Earth Release (土遁, Doton; aka "Earth Style") is one of the basic elemental nature transformation techniques and allow the user to manipulate the surrounding earth for offensive and defensive purposes or create it; be it dirt, mud, or rock.
Earth Release techniques have the ability to change the strength and composition of the earth from being as hard as metal to as soft as clay, as well as manipulating their density, making them heavier or lighter. This includes allowing the user to travel through ground and rock in various ways which can be essential for both transportation and for setting up attacks or creating defences or for offence. Indeed, this makes earth techniques one of the most versatile of the elemental techniques. Pre-existing earth is not necessary though, for the user can create it with their own chakra.
Earth Release affinities are the most common among the ninja of Iwagakure, and is commonly affiliated with the Snake seal and/or slamming their palm onto the ground.