When to sound a kiai
The kiai is sounded:
- At the moment of impact of a technique, whether it be a block or an attack
- When absorbing blows to the abdomen
- At certain points while performing patterns, failure to sound a strong kiai at the appropriate place is regarded as an error.
- While free-sparring to signify a decisive technique. An attack without an accompanying kiai is not is regarded as a strong, decisive technique
- Anytime you want to accentuate an action you are performing
Just like what the military tells you about when to salute, "When in doubt, do it." Use a kiai every time you execute a technique. Depending on the circumstances, it may be a low volume kiai similar to a whisper, or it may be a blood-curdling kiai that even causes the spectators to tremble.