Home Japanese Language 6 Japanese Tongue Twisters to Excellent Your Pronunciation

6 Japanese Tongue Twisters to Excellent Your Pronunciation

6 Japanese Tongue Twisters to Excellent Your Pronunciation


Studying Japanese tongue twisters is greater than a enjoyable problem. It’s a surefire method to enhance your pronunciation and improve your vocabulary.

On the very least, you’ll choose up a cool trick to impress Japanese mates.

(Simply strive them out on your language change associate to see what sort of response you’ll get!)

On this weblog put up, you’ll be taught 6 well-known Japanese tongue twisters, or 早口言葉 (はやくちことば), and 4 ideas that will help you grasp them.


Hiragana: ばすがすばくはつ
English: Bus fuel explosion

Begin off by taking one phrase at a time:

バス (ばす) — bus

ガス (がす) — fuel

爆発 (ばくはつ) — explosion

Repeat these till you possibly can say them with out wanting on the textual content. Keep in mind to maintain these “a” sounds quick, just like the “a” in “that.”

Now comes the difficult bit. Keep in mind that in Japanese, tongue twisters are referred to as fast-mouth phrases. So attempt to say them thrice quick.

Hiragana: あかまきがみきまきがみあおまきがみ
English: Pink scroll, yellow scroll, blue scroll

Think about a clerk in outdated Japan, cataloging his scrolls. Besides it’s just like the classic animation in outdated Scooby Doo episodes, with the identical background on an everlasting loop.

The identical three scrolls hold flashing previous because the clerk tries to type them.

“あかまき がみきまきがみ あおまきがみ,  あかまきがみきまきがみあおまきがみ…”

Be careful for all these okay sounds.

When you’ve realized to say this, it ought to be a breeze to say regular sentences in Japanese, like:

It was not heat

Hiragana: なま むぎなまごめなまたまご
English: Uncooked wheat, uncooked rice, uncooked eggs

This one is a Japanese favourite, and I’ve heard it essentially the most whereas chatting with Japanese college students.

One of many joys of touring in Japan is exploring all of the scrumptious regional delicacies.

Thus, the phrases on this tongue tornado are all necessary kanji or 漢字 (かんじ) to be taught since they generally seem on Japanese menus.

In case you’re planning a visit to Japan, you’ll wish to acknowledge the 漢字 for the staple meals, resembling:

(むぎ) — wheat

(こめ) — rice, raw

(たまご) — egg

For instance, when you’re celiac, then you definitely’ve acquired to recollect methods to ask,

Is there wheat on this?

Hiragana: すもももももももものうち
English: Each plums and peaches are members of the peach household

After I first began studying Japanese, somebody informed me that they discovered 漢字 simpler to learn than かな or kana. I believed they have been loopy.

For my part, studying hiragana and katakana was easy with the appropriate methods.

Nonetheless, I quickly got here to agree. If something demonstrates the problem of studying plain かな, it’s that string of eight consecutive もs on this tongue tornado.

Studying the かな alone, it’s difficult to know what this sentence means, as there’s no solution to inform from the textual content alone the place one phrase ends and the subsequent one begins.

Let’s break it up a bit:

(すもも) — plum/s

— “additionally” particle

(もも) — peach/es

— “additionally” particle

(もも) — peach

の うち — the group/ household of

English: The visitor subsequent door eats lots of persimmons

One key level to notice right here is the studying of  “くう” for “食.”

You might need seen this 漢字 learn extra usually because the た of 食べる (たべる — to eat).

The “くう” studying of the “食” 漢字 is much less well mannered than “たべる” and tends for use extra by males.

One other factor that makes this tongue tornado troublesome is that it’s important to transfer your mouth rapidly between the only “か” and its fluid compound cousin “きゃ.”

That is a vital factor to get proper for correct spoken Japanese.

The distinction between these かな might be necessary in locations English audio system won’t count on.

For instance, in adapting English phrases to カタカナ, the Japanese generally go for “きゃ” after we may suppose a plain “か” is nearer to the English pronunciation.

A number of examples of this are:

キャラクター (きゃらくたー) — character

キャッシュカード (きゃっしゅかーど) — money card

キャンセル (きゃんせる) — cancel; cancellation

キャスト (きゃすと) — forged

Hiragana: にわのにわにはにわにわとりにわかにわにをたべた
English: In (Mr.) Niwa’s backyard, two chickens out of the blue ate a crocodile

Sooner or later, a crocodile was hanging out in Mr. Niwa’s backyard when two chickens got here and ate him out of nowhere.

Mr. Niwa was shocked by what he noticed and needed to doc it.

…Or, somebody took this unique, shorter Japanese tongue tornado and determined it was far too simple and boring:

There are two chickens within the backyard

This unique phrase is proven within the video above, because it’s a bit extra frequent.

Let’s break this one down:

丹羽 (にわ) — household title, think about there’s a さん affixed, so Mr. or Mrs. Niwa

— ‘s (possessive)

(にわ) — backyard

には — preposition, in/at

二羽 (にわ) — counter for birds

(にわとり) — chickens

俄に (にわかに) — out of the blue

ワニ (わに) — crocodile/alligator

— this particle marks the direct object of a sentence

食べた (たべた) — ate

Like quantity 5, this tongue tornado is way simpler to learn in 漢字 than in plain かな.

How you can Apply Japanese Tongue Twisters

Japanese tongue twisters are enjoyable to be taught and efficient for bettering pronunciation and understanding Japanese tradition.

Listed below are a number of tricks to get essentially the most out of every phrase.

  • Apply your pronunciation with comparable sounds. The purpose of tongue twisters is that they’re troublesome to say as a result of many sounds are the identical, even in our native language. However by specializing in and training the troublesome phrases, you’ll finally be taught to say them accurately and distinctly.
  • File your self saying the Japanese tongue twisters. You possibly can replay the audio utilizing a easy voice recording app to see the place you might want to enhance. Are you forgetting to articulate sure sounds? Are sure sounds supplying you with extra issue than others? You’ll additionally be capable to hear your accent and make changes the place needed.
  • Use them along with your Japanese language change associate. Ask your change associate which tongue twisters are their favourite, which of them they hear or use most frequently if they’ve a narrative about sure phrases and extra. You may also ask them for suggestions in your pronunciation of every tongue tornado.
  • Study troublesome and new phrases in context. Most of those tongue twisters include phrases you most likely haven’t used earlier than, in order that they have a great deal of studying potential. You possibly can be taught to make use of them like a local by immersing your self in Japanese content material, just like the curated movies on FluentU. The interactive subtitles allow you to click on on phrases you don’t perceive to immediately see a definition, instance sentences and different movies the place it’s utilized in context.

japanese tongue twisters


Japanese tongue twisters—troublesome to say, however insanely enjoyable nonetheless. It’s a bonus that they’re additionally highly effective instruments to supercharge your pronunciation and vocabulary expertise.

Maintain working by way of these phrases, upping your velocity regularly till you possibly can say all of them easily 10 instances quick.

(And when you favored enjoying with tongue twisters, I guess you’d love studying methods to use Japanese onomatopoeia, too!)