How to “TAI-SABAKI 体さばき” body shifting? by Karate Myint Kywe 先生

How to “TAI-SABAKI 体さばきbody shifting?

空手先生 Myint Kywe
ဆိုရွိကိ ကရာေတးအသင္း နည္းျပခ်ဳပ္ 
ဦးျမင့္ၾကြယ္ ( ၿမိဳ ႔မ ျမင့္ၾကြယ္ )
首席先生  Soshiki Karate (松濤館 空手)


Tai sabaki refers to the complete movement of the body while wielding a naginata in Japanese ancient martial arts period. How to perform Tai Sabaki. Martial artists can get out of the line of attack by using Tai Sabaki techniques. This is a general guide that can be used with many styles such as karate, aikido or jujitsu. And it is through ashi-sabaki, footwork, in which this movement is initiated. Below are the primary methods of moving one's feet, with brief descriptions and diagrams of the movements. 

Movements in Karate

·       sabaki - general term for body moving/shifting techniques
·       tai sabaki - body movement
·       te sabaki - hand movement
·       ashi sabaki - foot movement
·       suri ashi - sliding step
·       tsugi ashi - shuffling step
·       tenkai ashi - pivot
·       kaiten ashi - forward step pivot
·       tenkan ashi - pivot backstep
·       ayumi ashi - natural stepping/walking
·       yori ashi - dragging step
·       keri ashi - kicking foot
·       tenshin - moving, shifting
·       chakuchi - replacing
Okuri-ashi (Yori-ashi): The footwork used when striking, and for moving in all directions (sliding the feet). There are also short video clips showing the Karate practitioners using the footwork.


Ayumi-ashi: Footwork used for going frontward and backward. When moving forward start with the right foot first and move four steps forward. When moving backward, start with the left foot first and take four steps back.

Tsugi-ashi: Footwork used when striking from distance or when you want to reduce the maai quickly. Maai (間合い), "interval" or "range", is a Japanese martial arts term referring to the space between two opponents in combat; formally, the "engagement distance". It is a complex concept, incorporating not just the distance between opponents, but also the time it will take to cross the distance, angle and rhythm of attack.

Hiraki-ashi: Footwork used when avoiding a strike or responding. When moving to the left, step with the left foot and follow with your right. It can also be used for moving to the right with opposite stepping order and for changing directions.

Fumikae-ashi: Footwork used for changing the direction that the body is facing on the spot when striking or counter-attacking.

According to karate history, Master Funakoshi Gichin, Master Masatoshi Nakayama and Master Masutatsu Oyama DID NOT bounce (up and down) in karate. They are greatest masters in Japanese Karate.
I noticed senior men NEVER bounced in Karate.

In martial arts one should not bounce since it's not an effective way to enhance power for fighting. Almost competitors have trained in it and like it, so I think it depends on the individual and what they are comfortable doing. You don't want to bounce SO much because you lose your energy (bouncing is a waste of needed energy).  It is true that it WASTES energy- I found that out after about 25 minutes of sparring.

My friends, first of all you need to learn about TAI- SABAKI体さばき!

How to perform Tai Sabaki  (body shifting)?.

Karate martial artists must study the line of move by using Tai Sabaki techniques. This is a general guide that can be used with many Japanese martial arts styles such as karate, aikido or jujitsu.

Practice Tai Sabaki often to make the movements second nature.

To maintain balance, both feet can step, pivot (the central point) or slide as appropriate.

LINEAR movement in straight line) is common to a great deal of the martial arts world, and is predominant in arts of Japanese influence such as many forms of old pure Karate.

Linear footwork's direct, sharp movements are natural for most sparring systems, which aim quickly to take an opponent to the floor with as little movement or adjustment as necessary. "Shooting," or rushing for the legs in order to execute a takedown, is a universal action that is an example of linear footwork's application.

CIRCULAR movement patterns are also needed part of many forms of traditional Japanese martial arts. Circular footwork is also the basic method of movement in karate. That it always points towards the center of the circle.

This circular motion is different from the straight movements of karate. It has more variety. When it is fully utilized in karate it leads to another more effective area. This is the development of spherical motions which consist of centrifugal and centripetal forces.

You need to understand such as linear velocity, centripetal acceleration, centripetal force, centrifugal force, angular speed, centre of gravity, stability control, direction of movement and motion.

Then, Footwork involves keeping balance, closing or furthering the distance, controlling positioning, and creating additional momentum for strikes, kicks, punches.