Dojo Etiquette


·         Courtesy and respect at all times! No profanity or disrespect is allowed in the Dojo at any time. If you can not abide by this rule, you will be asked to leave.

·         Bow when leaving or entering the Dojo.

·         Bow to the instructor when entering or leaving the Dojo.

·         Bow to your training partner before you begin an exercise or when changing training partners

·         If you are late to class, bow when entering the Dojo, then kneel and proceed with your kneeling ceremony. Remain kneeling, looking at the instructor until the instructor acknowledges you. At that time, you may join the class as unobtrusively as possible.

·         If you need to leave the class for any reason, please ask for the instructor’s permission to do so and bow out to the instructor and also when leaving the dojo.

·         Each class will begin and end with a short ceremony. Students will line up, shoulder to shoulder, in order of rank from right to left. Some dojos may line up left to right so always check before lining up at a different dojo.

o       The senior student will start the seiza – kneeling position, after the instructor kneels. Everyone should very quickly follow.

o       The senior student will say “Mokusoh” which means to meditate. Lower your eyes and breathe deeply and slowly, clearing your mind of any intention except to train and learn. This will take about a minute or two.

o       The senior student will say “Mokusoh Yame” – meditation stop.

§         Raise your eyes

o       The senior student will say “Shomen ni re” – bow to the front.

§         Place your left hand in front of your left leg, angled slightly towards the center. Place your right hand in front of your right leg, angled slightly towards the center. The fingertips of the two hands may touch. Bow, with your forehead close to placement of your two hands.

o       The senior student will say “Sensei ni re” – bow to the instructor.

§         Repeat the bow while saying strongly “OSU” – pronounced “oos”

§         The instructor will rise and motion to rise, which will begin with the senior student. Everyone else rises quickly as soon as the senior student moves to rise.

·         Occasionally, the class may forego the kneeling ceremony and begin with an informal bow.

·         Please let the instructor and any training partners if you have some limitation to your training, IE any strain, sprain, or injury, or you need to restrict speed or range of motion, etc.

·         If at any time you feel dizzy, light-headed, faint, nauseous, etc., discontinue physical activity immediately and let the instructor know.

·         Please take care of restroom needs before and after class. If you have to leave, request permission from the instructor, etc.

·        Bringing a bottle of water to class is recommended. You may ask to be excused for water, or if there is a sufficient pause in class training, you may get water on your own, quickly and unobtrusively.