haishu Uke Back-Hand Block
Nagashi Uke Sweeping Block (Heian Nidan)
Haiwan Nagashi Uke Back of fore-arm Block (Heian Yodan)
Osae Uke Pressing Block (Heian Godan)
Kake Uke Hooking Block (Heian Godan) (Tekki Shodan)

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Gyaku Zuki Reverse Punch
Kizami Zuki Jab
Oi Zuki Lunge Punch
Ren Zuki Double Punch
San Zuki Triple Punch
Choku Zuki Straight Punch

Oi Gyaku Zuki Lunging Reverse Punch
Kage Zuki Hook Punch (Heian Godan)
Morote Zuki Two Hand Punch
Yama Zuki "U" Punch
Tate Zuki Vertical Punch (Heian Nidan)
Nagashi Zuki Flowing Punch (Heian Godan)
Ippon Ken Zuki Single-Point Fist Punch (Hangetsu)
Hasami Zuki Scissors Punch (Chinte)
Nakadate Zuki Middle Finger Punch (Chinte)

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Mae Geri Keage Front Snap Kick
Mae Geri Kekome Front Thurst Kick
Mawashi Geri Roundhouse Kick
Yoko Geri Keage Side Snap Kick
Yoko Geri Kekome Side Thrust Kick
Ushiro Geri Back Thrust Kick

Nidan Geri Double Kick
Fumikomi Geri Stomping Kick
Soto Mikazuki Geri Outside crescent Kick
Uchi Mikazuki Geri Inside Crescent Kick
Gyaku Mawashi Geri Reverse Round Kick
Mae Tobi Geri Flying Front Kick
Yoko Tobi Geri Flying Side Kick
Mawashi Tobi Geri Flying Round Kick
Ono Geri Axe Kick
Ashi Barai Sweep
Hiza Geri Knee Kick/Strike
Nami Ashi Geri Returning Wave Kick (Tekki)

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Mae Empi Uchi Front Elbow Strike
Mawashi Empi Uchi Round Elbow Strike
Yoko Empi Uchi Side Elbow Strike
Otoshi Empi Uchi Downward Elbow Strike
Ippon Nukite Single Finger Strike
Nihon Nukite Two Finger Strike (fork to the eyes)
Shihon Nukite Four Point Spear Strike
Haito Uchi Ridge Hand Strike
Uchi Haito Uchi nside Ridge Hand Strike
Hiza Uchi Knee Strike
Kumade Uchi Bear Claw Strike
Tettsui Uchi Hammer Fist Strike
Tiesho Uchi Palm Heel Strike
Uraken Uchi Back Fist Strike
Soto Shuto Uchi Outside Knife-Hand Strike
Uchi Shuto Uchi Inside Knife-Hand Strike
Hiraken Uchi Fore-Knuckle Strike
Ippon Ken Uchi One Knuckle Strike (Chinte)
Washide Uchi Eagle-beak Hand Strike
Haishu Uchi Back Hand Strike
Seiryuto Uchi Ox-jaw Hand Strike (Empi)

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Belt Colors

White Shiro
Yellow Kiiro
Gold Kin
Orange Orange
Green Midori
Blue Ao
Purple Murasaki
Aka Red (Also used in Tournament Kumite)
Brown Chairo
Black Kuro
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Ashi Leg
Atama Head
Kata Shoulder
Kyosen/Suigetsu Solar Plexus/Bottom of Sternum
Koshi Hip
Wan Arm
Haisoku Top of the Foot
Kakato Heel of the Foot
Koshi Ball of the Foot
Ensho Back of the Heel
Tekubi Wrist
Tate Ken Vertical Fist
Ken Fist
Seiken Fore-Fist
Sokuto Knife edge of the Foot
Ude Forearm
Higi/Empi Elbow
Te Hand
Kaishu Open-Handed
Haishu Back of Hand
Hiza/Hitsui Knee
Koshi no Kaiten Hip Rotation

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Taikyoku -Shodan, Nidan, Sandan First Cause - Level 1,2,3
Heian- Shodan, Nidan, Sandan, Yodan, Godan Long lasting peace. "Hei " is peace and "an" is stable, safe, or relief. Sensei Anko Itosu created these kata's and named them Heian - Level 1,2,3,4,5
Tekki Shodan Iron Knight - First level
Bassai-Dai To Penetrate a Fortress
Jion A Buddest Temple in China; Compassion
Empi The Flight of the Swallow
Hangetsu Half Moon
Kanku-Sho Look to the Void; To View the Heavens
Tekki Nidan Iron Knight - Second Level
Bassai-Sho To Penetrate a Fortress
Chinte Extraordinary Hands
Jitte Ten Hands
Nijushiho Twenty-Four Steps
Gankaku Crane on a Rock
Jiin In the Shade of Compassion. "JI" means compassion and "IN" means in the shadow or shade
Sochin To Keep the Peace
Gojushiho-Sho Fifty-Four Step (or directions)
Gojoshiho-Dai Fifty-Four Step (or directions)
Unsu Cloud Hands
Meikyo Bright Mirror or Clear Mirror
Wankan King's Crown
Sho Lesser, Minor
Dai Greater, Major
Shorin Speed, Swiftness
Shorei Power, Strong

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The 15 Basic, Original, Shotokan Kata's

