Code of Conduct

Dojo Etiquette

In traditional Martial arts, the development of the whole person is more important than the development of the physical and technical prowess, the strict compliance of the Dojo etiquette is fundamental for the development of budo spirit.

Dojo Etiquette is an expression of honour, self-discipline,

Appreciation, kindness and sincerity. Courtesy and respect are key elements in karate training and conduct. How we act is how others perceive us. Do means way, road or path. Jo means place. Dojo means the place of the way.

Here are some general rules of conduct:

Teacher Ranking Systems

Sensei – Teacher
Sempai – Senior

1. Bow when entering the Dojo.

2. Bow when leaving the Dojo.

3. Always bow and greet the instructors and higher-ranking members when entering the dojo.

4. Never refer to the instructor by name in the dojo. Always address you instructor as Sensei or Sempai.

5. Since promptness is part of the self-discipline karate-do encourages, arriving late for class should be avoided whenever possible. If you are late and the class has begun, stop at the door, kneel in the Seiza position, or stand straight with the feet together, and await an acknowledgement from the Sensei or Sempai before joining the class.

6. Line up in order of rank. People of the same rank line up by age.

7. Arrive early and warm up on your own before formal class.

8. Listen to the instructor, listen means not to talk. There should be no idle talking during class. It is disrespectful, and distracting to the Sensei and the other participants.

9. If you have a question ask it with respect. Respect is to be given at all times. There is never a reason that will authorize anyone to not have respect for its members. Under no circumstances will a lower belt challenge a technique or procedure taught by the Sensei that is instructing. If a certain Sensei is teaching a technique that is different in execution that was taught be another Sensei the student will apply the technique as taught and will not question it on the floor. The student may then approach the original Sensei and respectfully question the technique. It will then be up to the two Sensei’s to concur and then both will teach the correct procedure. This will apply to Sempai’s as well and Kyoshi Ben will have the final say.

10. When you are listening to Sensei making an explanation during training, stand quietly and attentively, with the hands at the side or behind. Never lean against the wall, or place hands on the hips. This shows disrespect. Acknowledge the Sensei’s instructions with “Ai Sensei”.

11. It is important to “Kia” on all techniques relating to Standing and moving basics and any supplementary training or fighting techniques.

12. The “Kia” is an expression of intent and therefore must be loud and audible, it cannot be an under the breath murmur… When teaching it also gives the instructor the timing that the class is working to and helps with the speed and rhythm of the class.

13. Under no circumstances will the “opinion” of a lower belt be entertained unless expressly asked for by the instructor.

14. If a student is addressed by a senior while they are sitting down they will stand up and place their hands by their side and listen to the senior.

15. A student’s help or assistance is not required unless expressly asked for by the instructor.

16. If a student is asked to perform a task, for example, do the warm-ups they will see this as a duty and not as a burden.

17. Under no circumstances will a “junior” (Underage) warm up a senior class. This is in immediate violation of the structure and may not happen.

18. Wear a clean Gi.

19. Do not wear jewellery.

20. If told to remove jewellery, do so immediately.

21. Keep fingernails and toenails short and clean.

22. Bow when someone hands you training equipment.

23. Do not walk between the instructors and other students.

24. Do not lean on the walls during training. Do not cross your arms during training.

25. Do not make overt displays of how tired you are, no matter how tired you are.

26. Place your clothing and equipment in order before training.

27. Let senior ranks get water first.

28. No shoes on the training floor.

29. Leave equipment neatly to the side when not in use.

30. Do not leave your belt on the floor.

31. Students are to report any conduct, which is beneath the dignity of the martial arts that they or any other practitioner are engaged in.

32. Never walk off the Dojo floor without the permission from the Sensei or Instructors. Do not shout, curse or become angry on the floor.

33. Chewing gum is not allowed when training. It is disrespectful and is not a safe practice. Do not bring food on to the dojo floor.

34. Do not come to the dojo under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Alcohol nor drugs are allowed on the floor.

35. Do not ask to be tested or when you will be tested. Your job is to train hard and let your Sensei determine your progress and promotion.

36. Work on developing patience, tolerance, good manners, perseverance, fitness, balance, speed, flexibility, kindness, strength, technique, spirit and compassion and any other good quality.

The Five Virtues of Goju-Ryu Karate 

We are proud of studying the way of Goju.

We are courteous in manners

We are simple and humanly

We cultivate the spirit of cooperation with sincerity

We respect the spirit of traditional chivalry as practised in the old times in Japan.