Gaara, better known as Gaara of the Desert, is the Fifth Kazekage of Sunagakure, the son of the Fourth Kazekage, and the brother of Temari and Kankuro. He was originally introduced as an antagonist, but later became one of of the major supporting protagonists of the series.
Gaara was born as the third child of the Fourth Kazekage in Sunagakure twelve years before the start of the series. Prior to his birth, his father had Chiyo, an elder of Sunagakure, seal Shukaku, the One-Tailed beast, into Gaara in hopes that he would become the ultimate weapon for the village, but doing so caused his mother to die shortly after his birth, despite his father's desperate attempts to save her. Growing up, Gaara unintentionally attacked villagers regularly due to lacking control over his powers he received from Shukaku. His father still loved him dearly, however, and he gave Gaara one last chance to prove his worth by controling Shukaku. He ordered Yashamaru, Gaara's uncle, to tell a horrible lie to him about his mother in order to see how well Gaara could control Shukaku and when Gaara lost control and transformed into Shukaku, his father subdued the beast and began sending assassins to kill him. After Yashamaru's lie, Gaara became a cruel and aloof person and, in killing the assassins his father sent for him, came to believe that he existed to kill every other person alive. Gaara then began to exercise better control over his powers and his father cancelled all assassination orders in hopes he would become the ultimate weapon as he had been born to be.
In Part 1, Gaara and his siblings, Temari and Kankuro, first appeared in Konohagakure to attend the Chunin Exams, while really undercover to help destroy Konohagakure, unaware that Orochimaru had killed their father and begun to impersonate him to get them there. Gaara first interfered with Kankuro's attempt to start a fight with Sasuke Uchiha and forced he and Temari to leave with him, identifying himself to Sasuke when the latter requested his name. He later attended the first phase of the Chunin Exams with his siblings in the testing room and acquired the answers to the test using his Third Eye technique after figuring out that you would have to cheat to be able to pass and not get caught doing it. Gaara later attended the second phase of the exams, the Forest of Death, where he brutally murdered Team Shigure when they looked at him the wrong way and he and his siblings took the scroll they had, which they needed to pass the second phase and proceeded to the tower at the center of the forest after Temari urged him not to kill Kankuro or think of them as the enemy. Being that so many Gennin has survived the second phase, a preliminary fight round began.
As his siblings had their turns before him, Gaara told Temari to quit fooling around with Rock Lee and get back with their group after her battle. After he was matched up with Lee, Gaara initially proved too much for him as his automatic Shield of Sand was too fast and strong for Lee to break through. After Lee removed his weights, he managed to bypass Gaara's Shield of Sand and land a two hits on him(something that had never been done), knocking him down with the second. Gaara then revealed his last sand defence, his Armor of Sand, which completed his Absolute Defence. Lee then opened one of the inner Eight Gates(inner chakra forcefields that limit chakra flow in the body) and used his Front Lotus to kick Gaara into the air, wrap him in bandages, and slam him through the concrete floor, but it was just an empty sand shell.
Gaara, having substituted with the shell, appeared behind Lee after emerging from some sand and began to brutally beat Lee and throw him around with his sand. Lee, however, regained his confidence and composure and began to evade Gaara's attacks. Lee then opened four of the inner Eight Gates and overpowered Gaara, again kicking him into the air. Gaara's Armor of Sand kept him unharmed, but began to gradually crumble when Rock Lee suddenly appeared, moving at incredible speed and using strength enhanced greatly, and began to beat Gaara back and forth in several directions. Gaara was left unable to defend himself when Lee opened the fifth of the inner Eight Gates and punched him downward, attaching another bandage as he did so. Lee then yanked Gaara up and used his Hidden Lotus move to repel Gaara through the floor, greatly damaging it. Gaara, however, had softened the gourd on his back, also made of sand, into a pillow and it cushioned his fall. Gaara then retaliated on the massively weakened Lee and crushed his left arm and leg. Before he could finish Lee, his teacher, Might Guy, intervened and saved him and Gaara won the match.
