The Japanese Morning Exercise Routine - Rajio-Taiso
Rajio Taiso (ラジオ体操) ・ Radio Calisthenics in Japan
Rajio Taiso, literally "radio calisthenics," is a radio program that broadcasts a set of warm-up exercise guidelines along with music, and while "rajio taiso" is the Japanese name, similar programs are popular in China and Taiwan, too. In Japan, NHK, Japan's public broadcasting company, broadcasts the program from 6:30 am every morning on NHK Radio 1, and it lasts for approximately 10 minutes. According to Japan Post Insurance, the first broadcast took place in 1928, and the aim was to improve the health of the general public in Japan. Ever since then, this tradition of Rajio (radio in Japanese) Taiso has been incorporated into a lot of Japanese people's morning routines.
The good part about this exercise program is that it's been designed for anyone at any age to do on their own, without any equipment required. Everyone from children to the elderly can join in, and there's even versions that you can do while seated.
If you can wake up early in Tokyo, go to Ueno Park (or another park near you) and try Radio Taiso!!! It’s a short, fun, group warm up exercise that is popular in Japan! If you go to Ueno, it’s at ~6 a.m. near the Starbucks/Zoo/Park Side Cafe. #radiotaiso #uenopark #tokyo #rajiotaiso #ラジオ体操 #exercise #calisthenics
Where can you try rajio taiso?
- This tradition stretches back decades, with individual families or entire towns gathering together for the rajio taiso broadcast, especially on vacation days and in the summer. Sometimes they're conducted by a proper Radio Calisthenics Community, like the one in Ueno Park (run by the Ueno Park Radio Taiso Community) or well as the one at Osaka castle park (run by the Osaka Castle Radio Taiso Community). Radio calisthenics continue to this day, broadcast on the radio, on TV, and even on YouTube!
Give It a Try!
You can also check out the rajio taiso videos uploaded on NHK's official YouTube channel (part 1 and part 2), or a whole variety of different radio calisthenics videos here, with Pokemon, Japanese mascots, even Hello Kitty.