Glossary of Terms

This is an extensive list of Karate and Wado Kai terms. You will find the Japanese romanized in English characters on the left and the explanation on the right. Pronunciation of Japanese vowels is simple and is as follows.

A – ‘ah’ sound as in father
I – ‘ee’ sound as in ink
U – ‘ou’ sound as in flute
E – ‘eh’ sound as in bed
O – ‘oh’ sound as in oatmeal

 

BUSHIDO  – The Way of the warrior
CHINTO – Kata named after a Chinese sailor. Also a stance.
CHUDAN – Middle or middle level. For example, a middle level punch is generally aimed at the solar plexus but can be anywhere below the shoulders and above the waist.
-DACHI – From tachi meaning stance.
DAN – One who has attained the Black belt ranking. Also known as yudansha.
DO – Way. Indicates a path to be followed in life as in Karatedo, the Way of the empty hand.
DOJO – Place for studying the Way.
EMPI – Elbow. Also known as hiji.
GAIWAN – Outside of the forearm. Used for blocking as in Sotouke.
GEDAN – Low or lower level. Generally means below the waist.
GERI – From keri meaning kick as in maegeri.
HAJIME – Begin
HIDARI – Left.
HIJI – Elbow. Also known as empi.
HIKITE – Pulling hand. Action taken by the non-striking hand to add power to a technique. May also be used to block or pull an opponent off balance.
HITSUI – Knee. Also known as hiza.
IPPON – One or one step
JODAN – Upper or upper level. Generally indicates the area above the shoulders.
KAMAE – From gamae meaning posture.
KATA – prearranged sequence of techniques making up the foundation of a particular style of karate.
KERI – Kick.
KI – This term does not translate easily. Ki is the same as the Chinese word chi which some believe is a bioelectric force that flows through the body along pathways called meridians in the same manner as the blood flows through the arteries and veins. Some believe it is your spirit or mental intention.
KIAI – Literally “spirit harmony.” This is the brief moment in executing waza that the body, mind and spirit are in perfect harmony often demonstrated by tensing the abdominal muscles forcing air over the vocal cords resulting in the “karate shout.”.
KIHON – Basic or standard.
KIOTSUKE – Attention. Command to stand in the attention stance, musubi dachi.
KOHAI – Junior. One who is less senior to another. Opposite of sempai.
KOSHI – Pelvic carriage. The pelvis and surrounding structures. Indicates the hip area.
KUMITE – Fighting as in ippon kumite (one-step fighting) or jiyu kumite (free fighting).
KUSHANKU – Kata named after a Chinese government official.
KUZUSHI – The unbalancing of an opponent either physically (as in a foot sweep), mentally (as in stepping on an opponent’s foot before punching to distract him), or spiritually (as in a fierce kiai just before an opponent attacks to “drain” his fighting spirit).
KYU – Indicates a student who is not ranked as a black belt (dan). Also known as mudansha.
MAAI – Combative engagement distance. Distance between opponents.
MAE – Front
MATTE – Stop. Command to stop.
MAWATTE – Turn around. Command to turn around.
MIGI – Right.
MOKUSO – Meditation. Command to meditate.
MUDANSHA – kyu ranks
MUSHIN – No mind. State of mind where there is no conscious thought.
NAIHANCHI – Kata whose name translated can mean “fighting on the dikes between rice paddies” or “inside fighting.”
NAIWAN – Inside of the forearm. Used for blocking as in Uchiuke.
NAOREI – Return to musubi dachi and rei.
NUKITE – Fingertip thrust strike as in ippon nukite (index finger thrust) or yonhan nukite (four finger thrust).
OBI – Belt. Used to indicate the rank of the wearer. Mudansha (kyu ranks) wear colored belts. Yudansha (dan ranks) wear black belts.
PINAN – “Peace and tranquillity.” Name of the group of 5 kata Pinan Shodan, Pinan Nidan, Pinan Sandan, Pinan Yondan, and Pinan Godan.
REI – Bow
RYU – Style or school of karate.
SEIKEN – Fist
SEIKEN ZUKI – Fist punch
SEIRETSU – Line up. Command to line up.
SEISAN – Literally “thirteen.” A kata practiced in Wado Ryu.
SEIZA – Kneeling posture. Command to kneel.
SEMPAI – Senior. One who is senior to another. Opposite of kohai.
SENSEI – Literally “one who has gone before.” Refers to the teacher of a class. Also used as a title for one who has attained Sandan rank (third degree black belt).
TACHI – stance.
TACHI REI – Standing bow.
TAE UKE – Position of the arms where one arm is across the chest, palm down and parallel to the ground and the other arm is pulled back beside the chest palm up.
TAISABAKI – Body movement or shifting. Method of moving the body to a more advantageous position for a counter attack. Used in conjunction with ashisabaki (foot movement) and koshisabaki (hip movement).
TATE – Vertical as in tate zuki (vertical fist punch).
TOBI – Jump or leap.
TORRE – Attacker
TSUKI – Thrust or punch.
TSUKURI – Creating an opening in your defense to draw the opponent into attacking this “weakness.” This allows you to respond with a specific counterattack.
UKE – Receiver, defender or block.
URA – Back or reverse.
USHIRO – Backwards.
WADO RYU – “Way of Peace style” or “Way of Harmony style.” Emblem is the Kanji character Wa (peace or harmony) surrounded by the wings of a dove (also a peace symbol).
WAZA – technique. For example, keriwaza are kicking techniques
YAME – Stop. Command to return to ready position.
YOI – Prepare. Command to move to ready position.
YUDANSHA – black belts
ZANSHIN – State of mind where one is fully aware and alert.
ZAREI – Kneeling bow
ZUKI – From tsuki meaning punch or thrust.

