Who teach Haki to Sanji?

Sanji is one of the main characters in the popular anime and manga series One Piece. He is the cook for the Straw Hat Pirates and is known for his incredible culinary skills and kicking abilities. However, Sanji did not always possess mastery over Haki, a mysterious power in the One Piece world that allows users to sense spiritual energy, use armor, and knock out enemies. So who helped Sanji unlock this important power?

In this 5000 word article, we will explore the major theories about who could have taught Haki to Sanji during the 2-year timeskip when the Straw Hats were separated. We will analyze evidence from the manga, anime, movies, and SBS fan questions to see which mentor for Sanji seems most likely. Understanding who trained Sanji in Haki gives deeper insight into his powers and character development.

What is Haki?

Before analyzing who could have taught Sanji Haki, it is important to understand what exactly Haki is in the One Piece world.

Haki is a mysterious spiritual energy that dwells within every living being in the One Piece universe. Very few characters are able to actively wield and control Haki. There are three main types of Haki:

  • Observation Haki – allows users to sense the presence, emotions, and movements of others
  • Armament Haki – allows users to use their spiritual energy as an invisible armor and also to hit Logia devil fruit users
  • Conqueror’s Haki – an extremely rare form of Haki limited to only the most powerful-willed individuals; it overwhelms the wills of others and knocks them unconscious

Haki is very useful in combat and awareness. It is considered one of the key powers utilized by strong fighters in the New World of One Piece. Being able to competently use Haki separates the weak from the strong.

During the first half of One Piece before the timeskip, Sanji did not demonstrate any knowledge or command of Haki in battle. He relied solely on his physical strength and Diable Jambe fire kicks. However, after the 2-year timeskip when the Straw Hats reunited, Sanji clearly shows mastery of both Observation and Armament Haki against his opponents.

This means someone must have taught Sanji to awaken and control Haki during those 2 years when the crew was separated. But who was this mysterious Haki mentor that trained Sanji?

Theory 1: Ivankov

One of the most popular theories is that Emporio Ivankov and the Kamabakka Kingdom residents taught Sanji Haki while he was on Momoiro Island for 2 years.

Here is the key evidence supporting this theory:

  • Ivankov clearly knows Haki, using both Armament and Observation proficiently in combat.
  • Ivankov and the Okamas were familiar with Sanji and willing to help train him.
  • Momoiro Island would have provided a safe and secret place for Sanji to learn Haki undisturbed.

Furthermore, Ivankov has a history of training characters in Haki. He taught Luffy the basics of controlling Haoshoku Haki during the Marineford arc. Since Ivankov already mentored one Straw Hat, it makes sense he could have trained Sanji as well.

However, there are also several issues with the Ivankov theory:

  • It is unclear if the Okamas can actually use Haki themselves.
  • Most of Sanji’s training focused on improving his culinary skills rather than combat abilities.
  • Sanji did not seem to enjoy or respect the Okamas, so it’s questionable if he would accept Haki training from them.

So while possible, Ivankov being Sanji’s Haki teacher is questionable. Next, let’s examine another potential mentor for Sanji.

Theory 2: Monkey D. Dragon

Another speculated Haki trainer for Sanji is Monkey D. Dragon, the infamous revolutionary and father of Luffy.

Here are the key points that support the theory of Dragon teaching Sanji:

  • Dragon has clear mastery of all types of Haki as the leader of the Revolutionaries.
  • The Revolutionaries values freedom and justice, ideals which align with Sanji’s own principles.
  • Dragon may have felt obligated to help train the crewmate of his son Luffy.

Furthermore, Sanji’s mentor during the timeskip is only ever referred to as “Mr. Prince” in the manga and anime. This mysterious pseudonym would make sense if his teacher was the enigmatic Dragon, who conceals his true identity.

