Glossary of Terms E-H


– E –

Economy of Motion – Any movement that takes less time to execute and still causes the intended effect.

Eighteen Hand Movements – The original number of hand movements first developed to defend or attack an opponent. These moves supposedly formed the foundations of Shaolin Boxing.

Elements – The basic definition is the environment around you. Elements cannot be broken down, but only change into other elements. The substances of the martial art elements are earth, wind, fire, water, and wood.

Embryonic Moves – Simple basic movements which are generally singular in both action and purpose.

Empty Hands – A term associated with all Martial Art Systems that employ only natural body weapons while defending or attacking.

Engineer of Motion – Is that stage in a student’s study where he not only can dissect motion, inspect it, understand it, and reassemble it like a mechanic, but extends beyond that point. At this stage he can rearrange, fuse, or create more sophisticated principles. These may stem from a combination of principles, but, nevertheless, they do take on a new perspective.

Environmental Awareness – The ability to observe daily condition and surrounding and make on the spot decisions to either avoid danger or take advantage of the opportunities offered.

Environmental Objects – Useable objects that surround us (a pole, wall, chair, table, etc.), or that are on us (a comb, keys, brush, tube, pen, pencil, belt, purse, etc.) which we can use as weapons of defence.

Equation Formula – This is a special formula that one can follow in determining and developing specific fighting patterns that are practical and logical. The formula allows one a more conclusive basis for negotiating alternate actions.

Exaggerated Step – Is another simplified term to describe a kick.

Explosive Action – Instantaneous reaction that ignites and bursts from inside out with repetitive succession.

Extended Outward – A type of block that is delivered out, up and away from the body. It is a block used at medium range.

Extension – 1. Extended weapon of limb & 2. Extending a set self defense move. Full extension can be described as limb is straightened fully while stance is elongated fully.

External Physical Weakness – Self induced weakening of the body imposed by outward forces such as steam, fire, etc. to humble the soul.

– F –


Fa Jin  – Deep internal Chinese method of discharging an explosive amount of power and energy (Chi) through your opponent, moving them instantly. Although not specific to any art, Fa Jin can be utilised to extract energy from your opponent as well. This has been demonstrated by Grandmaster Gemmell as a projection of Chi (Ki).

Family Related Moves – The use of the same move or moves against a number of predicaments that are basically similar in context, but so often overlooked as similar in principle. For example, the answer to a wrist grab can, with some minor alteration, be the same as a hair or lapel grab. The basic action is to control the opponent’s wrist while striking against the joint of his elbow. The answer to a “rear bear hug”, arms free, can also work if the arms are pinned or if the hug was converted into a “full nelson”.

Fan – Refers to circular parries as used in a technique

Feathers – Refers to the hair.

Feel – A word used to describe the foot or hand as it slides from one point to another. In the case of the foot, the concept teaches you to move your foot back ever so slightly so that it literally feels the ground when it is sliding in the hope of overcoming possible obstacles.

Feint – A misleading move used to deceive an opponent.

Fighting Sentence – Combined movements of hands and feet that are used in sequence both defensively and offensively.

Figure 8 – Common practice of weaponry, nunchakus, swords, and short staffs, in the shape of the number eight. Can use the figure eight when walking in Ba Gua.

Fitting – Applying the shape of a natural weapon to fit the target being struck. It is like fitting a puzzle in place. The effectiveness of a strike is enhanced when you use shapes that match. It is one of the methods of contouring.

5 Animals – The most commonly used animals to portray the movement of a martial artist. These are the dragon, tiger, crane, snake, and leopard, representing in the same order spirit, strength, chi, sinew, and bone. There are further animal systems such as monkey, eagle, bear, and praymantis.

Flow – Rounding the corners and rythmically flowing through free continuous movement with no stoppage. Commonly executed in katas with no power.

Focus – Is the result of the entire body working as a unit at the very instant a target is struck. The concentration of mind (knowledge) breath, strength, and methods of execution must unite as one in conjunction with body momentum, torque, gravitational marriage, timing, speed, penetration, etc.

