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We are an AMERICAN martial arts school that practices the "arts" of several different countries. In the course of your training you will come in contact with words that are not English but may be Korean, Japanese, Chinese or Filipino. This is intended to be a dictionary of sorts for you to learn the meanings of the different languages used in the school. The words are spelled phonetically or as they sound.

Most of the terminology used in the school will be English with a mixture of Korean as a base language. We have been more formally involved with the Korean arts over the past four decades, so that will be our base along with English.
Towards the bottom of this page, there are some duplicates and also the correct pronunciation of the words in Korean. Just click on the BLUE links.


In Korean language there are two sets of numbers. One of these was borrowed from the Chinese. Up to ninety-nine (99), both sets are used. For one-hundred (100) and above you use only the Chinese set.




(1) One Hahnah Il
(2) Two Dool Ee
(3) Three Set Sam
(4) Four Net Sah
(5) Five Tasut Oh
(6) Six Yusut Yuk
(7) Seven Ilgope Chil
(8) Eight Yahdul Pal
(9) Nine Ahop Ku
(10) Ten Yah ul Sip
(11) Eleven Yol-hana Sip-Il
(12) Twelve Yol-dool Sip-Ee
(13) Thirteen Yol-set Sip-Sam
(14) Fourteen Yol-net Sip-Sah
(15) Fifteen Yol-Tasut Sip-Oh
(16) Sixteen Yol-Yusut Sip-Yuk
(17) Seventeen Yol-Ilgope Sip-Chil
(18) Eighteen Yol-Yahdul Sip-Pal
(19) Nineteen Yol-Ahop Sip-Ku
(20) Twenty Sumul Ee-Sip
(30) Thirty Solhun Sam-Sip
(40) Forty Manhun Sah-Sip
(50) Fifty Swin Oh-Sip
(60) Sixty Yesun Yuk-Sip
(70) Seventy Ilhun Chil-Sip
(80) Eighty Yodun Pal-Sip
(90) Ninety Ahun Ku-Sip
(100) One-hundred Il-Pack Pack
(200) Two-hundred Ee-Pack Ee-Pack


Upper part Sahng-dan
Middle part Choong-dan
Lower Part Ha-dan
Ear Kwi
Head Mori
Eye Nun
Nose K'o
Throat Mok
Shoulder O-kae
Chest Ka-sun
Spine Chok-chu


Center Chung-sim
Arm Pahl
Elbow Pal-kum-chi
Wrist Pal-mok
Hand Son
Finger Son-ka-rak
Leg Tah-ri
Knee Mu-rup
Ankle Pok-song-abyo
Foot Bahl
Body Mom


COMMANDS are in quotation marks!

"Again" ------------------------"Ta-si"

"Assume Formal Sitting Posture" ---------------------"Ahn-jo"

Attack --------------------------Kong kyuck

"Attention" -------------------"Cha ryut"

"Back" -------------------------"Twee"

Bad -------------------------------Na pun

Balance --------------------------Choong shim

Bamboo Sword -----------------Jukdo

Bamboo Sword Blocking ----------Jukdo mak gi

Basic --------------------------------Gi cho (ki cho) or Kibon

Basic Stances --------------------Gi cho Sogi or Kibon ja sae

Beginner --------------------------Cho bo ja

"Begin" or "Start" : Japanese ---------------"Hajime"

"Begin" or "Start" : Korean ------------------"Shee jak"

Belt : Japanese --------------------------Obi

Belt : Korean -----------------------------Dee

Big -------------------------------------------Kun

Bird ------------------------------------------Sae

"Bite" ---------------------------------------"Mul da"

Black -----------------------------------------Kom un

Black Belt Holder: Japanese-----------Yu dan sha

Black Belt Holder: Korean -------------You dahn ja

Black Belt rank ----------------------------Dan (dahn)

Block ------------------------------------------Mak gi

Blue --------------------------------------------Pu run

"Bow" : Japanese --------------------------"Rei"

"Bow" : Korean ----------------------------"Kyung net"

"Bow to Examiner or Judge" --------------"Shim sa Kwan nim ge kyung net"