CHINTODACHI – Chinto stance. The toes of both feet are on a line towards the opponent. Both feet are angled in roughly the same direction with the front foot turned in slightly more than the rear foot. Weight is even.
GYAKU NEKOASHIDACHI – Reverse cat stance. Feet are roughly in the same position as in Nekodachi but the rear heel is up while the front heel is down. The rear knee generally points inward. Weight is more on the front foot.
GYAKUZUKIDACHI – Reverse punch stance. Front foot is one foot length wider and one foot length shorter than Junzukidachi. Front foot points in slightly. Weight is more on the front foot.
GYAKUZUKI TSUKKOMIDACHI – Reverse lunge punch stance. Front foot heel is even with rear foot toes on a line perpendicular to the attack line. Both feet point slightly inward. Distance between feet is roughly two and one half shoulder widths. Body leans slightly forward. Weight is more on the front foot.
HANMI NO NEKOASHIDACHI – Half side-facing cat stance. Feet are in the same position as Mashomen No Nekoashidachi but the body is facing 45 degrees instead of facing the opponent. Weight is 2/3 on the rear foot.
HEIKODACHI – Parallel stance or ready stance. Feet are one foot length apart. Feet are pointed straight ahead and the weight is even.
HEISOKUDACHI – Closed foot stance. Feet point straight ahead and are together with the heels and toes touching. Weight is even.
HIDARISHIZENTAI – Left natural stance. Feet are roughly shoulder width apart with the left foot moved forward roughly one to two foot lengths. The left foot faces forward and the right foot faces 45 degrees to the right. The body also faces 45 degrees to the right. Weight is even.
JUNZUKIDACHI – Front punch stance. Distance between the feet is roughly two shoulder widths. Front foot points straight ahead and is one foot length wider than Musubidachi. Weight is more on the front foot.
JUNZUKI TSUKKOMIDACHI – Front lunge punch stance. Front foot points straight ahead. Rear foot points 90 degrees to the side with the heel on the same line as the inside of the front foot. Back leg is straight but not locked. Body is leaning and lined up with the rear leg. Distance between the feet is roughly two and one half shoulder widths. Weight is mostly on the front foot.
KOKUTSUDACHI – Back stance. Front foot is pointed straight ahead or slightly inward. Rear foot is pointed roughly 120 degrees from the front. Feet are roughly two shoulder widths apart with both heels on a line toward the opponent. The front leg is straight but not locked. The body is leaning, aligned with the front leg. Weight is more on the back foot.
KOSADACHI – Crossed stance. Front foot is pointed out 90 degrees. Rear foot is pointed straight ahead. The inside of the rear foot in on the same line as the front heel. Feet are roughly one and one half to two shoulder widths apart. Body faces forward. Weight is even.
MAHANMI NO NEKOASHIDACHI (NEKOASHIDACHI) – Full side facing cat stance. Front foot points towards the opponent. Rear foot faces roughly 120 degrees from the front. The front heel is slightly raised. Body faces 90 degrees sideways to the opponent. Feet are roughly two shoulder widths apart. Weight is 2/3 on the rear foot.
MASHOMEN NO NEKOASHIDACHI (NEKODACHI) – Full front facing cat stance. Front foot faces forwards. Rear foot faces out at 45 degrees. From Migishizentai or Hidarishizentai, raise the front heel slightly while settling 2/3 of the weight onto the rear foot. The body faces forward.
MIGISHIZENTAI – Right natural stance. Opposite of Hidarishizentai.
MUSUBIDACHI – Attention stance. Heels are together with the feet pointed out 45 degrees. Weight is even.
NAIHANCHIDACHI – Naihanchi stance or inside fighting stance. Feet are roughly one and one half to two shoulder widths apart and are pointed in slightly. Weight is even.
SAGIASHI DACHI – Heron/Crane stance. Stand on one leg with the toes of the other foot lightly touching the back of the opposite knee. Supporting leg is bent.
SHIKODACHI – Outer circular stance. Feet are roughly two shoulder widths apart and pointed out 45 degrees. Weight is even.
SHIZENTAI – Natural stance. Feet are shoulder width apart and are pointed out 45 degrees. Weight is even.
TATE SEISANDACHI – Vertical Seisan stance. Front foot toes and rear foot heel are on a line towards the opponent. Both feet are pointed in roughly the same direction with the front foot slightly more turned. Feet are roughly one and one half to two shoulder widths apart. Weight is even.
YOKO SEISANDACHI – Side Seisan stance. From Naihanchidachi, move one foot forward one foot length. Weight is even.
ZENKUTSUDACHI – Front stance, forward stance or fighting stance. From Heikodachi, one foot moves forward roughly one and one half shoulder widths. The front foot faces forward. The rear foot faces out 45 degrees. Weight is even or slightly more on the front foot.