Forms – It is an index of offensive and defensive manoeuvres whereby one can get answers to certain situations. It is a physical expression of form, speed, power, continuity, poise, etc.

Formulate – The combining of moves into a systematized order, which when properly organized, develops into a logical and practical sequential arrangement.

Formulation Phase – This is the third analytical process of dissecting a technique. It involves the actual application of your newly found alternatives to the original ideal or fixed technique.

Freestyle – A term used in Karate for sparring. As in boxing it is a combination of offence and defence — free physical expression.

Full Contact – Is the professional method of free styling (sparring) where actual hitting is accepted as part of the rules.


– G –

Gauging of Distance – Maintenance of proper distance between opponent and self for purposes of defence or attack.

Gift – Refers to a handshake as used in a technique

Glancing – A method of striking that is similar to a slice. The major difference is that the depth of penetration is much greater. It does not skim the surface of the target, but makes a deep penetration.

Grafting – Is the combining of several principles within the flow of a single action. For example a strike may start with a hammering motion, but conclude with a thrusting action without disturbing the natural flow of the executed move. The term also refers to combining self-defence techniques without disruption in their completed or uncompleted state.

Grapple – This is defined as close quarter ground seizure. You are trying to gain superiority or dominance whilst fighting on the ground. [also Wrestle]

Gravitational Check – A form of contouring where parts of an arm or leg rests on a particular surface area on an opponent’s body to prevent him from obtaining height and leverage. This restriction can detain or prevent an opponent from taking action that can be detrimental.

Guard – Refers to controlling position[s] in ground grappling when you are on your back. If in full guard, you have both legs outside the body of your opponent; commonly wrapped around the torso. If you have one leg between your opponents leg and one outside, this is termed as half guard; commonly wrapped around the leg they surround. The opponent has to pass the guard to manouvre into a better position.


– H –

Hairpin – Refers to a path of action that resembles the shape of a hairpin. It is a method of execution that elongates the circle and rounds off the corner.

Hammering – A particular method of striking which resembles the action of a hammer pounding a nail from various angles.

Hammering Block – When we step to an angle we use a hammering block to get angle of incidence (Checking & Evading the storm, Thrusting salute, Buckling Branch).

Hanshi – The title bestowed on the master teacher who earns their warrior scholar, commonly given at seventh degree/dan. This is the senior improvement to Shi-Han [Han-Shi].

Hapkido – An eclectic Korean martial art using self defense that employs joint locks and techniques of other martial arts. This art also demonstrates kicks, punches, other striking attacks, and weaponry.

Heel-Knee – Method of determining the proper depth of a neutral bow where the heel of the forward foot in on the same line as the knee of the rear leg when it is smartly and naturally placed on the ground.

Height Cancellation – Bending attackers over to keep them below us. Normally done by kick or strike to groin or knee. When you remain in the centre-line of an attacker, you MUST cancel their height zone. Examples; Mace of Aggression, Snapping Twig, Raking Mace.

Hook – A type of punch used by boxers that makes contact with the opponent on the down side of his circling action. In short, contact is made after the fist passes the apex of the circle. Kicks can also follow the same principle.

Hooking – The execution of a natural weapon that makes contact with its target after passing the apex of the circle in which it travels. Contact is made on the downside or return of the circle in which your weapon travels.

Horizontal Zones – Another one of the categorical zones of protection. It basically entails the protection of three horizontal or height levels: the solar plexus to the top of the head; groin to the solar plexus and feet to the groin

Horizontal Zones of Attack – Another one of the categorical zones of protection. It basically entails the protection of three horizontal or height levels: the solar plexus to the top of the head; groin to the solar plexus and feet to the groin

Hsing-I – This is a Chinese Wudang style. Hsing-I means ‘Form Intention Boxing’ and seems to be agressive and linear. They are, however, coordinated movements generating explosive power of body, but being subordinate to conscious control. There is only variant styles existing in todays world.

Hwarang-do – A Korean Martial Art system that taught high principles and philosophies. Advocates were dedicated to the cultivation of spirit and health among the youth along with self-defence disciplines.