During the one month that the Third Hokage gave the winners to come up with new tricks, Gaara paid visits to Sasuke Uchiha, whom Gaara saw was like him from the look in his eyes and told him that when they fought, which had been decided already, the latter was his prey and Rock Lee, who he tried to kill to please himself in the hospital, but was stopped by Shikamaru Nara and Naruto Uzumaki, both of whom he also tried to kill, but was stopped once again by Might Guy and left, swearing to kill them one day anyway. At the Chunnin Exams finals battle arena, Gaara killed a pair of Kusagakure shinobi working for a Feudal Lord who tried to blackmail him to lose the fight with Sasuke when he was on his way to the arena ground floor and proceeded to excitingly battle Sasuke. After Sasuke revealed he had copied and mastered Rock Lee's taijutsu with his Sharingan and overwhelmed Gaara, he used all his sand to cocoon himself and used his Third Eye technique to keep an eye on Sasuke while he began to transform into Shukaku, his tailed beast. However, Sasuke Uchiha wounded him with his Chidori and stopped the process. After the sand cocoon crumbled down, Gaara's siblings carried him away to tend to his wound after Orochimaru began the destruction of Konohagakure, as he could no longer serve his role in destroying the village at that point.
They were pursued continuously by Sasuke Uchiha, Gaara's siblings both staying behind at different points to hold him off. After Temari stopped to tend his wound, Gaara punched her away and gave Sasuke an icy glare as he began to finally transform into a miniature Shukaku, much to the latter's horror. As Gaara attacked and continued fighting Sasuke, the latter continued to use his Chidori, but Gaara regenerated any damage and nearly killed Sasuke, only to be repelled by Naruto Uzumaki, who had arrived as back-up alongside Sakura, with the aid of a ninja hound. Gaara then pinned Sakura to a tree and, compelled by Naruto's abilities, hurt Sakura to force him to fight. As they engaged in battle, Gaara continuously overwhelmed Naruto on every move he made, progressively transforming into his miniature Shukaku form as he did so. When Naruto stabbed a kunai with an explosive tag under Gaara's tail, his defence was reduced tremendously when it exploded and he was completely overpowered by Naruto when the latter created two-thousand shadow clones. Unwilling to lose to Naruto, Gaara released his complete Shukaku form, destroying the shadow clones as he did. He then trapped Naruto in his Sand Binding Coffin technique and tried to kill him, but Naruto summoned Gamabunta, a giant toad, to fight alongside him, escaping in the process. After Gamabunta learned that Gaara had attempted to kill his son, whom Naruto had summoned in an earlier attempt for him, Gamabunta drew his tanto and cut off Gaara's right arm.
Even further intrigued by this, Gaara emerged from within his Shukaku transformation and used the Feigning Sleep Technique to force himself into sleep and allow Shukaku to take full control over his replica body so as to fight for Gaara. While Shukaku proved to be an overwhelming threat, Naruto and Gamabunta did a combined transformation to transform into a giant fox( the Nine-Tailed Demon Fox in the anime) and managed to cling to Shukaku and hold him in place long enough to allow Naruto to punch Gaara and wake him up, supressing Shukaku. Gaara then tried to kill Naruto, getting around Gamabunta's attempt to save him and catching Naruto by his feet. Naruto, however, released some of the Nine-Tailed Demon Fox's chakra, broke free, and smashed Gaara in the forehead, causing Shukaku's body to crumble. Gaara and Naruto then engaged in taijutsu combat and Naruto defeated him. After witnessing Naruto's undying devotion to his friends, Gaara pondered and realized love was the source of his strength and resolved to be like Naruto, later apologizing to Temari and Kankuro for his cruel treament of them as they carried him home.