GEDANUKE/GEDANBARAI – Low block or low parry made with the forearm. Fist starts palm up at the opposite shoulder and sweeps down and across the body, twisting on contact. Can also be made with shuto or shotei.
HAISHUUKE – Back hand block. Block made with the back of the hand moving from inside to outside.
HIJIUKE – Elbow block. Block made with the back or side of the elbow joint area.
JODANUKE – Upper block or high block made with the forearm. Fist starts palm up on the opposite shoulder and moves straight up, twisting on contact. Forearm ends at an angle with the fist higher than the elbow. Can also be made with shuto or shotei.
JUJIUKE – Cross block or “X” block made with both forearms. Can be made upwards or downwards.
KAKEUKE – Hook block made with the wrist bent towards the little finger side in a hook shape.
KOKENUKE – Block made with the back of the bent wrist. Can be made sideways or upwards.
MAWASHIUKE – Round block made with both open hands moving in a circle in the same direction.
NAGASHIUKE – Sweeping block or slip block. Any of the basic blocks (gedan, soto, jodan, haishu) may be made into a nagashi type block by changing the direction in which the block moves from perpendicular to angling back towards your body.
OSAEUKE – Press block made by softly pressing down with the palm or back of the open hand.
OTOSHIUKE – Dropping block made by throwing the arm down on top of the opponent’s attack. Can be made with shuto, shotei, tettsui, or uraken. Usually accompanied by a dropping of the body weight to add power to the technique.
SHUTOUKE – Knife hand block made with the little finger die of the open hand or forearm. Can be made moving inwards, outwards, or downwards.
SOTOUKE – Outside block. Basic middle block made with the outside of the forearm moving from inside to outside. Can be made blocking jodan or chudan.
SUKUIUKE – Scooping block made with the forearm moving in the same direction of an attack sliding under it and lifting.
UCHIUKE – Inside block. Block made with the inside of the forearm moving from outside to inside. Can be made jodan or chudan.

Punching techniques (突き技 Tsukiwaza) and Striking techniques (打ち技 Uchiwaza)

