Hentai is a class of techniques in Taido characterized by tilting the body axis. Since most hengi are kicks, it’s usually a case of “head goes down; leg goes up,” though there’s no rule that the technique must be a kick (in fact, there are non-kicking examples listed below).
Lexical Note: Hentai (変態) can also refer to a pervert in Japanese. In Taido, 変体 – “changing body.” They are homophones but unrelated.
Hengi are the classic taido techniques, defending and countering simultaneously by changing the orientation of the body axis.
Doko Go (5) Kai for Hentai
Each technique class in Taido is defined by a set of characteristics describing its proper execution, called Doko Go Kai.
Here’s the key points for executing hengi:
- Hentai unpu – Imagine clouds changing direction. Feel your head being pushed toward the ground, pivoting about your hips.
- Kihatsu seiko – The back thigh or heel is your weak point. Either one of these points can be used to misdirect or defeat a hentai technique.
- Ohen fubi – The body axis topples over. maintaining tension in your lower back, keep your body axis straight. As your head moves toward the floor, your leg must rise toward the target. Pivot your body axis around your hips.
- Santei kyogo – Both hands and the stationary foot should form an equilateral triangle. In order to push the kick towards the target, place your hands close to your foot.
- Kikai sokketsu – Target is the kikai, just above the navel. This is the knock-the-wind-out-of-you spot.
Examples of Hentai Techniques (Hengi)
Hengi (Hentai techniques) are probably the defining movement class in Taido, combining defense and attack with a single motion. The following are examples of hengi:
- Gyakujogeri – Body goes back; foot extends upward. Possibly the least-esed kick in Taido.
- Kaeshigeri – “Returning kick,” executed along the return path after a manji/shajogeri.
- Moroashigeri – Kick with both legs, usually executed similarly to ebigeri.
- Suiheigeri – Suihei means “horizontal,” which is the angle the body makes to the floor in the Taido version of a sidekick.
- Ebigeri – Taido’s archetypal “shrimp kick.”
- Shajogeri – Shajo means “angular condition” and refers to the tilted nature of this roundhouse variant.
- Senjogeri – Senjo refers to spinning (as in Sentai).
- Harai kuzushi – Harai is a sweep. Kuzushi is a takedown. Harai kuzushi refers to any kind of sweep in Taido.
- Kake kuzushi – OK, this is even less common than gyakujogeri… Basically, you reach out with your foot and hook the opponent’s leg to pull him down.
- Nage kuzushi – Nagewaza are throwing techniques, and in Taido, they tend to fall under the Hentai classification.
- Fukuteki – This is a set of ducking escapes, but we use them to set up attacks as well, so I’ve listed it as a technical movement.
There are two nen hokei in Taido:
- Hentai no hokei
- Henin no hokei
Here’s a reference animation of Hentai Hokei created by one of my teachers:
And here’s the lovely ladies of Tokyo Medical & Dental University practicing Henin Hokei for a tournament: