Dojo Etiquette

  • Bow as you enter and leave the dojo.  Bow before stepping onto or off the mat.
  • Shoes must not be worn in the workout area.  Remove and arrange neatly before entering the dojo.
  • Assemble five minutes or earlier before class starts and begin your own warm-up.
  • If you are late for class, warm-up, then sit in seiza on the edge of the mat and wait for the Sensei to bow you into class.
  • “Sensei” is the term used to address the highest-ranking black belt present. Mr., Miss, Mrs., or Ms. is used to address all other black belts.  It does not mean master, but “one who comes before”.
  • Sit in seiza when the Sensei is showing a technique to the entire class.
  • Horse play is not tolerated; that’’s when people get hurt.
  • No arguing or animosities are allowed.  Leave them outside when you bow in; in time you will learn to let go of them entirely.
  • Uniforms are to be kept clean and neat.  Yellow belts and up shall wear a white gi and the appropriate obi.  Black gi are only approved for yudansha ranks (black belt).  Only authorized Shoshin Ryu markings are allowed.
  • A bow is executed before and after working with a partner.  Always think of safety when working with a partner.  Remember he is your partner, not your opponent.
  • Practice with spirit and control – use both your mind and body.  Seek excellence.
  • Do not lie down, lean on a wall, sit with legs stretched out, wear jewelry or chew gum.
  • It is a duty and honor to participate in the cleaning and maintenance of the dojo.  Never allow a student of higher rank to sweep or clean while you sit idle.
  • Always be courteous in and out of the dojo.  “Please” and “Thank you” are signs of maturity and confidence, not weakness.
  • If you cannot make a class for a while, or are moving or stopping practice, talk with your Sensei.  Sensei is there to help you and will not pressure you into staying.  Let him know your plans and keep in touch.  The bond your Sensei has with you is deeper than you might imagine.
  • Pay dojo dues and National Association fees on time.  Plan accordingly to pay for dues and seminars ahead of time.  Do not make your Sensei or the senior students into bill collectors; it is not their job.