top of page



The Okinawan Chishi is a traditional training tool used in Okinawan martial arts, specifically in styles like Karate and Kobudo. It is also known as "Ti-shi" or "Tsu-shi" in the Okinawan dialect. The Chishi is a unique and effective tool for developing upper body and grip strength, as well as promoting stability and proper body mechanics.


1. Design and Appearance: The Chishi is a simple tool consisting of a stone or concrete weight attached to a wooden handle. The weight is usually cylindrical or rectangular in shape and varies in size and weight depending on the practitioner's strength and training level. The handle is about the length of an average forearm and allows for a secure grip during exercises.


2. Training Benefits: The Chishi is primarily used for strength training, particularly targeting the shoulders, arms, and grip. The unique design of the tool provides resistance throughout various movements, helping practitioners develop functional strength that can be applied to martial arts techniques. It also helps to improve posture, stability, and body awareness.


3. Exercises: Training with the Chishi involves performing specific exercises that utilize its weight and unique design. Some common exercises include:


   - Upward Swings: Hold the Chishi with both hands, letting it hang down in front of you. Swing it upward using your hips and shoulders while keeping your arms straight. This exercise targets the shoulders and upper body.


   - Side-to-Side Swings: Hold the Chishi with both hands, again letting it hang down in front of you. Swing it from side to side in a controlled manner using your core and obliques. This exercise works on stability and lateral strength.


   - Circular Swings: Hold the Chishi with both hands, and in a controlled motion, swing it in a circular pattern in front of you. This exercise engages multiple muscle groups and enhances coordination.


4. Safety Considerations: Training with the Chishi can be physically demanding and is more suitable for intermediate or advanced martial artists who already have a good foundation of strength and technique. Beginners should start with lighter weights and gradually progress to heavier ones to avoid overstraining.


5. Historical and Cultural Significance: The Chishi has a long history in Okinawan martial arts and reflects the practical approach to training seen in these styles. The emphasis on functional strength and simplicity aligns with the traditional values of martial arts as a means of self-improvement and self-defense.


6. Variations: There are some variations of the Chishi in terms of weight, size, and materials used. Some modern practitioners use adjustable Chishi with detachable weights to vary the resistance during training.


As with any physical training, it is essential to consult with a qualified instructor to learn the proper techniques and ensure the safe and effective use of the Okinawan Chishi. Training with this traditional tool can be a valuable addition to a martial artist's regimen, helping them develop strength, stability, and martial prowess.

Source Link:

Hojo Undo

Episode 009 Chishi

Using the Chishi

bottom of page