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Bowing, a Japanese Gesture

Bowing, a Japanese Gesture (2)
There are many gestures which are unique to Japan or which do not mean the same thing in Japan as they do elsewhere. Japanese greet each other by bowing. When bowing from a standing position, it is customary to stand at attention and bow from the waist.

There are many levels of bowing, from a simple nod of the head to forming a 90-degree angle, depending on the degree of respect one wishes to convey. In a tatami room one always bows from a sitting position with feet tucked under the buttocks and both hands on the floor in front. You can experience this kind of bow if you would go to Ryokan,  Japanese‐style inn.

Bowing, a Japanese Gesture

bowing from a sitting position

Japanese do not customarily touch each other in greeting, and shaking hands is not a traditional practice. When they shake hands, it is usually with a foreigner or under special circumstances such as in the exchange of greetings between a politician and his supporters or a celebrity and his fans.

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