AWASEZUKI – Combined punch made with one hand punching Urazuki and the other punching Seizuki.
EMPI – Elbow strike made upwards, downwards, sideways, inwards, outwards, forwards, or backwards.
GYAKUZUKI – Reverse hand punch made with Seizuki.
GYAKUZUKI TSUKKOMI – Reverse hand lunge punch.
HAISHU – Back hand strike.
HAITO – Ridge hand strike or inner knife hand strike made with the side of the first knuckle of the index finger.
HASAMIUCHI – Scissor strike made with both hands striking Tettsui inwards.
HEIKOZUKI – Parallel punch made with both fists punching side by side.
HIRAKEN – Flat fist punch made with the second knuckles of all four fingers
IPPON KEN – One finger fist punch made with the second knuckle of the index finger.
IPPON NUKITE – One finger spear hand thrust made with the tip of the extended index finger.
JUNZUKI – Front hand punch made with Seizuki.
JUNZUKI TSUKKOMI – Front hand lunge punch.
KAGIZUKI – Hook punch made with the forearm parallel to your chest.
KOKENUCHI – Bent wrist strike made with the back of the bent wrist.
MAWASHIZUKI – Round punch made by swinging the arm.
NAGASHIZUKI – Punch made by moving forward and twisting the body out of the way of an oncoming attack. The body moves parallel to and just off of the attack line.
NAKADAKA IPPON KEN – One finger fist punch made with the second knuckle of the middle finger.
OYAYUBI IPPON KEN – One finger fist strike made with the second knuckle of the thumb.
SEIZUKI – Normal punch made with the first knuckles of the index and middle fingers.
SHOTEI – Palm heel strike.
SHUTO – Knife hand strike.
TATEZUKI – Vertical fist punch made with the little finger side of the fist towards the ground.
TETTSUI – Hammer fist strike made with the little finger side of the closed fist.
TOBIKOMIZUKI – Jumping lunge punch. Lunge punch made by jumping the body forward into the technique.
URAKEN – Back fist strike made with the back of the first knuckles of the index and middle fingers.
URAZUKI – Inverted punch made with the back of the fist pointed towards the ground.
YAMAZUKI – Mountain punch. Similar to Awasezuki but made with the arms bent and the body leaning forward.
YONHAN NUKITE – Four finger spear hand thrust made with the tips of the four extended fingers.

ASHIBARAI – Foot sweep made by sweeping the opponent’s foot out from under him.
FUMIKOMIGERI – Stamping kick made downwards with the side or heel of the foot.
HIZAGERI – Forward knee strike.
HIZAMAWASHIGERI – Roundhouse knee strike.
KINGERI – Groin kick made with the top of the foot.
MAEGERI – Front kick made with the ball, heel, or toe tips of the foot.
MAETOBIGERI – Flying or jumping front kick.
MAWASHIGERI – Roundhouse kick made with the ball or instep of the foot.
MIKAZUKIGERI – Crescent kick made from the outside to the inside using the sole of the foot.
NAMIGAESHI – Returning wave kick made by bringing the foot upwards and inwards striking with the sole or side of the foot as found in Naihanchi kata.
SOTO MIKAZUKIGERI – Outside crescent kick using the side of the foot moving from inside to outside.
USHIROGERI – Back kick  made backwards using the heel of the foot.
USHIROKINGERI – Backward groin kick made by bringing the heel upward.
YOKOGERI – Side kick made to the side using the side of the foot.

Inashi & Irimi 
Inashi is the act of placing oneself in such a position that enables one to dodge an oncoming attack. It is a movement that takes you out of your opponent’s seichusen by either trapping, deflecting and or evading his line of attack. Irimi is the act of entering into the opponent’s space either before, during, or after he attacks. You enter into his ‘shikaku’ (his blind spot) for the purpose of disabling him with some combination of strike, throw, or lock.

In order to perform irimi you first need to understand maai (distance between you and your opponent). Maai is distance. But there are three main maai to consider. There is your maai – the maai you require to strike your opponent. There is the opponent’s maai – maai your opponent requires to strike you.
There is the dynamic maai – the ever changing distance between you and your opponent as both of you move, shift, attack, dodge.

The only way to learn your personal maai is by doing various uchikomi drills. Experiment from different distances to discover your range for a particular technique. The only way to learn someone else’s maai is to have someone repeatedly attack you. The only way to learn the dynamic maai is to practice uchikomi while the opponent either moves forward or back.

Assuming you understand maai then it is easier to proceed to irimi. The movements of irimi can be practiced in the following drills (this is not an exhaustive list by any stretch of the imagination).