Gaara and his siblings were later called on by Tsunade, the new Fifth Hokage, to aid the Sasuke Retrieval Squad in bringing back Sasuke Uchiha, who had fled the village to join sides with Orochimaru. Gaara saved Rock Lee from Kimimaro, one of Orochimaru's most loyal and powerful followers, and battled him in Lee's stead, showing a new personality. Gaara managed to easily overwhelm Kimimaro with his immense sand techniques, capturing and crushing him in his sand multiple times, even when the latter made use of his Cursed Seal of Earth's complete first stage. After Kimimaro released the Second Stage of his Cursed Seal of Earth, Gaara was finally struck himself, but was unharmed due to his Armor of Sand. Gaara then used his ultimate sand defence to protect himself from Kimimaro's two-part Dance of the Clematis, buried him two-hundred meters in the ground. levitating he and Lee to evade Kimimaro's final attack, the Dance of the Seedling Fern. Kimimaro, however, emerged from within one of the bones and nearly killed Gaara, who had used up all of his chakra, but died of his fatal disease before he could. Gaara and Lee then returned to Konohagakure and he safely returned home with his siblings after the completion of their mission, but they helped out the accademy before leaving in the anime.
In part 2, Gaara had become the Fifth Kazekage during the time skip and was watching over his village when he spotted Deidara, a bomb-weilding member of Akatsuki, a criminal organization, who was looking for him and confronted him in the skies above Sunagakure, where they fought a brutal battle in which Gaara crushed his left arm and nearly killed him multiple times throughout the fight. Deidara, however, took advantage of Gaara's duty to protect his village by dropping one of his most powerful bombs on top of the village and Gaara used up all the chakra he had left to summoned a vast sand shield to protect the village. After Deidara forced his automatic Shield of Sand to act, he detonated some explosives he had made from clay left in Gaara's sand when his arm was crushed from within the sand sphere Gaara was sheltered in and made it crumble down. Gaara used everything he had to move the sand he had used to protect Sunagakure into the desert and passed out. He was then kidnapped and taken to the Akatsuki's hide-out by Deidara where Shukaku was extracted from him, resulting in his death. Gaara was later revived by Chiyo, an elder of Sunagakure who had sealed Shukaku into him, and Naruto, who was supplying her chakra, and he resumed his reign as Kazekage.
Gaara later appeared at the Five Kage Summit at the request of A, the Fourth Raikage. Gaara was the first to speak, despite being treated rudely by Onoki, the Third Tsuchikage, and his suggestions, aside from an alliance between the five Kage and their villages, were ultimately rejected due to his young age. Gaara later went after A, who left when he learned from White Zetsu that Sasuke Uchiha, who had attempted to, but failed to capture Killer B, A's brother, was present at the summit. He arrived in time to prevent A from killing Sasuke and attempted to lead the latter back to the good side one more time, before continuing the fight A had started. Gaara's automatic Shield of Sand proved to be faster and stronger than Sasuke's Amaterasu and Sasuke caused a cave-in to escape from Gaara. Gaara saved Darui, one of A's bodyguards, as well as his siblings before going to back to the conference room with the group and being met there by Tobi, Akatsuki leader, posing as Madara Uchiha, who told them of his Eye of the Moon Plan and attempted to blackmail the five Kage into giving him Killer B and Naruto, but they refused and he declared the start of the Fourth Shinobi World War. Gaara then agreed to let A be the leader of the Allied Shinobi Forces and that Killer B and Naruto should not be allowed to take part in the war since they were Tobi's targets. Gaara also proposed Kakashi Hatake to replace Danzo as Sixth Hokage, since Danzo had proven himself unworthy of trust at the summit, prompting A to leave the task of informing Kakashi of their decision to Gaara after informing him of Kakashi's location. Gaara and his siblings paid Kakashi and Naruto a visit where they informed them of Sasuke's actions at the summit and of the Kage's decision for Kakashi to replace Danzo as Sixth Hokage. Gaara spend much of his effort trying to convince Naruto that trying to save Sasuke was foolish and that if he had truly resolved to take on the mantle of a Kage, reminding Naruto of his previous statement that he wanted to be Hokage, then he would have to do what needed doing as Sasuke's friend, a fact he had learned due to having become Kazekage. Afterwards, Gaara and his siblings returned home where they were informed that the Feudel Lords had approved of the Allied Shinobi Forces formation.
Gaara later appeared at a meeting of the five Kage in Kumogakure where the Kage discussed where to hide Killer B and Naruto and Gaara told Tsunade, who had recovered and resumed her reign as Fifth Hokage, that they had made this decision as a group and that he knew Naruto was the kind of person that would get reckless when someone close to him was in danger when the latter protests. He later returned to Sunagakure with Temari.
