What is the correct pronunciation of the word 胸突き as used in martial arts? In Japanese sources, it seems to be むなつき. However, in several Martial arts in the US, it seems to be called "munetsuki" when speaking in English.

Are both な and ね sounds correct here? Is there some connotation of one versus the other?

  • 1
    I would start by keeping in mind that English often butchers the pronunciation of Japanese words, hairy-kerry for はらきり, kerry-oakie for カラオケ, or comma-kawzee for かみかぜ. But, I'm not qualified to speak on matters of martial arts where the received pronunciation may or may not have been preserved in the dojo.
    – A.Ellett
    Commented Aug 17, 2017 at 19:51
  • Yeah, I know some other words like that. But this one seems a little less coincidental, like someone knew "mune" and "tsuki" and just put them together as-is.
    – Locksleyu
    Commented Aug 17, 2017 at 20:02

1 Answer 1


I believe the reading depends on the school, but むなつき is more common (I read the kanji that way as well). 胸突き{むなつき}八丁{はっちょう} is a known phrase to mean the "hard part", coming from the last climb on Mt. Fuji (八丁) making you breathless (as if you've been struck in the chest, thus 胸突き).

I've also seen むなづき in my searches, but that doesn't seem all that common. Perhaps one reason it become "munetsuki" in English could be from someone transcribing the technique being unaware of this possible reading (むな), and therefore defaulted to むね.

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