Why do we have etiquette?
Good etiquette should make for good karate. It should play an important part in karate training. It is pure common courtesy (something which, unfortunately, is missing from certain areas of life today) and should not be interpreted or considered as an act of subservience. Mutual respect is also important in karate and applying the principles of etiquette inside and outside the dojo is certainly recommended. Having said this those who have no problem with practising etiquette inside the an outside the dojo must have a certain amount of respect for those who have difficulty or discomfort in practising some of the etiquette required in the dojo, outside the dojo.
Studying karate is much more than learning to perfect a variety of techniques and really requires an understanding of the cultural and historical background which have rise to the conventional code of conduct. The importance of culture, tradition and philosophy in karate are readily expressed by the conventional code of conduct which emanated from, inter alia, the ancient traditions of Okinawa and Japan.
A karateka (student of karate) who understands the principles of etiquette and practices the same will be a credit not only to oneself but also to his/her instructor and indeed, fellow karateka.
There are numerous styles of karate and each probably has their own way in which they practice etiquette but the practice hereinafter mentioned basically relate to Seiki-Juku Karate.
|Etiquette and procedure1. On entering the Dojo (hall) all Karate-ka (students) should say “Osu” loudly and with confidence.
2. Always pay attention to the instructor and attempt to follow his instructions to the best of your ability.
3. No eating, drinking or smoking is permitted in the dojo.
4. Karate gi’s should be kept clean and in good repair at all times.
5. Finger nails and toe nails should be kept clean and well cut.
6. Jewellery must not be worn. If it cannot be removed, it must be taped over.
7. All karateka should use the time before class as a period for warming up and asking the higher grades for information and advice.
8. Instructors must be addressed appropriately: Senei (3rd Dan or over) or Sempai (highest grade up to 3rd dan).
9. When arriving late, you should kneel down bt the side of the dojo and wait for the instructor to let you know if you are permitted to join the class. Always ask permission to leave the dojo for whatever reason.
10. Any member found using the art of Karate for personal gain or conducting his or herself in a violent or rude manner will have his or her membership terminated.
11. The dojo must always be kept clean and tidy. This is the responsibility of the lower grades.
12. When sparring, association recommended groin guards, mittens ans shin and instep pads are mandatory.