Karate Terminology and Club Etiquette

"Karate begins and ends with a bow. Without respect there would be no Karate"

                                                                                                       Gichin FUnakoshi


The Standing Bow

Stand with your heels together, feet pointing outward like a "V" (Musubi Dachi). Keep your knees straight and relaxed; hands open at the outside of your legs, and fingers together. Bend at the waist, about 20 degress forward. Unben.


Kneeling  (Seiza)

Place your left knee on the floor, then your right knee. Sit down on your feet. The big toes of your left foot and right foot should overlap. Keep your back straight and your shoulders relaxed. Rest your lefthand on your left thigh and your right hand on your right thigh (palms down), so that your fingers point inward.


Bowing in Seiza

Slide your left hand from the thigh to the floor immediatley in front of the left knee. Do the same with your right hand, so that the right hand motion is slightly behind (in time to) the left hand motion. Your palms should touch the floor to show deep respect, bow at the waist, taking a little longer than a standing bow (forehead comes close to the floor but does not touch it). Slide back to their initial position on the thighs, this time with your left hand slightly behind your right hand (in time).


Starting the class

When you hear the words "line up" or "in line", students should stand shoulder to shoulder facing the fromt of the Dojo, in rank order. Try to line up so that the instructor standing before your line is right in the middle of the line. If the class is so big, a senior student will request that you make more than one line, try to line up so the lines are approximatley the same length.


"Seiza": Sit down in Seiza, so your knees are aligned with the person on your left.


"Mokuso": (Quiet meditation) just lower your gaze, relax and breathe.


"Mokuso yame": (End meditation).


"Shomen ni rei": (Bow to the front) this is to show respect for your training space, to the institution of Karate and to the instructors brought it to your instructor.


"Sensei ni rei": Bow to the Chief Instructor. When you are bowing you can say "onegaishimas" which roughly translated means "please" (i.e "please help me", "please show me", "please teach me" etc). At the signal of the instructor, get up quickly, but wait for the person on your left to begin to rise.



Karate Terminology


Japanese    Number    Pronunciation

Ich               One          Itch

Ni                 Two          Knee

San              Three       San

Shi               Four          Shi

Go                Five           Go

Roku            Six             Rokk

Shichi         Seven       Sheesh

Hachi          Eight        Hatch

Ku               Nine         Koo

Ju               Ten           Ju


Japanese    Number   

Ju                Ten

Niju              Twenty

Sanju           Thirty

Yonju            Forty

Goju             Fifty

Rokuju         Sixty

Nanju          Seventy

Haciju         Eighty

Kuju            Ninety

Hyaku         One Hundred  



Basic Stances

Yoi - Ready stance

Zenkutsu Dachi - Front stance

Fudo Dachi - free stance

Neko Ashi Dachi - cat stance

Kiba Dachi - horse riding stance

Kokutsu Dachi - back stance

Musubi Dachi - formal attention stance



Gedan Barai - downward block

Uchi Uke - inside forearm block

Soto Uki - outside forearm block

Chudan Uki - inside circular block

Jodan Uke - upward block

Age Uki - rising block

Shuto Uki - knife hand block

Shotei Uke - Palm heel block

Shotei Otoshi Uke - Open hand dropping block

Yoko Uke - circular block

Hiki Uki - pulling/grabbing block

Ko Uke - wrist block

Gedan Uchi Barai - outside downward blcok (open hand)

Ura Uki - back hand block

Mawashi Uki - elbow block

Morote Uki - roundhouse block

Sukui Uke - augumented block

Nagashi Uki - sweeping block

Kosa Uke - cross block

Hiza Uke - knee block

Sokutei Uke - pressong block with sole of the foot

Sokutei Harai Uke - sole of the foot block

Haisoku Barai - instep block

Foot Techniques

Mae Geri Keage - front snap kick

Mae Geri Kekomi - front thrust kick

Yoko Geri Keage - side snap kick

Yoko Geri Kekomi - side thrust kick

Mawashi Geri - round house kick

Ushiro Mawashi Geri - round house to the rear kick

Gyaku Mawashi Geri - round house reverse kick

Ushiro Geri - back kick thrust

Kanketsu Geri - stamping kick

Hiza Geri - knee kick

Nidan Geri - double front snap kick (back leg first)

Ren Geri - double front snap kick (front leg fiirst)

Ashi Geri - foot sweel

Mai Tobi Geri - jumping front kick

Tobi Nidan Geri - jumping double kick

Yoko Tobi Geri - jumping side thrust kick

Kakato Geri - heel kick

Fumikomi Geri - stamping kick

Tsumasaki Geri - kicking with the tips of the toes

Haisoku Geri - kicking with the instep

Sokuto Geri - kicking with the foot edge


Training Schedule

Training Schedule

Red Belt 9 kyu -

10 lessons


Yellow Belt 8th Kyu - Purple Belt 4th Kyu (for each belt) -

Minimum 3 months since last grade plus a minimum of 20 lessons


Brown Belt 3rd Kyu to 1st Kyu (for each belt) -

Minimum 6 months since last grade plus a minimum of 40 lessons


Black Belt 1st Dan -

An invitation to grade from Chief Instructor, 6 months since 1st Kyu and a minimum of 40 lessons.


Black Belt 2nd Dan -

An inivitation to grade from Chief Instructor,  2 years regualr training since 1st Dan grade.


Black Belt 3rd Dan -

An inivitation to grade from Chief Instructor,  3 years regualr training since 2nd Dan grade.


Black Belt 4th Dan and above - Please refer to Cobra Martial Arts time served grading policy on the www.cmaauk.com website.http://www.cmaauk.com