Kirikaeshi (切り返し:きりかえし?), literal meaning "cutting repeatedly", is a kendo exercise, combining the practice of attacking and receiving strikes and is meant to develop physical strength, spirit, and vigor. Kirikaeshi is also known as uchikaeshi (打ち返し:うちかえし?) "striking repeatedly".
Kirikaeshi is a drill done with a partner that involves a succession of strikes to e.g. the head (men, in Japanese). Kirikaeshi was established as a basic exercise toward the end of the Meiji era (1868-1912). The exercise typically begins with a strike to the center of the head, followed by a series of alternating strikes to the left and right sides of the head (yokomen). Though the exact method of kirikaeshi can vary among dojo, the most common scheme involves a single strike to the center of the head, followed by four angled strikes going forward (starting on the receiver's left side), and five strokes going backward. Kirikaeshi practice is the staple of kendo training. It teaches a number of important principles including proper distance and timing, accuracy, rhythm, and smoothness.
At some Kendo dojo, the practice of kirikaeshi is performed at the start and end of kendo practice sessions.