30 May 2013

Hadoken: Japanese Schoolgirl Trend Goes Global

A month or two ago a trend started in Japan. Photos of schoolgirls doing what looked like extremely impressive manga style martial arts moves on their friends started to appear on social networking sites, notably Twitter. Most popular of all was 波動拳 or hadoken (sometimes spelled hadouken) made famous in the Street Fighter series of fighting games. Now, it's going global.

What is essentially happening here (for those of you still scratching your heads!) is the propulsion of spirit energy (known as ki) towards an opponent. The surge is created by thrusting both palms forward towards an adversary. It is also known as the fireball and this move became popular on most sprite-based games of the era (1987 onwards).

You might well ask yourself why now, all of a sudden, a game from the 1980s is causing this interest among young trend-setting Japanese ladies. There hasn’t been a Dragon Ball movie in theaters for 17 years. However, a new entry in the series, Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods, is due for release in the near future and this, it seems, has piqued the interest of the youth of a nation (and is nothing at all to do with very canny marketing, he added ever so slightly cynically).

The age of digital cameras enabled the Japanese schoolgirls, the originators of the craze, to catch the hadoken in action. It wasn’t long before the whole thing went viral. It sometimes takes the rest of the world a little time to catch up with Japan, and now the rest of the world is joining in the fun.

Image Credit Flickr User Josh Russell
Do you think you can do as well or better than the brave warriors pictured here? Then send us your hadoken pictures – email them to kuriositasitas@gmail.com and we will pop them up here. Thanks!

Image Credit Tinashe Sibanda
Image Credit Flickr User Sweet Alize

Image Credit Flickr User Nick Stuckey
Image Credit Flickr Luan Jardine
Image Credit Flickr User Lucyl96
Image Credit Flickr User Jimmy Pistol
Image Credit Flickr User Brandice Schnabel
Image Credit Flickr User Kurichan+
Image Credit Flickr User Derek Oyen
Image Credit Flickr User Daniel Buechele
Image Credit Flickr User Faraz.Damji
Image Credit Flickr User SarahvMook
Image Credit Flickr User Hannah_McKinney
Image Credit Flickr User Sweet Alize
Image Credit Flickr User Kiana.Sairafi
Kuriositas would like to thank the following Flickr photographers for their kind permission to share their pictures with you.

Nick Stuckey - Flickr Photostream, Purple Tasche Website, Facebook Page
Flickr User Lucyl96
Flickr User Luan Jardine
Flickr User faraz.damji
Flickr User SarahvMook
Flickr User Hannah McKinney
Flickr User Sweet Alize 
Flickr User Kaira.Sairafi