Junzuki Tobikomizuki Nagashizuki
Pinan yondan movement where you step forward three times in mahanmi as you simultaneously execute an otoshiuke and haraiuke. Junzuki helps because junzuki is a study in how to deliver power into the opponent AS you move forward. For junzuki to be effective, the punch must not land AFTER the forward step is complete. The punch must land AS the forward step is completing. If the punch is complete AFTER the forward foot plant then much of the energy is absorbed into the floor. Ideally in junzuki you want to carry as much of your body weight into the strike. If you step first then punch, your step absorbs most of the forward body movement and thus robs the punch of potential energy. One of the goals of junzuki training is learning how to move in such a way that you have to overcome as little inertia as possible. Visualize doing junzuki downhill. It is much easier to go forward because there is less inertia to overcome. Visualize doing junzuki uphill. It is very hard because there is more inertia to overcome.

Nagashizuki
Pinan yondan movement where you step forward three times in mahanmi as you simultaneously execute an otoshiuke and haraiuke. Junzuki helps because junzuki is a study in how to deliver power into the opponent AS you move forward. For junzuki to be effective, the punch must not land AFTER the forward step is complete. The punch must land AS the forward step is completing. If the punch is complete AFTER the forward foot plant then much of the energy is absorbed into the floor. Ideally in junzuki you want to carry as much of your body weight into the strike. If you step first then punch, your step absorbs most of the forward body movement and thus robs the punch of potential energy. One of the goals of junzuki training is learning how to move in such a way that you have to overcome as little inertia as possible. Visualize doing junzuki downhill. It is much easier to go forward because there is less inertia to overcome. Visualize doing junzuki uphill. It is very hard because there is more inertia to overcome.

Junzuki
The ‘art’ of doing junzuki is figuring out how to move on a flat surface area with the similar ease as a downhill junzuki. Because the junzuki stance has the shin pretty much perpendicular to the ground ( the knee is not over the toe…that is cheating…..) it takes some training to understand how to move quickly without extraneous motion. The trick is figuring out how to use the upper body (extended arm) along with the back leg and center of gravity placement. The less inertia to overcome, the sooner you can attain maximum velocity. Any extraneous movement adds to the delay in speed and weakens the force of the impact. Acceleration must be immediate. Do not hold the arm movement until the very end of the transition.

Tobikomizuki
Tobikomizuki is the study in how to put all of your weigh onto your fist at the impact point as you slid forward (as opposed to stepping forward in junzuki). At the moment of impact the whole body must be behind the punch.

Nagashizuki
Nagashizuki is the study of sliding forward in a diagonal, off the line off attack while at the same time getting into your opponent’s space and hitting him with force.. Again, similar to tobikomizuki, the whole body weight must be behind the punch at the moment of impact . If the front foot settles before the impact then the body weight is absorbed into the ground. The body must be in proper alignment so the body remains fully behind the impact.

Most people do nagashizuki with a 2 beat cadence. Nagashizuki must be done on one beat. Many people lead with their front foot and then punch. There is a time lag between the foot reach and the forward movement of the torso. When you ‘reach’ with the front foot you tend to leave your torso behind. The torso has to progress forward out of the line of attack at the exact instant the front foot moves forward. In other words, the entire body is connected and moves as one unit. Everything must be done as one. Most people ‘reach forward with their leg, step down, then torque their body sideways. They land with their foot pointing straight forward then they rotate their foot on the ball of their foot as they punch.

Instead of doing it this way one must land the foot on a slight diagonal. As the foot begins to settle, in that split second, the ankle will tighten and the body will naturally shift into a diagonal and the whole body weight will be behind the impact. Another important point to consider is that the extended hand and the length of the thigh must be in the same plane otherwise you cannot drive your mass into the opponent. Another way of saying this is that the front knee must be going into the direction of the opponent without locking the knee.

By practicing junzuki, tobikomizuki, nagashizuki and Pinan yondan, the movement of irimi will become natural. Once the movement is mastered, the next part is learning how to go into the opponent’s shikaku safely without getting hit. In order to do this you must be aware of your seichusen( your centre line or line of attack). You must guard your seichusen and move along side their seichusen.

This can be done by either:
• moving in such a way that you avoid their seichusen.
• by blocking (trapping) their front hand and taking their outside line.
• by blocking (trapping) their front hand, taking the inside line while being aware of the potential danger of the inside hand or foot.

Only a stupid (or toothless) person will go forward into the opponent if he is not confident in his ability to block an oncoming technique. If a person is confident in his ability to block or trap then he will have no problem going forward.

