I’ve looked at quan, the ‘fist’ so I thought I might look at the ‘palm’ this time. In Chinese it’s pronounced zhang with the third tone while in Japanese one way to say it is sho, especially by karate-ka. The Korean is more similar to the Chinese with jang. Incidentally, if you know the character for ‘hand’ (手) then you’ll notice that the bottom half of the palm character is made up of ‘hand’.
We often associate the palm strike as one of the exotic techniques in East Asian martial arts, like the knife-hand strike and the pheonix-eye fist. I’ve never seen a palm strike used in MMA except for some footage of Pancrase I saw on TV in Korea once, but even then it was more like a slap than a palm strike. Even though it seems the palm heel can endure more of a beating than the knuckles, I guess it just doesn’t have the reach. However, thanks to 70’s kungfu legend, the palm strike will be remembered in our minds as the ‘Palm of Death’.