Dojo Etiquette and Rules



            Master Funakoshi defined five important principles about achieving Karate-do, about living an honourable life. Each student should reflect on the meaning of the Dojokun while repeating them in unison in English and Japanese at the end of each training session. They are:    

1.Seek Perfection of Character

Hitotsu! Jinkaku kansei ni tsutomuru koto!

Hee-toe-tsu! Jeen-kah-koo Kahn-say Nee Tsu-toe-moo-roo Koe-toe

(One thing: To strive for the perfection of character)            

2. Be Faithful

Hitotsu! Makoto no michi o mamoru koto!

Hee-toe-tsu! Mah-koe-toe No Mee-chee Oh Mah-moe-roo Koe-toe

(One thing: To keep up the paths leading to the truth)

3. Endeavour

Hitotsu! Doryoku no seishin o yashinau koto!

Hee-toe-tsu! Doe-ree-oh-koo No Say-sheen Oh Yah-shee-now Koe-toe

(One thing: To achieve strength of will)

4. Respect Others

Hitotsu! Reigo o omonzuru koto!

Hee-toe-tsu! Ray-gee Oh Oh-mone-zoo-roo Koe-toe

(One thing: To set a high value on decorum)

5. Refrain from Violent Behaviour

Hitotsu! Kekki no yu o imashimuru koto!

Hee-toe-tsu! Kay-kee No You Oh Ee-mah-shee-moo-roo Koe-toe

(One Thing: To avoid hot-headed, uncontrolled courage)

 Instructors and Students

Head Instructors Tony Tam and Danny Tam are referred to as Sensei (meaning: the one who came before, thus teacher) in and out of the Dojo. Black-belt assistant instructors are referred to as “Sempai”, which is a traditional greeting given to senior instructors. Kohais are higher ranking students.

By its very nature, a karate class is made up of students of all levels of expertise and ability. Students are evaluated on attitude, sincerity and willingness to train hard.           

It’s important to realize that all students, including beginners, are vital to the health and spirit of the club, and so each person should command equal respect from all other students—  regardless of rank or ability. However, there is a hierarchy of kyu or dan levels, and students are expected to show formal respect to senior ranks.

Proper Dojo Dress

After a few months, beginning students are expected to train in the traditional white karate gi which represents the purity of intention and equality of each student. No patches or other embroidery is permitted on gis, excepting the official ISKF crest.

Proper Dojo Behaviour

The atmosphere in a dojo can be strict and disciplined, long considered a fundamental necessity for the learning of any martial art form. Although many new students don’t initially understand the need for such rigidity, it does further one’s karate training, and helps promote a strong sense of spirit and serious purpose. All students must relate to each other in a respectful and mature manner, regardless of rank.

That’s why every dojo has certain rules, and the club is no exception. Each student should:        

            1.         Have a clean gi.

            2.         Be properly dressed in a gi and on the floor before class begins.

            3.         Remove all jewellery or articles on the body which may in the opinion of Sensei may result in injury to other students.

            4.         Bow before entering and leaving the Dojo.

            5.         Bow when Senseis Tony, Danny, Paul, or Andy enters the Dojo at the beginning of class and say “OSU!”, and bow whenever approaching Senseis or Sempais in class or around the Dojo areas. It is not necessary to bow to Senseis outside the Dojo but bowing in public is acceptable as a traditional Eastern cultural greeting instead of shaking hands.

            6.         Observe the rules and regulations of the ISKF.

Each student should not:

            1.      Engage in any violent actions, in or out of the dojo, that will reflect                      shamefully on the Sensei, the club, or the ISKF.

            2.         Talk with other students during class.

            3.         Physically or verbally abuse another student for any reason.

            4.         Leave the Dojo during class without permission.

E-mail Etiquette

Please do not email the Dojo or Senseis for anything that can be addressed before or after class. All information regarding training times and fees are found on this website. It is not necessary to contact the Dojo to advise of your absence from class but you are encouraged to advise Senseis in person after class if you have been away for an extended period of time or intend to be away to show respect to the Dojo.

Membership in the Halifax ISKF dojo continues so long as the member abides by the proper principles and etiquette of karate-do. Senseis Tony or Danny may revoke membership at anytime if in their sole opinion the member has failed to abide by the principles and etiquette of karate-do. The practice of karate is of body and mind. Perfection of character is the ultimate aim of karate, -Master Gichin Funakoshi.

Anyone who trains at the Dojo is subject to the Terms and Conditions of Membership as set forth in the Membership Registration Form in the Member's link of this website, regardless of whether the individual signs the Registration Form. The act of practicing at the Dojo or participating at any event conducted by Halifax ISKF shall be deemed acceptance of the Terms and Conditions of Membership.