The best drill I have found to master blocking is as follows:

Pair up with a partner. Have your partner attack you for 1 minute. The only thing you are allowed to do is block. The blocks must be done in small movements. Block as you shift the body. Shift back. Shift left. Shift right. Shift forwards. But never shift back by more than two steps. Once you start going backwards it is too hard to arrest the backwards movement due to momentum build up and you will not be in a position to counter attack. Try to shift forwards, left, or right. Once the student becomes confident in his ability to block, then he will have fewer reservations about going forward (diagonally) into the opponent.

The blocking training if done properly has now taught him inashi movements. No over blocking, just simple parries, deflections, redirections, trapping, interceptions, body shifting. No hard blocks. Armed with the knowledge (body knowledge) of maai, inashi, and irimi, one will be able to enter into the opponent’s space to execute the damage necessary to overcome the opponent.

On Kihon Kumite

When initially moving forward in Kihon Kumite the posture is tate seishan. It is common to kiai at this point but one must be careful that the kiai does not lead to a tightening of the body. Once the body is tight all further movement is frozen.  If you are frozen then you are immobile.  Being immobile means being unable to defend or attack; it means to create an opening (suki) for the opponent. It is important never to ‘lock’ the body. The body should always be immediately relaxed after any application of kime to prevent the creation of suki.  Most people assume that as you land you apply kime to the technique by instantaneously tightening and locking the muscles.  This only leads to suki and itsuki.

Being locked into the stance after stepping forward creates a condition called ‘itsuki’.  Itsuki means to be in a position where the kinetic energy (energy inherent to movement) is frozen and no further movement is possible.  It is being ‘flat footed’.  Refrain from being rigid.  Try to feel instead as if ‘flowing’ into the stance.

Another point to be mindful of when stepping forward is to remain cognizant of the seichusen (line of attack/center line/ line of defense).  When stepping forward one should be guarding the seichusen.  The hands are brought forward so that one hand guards the jodan area and the the other guards the chudan area.  This happens during the transition and not after the front foot has been planted. There’s allways the possibility of being attacked during transition. This applies not only to kihon kumite but also to kata. During any transition there must allways be awareness of seichusen. That goes for the attacker as well as the defender.

Once the position is taken, one must find the proper ma (distance) relative to the opponent.  The way to adjust the maai (distance between the two partners) in kihon kumite is through ‘nijiri ashi’. To press forward the front toe is wiggled and one creeps forwards while twisting the back ankle to maintain the posture.

Nijiri ashi is a movement seen frequently in kenjutsu.  The reason for this footwork is to minimize suki.  In kenjutsu any opening can lead to swift death.  Any time the feet are lifted, a potential opening is created. By moving in nijiri ashi one attempts to minimize any potential opening. Also, traditionally njiri ashi would have been done under cover of the Hakama so even this slight movement of the feet would have been partially hidden.

It is important to allow the kinetic energy to continue so that the first and second attacks from ukemi are always practiced as one complete movement. Many people learn kihon kumite in two parts because of the two attacks from ukemi are often taught with a slight hiatus in delivery and somehow this is then practiced until embedded into their kihon kumite. The point about the ‘tightening of the body’ is usually the cause of this, and prevents the natural flow into the san mi ittai counter attack.

Essentially ‘san mi ittai’ involves these three concepts performed in one timing. Ten-i (change of direction), ten-tai (change of body) and ten-gi (change of technique) are these three elements of sabaki and are accomplished in unison.

Posture and stance are not the same thing. Quite often there’s a problem in a person’s interpretation of the stance and trying to perform smooth movement when being focussed on the ‘end product’ of, for instance, tate seishan.

Tightening of the body is often mistakenly understood as power and kime. But basicly it is the movement, not the stance that matters. Stance is merely a manner of standing, usually according to a set of instructions. A stance is often seen as an end in itself and and can thus be responsible for a lot of stilted movements. Stance is standing is static.

Posture, on the other hand, goes further than this in that it includes the ‘mind body & spirit’ as a whole, placed in a particular manner for a purpose and ‘continues’ throughout the movement. Wado is not about standing in a stance but about elegant movement and retaining one’s posture while moving.

Kihon kumite is essentially the fundamentals of fighting. This includes the posture, technique, mindfulness, and the stratagems of fighting. for instance the first defensive posture in kihon kumite ipponme using jodan harai uke by torimi is a stratagem whereby he is actively offering a second target to Ukemi so that he can ‘set up’ the counter attack. Torimi holds sente all the time throughout the practice. Torimi’s initial posture with one hand guarding jodan and one guarding chudan exemplifies this.

-Bob Nash