"Bow to Senior instructor" ------------------"Sabom nim ge kyung net"

"Bow to Flag" ----------------------------------"Kuk gi bay ray"

"Bow to Master" -----------------------------"Kwanjang nim ge kyung net"

"Bow to Partner" -----------------------------"Sahng ho kan ee kyung net"

Breakfall ------------------------------------------Nauk bup

Breaking technique : Japanese -------------Tameshiwari

Breaking technique : Korean ----------------Kuc pa

Broken ---------------------------------------------Gae jin

"By the count" ----------------------------------"Ku ryung ee mat cho so"

Calisthenics ---------------------------------------Un dong

Cane Techniques --------------------------------Dan jang sul

Car --------------------------------------------------Cha dong cha

Center ----------------------------------------------Chung sim

Champion ------------------------------------------Son su

"Change" (to other side) ---------------------"Kyo dae"

Cheap -----------------------------------------------Ssan

1st degree Black belt ---------------------------Cho dahn

2nd degree Black Belt --------------------------Ee dahn

3rd degree Black Belt ---------------------------Sam dahn

4th degree Black Belt ---------------------------Sah dahn

5th degree Black belt ----------------------------Oh dahn

6th degree Black Belt ----------------------------Yuk dahn

7th degree Black Belt ----------------------------Chil dahn

8th degree Black Belt ----------------------------Pal dahn

9th degree Black Belt ----------------------------Ku dahn

10th degree Black Belt ----------------------------Sip dahn

Choking techniques -------------------------------Jo ru gi sul

** Chung -----------------------------------------A calm and concentrated mental state

Class of Belt below Black Belt -------------------Kup or Gup

Class Holder below Black Belt -------------------Yu kup ja or Yu gup ja

Class is over; dismissed--------------------Hae san

Cold ------------------------------------------------------Ch an

Collar -----------------------------------------------------Kal la

Combination Kicks -----------------------------------Hon shik cha gi

Contest --------------------------------------------------Kyong jaeng

Continue -------------------------------------------------Kay sok ha da

Controlling techniques ------------------------------Yen hang sul

Count -------------------------------------------------------Ku ryung

Creating the Dynamic Force --------------------------Do jin bup

** Dahn ------------------------------------------------------Degree of Black Belt

** Dahn Jon ---------------------------An oriental medical term indicating the portion of the abdomen two inches below the navel. It is the absolute center of gravity in man, and also serves as the foundation of human power.

** Dahn Jon Ho Hup ---------------------------Strengthening the Inner Power through the use of abdominal breathing techniques.

Defense against a gun ------------------------------Hoshin kwon chong bang a sul

Defense against a knife ----------------------------Hoshin dangumm mak gi sul

Defense against a punch ---------------------------Bang kwon sul

Defense against a sword ---------------------------Kong soo gum bang a sul

Defense against a throw ----------------------------Bang too gi sul

Defense against three opponents ------------------Sam in cheri sul

Defense against two oponents ----------------------Yang in cheri sul

Earth --------------------------------------------------------Chi gu

Elbow strike -----------------------------------------------Joo chum or Pal keum chi

End -----------------------------------------------------------Kut

"Excuse me" ---------------------------------------------"Yong so ha da"

Expensive -------------------------------------------------Pi ssan

External Power -------------------------------------------Wae gong

Fan --------------------------------------------------------------Pu chae

Fast -------------------------------------------------------------Ba lun or Ppalli

Father ----------------------------------------------------------A bo ji

Federation -----------------------------------------------------Kwan

Fighting chain : Japanese -----------------------------------Manriki gusari

Fighting, One-step --------------------------------------------Il soo shik dae ryun

Fighting, Two-step -------------------------------------------Yi soo shik dae ryun

Fighting, Three-step ----------------------------------------Sam soo shik dae ryun

Fighting, Free : Japanese ----------------------------------Kumite

Fighting, Free : Korean ------------------------------------Cha yu dae ryun

Fish ---------------------------------------------------------------Mul kogi

Fist ---------------------------------------------------------------Chu muk

Flying kicks ---------------------------------------------------Bi sang cha gi

Focus of eyes ------------------------------------------------Shi sun

Foot -------------------------------------------------------------Bahl

Foot techniques ---------------------------------------------Cha gi or jok gi

Form : Japanese ---------------------------------------------Kata

Form : Korean -------------------------------------------------Hyung or Tul or Poomse

