View Full Version : thumb strike term in japanese

10th July 2003, 17:22
I was wondering what karateka call the thumb strike. In jujutsu, I have heard the term boshiken, are there others?

Matt Wolfson
10th July 2003, 17:52
not sure that is the right spelling or not.

10th July 2003, 21:40
Boshiken=thumb fist and is used in japanese jujutsu ryu and the Bujinkan.

It is also sometimes referred to as "shadow fist" because it is easy to apply so that others can't see it. This fist could be referred to as kage no ken or hikage no ken, but I am not an expert on the Japanese language by any stretch.

It has also been referred to as moguriuchi or "burrowing punch."

These references all come from Bujinkan sources and may differ markedly from what you may find in styles of Okinawan karate vs. Japanese fighting arts.

That being said, boshiken is a very useful and under utilized tool in many schools of fighting, imo. I am just beginning to really appreciate what one can accomplish with such a "small" weapon.

Unfortunately in MA today, the most I see of it outside the Bujinkan is circus tricks involving attempts to break various objects with the thumb. The dynamics are usually poor, the technique is telegraphed and transparent to the observer, leading to a completely useless technique.

10th July 2003, 21:44
Yubi refers to fingers. So, you might be able to call it yubi ken, but that makes me think of nuki te uchi (which actually refers to a swimmers stroke hand positioning) more than a spear hand strike.

Not that it is wrong, because, damn, I look this stuff up like most everyone else here. ;)

10th July 2003, 21:48
I've heard yubi-waza used for both finger and thumb strikes as well as techniques used against the joints of the fingers and thumb.