Forget Radio Taiso, Try Pokemon Taiso!

With the lockdown underway, the family and I have been trying to stay in shape. Since my son is a big Pokemon fan, and as we’re trying to keep our kids to be bilingual, we found this great video of Pokemon Taisō:

In Japanese, taisō (体操) means calisthenics, especially morning calisthenics. It’s a cultural phenomenon that has been a part of Japan for generations, and featured every weekday morning on the national government channel, NHK, even though it was originally broadcasted on the radio since the 1920’s (which in turn was inspired by a similar program in the US). An example of one such episode of “Terebi Taisō” (テレビ体操, calisthenics for television)1 is below:

An episode of Terebi Taiso from April of 2020. Notice how there are three women, including one who does the exercises while sitting for the sake of elderly or disabled viewers in a chair.

Back to Pokemon Taiso, it’s a fun thing to do with the kids in the morning after breakfast and before we start school for the day. Even if you don’t speak Japanese, you can pick up the counting to eight very quickly:

  1. ichi
  2. ni
  3. san
  4. shi
  5. go
  6. roku
  7. shichi
  8. hachi

From there, give it a try! Good health to you and your’s. 💪🏼

1 Colloquially, people in Japan will still often call it Rajio Taisō (ラジオ体操) due to its origins as a daily radio broadcast.

Published by Doug

🎵Toss a coin to your Buddhist-Philhellenic-D&D-playing-Japanese-studying-dad-joke-telling-Trekker, O Valley of Plentyyy!🎵He/him

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