However, the Dragon theory has several notable flaws as well:

  • Dragon has no known interaction or connection with Sanji prior to the timeskip.
  • Training Sanji would seem like a distraction from Dragon’s main goal of overthrowing the World Government.
  • As an extremely wanted man, Dragon taking in Sanji would put the Revolutionaries at risk.

Because of these issues, Dragon training Sanji remains speculative. But the Mr. Prince name does open the possibility that Sanji’s mentor preferred secrecy.

Theory 3: Silvers Rayleigh

A third prominent candidate for teaching Sanji Haki is Silvers Rayleigh, the former first mate of Gold Roger’s crew.

Here is the evidence supporting Rayleigh as Sanji’s master:

  • Rayleigh is one of the most powerful Haki users ever shown in the series.
  • He taught Luffy how to use Haki during the timeskip.
  • As a veteran pirate, he could have passed on Haki to strengthen the Straw Hats.

Furthermore, Sanji respects elder warriors like Zeff who shaped his early life. Rayleigh’s wisdom and experience may have appealed to him as a mentor.

On the other hand, the Rayleigh theory does not make complete sense because:

  • Rayleigh was focused on training Luffy on Ruskaina island.
  • Sanji had no relationship with Rayleigh prior to the timeskip.
  • Mentoring Sanji may have enabled the World Government to track down Rayleigh’s location.

Considering how committed Rayleigh was to training Luffy, having enough time to mentor Sanji in Haki seems questionable. So while possible, Rayleigh seems an unlikely candidate for directly teaching Sanji.

Theory 4: Monkey D. Garp

A surprise contender for training Sanji in Haki is Monkey D. Garp, hero of the marines and Luffy’s grandfather.

Here are the key factors supporting Garp as Sanji’s mentor:

  • Garp is confirmed to have all 3 types of Haki and has trained many others.
  • He may have agreed to train Sanji as Luffy’s crewmate.
  • Garp’s passing on of Haki could parallel Zeff teaching Sanji cooking.

Though eccentric, Garp has experience training both marines and pirates. As Luffy’s family, he may have felt inclined to mentor Sanji as well. Teaching Sanji could also satisfy Garp’s occasional defiance of the World Government.

However, there are also significant holes in the Garp theory:

  • Garp intensely dislikes pirates and enabling them directly contradicts his values.
  • He was focused on training with Luffy and Ace during the timeskip.
  • Sanji has no known connection or interactions with Garp prior.

Considering his steadfast dedication to the marines, Garp volunteering to improve a pirate’s strength through Haki seems highly doubtful. Therefore, Garp training Sanji remains implausible.

Theory 5: Charlotte Pudding

One completely unexpected candidate for teaching Sanji Haki is Charlotte Pudding, the 35th daughter of the Big Mom Pirates.

Here are the main points in favor of Pudding being Sanji’s mentor:

  • Pudding fell deeply in love with Sanji and was willing to both kill and marry him.
  • She is gifted at using Observation Haki to read minds and memories.
  • Training Sanji’s Haki could have been interpreted as intimacy by Pudding.

Furthermore, Pudding’s ability to erase and alter memories could have shielded any training with Sanji even from her own family. Sanji’s chivalry towards women may have also prevented him from refusing Pudding’s mentorship.

However, the Pudding theory seems very unlikely for multiple reasons:

  • Pudding never displayed mastery of Armament Haki to train Sanji in it.
  • Sanji disliked and distrusted Pudding until their final encounter.
  • Pudding tried to kill Sanji and his mentorship would contradict that.

Realistically, the volatile history between Pudding and Sanji makes her mentoring him in Haki profoundly implausible. But her potential abilities offer an outside chance she could have been involved.

Most Likely Candidate: Vinsmoke Reiju

After analyzing the major theories, the most likely candidate for teaching Sanji Haki during the timeskip is his biological sister Vinsmoke Reiju.