Gaara is later made Reginental Commander of the Allied Shinobi Forces and leader of the Fourth Division. He ends the fighting some of his men had been doing amongst themselves, and gives a speech that brought them all together as friends. After the divisions mobilize and split up, Gaara leads his Fourth Division to a rocky terrain where they settle down and where Gaara covers the area with his sand to use as a sensing device. After he detects Mu, the revived Second Tsuchikage, he uses his Third Eye technique to locate Mu and three other revived Kage, including his father. After he and his division retreat for as far as they can, Gaara uses his Quicksand Waterfall Flow technique to attack them, but it is countered by his father's gold dust wave. After arriving, Gaara attempts to restrain the revived Kage with his sand, but they manage to break free. After a conversation with his father, which revealed everything that had happened to Gaara since his father's death, the latter attempts to test Gaara's worth once more. Gaara defeats his father easily and seals him, but not before his father tells him the truth about his mother and Yashamaru, and Gaara was brought to tears before he seals his father away in his sand.
Gaara then begins to assist Onoki in his battle with Mu, as the Third Raikage and the Second Mizukage break free from Gaara's sand once again and assault Gaara's Fourth Division. After Naruto arrives and helps them finish sealing Mu, Gaara and Onoki listen to Naruto explain why he is there as they head for the next battlefields. Gaara arrives to confront the Second Mizukage, who had killed many of Gaara's men. As Gaara and the Second converse, he locates the Second's Giant Clam summon and allows Onoki to destroy it and expose the real Mizukage's position as the one Gaara was talking with was a mirage. Gaara then saves Onoki from the Second and traps him in a sand pyramid which is then bound by sealing tags. Before the division can rejoice, a huge explosion oocurs and the Second's smiling face appears in the sky above them. As Gaara watches in horror, wondering if this was another genjutsu, Onoki points out that it is the Second's infinite explosions technique, Steaming Danger Tyranny, which not even Mu could counter. As a clone of the Mizukage appears and lands on the ground, Gaara attempts to attack it with his sand, but it is too fast. After Gaara finds the Second's real body, now rendered weak, he seals it in his sand again, but the sealing tags are ripped off by the clone before they can be used. As the Second emerges and begins to wonder if he was wrong about Gaara being the golden egg among the five current Kage as he had thought he was, Gaara protects the division from the clone as it explodes again and manages to immobilize it when it strikes a sand clone filled with gold dust and traps it in his sand as it fails to explode thanks to the hail within. Explaining to the Mizukage how he had beaten him, the Second tells Gaara that he was indeed a golden egg. As Naruto arrives, Gaara seals the Mizukage for good and later watches in surprise as Mu appears again.
As the division then spots someone with him, whom Onoki recognizes as Madara Uchiha, Gaara draws everyone's attention to Madara eyes, which gave away the fact that he was revived and the division then wonders who Tobi really was. Gaara attacks Madara with his sand, but he easily dodges and attacks with an enormous fire technique, which takes serveral water techniques to extinguish. As Madara comandeers a sword and begins to tear through his ranks, Gaara catches the blade and allows an opening for him to be attacked, but Madara kicks the attacker away. Gaara then uses lightened sand to pull Madara from his Susanoo and into the path of Naruto's Rasenshuriken, but the latter activates his Rinnegan and absorbs the attack. As Madara brought down a meteorite on the Fourth Division, Gaara wondered if he had the power of a god. Onoki and Gaara managed to stop the first meteorite, but couldn't stop the second, which collided with the first and devastated most of the Fourth Division. Gaara survives and, after the other Kage arrive to help with Madara, he and Onoki are healed by Tsunade as Mei, the Fifth Mizukage and A keep Madara busy. They later counter Madara's Yasaka Magatama technique and tell Naruto's shadow clone to win against Tobi before it disappears.
