Karate Stances

In all these stances the knees are bent very slightly. There are no stances where weight rests on a leg with a completely straight knee.


Uchi Hachiji Dachi
• Uchihachiji-dachi (内八字立, literally "stand like the upside-down character 八") The feet are at the shoulder width, toes facing inwards at 30-45 degrees, knees tense. This stance is used in some formal exercises, for example the tsundome. Also called Chun'be.

Musubi dachi • • • • • • Formal attention stance (feet together) Stance of attention. toes open at about 45 degrees. This stance is used to perform the formal respectful bow. rei (礼). . Feet 45 Degree Open Toe Stance Heels together with the toes pointing out Musubi-dachi (結び立. Heels together. Knot stance) Heels together.

Uchi Hachi Monji Dachi • Feet wider than shoulder width • Feet Parallel .

natural stance. Sometimes this stance is called soto-hachiji-dachi ( 外八字立). • Hachiji-dachi (八字立. toes open at about 45 degrees. .Hachiji dachi • Natural stance (feet shoulder width apart toes slightly pointed out) • It is also known as Soto Hachiji Dachi or Soto Hachi Monji Dachi • Open Leg Stance • Feet are shoulders width apart with toes pointed out slightly. This is the basic ready stance in Karate. literally "stand like the character 八") The feet are at the shoulder width.

although it is used as the ready stance in some kata .Heisoku dachi • • • • Closed foot stance (feet together) Informal Attention Stance Stand straight with toes and heels together Heisoku-dachi (閉足立. Feet together stance) Feet together. This is usually a transitional stance.

Kokutsu dachi • Back stance or rooted stance • Back Stance • Feet are two shoulder widths apart with the rear foot turned out at 90° to the front foot. The front leg bears 30% of body weight and rear leg 70%. • Kokutsu Dachi is back stance (one foot pointing forwards 30% weight loading) rear foot at 70% weight loaded . Rear knee pushes outward.

. but one foot is forward to where the heel is parallel with the big toe of the back foot. as in Heiko-dachi.Sesan dachi • Side facing straddle stance • Seisan (Universal) The feet are shoulder width apart.

parallel stance) The feet are at the shoulder width. This is a common transitional stance in many kata. . and their outer edges are parallel.Heiko dachi • Parallel stance (feet shoulder width apart) • Heikō-dachi (平行立.

• Zenkutsu Datchi is front stance (both feet point forwards 70% front and 30% weight loaded back leg) . The front leg bears 60% of the body weight and the rear leg 40%.Zenkutsu dachi • Front stance • Forward Stance • Feet are two shoulder widths apart with the rear foot turned out at about 30°.


The weight is kept 70% on the rear foot. The foot in the front is fully frontal (toes facing forward). its heel will touch the heel of the rear foot.Renoji dachi • The letter L stance • It is also known as the T stance • Renoji-dachi (レの字立. Thus the foot print is shaped like the character レ (or letter L). the rear foot is turned 90 degrees out. . stand like the character レ) Feet are at the shoulder width. and is positioned in such a way that if the front foot is brought back.

thus the foot print is shaped like the character 丁 (or letter T). stand like the character 丁 ) Similar to renoji-dachi.Teiji Dachi • Teiji-dachi (丁字立. but if the front foot is brought back. . its heel will touch the middle of the rear foot.

Kosa Dachi • Reversing Stance .

Kihon Dachi • Natural Walking Stance • Like Sanchin. Feet parallel .

Hangetsu Dachi .

Front knee is over the toes and weight is distributed slightly more to the front leg. .Fudo Dachi • It is also known as Sochin Dachi • Diagonal Straddle Leg Stance • Feet are about twice shoulder width apart and one shoulder width when viewed from the front. Rear leg is bent.

Bensoku dachi • Turning cross leg stance .

Han zenkutsu dachi • Half front stance (Short Zenkutsu dachi) • It is also known as Sho zenkutsu dachi .

Kiba dachi • Horse riding stance (feet parallel) • Straddle Leg Stance • Feet are two shoulder widths apart and parallel. Knees pushed out. Weight distributed evenly .

Some styles don't distinguish this stance from heiko-dachi.Musubi Dachi Heiko • Musubi-dachi-heiko (結び立-平行) From musubi-dachi. . open heels until both outer edges of feet are parallel.

Neko ashi dachi • Cat Stance • Rear knee is pushed forward slightly. The heel of the front foot is raised and the knee pointed slightly inward. Almost all body weight is on rear leg. .

Sanchin dachi • Pigeon Toe stance • Hour Glass Stance • Toes are pointed inward and knees are inward and then out. Pelvis should be rotated upward to the front. . Heels are about shoulder width apart and weight is distributed evenly. Rear toes are in line with front heel.

Shiko dachi • Straddle leg stance (horse stance feet at 45 degrees) .

Sagi Ashi Dachi • Crane or Heron Stance .


Gedan no kamae • Lower level fighting posture .

Chudan no kamae • Middle level fighting posture .

Hanmi no kamae • Half forward facing fighting posture .

Jodan no kamae • Upper level fighting posture .

Morote no kamae • Augmented hand fighting posture .

Shizen dachi no kamae • Natural fighting posture .

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