About the Portland Shotokan Karate Dojo
Our dojo started in 1997. Our dojo leader is Stuart Iwasaki who is a third degree black belt student of Tsutomu Ohshima, founder of Shotokan Karate of America.
Our members enjoy a direct link to ancient masters of martial arts through Mr. Ohshima and his direct instructor, Gichin Funakoshi, founder of Shotokan Karate.
We strive to strengthen body, mind and spirit, perfect character, and faithfully transmit the art to future generations.
Benefits of Karate Practice
Karate can be practiced by everyone at any age for self-defense, to strengthen the entire body, improve balance, efficiency of movement, breathing and overall health. No special equipment is needed.
Karate helps to strengthen the mind, develop courage, fortitude, and the ability to achieve goals.
Karate practice emphasizes spiritual values of courtesy, integrity, humility, justice, honor, and self-control.
The study of karate benefits the student in all areas of their life.
We are so glad that you are interested in joining Portland Shotokan Karate Dojo.
Joining is easy – just visit any of our practices! There is no charge to observe or to practice with us once or twice. After that, if you decide to stay, you must join Shotokan Karate of America ($75 for the remainder of the year). As a member of SKA you will be able to attend any SKA regional, national, and international event open to your rank, and you’ll be able to test for rank twice per year at no charge. Black belt testing is by invitation.
To win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the highest skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the highest skill.” – Master Gichin Funakoshi
Glossary of Karate Terms
- Pronunciation keys of Japanese terms are given in parentheses.
- How to read Japanese in English alphabet (rōmaji):English vowels a=ah, i=ee, u=oo, e=eh and o=oh
- A macron or a line over a vowel indicates that it is pronounced for twice the length of the vowel without a macron or a line. Sometimes an "h" is added instead, as in Mr. Ohshima's name. The first "o" in Mr. Ono's name, on the other hand, is not lengthened. Ohno and Ono are two different names. However, these sounds are just approximations and there are some exceptions.
- Please note that the pronunciation keys given here are only approximations and are primarily designed for the members in the U.S. and Canada. They may not necessarily be helpful for the members of international affiliates.
- Hiroko Mori has recorded each term twice -- first slowly, then natural speed. Click each Japanese term to hear the recording.
ku (koo) /
|Head instructor/Master instructor (of an organization) *(see Notes at the end)|
|Instructor *(see Notes at the end)|
keiko gi (keh-ee-koh gee)/
|Training uniform belt|
|Vocal expulsion of air|
|Black Belt rank|
|White/Brown belt rank|
rei (reh-ee)/lei (leh-ee)
|Pivot/assume opposite direction|
|Maximum effectiveness/ focus of techniques|
|Breathing center in lower abdomen|
|Getting into the opponent|
enpi (ehn-pee)/ empi(ehm-pee)
renzoku waza (rehn-zoh-koo wah-zah)
Tachi (tah-chee) changes to
dachi (dah-chee) when used after other words.
|Horse riding stance|
Harai (hah-rah-ee) changes to
barai (bah-rah-ee) when used after other words. Harai is one kind of block.
Te Waza (teh-wah-zah) Thrust
tsuki (tsoo-kee) changes to
zuki (zoo-kee) when used after other words.
|Continuous punches alternating hands|
|Continuous punching attacks|
|Punching with horse riding stance|
Uchi Waza (oo-chee-wah-zah)
|Middle finger/knuckle fist|
Keri (keh-ree) Keri (keh-ree) changes to
geri (geh-ree) when used after other words.
ushiro-geri hiro_geri.mp3"> (oo-shee-roh-geh-ree)
|Double front kick|
|Flying front kick|
|Flying side-thrust kick|
|Front kick with front leg|
Kumite (koo-mee-teh) Kumite (koo-mee-teh) often becomes
gumite (goo-mee-teh) when used after other words.
|Basic one-time sparring|
kihon ippon gumite (kee-hohn eep-pohn goo-mee-teh)
|Free one-time sparring|
jiyū-ippon gumite (jee-yoo-eep-pohn goo-mee-teh)
sanbon gumite (sahn-bohn goo-mee-teh)
gohon gumite (goh-hohn goo-mee-teh)
jiyū kumite (jee-yoo koo-mee-teh)
|Distance, timing, and other things between opponents|
rei (reh-ee) / lei (leh-ee)
|One point match|
shōbu ippon (shoh-boo eep-pohn)
|I award no point|
|One more time|
mō ichido (moh ee-chee-doh)
|End of match|
soko made(soh-koh mah-deh) /
sore made (soh-reh mah-deh)
waza ari (wah-zah ah-ree)
|Two half-points equal one point|
waza ari awasete ippon (wah-zah ah-ree ah-wah-seh-teh eep-pohn)
|Red is the winner|
aka no kachi (ah-kah noh kah-chee)
shinpan (sheen-pahn) / shimpan(sheem-pahn)
|to topple a folding screen|
|encircle the neck|
|'v' turning swallow|
|to spear a ball|
|to push off a cliff|
|to encircle with the arm|
|to hammer upside down|
|Performer of the technique|
|Receiver of the technique|
- Shihan or Sensei is attached to the end of the person's family name, e.g., Ohshima Shihan (not Shihan Ohshima), Ohshima Sensei (not Sensei Ohshima)
- According to the Japanese culture, it is not appropriate to call oneself Shihan or Sensei, or introduce oneself with the title Shihan or Sensei, e.g., Instructor John Doe shouldn't call himself Shihan, Sensei, Doe Shihan or Doe Sensei. His students can, but he shouldn't.
- The same thing applies to the honorific san (meaning Mr., Mrs., or Miss). Mr. John Doe shouldn't call himself Doe-san or John Doe-san. San can be attached only to the end of others' names.