Gichin Funakoshi, in 1922, brought this kata to Japan. The main value of each kata is expressed. 
Heian Shodan Front Stance, back stance, stepping patterns, lunge punch
Heian Nidan Front kick, side kick while changing directions
Heian Sandan Body connections in forearm blocking, back-fist strike
Heian Yodan Balance and variation in technique
Heian Godan Balance and jumping
Tekki Shodan Straddle leg stance-hip vibration
Tekki Nidan Grasping and hooking blocks
Tekki Sandan Continuous middle level blocking
Bassai-Dai Changing disadvantage into advantage by use of switching blocks and differing degrees of power
Kanku-Dai Variation in fast and slow techniques, jumping
Jion Turning, shifting, variations in stepping patterns
Jutte Powerful hip action, use of the staff
Empi Fast slow movements, high and low body positions, reversal of body positions
Hangetsu Inside tension stance, coordination of breathing with stepping, blocking and punching; circular arm and leg movements
Gankaku Balancing on one leg; side kick; back fist strike

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WKF Referee Terms

Shobu Hajime Start the match or bout
Yame Stop
Tsuzukete Fight on (unauthorized Interruption)
Tsuzukete Hajime Resume Fighting, Begin!
Shugo Judges Called
Hantei Judgement;Decision
Hikiwake Draw
Torimasen Unacceptable as a scoring techniques
Aka (Shiro) No Kachi Red (Blue) wins
Aka (Shiro) Ippon Red (Blue) scores three points
Aka (Shiro) Wazari Red (Blue) scores two points
Aka (Shiro) Yuko Red (Blue) scores one points
Chukoku First category warning I or category II warning with out penalty
Keikoku Warning with Ippon penalty
Hansoku-Chui Warning with Nihon penalty
Hansoku Disqualification
Jogai Exit from the match area
Shikkaku Disqualification
Kiken Renunciation
Mubobi Self Endangerment
Mienai Did not see
Uke-te Blocked
Atoshi Baraku a little more time left
Moto No Ichi Original Position
Encho-Sen Extension of the bout
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Dojo Kun

The Five Precepts of the dojo-Kun encodes the moral essence of the study of karate, which serves to balance the physical aspect of the sport. It is thus elevated the level of being simply a method of ritualized violence or a modern competitive sport. It is thought that to ignore these moral goals would eventually lead to negative consequences for both the karate-ka and karate as a whole.

Dojo Kun
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Formal Bow

KNEELING IN SEIZA Place your left knee on the floor, then the right knee. Sit down on your feet. The toes overlap (either one on top) Keep your back straight and shoulders relaxed. Rest each hand on your thighs (fingers together).
BOWING IN SEIZA Slide your left hand to the floor first, in front of your knee, then do the same with your right. (Palms touching the floor). Bow at the waist, the forehead comes close to the floor but does not touch. When you sit back up place your left hand on your left thigh first then your right.
FORMAL BOW-Beginning of Class The Senior student or Sensei will call out "Narande" or line up. Students stand shoulder to shoulder, even lines, facing the front of the dojo in belt order. The senior student calls out "Seiza" The senior student calls out "Mokusou" (meditation-lower head/and or close eyes) The senior student calls out "Mokusou yame" The senior student calls out " Shomen ni rei" (Bow to the front of the room) The senior student calls out " Sensei ni rei" (Bow to the sensei) (When bowing to sensei you may say, "onegaishimas" translates to Please teach me/please hold class) or you may say, "Osu")
FORMAL BOW-Ending of Class Same as opening except after mediation ends "Mokusou yame" the class recites the DOJO KUN. Also when you bow to the Sensei you may say, "arigatoh gozaimas" which means, Thank you.

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Gichin Funakoshi

SHIHAN GICHIN FUNAKOSHI Shihan Gichin Funakoshi Born in Shuri, Okinawan Prefecture 1868-April, 1957 The Okinawan Prefecture is located South of Japan and was formerly known as the Kingdom of the Ryukyus. Shihan Gichin Funakoshi's Instructors *Yasutsune Azato *Yasutsune "Anko" Itosu *Matsumura Sokon Shihan Gichin Funakoshi's son *Gigo Funakoshi Karate was first introduced to the public, in Japan, in 1902.

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Dojo Etiquette

The karate dojo is a formal place to practice karate. It is important to respect the environment, its surroundings, and fellow karatekas.


  • Bow before entering and exiting the dojo. It is also polite to bow when addressing the Sensei, a senior ranking student, and when beginning practice with another student.
  • Have respect for other students and the people instructing.
  • No talking during class.
  • No running in the dojo.
  • Gum chewing or food is not allowed in the dojo.
  • All students 1st blue and above must wear a karate gi. The gi should be clean with no holes, stains, etc. Students may wear a black gi to class; however, black uniforms are not allowed during testing, tournaments and demonstrations.
  • Students should be bare foot during class, unless they have some type of foot problem that requires them to wear shoes. Please advise the Sensei as to the nature of your problem and agree on the proper type of shoe to wear.
  • Hats, sun glasses, bracelets, watches, long earrings, rings, or necklaces are not allowed during practice. This is for the safety of the student, other students, and prevents damage to the articles mentioned. A watch may be worn looped around your belt, if you want to risk it. We prefer no headbands; however, if you need one to absorb sweat, a small, white, cotton headband that slips over the head with no ties is permitted.
  • Keep finger and toe nails trimmed for your safety and the safety of others.
  • Never wash a karate belt; this is disrespectful. A belt should fade with time, not with the washing machine.

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