Aikido Glossary


  • Aihanmi (eye-hahn-mhee): same-side stance
  • Aikido (eye-khee-doh): art founded by Morihei Ueshiba (O-Sensei), the way of Aiki
  • Aikidoka (eye-khee-doh-kah): Aikido practitioner
  • Aikiotoshi (eye-khee-oh-toh-shee): Aiki drop
  • Aiuchi (eye-oo-chee): mutual destruction
  • Atemi (ah-tey-mhee): a strike to an opening


  • Bokken (boh-keyn): wooden practice sword
  • Budo (boo-doh): martial way
  • Budoka (boo-doh-kah): martial arts practitioner
  • Bushi (boo-shee): warrior
  • Bushido (boo-shee-doh): the way of the warrior


  • Chi (chee): earth


  • Dan (dahn): degree (black belt rank)
  • Deshi (dey-shee): a student, a disciple
  • Do (doh): way, path
  • Dogi (doh-gee): practice uniform
  • Dojo (doh-joh): place where one studies a "do" or way
  • Domo Arigato Gozaimashita (doh-moh ah-ree-gah-toh goh-zeye-mahsh-tah): thank you very much
  • Doshu (doh-shoo): the person who shows the way; current leader of Aikikai Aikido


  • Gokyo (goh-khee-oh): fifth teaching, fifth movement
  • Gyakuhanmi (ghee-ah-khoo-hahn-mhee): opposite-side stance


  • Hakama (hah-kah-mah): traditional pleated pants worn by the samurai and by budoka
  • Hanmi (hahn-mhee): the basic triangular stance of Aikido (Aihanmi is "same stance"; Gyakuhanmi is "opposite stance")
  • Hanmihandachi (hahn-mhee-hahn-dah-chee): technique is which nage is seated and uke is standing
  • Hara (hah-rhah): one's center, found two fingers width below the navel 
  • Henkawaza (heyn-kah-wah-zah): changing from one technique to another
  • Hiji (hee-jhee): elbow
  • Hijiate (hee-jhee-ah-tey): applying pressure against the elbow
  • Hijitori (hee-jhee-toh-rhee): elbow grab
  • Hombu Dojo (hohm-boo doh-joh): the international headquarters of Aikido located in Tokyo, Japan


  • Ichi (ee-chee): one or first
  • Ikkyo (ee-khee-oh): the first teaching, the first movement
  • Irimi (ee-rhee-mhee): the act of entering directly into the attack, entering with the body
  • Iriminage (ee-rhee-mhee-nah-ghey): a throw whose main component is the irimi entrance


  • Jiyuwaza (jhee-oo-wah-zah): free-style practice
  • Jo (joh): short wooden staff usually 50-54 inches in length


  • Kaeshiwaza (khuy-shee-wah-zah): reversal technique
  • Kaiten (kye-teyn): pivot requiring turning of the hips
  • Kaitenage (kye-teyn-nah-ghey): revolving throw
  • Kami (kah-mhee): God(s) or Spirit(s)
  • Kamiza (kah-mhee-zah): Altar
  • Katatori (kah-tah-toh-rhee): shoulder grab
  • Katatetori (kah-tah-tey-toh-rhee): one-hand grab
  • Keiko (khey-koh): practice
  • Ken (kheyn): sword
  • Kenjutsu (kheyn-joot-soo): sword techniques
  • Kesagiri (khey-sah-ghee-rhee): diagonal cut across the body
  • Ki (khee): life energy
  • Kokyu (koh-khee-oo): breath or breathing
  • Kokyuho / Kokyudosa (koh-khee-oo-hoh / koh-khee-oo-doh-sah): an exercise in blending your energy with that of your partner
  • Kokyunage (koh-khee-oo-nah-ghey): Breath throw
  • Kosatori (koh-sah-toh-rhee): cross-hand grab
  • Koshinage (koh-shee-nah-ghey): hip throw
  • Kotegaeshi (koh-tey-ghuy-shee): wrist twist
  • Kubishime (koo-bee-shee-mhey): choke hold
  • Kumitachi (koo-mhee-tah-chee): paired sword practice
  • Kyu (khee-oo): grades preceeding yudansha rank