Form : Chinese -------------------------------------------------Kuen

Front --------------------------------------------------------------Ap

Fruit --------------------------------------------------------------Kwa sil

Gentle ------------------------------------------------------------On hwa han

Good --------------------------------------------------------------Pok ni or Choh un


Thank you ---------------- Kam sah hah dah

Thank you very much ---------------- Ko mop sup nee dah

You are welcome ---------------------Won chun mun yeo

I am sorry (excuse me) -------------------- Mee ahn ham nee dah

Understand? ---------------------- Al dah

No --- Ah nee

Yes --- Nae

Hello or Goodbye --- An yong

"Good Morning" ---------------------------------------------"Anyong hi chumu sosum nika"

"Good Day" -----------------------------------------------------"Anyong hasim nika"

"Good Night" ----------------------------------------------------"Anyong hi chu mu sip siyo"

"Goodbye" --------------------------------------------------------"Anyong"

** Hakama -------------------------------------------Divided skirt worn over uniform by Aikido, Kendo or JuJitsu practitioners.

Hand defense ----------------------------------------Jung kwon bang a bop

Hand techniques ------------------------------------Soo gi

Hand trident : Japan or Okinawa ---------------Sai

Coordination; To coordinate ---------------------Hap

Hard style blocks -----------------------------------Kang sul bang a bop

Headband ---------------------------------------------Mori di

Head Master : Japanese ---------------------------Han shi

Head Master : Korean ------------------------------Chong Kwan jang 

Heaven --------------------------------------------------Ha nul

Hot -------------------------------------------------------Du go un

Non-resistance ----------------------------------------Hwa

** Hwarang -------------------------------------------"Flowering Youth". The ancient royal warriors of Silla kingdom.

Ignorant -------------------------------------------------Musik han

Ill (sick)--------------------------------------------------Na pu ge

Inner Power : Japanese or Korean ---------------Ki

Inner Power : Chinese -------------------------------Chi

Korean ------- Jo Kyo (1st Dahn [assistant instructor])

Instructor : Kyo Sa (2nd Dahn)

Pu Sabom (3rd Dahn)

Sa Bom (4th Dahn)

Kwang Jang (5th thru 8th Dahn [Master instructor])

Sa Ja (Inheritor of a style)

Do Ju (Founder of a style [8th to 10th Dahn])

Instructor : Japanese or Okinawan --------Sensei

Instructor : Chinese ---------------------Sifu

Internal Power ---------------------------Nae gong or Nae ki

Japanese Military Warrior -----------------Samurai

Jointed sticks ---------------------------Nunchaku

Joint techniques -------------------------Kwan jyel

Junior member ---------------------------Hu beh

Kicking techniques -----------------------Cha gi or jok gi

** Kihap ---------------------------------Yell

Knife ------------------------------------Kal

Knifehand --------------------------------Soodo

Knife throwing -----------------------------Pyo chang sul pup

Korean flag --------------------------------Tae guk gi (Infinity)

Left ---------------------------------------Wen

Light ---------------------------------------Pit

"Line up" -----------------------------------"Annoda wie"

Little ---------------------------------------Chog un

Long ----------------------------------------Kin

Long knife -----------------------------------Kin kal

Loser ---------------------------------------Pah ja

Lower (groin) area ----------------------------Ha dan

Lower grade rank : Japanese --------------------Kyu

Lower grade rank : Korean ----------------------Kup or Gup or Keup

Lower grade rank holder ------------------------You gup ja

Turn --------------------------Doe rah

Turn Around and Be At Ease; Fix Uniform; Tie Belt-----Shee oh

Turn Around and Face Opposite Direction-----------Dee row doe rah

** Vigorous physical movement----------------- Dong

Head Master of School or Grand-master--------Seu sang
Sir; term added to title as sign of respect------------ Nim (Example: Kwan Jang Nim)


Shing yee --------------Hard Internal Style

Kenpo ---------------------------------"Fist Way"

Kung Fu ------------------------------"Man's effort" or "Well Done". Catch-all term for all

Chinese Martial Arts.

