This page may ultimately contain much of the white belt packet. For now, we offer:


Heiko dache - Parallel stance. Feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent. Hands in fists at chamber position, elbows back. Shoulders square forward, chin up. Weight even on both legs. Also used in attention position, with fists in front of legs.

Seisan dache - Forward stance. Like Hieko dache except on foot out in front and one behind. Parallel stance, shoulder-width apart. Weight distribution still even. Guard position or chamber position can be used here.

Kumite dache - Fighting stance. body turned sideways, head looking over shoulder toward opponent. Knees slightly bent, weight distribution even. Feet shoulder width apart and parallel at a 45-degree angle between direction of the body and direction of the head. Hands in guard position.

Shika dache - Horse stance. Feet much wider than shoulder-width. Shoulders square forward. Knees deeply bent, weight distributed evenly. Lower legs roughly vertical. Feet at 45-degree angles out away from the body, not parallel. Hands usually at chamber position. Head can look forward, or also to the side over the legs.

Seiuchin dache - another name for Shika dache.

Musabi dache - Attention stance. Feet together in V-shape, touching at the heels. Shoulders square forward. Very slight bend to the knees. Hands flat at sides of legs in open-hand position. Back straight. The position from which standing bows are done.

Honsuku dache - Feet also in V-shape, but left foot a full step forward of and away from right. Arms straight without locking. Hands in open-hand position, a short distance away from the sides of legs. Back Straight. The position from which we move into Musabi dache.

Kiba dache - Inside horse stance. Like Shika dache, except feet parallel, facing forward.

Zenkutsu dache - somewhat like Seisan and Seiuchin dache, but also unlike either. Feet much wider than shoulder width, pointed out to angles. One leg forward, knee bent 90 degrees. One leg back, knee straight but not locked. Weight distribution as even as possible. The hands form a catch on the bent-leg side. Upper body and head face nearly forward.

Neko Ashe dache - Cat stance. Front leg faces forward, out in front of the body, up on the ball, heel off the ground. Back leg underneath the body, pointed 90 degrees out to the side, entire bottom of foot touching the ground. Both legs very bent. Weight set almost entirely on the back foot. Hip pushes out toward the back. Feet separated by a distance equal to 1 to 1-1/2 times the length of your foot. Hands in catch on the same side as the back leg. Head looking forward. Upper body can face forward ("open" stance) or to the side ("closed" stance).

Homni dache - T stance. Like the Neko Ashe dache except the front foot is not up on the ball, but rather the entire bottom surface touches the floor.

Kake dache - Hooked stance. Almost an inverted open Neko Ashe dache. Front leg under the body, sideways. Back foot up on the ball, pointed forward, one foot's distance behind the front. Back heel off the ground. The back foot is along the body's centerline. Back knee rests on the front calf. Hips square forward. Hands usually in chamber position. Weight mostly on the front foot. Sometimes called "knee-in-knee" stance.

Nai hanchi dache - Inverted open-leg stance. Like Hieko dache, except feet pointed in at an angle. Knees bend in toward each other, coming close but not quite touching, in order to protect the groin.

Sanchin dache - Hourglass stance. Resembles a mixture of Seisan and Nai hanchi dache. One foot in front of the other, shoulder-width apart. Front foot points at an angle, forward and inward. Back foot points straight forward. Knees bend in toward each other along the directions of the feet. Hands usually in chamber position, head and upper body square forward.

Seiza - Kneeling position. Used for formal bows.

Japanese Terminology Resources

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