Kihon means "basics," or "fundamentals." It is the term used to describe the practice and repetition of the basic techniques of karate. Kihon can be performed with footwork or from a stationary position. It can be performed individually or in large groups. Kihon can be considered as the alphabet of karate. By organizing various kihon techniques into sequences, kata are created*. When learning how to apply kihon techniques to another person, kumite is born. Since kihon is vital to the development of proper karate technique, Shotokan students spend a great deal of time trying to perfect it. Improve your kihon skills, and all other aspects of karate improve automatically. Kihon can be divided into 5 categories:
Outer Tension Stances
Inner Tension Stances
*In actuality, kata preceded kihon. Kihon was developed as a means to facilitate the learning of movements of the kata, especially when teaching large groups of people.