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Counting in Japanese

Any martial artist should know the basics of counting in Japanese. Most martial arts schools count from 1 to 10 and then repeat the sequence meaning that learning past 10 is often unnecessary. I will describe how to count from 0 to 100 as well as list some powers of 10.

How to Count to 10 in Japanese

  • 0 -- rei
  • 1 -- ichi
  • 2 -- ni
  • 3 -- san
  • 4 -- shi
  • 5 -- go
  • 6 -- roku
  • 7 -- shichi
  • 8 -- hachi
  • 9 -- ku
  • 10 -- ju.

Counting from 11 to 19 in Japanese

For this set of numbers, we simply prefix the single digits with 'ju' (ten).

  • 11 -- ju ichi
  • 12 -- ju ni
  • 13 -- ju san
  • 14 -- ju shi
  • 15 -- ju go
  • 16 -- ju roku
  • 17 -- ju shichi
  • 18 -- ju hachi
  • 19 -- ju ku.

Counting from 20 to 99 in Japanese

Pay careful attention to this next set of numbers. Between 20 and 99 we prefix what we had between 10 and 19 with the appropriate tens place number.

  • 20 -- ni ju
  • 21 -- ni ju ichi
  • 22 -- ni ju ni
  • 23 -- ni ju san
  • 24 -- ni ju shi
  • 25 -- ni ju go
  • 26 -- ni ju roku
  • 27 -- ni ju shichi
  • 28 -- ni ju hachi
  • 29 -- ni ju ku

You get the idea. I will include a small selection of the remaining numbers.

  • 30 -- san ju
  • 31 -- san ju ichi
  • 38 -- san ju hachi
  • 58 -- go ju hachi
  • 77 -- shichi ju shichi
  • 90 -- ku ju
  • 99 -- ku ju ku

Japanese Powers of 10

  • 0 -- rei
  • 10 -- ju
  • 100 -- hyaku
  • 1000 -- sen
  • 10000 -- man.
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