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Origin of Kamehameha Wave's Name (from Dragon Ball Series)

Updated on September 21, 2016
Goku while doing the kamehameha wave. photo from
Goku while doing the kamehameha wave. photo from

Ka-me-ha-me-ha Wavveeee!!

For those who are anime or manga fanatic especially the Dragon Ball series, probably you cannot deny the amazement in your eyes with the characters' great energy power which they are using for their attacks. Of course no one can forget how some of the characters especially Goku unleashed the popular "Kamehameha Wave", also known as the "Turtle Devastation Wave or Turtle Destruction Wave". It was the most widely used finishing attack in the Dragon Ball series. Some may even mimicking the characters when doing that attack (am I right? ^.^).

In the series, Kamehameha was actually invented by Master Roshi over a fifty year period spanning pre-Dragon Ball. The main character Goku learned it after witnessing Master Roshi. The Kame attack has several different colors: whitish-blue, red, yellow, golden yellow and pink (depending upon the character who will do it). It is being formed when cupped hands are drawn to the user's side and the ki is concentrated into a single point between the cupped hands (and the hands must be really close), however in the manga, there aren't any energy spheres in user's hand. The hands are then thrust forward to shoot out a streaming, powerful beam of energy. The blast can also be used with just one arm. In most variants, the user utters the word "Ka-me-ha-me-HA!!!" as he/she charges and releases the attack (source: Wikipedia).

But did you know that Akira Toriyama, the author of the manga Dragon Ball derived Kamehameha from the name of the first king of Hawai'i- King Kamehameha. Out of curiosity, I read some articles and here's what I've found out.

Why he has chosen that name?
They said, he named it after his visit to Hawaii and saw the statue of the King.
In some references, it says like this "after much contemplation, actually Toriyama could not decide on a name for his "Kame" attack, so he asked his wife. His wife came up with the name and the stances used during the attack. She also told Akira that it would be easy to remember the name of the attack if he used the name of the famous Hawaiian King named Kamehameha. Akira agreed, and the Kamehameha was born."

King Kamehameha I
King Kamehameha I
Statue of King Kamehameha  (from
Statue of King Kamehameha (from

But who was really King Kamehameha I?

Also known as Kamehameha the Great, (1737 or 1758).

In Hawaiian language, Kamehameha means "The Lonely One" but behind its meaning lies a great name...a great warrior...a great leader...a great man with supernatural strength...

Based from some accounts, King Kamehameha's birth was legendary, he was born shortly after Halley's comet appeared in 1758 and it was the sign according to the prophecy. At the age of 14, he was the only person who ever lifted the Naha Stone (5,000 lbs) and the legend says it is the warrior who would unite all the islands of Hawaii. King Kamehameha I was the first king to conquer and unite all the Hawaiian islands and has been called as the Napoleon of the Pacific. He's a great warrior, ruthless in the war but he was generous and forgiving in peace. He is also a lawgiver who created the Law of the Splintered Paddle (his popular law, it protects the human rights of the non combatants during the battle) and other laws against murder, theft and plundering. He preserved Hawaii's independence during his reign. President Obama proclaimed June 11, 2010 as King Kamehameha Day.

After learning these things (maybe only about 1% out of the numerous stories about "Kamehameha I"), I can say that Akira's wife have a good taste. A great energy power attack derived from a great man with supernatural strength. When fiction meets the non fiction, we can make a beam of explosion out of the encounter and I can't tell how far the influence can go. Ka---me---ha---me----haaa....wavvvveeeeee!!!!!!

Hope you learn something interesting today. :-) Thanks for dropping by!


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    • NBYomi profile image

      N B Yomi 23 months ago from Dallas, TX

      "Turtle Destruction Wave." I've been a DBZ fan for 20 years now, and I didn't know that was the translation for it. Really glad, they called it "Kamehameha" in the English dubs too otherwise "Turtle destruction wave" would've sounded ridiculous.

      I'm pretty sure us 90s kids still would've wanted to try it, regardless.

      Oh and to find out that Toriyama's wife came up with the name and the stance? You've gotta be kidding me with that. xD

    • profile image

      Brandon Weaver 2 years ago

      somehow someway it must be possible to gather your energy into a wave like such, this was very informational and i feel amazed that he picked up a 5,000 pound rock he truly was great.

    • pinkhawk profile image

      pinkhawk 5 years ago from Pearl of the Orient

      Thank you so much for appreciating this! ^_^

    • profile image

      Denz 5 years ago

      i just remembered the old times.i used to watch it too.. thanks for the trivia, There's a story behind everything...your a good writer and researcher, :-D

    • precy anza profile image

      precy anza 6 years ago from USA

      Lol. You just traveled me back in time. :) I was in high school during those "Dragon Ball" nights. I used to watch it with the neighbors kids. ^-^'

    • DjBryle profile image

      DjBryle 7 years ago from Somewhere in the LINES of your MIND, and HOPEFULLY at the RIPPLES of your HEART. =)

      Hey, I love this! I heard about "kameha- meha" for the first time from my grandfather during my childhood in the 80's. He talked about the statue of the king and his features... I used to just imagine it, and right now, I am just so happy to see them on this hub! I miss my lolo even more... but I am always thankful for once in my life we shared precious moments. Thanks for sharing! Voted up! =)

    • profile image

      aba 7 years ago

      i think theres something another story behind kamehameha. its quit a name. a weird one. i also am trying my best learn such a technique from net or any training club. we can direct our energies. i bilieve. but not in that much amount as goku may require a whole life training

    • pinkhawk profile image

      pinkhawk 7 years ago from Pearl of the Orient

      Thank you very much for dropping by and leaving an interesting topic.. sounds cool! ^.^

    • profile image

      HaFeiZi 7 years ago

      I want to find the origins of actual kung fu technique that use your both hand to release energy wave.There's a myth about it but i'm not sure what is it name.

      It sound like 'Wai Po Hei Ko'.