As the battle between the Kage and Madara wrages on and gets intense, Gaara levitates Mei and Tsunade above Madara's Advent of a World of Flowering Trees technique, but Madara knocks the five Kage into the forest from behind and they pass out after breathing the pollen there. After Onoki saves them, Gaara and the Kage watch in shock as they see a face formed from Hashirama Senju's cells jutting out of Madara's now-exposed chest. After Madara is struck by Tsunade and considerably damaged, Gaara attempts to seal him in a sand pyramid that appears to imprison him, but Gaara is shocked when Madara impales Tsunade from below and emerges from a tree root, announcing that they had only sealed a wood clone. Gaara is later shocked even further, along with the other Kage, when Madara creates twenty-five more wood clones and surrounds each of the five Kage with five each. Gaara saves Mei from being killed, but is overpowered by the five clones he is fighting. Though he agrees with Mei that Madara is too strong, Gaara joins the other Kage in a combined attack on Madara that seems to give them the upper hand, but Madara overwhelms them again by releasing his final, gigantic Susanoo and repels them while destroying several mountains with just one swing of its sword. Gaara stands with the other Kage to face Madara again and stands in continuously surprise and shock when Madara's final Susanoo vanishes and Madara negates Impure World Reincarnation as he is about to disappear with the release of the technique and remains in the battlefield regardless. Despite Onoki trying to block Madara from leaving, Gaara and the rest of the five Kage are defeated and left severely wounded, but Tsunade proclaims she can save Gaara and the others after summoning her summon partner, Katsuyu, telling her not to worry about her at the moment. Though unable to do so at first, even with Katsuyu's help, due to being too badly hurt and low on chakra, Orochimaru quickly arrives with two of his former followers and has them work together to heal Tsunade. Afterwards, she heals Gaara and the others without trouble and Gaara tells them that he will use his sand to transport them to the battlefield after Katsuyu tells the current standings of the war, saying that they could conserve their chakra.
When they get close, Gaara and the other Kage see the Ten-Tails final form, the Shinju, in the distance, and are quickly contacted by a wood clone of Hashirama Senju, who tells them of the current standings on the battlefield and of what his original body had learned from Madara Uchiha. Later, Gaara and the others finally arrive on the battlefield, with him agreeing with onoki that failure here was not an option if they were to accomplish their dream of unity of all shinobi(which they previously learned Hashirama shared in the past through the earlier telepathy technique). Contemplating that Naruto and himself had become necessary existences and would now save the world together, Gaara, taking command of some troops from his village, orders them to follow his lead. Leading his troops in an assault on the Shinju, Gaara contemplates that now was their time to win. After Naruto begins to try and pull out the tailed beasts from Obito Uchiha's body, Gaara uses his sand to help pull out his tailed beast, Shukaku, as Naruto had not chakra from him and he had once been at one with it. After they succeed, Gaara requests Shukaku to lend him some strength so he can seal Madara away, insisting it was not an order and that he would ask someone else to aide him if he didn't want to. Responding to his sentiments about how close he was to Naruto by asking that they save small talk for later if he didn't mean to help him, Shukaku then agrees to help Gaara, saying it wasn't for him, and he tells him to follow his lead. When Son Goku, the Four-tails, then addresses him and says they would come to, having decided amounst themselves to help Naruto, Gaara thanks him, before saying that he considered Naruto his first true friend, and they all head out. On their way, the group find themselves face-to-face with a fully resurrected Madara, who Gaara and Shukaku shoot through with a barrage of the sand bullets, before he uses sand to immobilize Madara from within and allows the tailed beasts to beat him around.
After the Six-tails pins him down with slime, Gaara and Shukaku seal Madara inside a giant sand pyramid, only for him to easily break out with his Susanoo, much to their surprise. When Madara later utilizes his Rinbo: Hengoku technique and repels them, Gaara, shocked, wonders what was happening. After Madara retrains all the tailed beasts and decides to start absorbing them into the Demonic Staue of the Outer Path, Gaara uses his sand to prevent him from taking Shukaku, telling him he'd do so over his dead body. Though Madara hurls his Susanoo Sword at Gaara, Shukaku catches it and manages to cut his chains with it. However, Gaara is still overpowered when Madara reclaims control of the blade and directs it back at Gaara, his sand still managing to totally protect him, however. Though Shukaku tells him he shouldn't push himself, Gaara replies he can now fight beside him as an equal. Shocked when Madara begins dragging in all the beasts, Gaara hears out a request from Kurama before he is extracted from Naruto, much to his shock. Catching Naruto with his sand, Gaara, desperate to save him, flies with him to tsunade, ordering her to come with him and heal Naruto. Whens he declines as she lacks the chakra to do so, he takes Sakura instead, promising to explain everything later. When her medical ninjutsu has no effect, Gaara explains its probably because Kurama was extracted from Naruto. Declaring they might still be able to save him if Madara is defeated, Gaara states they must hurry to where the Fourth Hokage is. After Sakura begins a more deperate procedure, Gaara wraps his sand around her waist to keep her on it as he starts to fly faster.