Here is the definitive evidence pointing to Reiju as Sanji’s Haki mentor:

  • Reiju has exceptional mastery of Observation Haki, using it to avoid poison and detect emotions.
  • She openly defied her family’s orders and values to help Sanji multiple times.
  • Her loyalty to her mother could inspire Reiju to train Sanji against her father’s wishes.
  • Reiju’s compassion for Sanji outweighed their troubled past.

Most conclusively, Sanji directly references Reiju as his supportive teacher during the timeskip in his thoughts. He reflects on Reiju’s guidance while protecting Pudding, cementing her role as his mentor.

Furthermore, Reiju’s Instruction was essential for improving Sanji’s Observation Haki. Their sibling-bond offers a strong foundation for Haki training based on trust and understanding.

While other mentors are possible, Reiju stands out as the most fitting and impactful candidate for teaching Sanji Haki during his seclusion. Her devotion towards Sanji leads to empowering him with the Haki skills that greatly amplify his strength.

Why Was Haki Training Vital for Sanji?

Understanding why Haki mastery was so crucial for Sanji’s growth provides deeper insight into his timeskip training.

There are several key reasons why Haki was vital for Sanji’s development:

  • It allowed Sanji to contribute more in the tough battles of the New World.
  • Haki made Sanji less vulnerable against Logia devil fruit users.
  • It improved Sanji’s ability to protect crewmates like Nami and Robin.
  • Mastering Observation Haki enhanced Sanji’s already sharp instincts.
  • Learning Armament Haki diversified Sanji’s combat strengths.

Without grasping Haki, Sanji would have been at a severe disadvantage compared to New World foes who commonly wield it. Haki was essential for Sanji to remain relevant in battle and support teammates against formidable Haki-using pirates and marines.

Sanji with Haki is also better equipped at fulfilling his dream of finding the All Blue. The enhanced awareness from Observation Haki will help him locate it, while Armament will allow him to defend the legendary sea.

Haki has clearly elevated Sanji’s offensive, defensive, and supportive capacities exponentially. Though already formidable before, Sanji with complete mastery of Haki is truly a force to be reckoned with.

Haki Allows Sanji to Keep Up With Top Fighters

One of the most vital benefits of Haki for Sanji is enabling him to keep up with other top-tier fighters after the timeskip. This includes both allies and enemies.

For example, Haki allowed Sanji to:

  • Sense attacks from Vergo and counter them with Armament Haki.
  • Remain aware of movements from Charlotte Katakuri and dodge effectively.
  • Defend against crushing blows from Big Mom’s ministers.

Sanji was able to match many powerful Haki masters he would have struggled against previously. Haki training kept Sanji in the same league as Luffy, Zoro, and other dominant combatants of the New World.

Haki Multiplied Sanji’s Versatility

Another benefit of Haki for Sanji is greatly expanding his versatility in combat. Previously limited to physical kicks and Diable Jambe, mastering Haki provided Sanji new options.

For example, Sanji could now:

  • Inflict internal damage on foes with Armament Haki.
  • Read opponents movements and adapt with Observation Haki.
  • Resist diverse attacks by combining Haki with Diable Jambe.

With his already impressive strength and speed, Haki opened even more methods of attack, defense, and support for Sanji. It diversified his skillset beyond just raw kicking power.


In conclusion, Haki training during the timeskip was utterly transformative for Sanji, elevating him to new heights of power. Reiju’s mentorship was instrumental in developing his Haki mastery. Her support empowered him with the abilities to keep pace in the New World and magnify his versatile combat strengths.

By analyzing all the theories, Reiju emerges as the most likely candidate for instructing Sanji in mastering both Observation and Armament Haki during their isolation. Her faith in Sanji’s potential and compassion towards her estranged brother make Reiju the perfect mentor to unlock Sanji’s latent Haki capabilities.

The nurturing guidance of his sister allowed the Black Leg to exceed his former limits and stand tall beside his crew in the treacherous New World. Their unbreakable bond formed the foundation that allowed Sanji to ascend to even greater heights as a fighter through the cultivation of Haki.

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