Pa Kua or Ba Gua ---------------Internal Style based on Circular motion and Palm strikes.

Shuei Chiao ------------------------Throwing and Grappling sport; Like Judo / Wrestling

Tai Chi Chuan ---------------------"Grand Ultimate Fist". Internal style with slow movements.

Wing Chun ---------------------------The Art of Sticking Hands. Bruce Lee's first style.

Wu Shu --------------------------------Chinese National Martial Arts. Highly Gymnastic moves.

My Jhong Law Horn -------------The Lost Track system

Jeet Kune Do -----------------------"Way of Intercepting Fist". Bruce Lee's personal style.


Aikido ----------------------------------"The Art of Gentleness with Universal Power of Ki".

Iaido ------------------------------------"The Art of Sword Drawing".

Judo -------------------------------------"The Gentle Way"

JuJitsu ----------------------------------The forerunner to Aikido, Hapkido and Judo.

Karate -----------------------------------"Empty Hand"

Kendo ------------------------------------"Sword Fighting"

Kempo ------------------------------------Japanese term for Kung Fu

Ninjujitsu --------------------------------"The Way of the Assassin". Hired killers.


Karate -----------------------------------"China hand". Originators of Karate.

Kumiai Jutsu -------------------------Similar to Japanese Jujitsu.

Okinawa Te ---------------------------Okinawan term for karate


Tae kwon do --- Art of Hand and Foot Fighting; Founded by General Hong Hi Choi

Chang-Hun Style --- Blue Cottage (the I.T.F. Style)

Moo Duk Kwan --- Martial Virtue School (the W.T.F. Style)

Hapkido --- Art of Coordinated Power

Hosin do --- Art of Self-defense

Tae-Pung Kwan --- The Great Storm School (Hosin do Style)

Tang Soo do --- Art of the China Hand

Mooki do --- Art of Weapons

Tae kyon --- Ancient Korean Kicking Martial Art

Soo Bak do --- Ancient Korean Martial Art

Yu Kwon Sul --- Art of Yielding Hand (forerunner to Hapkido)

Hwarangdo (current) -----------Ancient art of battle modified by a student of Yong Sul Choi.

Kuk Sul Won ----------------------A style of Hapkido founded by student of Yong Sul Choi.

Subak do ---------------------------Pre-1955 hard style Korean Karate

Subak or Tae Kyon ------------Ancient Korean Kicking Arts

Yudo ----------------------------------Korean Judo.

Sungja do ---------------------------"Way of the Savior (Jesus)".

I. S. A. Korean Terminology

* Click on the BLUE links below to hear the correct pronunciation the Korean terms.

* Please note, the Korean spellings are not necessarily accurate according to how you may find them in a text using the alphabet. We've tried to make it a little easier to read/learn the words. However, a few general pronunciations will help...

c = ch     k = g     i = ee     Most 'a' are short vowel = ah

Basic Commands
Attention Cha Ryut
Ready Joon Bi
Bow Gyung Nae
At Ease Ba Ro
Meditation Jyung Ja
Flag Salute Gook Gyi Guung Nae
Class Begin Soo Ryun She Ja
Turn around Turi Tura
Step Change Palbako

Basic Greetings & Acknowledgements
Thank You Kamsahamnida
Hello Yobosaeyo
You have done well Suogohesumnida
Goodbye Anyangi hasaeyo


Basic Titles
Grand Master Chon Kwonjongnim
Master Kwonjongnim
Instructor Sabamnim
Student Hoksang
Studio Dojang
Uniform Dobok
Belt De

One han
Two tu(l)
Three set
Four net
Five da sut
Six yu sut
Seven ill gope
Eight yu dull
Nine ah hope
Ten yul