When they arrive on the Fourth's location, Gaara tells him that if he transfers his half of Kurama into Naruto he can save his son, before joining Kakashi to fight the Obito's controlling Black Zetsu. He, however, manages to thwart Minato's transfer by getting between him and Naruto as he starts, absorbing the Second half of Kurama into himself. Wondering what happened to Naruto, Gaara's shocked increased all the more when Madara, now the perfect jinchuriki of the Ten-tails, suddenly arrived on their location as well. Realizing that the other half of Kurama was now inside Black Zetsu, Gaara mobilized with Kakashi to try and get him back when he tried to unbind from Obito, only for Obito to stop him midway. Waiting patiently as the master and student talked, Gaara, Kakashi, and Minato all attempted a perfectly-timed attack on Madara when Obito seemingly started to join him, only for Madara to effortlessly overwhelm them in a few seconds and beat back their assault. After Kakashi and Obito successfully managed to save Naruto and Might Guy arrived as back up, Gaara noted to him that he and Minato's respective taijutsu and senjutsu abilities were their only means of fighting Madara now, only for Guy to be easily overwhelmed and nearly killed by Madara when he tried to use seven of the inner Eight Gates against him. When Madara overwhelms Guy and he instead uses all eight, Gaara wonders what Guy doing and feels sympathy for Lee when kakashi informs him Guy with die after using all eight gates. When Minato comes up with a strategy for them to help Guy fight, Gaara using his sand to transport Kakashi close enough to Madara for him to use his near blind left eye to create a hole in Madara's defense with Kamui, allowing Guy to strike and repel their adversary, albeit to little effect.
After Guy's fight with Madara ended and Naruto arrived and saved him from certain death, Gaara asked that they exchange sake cups together when Naruto becomes Hokage. When Madara regains both of his Rinnegan and starts to devastate the landscape around them with his Chibaku Tensei, Gaara flies himself, Rock Lee, and Might Guy away, saying Naruto an the others would be fine and that they had to get away from that area for now, only for them all to be caught in Madara's Infinite Tsukuyomi when he casts it and tethered to the Shinju to let it reclaim it chakra from them.
Gaara intially tried to be friendly towards people as a child and never mean't to hurt them when he would accidently attack them with sand. After Yashamaru lied to him about his mother, Gaara became evil and bloodthirsty. But he became reformed when he was defeated by Naruto, wanting to be like him and becoming a close friend of his. He is a very mature Kage, believing the belief of the prior generation to maintain prestige is ridiculous thinking and that cooperation between the five great hidden villages is fundemental in defeating Akatsuki. Gaara has also shown wisdom from beyond his years, shown in his reunion with Sasuke Uchiha at the Five Kage Summit, wherein he tried to be a friend to Sasuke and lead him from his corrupt ways. He is very close to his brother and sister, and while he remained ruthless to his opponents, he became highly defensive of his allies and innocent people.
