Learn Karate's Mawashi Geri (or Roundhouse Kick)

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Learn Karate's Mawashi Geri (or Roundhouse Kick)

This page provides details on how to do a Mawashi Geri (or Karate roundhouse kick). The Maswashi Geri (or roundhouse kick) is a standard kumite (sparring) kick. To see how other martial arts teach and use a front kick, please visit the main Front Kick section.

For additional Karate kicking techniques, visit our main Karate Kicks page.

In the vast majority of Karate schools, this kick is taught where you strike the target with the top of your foot with toes pointed down. In a small number, it is taught in a second way where the toes are curled back (like in Mae Geri). This is usually taught in schools where there is an emphasis on conditioning of the feet.


  • As with the vast majority of techniques, the first movement is to change block, this mean to swap your block, either to act as a softener or a pre-emptive strike to knock opponent back
  • Then, to create posture to quickly produce a round house kick, the front foot is twisted slightly outwards
  • From here your body will naturally twist when you raise your back foot and have all your weight on the twisted foot
  • The raised foot should be bent at the knee and flick out and back as fast as possible (With either the flat of the foot, or the toes curled back and the ball of the foot exposed)
  • Place the attacking foot back on floor landing in stance

The key point with the kick is speed, this will generate power, and targeting depends on the version being used, so if top of the foot, this is best used to top of leg to deaden the leg, and if toes curled back, it is better used to ribs as an example.

Shotokan Karate Instructional Video on Mawashi Geri (Roundhouse Kicks)

Kawaga Sensei Demonstrating Mawashi Geri (Roundhouse Kicks)

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