4.1 Ashi sabaki (footwork)

Okuri ashi

This is the most basic footwork in kendo. It consists of sliding the front (right) foot, toes first, forwards about 40cm and the bringing the back ( left ) foot up behind to the basic standing position (Chudan no kamae). This foot movement can then either be repeated or it may lead into another type of footwork. Okuri ashi can also be done backwards with the back foot moving first, followed up by the front foot.

Ayumi ashi

This movement is very similar to normal walking except that both feet slide just above the surface of the floor. It is used to move forwards or backwards swiftly and smoothly.

Tsugi ashi

From the chudan position push off from the back (left) foot and move forwards quickly about a metre. The front (right) foot makes contact with the floor first quickly followed up the back foot. You should finish in the chudan no kamae position you started from. This footwork is usually used when attacking.

Hiraki ashi

This footwork is used when stepping to the left or right. Whilst you remain essentially in the chudan no kamae position, your foot position will be reversed when you have finished your step to the left i.e. your right foot will be behind your left.

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