Gaara is an extremely powerful shinobi, so much that he became Kazekage as a teenager. He was able to easily defeat his father, the Fourth Kazekage, and defeat the Second Mizukage one-on-one, prompting the latter to praise him as the golden egg of the five Kage. A true testement to Gaara's immense power was his ability to fight equally against five completely Susanoo-clad wood clones created by Madara Uchiha to overwhelm him, which only happened when Gaara turned his attention to saving the Fifth Mizukage, Mei. Even as a Gennin, Gaara was easily as powerful as a Jonin, and is presently the overall strongest member of the five current Kage. As the jinchuriki of Shukaku, the One-Tailed beast, he can manipulate sand and retained this ability, even when Shukaku was removed. He can also now control sand saturated with water, having previously been unable to. He could transform into Shukaku and create a shield in the shape of his body and, in the anime, a spear in the shape of his claw. While transformed into Shukaku, Gaara could use Wind Release powerfully, but has likely lost the ability to use it with the removal of Shukaku. Also while transformed into Shukaku, Gaara gained incredible strength and speed, enough to outmatch Sasuke Uchiha, who had recently overwhelmed Gaara in that way. His strength was so great he could even smash tress in half.
Though he doesn't normally use taijutsu, Gaara has incredible reaction timing and reflexes to regular taijutsu users as he was able to instantly react at a moments notice to Rock Lee closing his eyes and escape from his Front Lotus move without being noticed, leaving behind an empty sand shell in his place. Also, despite not being a taijutsu fighter, Gaara has great physical strength, even without transforming into Shukaku, as he was able to repel Temari with one punch, despite also being wounded. In the anime, Gaara showed to be physically strong enough to pick himself up without aid after having his Armor of Sand soaked through with water, which had made it as heavy as land. In the anime, Gaara showed to be a skilled teacher, able to teach Matsuri how to use a rope javelin, a non-lethal weapon, after learning she feared such things. Gaara is also a highly analytical and very skilled tactician, proven when he managed to devise a way to counter the Second Mizukage's Steaming Danger Tyranny technique, a feat particularly notable since even the Second's own rival, Mu, failed to accomplish this in the past.
Gaara's fighting style is a stationary, mid-to-long range one, much like that of his father, as he usually is standing in a single place and rarely needs to completely move his body to attack an enemy. Though he is very skilled at using sealing tags, like most Sunagakure shinobi, Gaara's arsenal of techniques mostly involves using sand. He always carries around a callabash gourd made of hardened sand on his back that contains desert sand that is infused with his chakra. This sand comprises his Absolute Defense; his automatic Shield of Sand which is bound by his mother's will to protect him and will rush to shield him from harm whether he wants it to or not and his Armor of Sand which will protect him should the Shield of Sand be broken through. Though a very effective secondary defense, Gaara's Armor of Sand requires large amounts of chakra to remain active and also has the effect of weighing Gaara down. Because this sand is already infused with his chakra, Gaara doesn't need to expend more chakra to use it and can control it with his mind. The power of Gaara's Absolute Defense has also increased massively throughout the series as in part 1, the Shield of Sand could be outran by incrediblely fast movements and both the Shield of Sand and the Armor of Sand could be penetrated by the Chidori, meanwhile in part 2, neither immesenly powerful explosions or the Amaterasu, the strongest fire technique, could even get through the Shield of Sand, much less damage Gaara's Armor of Sand with Amaterasu failing to even burn into the sand, something that impressed even Sasuke Uchiha, who priased Gaara's Absolute Defence. The Shield of Sand was even able to withstand five Susanoo Swords from Madara Uchiha, whose Susanoo is the strongest one seen in the series to date. Even A, the Fourth Raikage and an immensely strong ninja, failed to outrun and overpower Gaara's sand when he tried to kill Sasuke, even though he was clad in his Lighting Release Armor.
While some of Gaara's sand techniques can be used for various purposes, his most often used techniques are Sand Binding Coffin and Sand Waterfall Funeral. Using these techniques in combination, Gaara makes use of his "catch and crush" tactic, the most prominent aspect of his fighting style. First he uses Sand Binding Coffin to catch and subdue his opponent, and then uses Sand Waterfall Funeral to implode the sand at immense intensity and crush his opponent to death. He has utilized larger variants of these techniques for more powerful and large-scale attacks, such as Quicksand Waterfall Flow, a technique that creates and uses a tsunami of sand, and Sand Waterfall Imperial Funeral, which he uses to shift his chakra through the sand as powerful shockwaves that cause the huge amount of sand to implode in both directions, crushing the opponent or opponents and causing a small earthquake. Gaara usually only relies on these techniques against stronger or larger groups of enemies.