  • Maai (mah-eye): distance, separation
  • Mae (mhuy): front
  • Misogi (mhee-soh-ghee): spiritual cleansing
  • Morotetori (moh-rhoh-tey-toh-rhee): grabbing one hand with two hands
  • Munetsuki (moo-ney-tskee): a strike or thrust to the upper body
  • Musubi (moo-soo-bhee): connect


  • Nage (nah-ghey): a throw, one who throws (opposite of uke)
  • Nikyo (nhee-khee-oh): second teaching, second movement


  • Omote (oh-moh-tey): to the front
  • Onegaishimasu (oh-nhey-gye-shee-mahs): please (used when bowing to partner before practise)
  • O-Sensei (oh-sen-sey): great teacher
  • Otoshi (oh-toh-shee): a drop, a throw


  • Randori (rahn-doh-rhee): multiple-attack practice
  • Ryokatatori (rhee-oh-kah-tah-toh-rhee): two-shoulder grab
  • Ryotetori (rhee-oh-tey-toh-rhee): two-hand grab (two hands grabbing two hands)
  • Ryu (rhee-oo): a school or a style


  • Sankyo (sahn-khee-oh): third teaching, third movement
  • Seiza (sey-zah): traditional Japanese seated position
  • Sensei (sen-sey): a teacher, one who gives guidance
  • Shidoin (shee-doh-een): senior instructor
  • Shihan (shee-hahn): teacher who presides over region
  • Shihonage (shee-hoh-nah-ghey): four-direction throw
  • Shikko (shee-koh): walking on one's knees
  • Shomen (shoh-meyn): the head, the front
  • Shomenuchi (shoh-meyn-oo-chee): strike to the front of the head
  • Soto (soh-toh): outside; opposite of uchi
  • Suburi (soo-boo-rhee): repititious motion performed to perfect movement
  • Sumiotoshi (soo-mhee-oh-toh-shee): corner drop
  • Suwariwaza (soo-wah-rhee-wah-zah): seated technique


  • Tachi (tah-chee): sword
  • Tachiwaza (tah-chee-wah-zah): standing technique
  • Taisabaki (tye-sah-bah-khee): evasive body movement
  • Tegatana (tey-gah-tah-nah): hand blade
  • Ten (teyn): heaven
  • Tenchinage (teyn-chee-nah-ghey): heaven-and-earth throw
  • Tatami (tah-tah-mhee): traditional Japanese straw mats
  • Tenkan (teyn-kahn): 180 degree pivot on the front foot
  • Tori (toh-rhee): a grab, a hold
  • Tsuki (tskee): thrust or punch


  • Uchi (oo-chee): inside; opposite of soto
  • Uchideshi (oo-chee-dey-shee): live-in student or disciple
  • Udegarami (oo-dey-gah-rhah-mhee): arm entwinement technique
  • Udekimenage (oo-dey-khee-mey-nah-ghey): a throw applying pressure against the elbow
  • Ueshiba Morihei (Oo-eh-she-bah Moh-rhee-hey): founder of Aikido, referred to as O-Sensei
  • Ueshiba Kisshomaru (Oo-eh-shee-bah Khee-shoh-mah-rhoo): 2nd Doshu, O-Sensei's son
  • Ueshiba Moriteru (Oo-eh-shee-bah Moh-rhee-tey-rhoo): 3rd Doshu, O-Sensei's grandson
  • Uke (oo-khey): one who receives the force, the person who is thrown (opposite of nage)
  • Ukemi (oo-khey-mhee): the art of falling
  • Ura (oo-rha): back, to the rear
  • Ushiro (oo-shee-rhoh): behind
  • Ushirotekubitori (oo-shee-rhoh-tey-khoo-bhee-toh-rhee): wrist grab from behind
  • Ushirowaza (oo-shee-rhoh-wah-zah): techniques in which one is attacked from behind


  • Waza (wah-zah): techniques


  • Yokomen (yoh-koh-meyn): to the side
  • Yokomenuchi (yoh-koh-meyn-oo-chee): strike or cut to the side of the head
  • Yonkyo (yohn-khee-oh): fourth teaching, fourth movement
  • Yudansha (yhoo-dahn-shah): those who have achieved black-belt level