Kicking - Pal caki
Jumping idan
Flying tia
Front kick apcaki
Jumping front kick idan apcaki
Flying front kick tia apcaki
Low-high front kick han dan-sang dan apcaki
Side kick yupcaki
Flying side kick tia yupcaki
Low-high side kick han dan-sang dan yupcaki
Roundhouse uptoolacaki
Jumping Roundhouse idan uptoolacaki
Low-high Roundhouse han dan-sang dan uptoolacaki
Back kick ticaki
Hook kick tikumcicaki
Inside to out Ax kick pakadadi doki caki
Outside to in Ax kick antadi doki caki
High spinning heel sang dan tidollacaki
Low spinning heel han dan tidollacaki
High-low spinning heel sang dan-han dan tidollacaki

Stances - Jassi
Front stance junglejassi
Back stance hooglejassi
Horse stance kimajassi
Fighting gongkyupjassi
Defense pangojassi
Walking opsagi
Tiger bumsagi

Blocking - Maki
Single hanson
Double yangson
Torso monton
Face algo
In body montonanmaki
Out body montonpakamaki
High block witmaki
Down block adamaki
Neck block patongsoonmaki
Cross blocking chipjamaki
Praying Mantis songkiupsoontoongkwanchigi
Single knife hand hansonalmaki
Double knife hand yangsonalmaki
Double knife hand, low block yangsonaladamaki
Scissor blocking kawimaki
Overhead fist & fist low block gumkonmontonmaki
Low stance, block out, front fist wisantulmaki

Okinawan/Japanese Martial Arts Titles
Sensei, Tas-shii, Ren-shi, Shi-han, Kyo-shi and Han-shi

The title "Sensei" is a Japanese title of respect. It is used to address teachers or professionals such as doctors, lawyers and others. Outside Japan, many people, due to the natural "cultural gap", have little experience with this title and sometimes unintentionally do not use the title correctly. Since this particular title comes from the Japanese culture and they are the authorities when it comes to their own language, those of us outside that culture must strive to use the title correctly by Japanese definition, if it is to be used correctly within each respective American martial arts dojo.

Sensei always comes after a teacher's name and is used like the similar honorific title "san" at the end of a person's name. In the Japanese/Okinawan martial arts, we call a teacher "Sensei," whether or not we are actually studying under that person, unless we want to be deliberately insulting. The title "Sensei" is attached to the end of a teacher's name at all times – not just in the Dojo. If you hear your Sensei refer to an assistant teacher in the Dojo by their first name, it does not necessarily mean that you should do the same. That individual is the Sensei's student and he or she is your senior and should be addressed as Sensei. The study of the martial arts is a way of life and the same respect that is shown in the Dojo should be practiced in our everyday life outside the Dojo.

Tas-shii, Ren-shi, Kyo-shi and Han-shi are classical ranks/titles, as opposed to the more modern day dan grades issued by other organizations. They are similar to Samurai titles that were given under the auspicious of Japan's Imperial Family during feudal times. Based on each individuals knowledge, teaching ability and the outstanding development of character through the study of the martial arts, these titles/ranks are much more difficult to achieve than the conventional dan grades.

TAS-SHII = (Ta'shee) "Expert" An expert of the Japanese Martial Arts who is of 3rd to 4th Dan black belt rank.

REN-SHI = The character "Ren" means "polished, tempered" and "shi" means "person". Thus Ren-shi indicates a "polished instructor" or expert. Ren-shi correlates to the modern rank of 4th to 5th dan.

SHI-HAN =  "Doctor" "Master Teacher" or "Model Teacher" A title representing a master in Japanese Martial Arts. Usually these Instructors are of very high rank, 6th Dan black belt and above; some head their own style and schools.

KYO-SHI = The "Kyo" in Kyo-shi means "professor" or "philosophy". Therefore, Kyo-shi equals a "professor capable of teaching the philosophy of the martial arts. Kyo-shi correlates to the modern rank of 6th to 8th Dan.

HAN-SHI = The "Han" in Han-shi means "example, model" and indicates "a teacher that can serve as an ideal model for others", or a "Senior Master." Han-shi correlates to the modern day rank of 8th to 10th dan.

This page copyrighted 1997-2016 by I. S. A. Consultation Group

Updated on MAY 19, 2016!