Most Common Japanese Terms in Shibari

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Shibari is a Japanese art of restraint. Although it is known and practiced around the world, the original terminology is in Japanese. Therefore, you should familiarize yourself with its jargon. That’s why here we present the most common Japanese terms in Shibari.

Asanawa – Rope made of bast fibre, typically from jute or hemp.
Bakshi – Short for Kinbakushi, which means Rope Artist
Dojo – literally “place of the way”, the place where you learn and practice.
Ebi – “shrimp”; is a type of tie that folds the body inward.
Hishi – diamond-shaped patterns in a tie
Hojojutsu – Ancient martial art of capture and restraint using a rope.
Ichinawa – An approach to tying that relies on a single rope.
Kannuki – A Cinch that tightens or holds other ropes in place.
Karada – Body, it generally refers to a variety of body harnesses.
Kinbaku – Tight binding
Kinbakushi – Rope Artist
Matanawa – Crotch rope
Nawa – Rope
Nawagashira – the “bight” of the rope.
Nawashi – Maker of rope. Rope Artist or expert
Newaza – Floorwork, rope bondage without any suspension
Ryu – Style of doing something, a school or approach.
Semenawa – Torture rope, bondage that intentionally inflicts pain.
Sensei – Teacher or Master
Shibari – “to tie” or “weaving”
Tengu – A type of tie that folds the arms and secures them to the side of the body
Tsuri – Suspension
Wabi Sabi – Philosophical approach that accepts transience and imperfection. A Beauty that is “imperfect, impermanence and incomplete”
Yoko Tsuri – Side Suspension.

These terms are the most common. However, the Shibari glossary is more extense. In spite of that, with these terms you have enough to begin with. Even though many of these terms have multiple definitions, knowing their basic meaning will help you get started. Moreover, it will be the beginning of your journey.

Now you know the most common Japanese terms in Shibari.

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