• Japan National Team Nicknames

    This is Olympic year. So I introduce Japan national team nicknames. Go for it, Nippon!

    Sports Nicknames Comments
    Ski Jumping Hi no Maru Hiko-tai (Japanese Flying Corps) “Hi no Maru” means rising sun flag and “Hiko-tai” means flying corps. So foreigners call them “The Japanese Flying Corps”. It’s forerunner of Japan national team nickname.
    Soccer (men) SAMURAI BLUE Blue is team color of Japan national football team. Some call their uniform “Japan Blue”. In not only football but also other sports, foreigners call them “Rising Sun” named after Japanese national flag. Some call them just “Daihyo” that means national team.
    Soccer (women) Nadeshiko Japan It was determined by the public, named after “Yamato Nadeshiko” that means ideal Japanese woman. “Nadeshiko Japan” won the grand prize in the buzzwords contenst in Jpana in 2011. Their uniform is printed partly in pink that is color of Nadeshiko (dianthus). Japan Women’s Football League is called as “Nadeshiko League”.
    U-20 Soccer (women) Young Nadeshiko U-20 (Under-Twenty) stands for players under 20.
    U-17 Soccer (women) Little Nadeshiko U-17 (Under-Seventeen) stands for players under 17.
    Baseball (men) SAMURAI JAPAN It was determined by Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) to avoid being called as “manager name + Japan”.
    Baseball (women) Madonna Japan It is named after character “Madonna” from “Botchan” that is Japanese novel written by Natsume Soseki. “Team Energen” had been used under sponsorship deal with Otsuka Pharmaceutical.
    Volleyball (men) Ryujin NIPPON “Ryujin” means dragon god. It was determined by the public. Some call them just “Zen Nippon” that means all Japan.
    Volleyball (women) Hi no Tori NIPPON “Hi no Tori” means firebird. It was determined by the public. Some call them just “Zen Nippon” that means all Japan. In an era when Japan and Soviet had been fighting to win, they are called as “The Oriental Witches”.
    Field Hockey (men) Samurai JAPAN It was determined by the public.
    Field Hockey (women) Sakura JAPAN “Sakura” means cherry blossoms. It was determined by the public. Sakura is one of Japanese national flowers. Their uniform is decorated with sakura.

    Sports Nicknames Comments
    Handball (men) Musasabi Japan “Musasabi” means flying squirrel.
    Handball (women) Rainbow Japan Rainbow has 7 colors in Japan, and handball team is 7 players.
    Basketball (men / women Hayabusa Japan “Hayabusa” means peregrine falcon. It was determined by the public.
    Swimming TOBIUO JAPAN “Tobiuo” means flying fish. It is named after “The Flying Fish of Fujiyama”.
    Synchronized Swimming Mermaid Japan It had been used by TV Asahi, and was determined officially by Japan Swimming Federation.
    Water Polo (men / women) Poseidon Japan Poseidon is god of sea in Greek mythology.
    Rhythmic Gymnastics Fairy Japan They are also called as “Fairy Japan POLA”. POLA is official sponsor name.
    Curling Crystal Japan Crystal is effort crystal shining like snow crystal. They had been called as “Curling Musume” named after Morning Musume and Country Musume. “Team Aomori” is not nickname but official team name.
    Rowing Crew Japan Crew means team in rowing.
    Rugby Cerry Blossoms / Brave Blossoms It is named after “Sakura no Jersey” that means the uniform of cherry blossoms. Their uniform has an emblem of Sakura (cherry blossoms) in the chest. Some call them just “Blossoms” or “Japan”.
    Rugby Sevens SEVENS JAPAN
    Rugby League Samurais
    Australian Football Samurais
    University Baseball Waka-Musha Japan “Waka-Musha” means young warrior in old Japan.
    Homeless Football No-Bushi Japan “No-Bushi” means lordless samurai.
    Go (Igo) Chie no Wa Japan It was determined by the public, named after “Chie no Wa” that means puzzle links. It also means wisdom of Japan.

    Appendix: Japan top league names

    Sports Short Names Formal Names Comments
    Soccer (men) J. League Japan Professional Football League It consists of “Division 1 (J1)” and “Division 2 (J2)”. “J” is initial of Japan.
    Soccer (women) L. League (Nadeshiko League) Japan Women’s Football League It consists of “Nadeshiko League (L1)” and “Challenge League (L2)”. “L” is initial of Ladies.
    Baseball (men) Ce League / Pa League Nippon Professional Baseball Central League / Nippon Professional Baseball Pacific League There is farm (minor) league that consists of “Eastern League” and “Western League“.
    Volleyball V.League Japan Volleyball League It consists of “V.Premier League” and “V.Challenge League“.
    Field Hockey HJL Takamadonomiya Cup Hockey Japan League “Takamadonomiya” is one of reigning names in Japan.
    Handball JHL Japan Handball League
    Basketball (men) JBL Japan Basketball League In recent years, they are trying to integrate themselves with “Basketball Japan League (bj-league)” that branches from JBL.
    Basketball (women) W League Women’s Japan Basketball League “W” is initial of Women.
    Rugby Top League Japan Rugby Top League
    Ice Hockey ALH Asia League Ice Hockey Four countries: Japan, China, Korea, and Russia participates in the league.
    Softball JSL Japan Softball League There was “Japan Soccer League (JSL)” that is predecessor of J. League.
    Futsal F. League Japan Futsal League
    American Football X-League Japan American Football League Xcellence “X” is initial of Xcellence. “X” has meaning of expert, excellence and exciting.
    3rd-tier Soccer JFL Japan Football League It is the lower division of J. League Division 2.


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