Poll Results: Which Technique is the Most Fun?

This poll ended up running a little longer than I had planned, but the cool side benefit is that it gave more people time to vote and share their opinions.

Let’s Make Taido Fun

I think Taido is crazy fun to do, and I don’t seem to be the only one. At the seminar for rainbow belts prior to the recent World Taido Championships, I helped Saito and Tanaka Sensei give a presentation on how to enjoy learning Taido. The central point, of course, was that Taido is something we do for both ourselves and society, and that we can get a lot more out of it by making it fun.

In that seminar, we tried several ways to put a little bit more interest into training kamae and unsoku – things that may get tedious after a while unless we use some creativity.

There are lots of ways to make training fun, but one of my favorites is to boil down the basic sen, un, hen, nen, and ten movements to fundamental motor patterns and drill them that way. At my dojo in Osaka as well as at recent trainings I gave for students at Kobe Gakuin and Kitasato Universities, I’ve shown students various ways to get more creative with their kihon training by approaching the movement as separate from technique.

Fun is Relative

One thing I always notice when I do these training is that some people like certain movements more than others. Some people like to spin, and others like to jump. Some people seem to enjoy unsoku, while others will do almost anything to avoid stepping sideways.

This is also true of various types of practice. Young men tend to think that jissen is the most fun method of training Taido. Most female college students seem to prefer hokei. Then there are some that love constructing tenkai. I know plenty of people in Japan that enjoy the team events more than then individual ones – especially dantai jissen.

The point being that everyone has a different idea of fun.


If we’re trying to find ways to have fun training Taido, it’s a good idea to know which techniques people enjoy doing. Here’s the breakdown:

  1. Hentai – 41% of total votes
  2. Sentai – 39%
  3. Tentai – 38%
  4. Nentai – 27%
  5. Untai – 21%

There were a total of 56 votes in this poll, and each one cast two votes for their favorite techniques to practice. Hen, sen, and ten were pretty even with 23, 22, and 21 votes, respectively. My picks, nen and un, were considerably less popular with with only 15 and 12 votes each.

So what does that mean?

Well, it’s hard to say. I’m not surprised that nengi isn’t very popular, as it’s the technique of which most students know the fewest variations. I am somewhat surprised that ungi isn’t considered more fun – maybe because jump training is so tiring? I had expected tengi and sengi t be popular, but I would never have guessed that so many people would think hengi is fun.

Sure, hengi is cool. It’s interesting. It’s the most popular technique in jissen. But I don’t really see it as a fun movement. Maybe I’m missing something…

Moving Forward

While you’re here, don’t forget to vote in the new poll: What kind of Taido videos would you like to see more of on YouTube?

If you have a suggestion for an answer that isn’t included, let me know, and I’ll post it.


2 thoughts on “Poll Results: Which Technique is the Most Fun?”

  1. Perhaps popularity of hengi is because of senjogeri. Easiest way to do reverse turning kick. Also, cool and interesting tends to be fun. Though, my favourite tehcnique in hengi is definitely gyakujogeri. Hard to use, as it is short and leaves your head open and going down fast can break wrists, and getting up fast is also hard. But dodging opponent’s attack by bending backwards is just so cool.

    For me nengi, and especially dogaramis are most fun to do, but I hate receiving them, tends to slam head to ground if done with strong scissoring movement of legs.. In tengi there isn’t much variation.. Sengi is nice movement, but sengi techniques aren’t that interesting. And my jumping skills are too onesided to make ungi fun..

    Probably you could tell us examples how to get more creative with kihon training by approaching the movement as separate from technique…?

  2. That makes sense. Senjo is really fun.

    Re: sengi. I recently saw a forum post from a Shotokan teacher who found some Taido clips on YouTube, and his comment was something like “From what I can tell, you are required to spin around before punching or kicking.” There are certainly some players who tend to do a lot of spinning in jissen (I used to be one of them), so I shouldn’t be surprised that sengi is considered fun.

    Probably you could tell us examples how to get more creative with kihon training by approaching the movement as separate from technique…?

    I’ve thought about the best way to do this for a while, and it’s going to have to be video, which means it’s going to have to wait until I get a chance to record some video. I have a ton of stuff I want to record, but no camera and limited time.

    Still, I think it could be a good addition to the training articles here. I’ll move it forward in the priority queue.

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