◾ Frequently Asked Questions 


"No. Karate is a very cheap sport to practice. Costs are minimal and our school asks only for a small donation each session."

"No. There is no joining fee and gradings are free. A cheap suit is around £15 and will last for a few years. Training will always be free but donations are welcome."

"No. You can wear loose, comfy clothing but it is advised that you wear a white karate suit as you progress from beginner."

"No. You will not need these protective items unless you wish to compete in a competition or tournament."

"No. We have a collection of belts that you are free to use but you can buy your own if you'd prefer. They cost around £3 on eBay or Amazon or in martial arts shops and some sports shops."

"Yes, the terminology and instructions are given in Japanese but the instructor will also explain in plain English so you wont get confused. Japanese terminology is helpful when training in a foreign school; the terminology is universal."

"Just as the different coloured belts have meanings, the modern coloured Karate suits also have different meanings. Our school trains in white which is a traditional colour."

"No. You will never have to pay Insurance or License fees. The club is covered with £1000000 (one million pounds) insurance, underwritten by Lloyds."

"For safety reasons, it is strongly recommended that you remove piercings and accessories such as necklaces, bracelets and watches, before you begin each session. Plain rings with no sharp protrusions, such as wedding bands, are acceptable however."

"Yes, under certain circumstances, you may wear light footwear but it is advisable to train barefoot if possible."

"No. We do a full warm up and a warm-down. Every effort is taken to ensure the safety and well-being of all students. Contact is not allowed or encouraged, so no-one needs to worry about getting hurt."

"No. You can learn the system from scratch or build on any previous knowledge of any martial art you may already know."

"Any age is good but under 10 years is too young. The longer you train, the better you will become, so starting now is advised."

"No. The karate training will be adapted to suit your physical and mental health needs although severe disabilities should be advised by a doctor before training."

"Yes, make sure you bring your inhaler and check with a doctor first. We practice several breathing exercises which may help to develop your lungs."

"Always train within your own limits. you can decide how hard, fast or light you wish to train but this style of Karate generates a relaxed, natural power, so over-exertion is not required."

"No. You will naturally develop strength, fitness and flexibility as you progress in your training.

"Come along and watch a class to see if you are interested or bring a friend to train with you for company."

"Of course, seating is available for spectators, although we respectfully ask them to be quiet during training."

"It is recommended that you start from the beginning if you are not familiar with this system. Black-belts however, can still wear their belt while they learn."

"You will be asked to perform various techniques and sequences. As you get better you will also be asked to demonstrate with a partner and for black belt, you may also be asked to write an essay."

"No. Karate is about self-discipline, culture, movement and thought. You will not be taught about religion."

"This is similar to a handshake in Japanese and Okinawan culture. We bow to say hello, goodbye and to pay respect to each other."

"Yes, there are many health benefits; we aim to train holistically to improve and maintain mobility, physical health and mental agility."

"Drinking water or soft drink is encouraged during training but eating or chewing gum is not allowed."

"It's a very old style of Karate. See our history page for more info."

"It can be but its effectiveness varies from person to person. Above all, it will give you confidence and develop an ability to avoid hostilities in the first place."

"The law allows you to defend yourself if you are attacked but I advise using minimum force. You get no special privileges for being trained in karate and you are responsible if you hurt someone."

"No. You will naturally get fit whilst training. We specially exercise the legs in every class but extra fitness is left up to the individual."

"No, weapons are not used in our training. Although occasionally we practice defences using a rubber knife to simulate an attack, you will not be taught to use weapons."

"Twice a week is the recommended minimum, you can practice at home as often as you like, if you can't attend all the classes."

"People will give you different answers. Everyone has their favourite but the truth is, they all have their good points. The best martial art is one that you enjoy enough to be able to dedicate a life-time of study to."

"A typical class has a warm up, stretching, leg exercise, punching, kicking, basics (kihon), pad work, partner work (kumite), forms (kata), a warm down and breathing or basic meditation techniques."

"It is not a major part of our training but we have been invited to attend Tournaments across the Country, so I can help you to compete if you would like that option."

"Usually it takes around 4 or 5 years to attain a black belt, depending on how often you attend and how quickly you learn. There are many grades to achieve after that to become a master!

"You will be awarded a certificate of distinction upon passing your black-belt and your Karate will be of a good standard which will be recognised by other instructors and practitioners."

"Yes, we sometimes test our techniques by breaking boards. You will only be given this option when the instructor feels that you are ready. You will not be forced to do this however and you will not be made to feel bad if you decide not to."

"Toilet facilities and drinking water are provided. You are always free to leave a class for any reason but please notify me before you go and let me know where you are going, for safety reasons."

"Yes. I have no criminal record or cautions - past, present or pending. My enhanced CRB disclosure number is 001341668739, which is current and gets renewed every 3 years."

"You are advised to bring all valuables with you into the training hall, rather than leaving them in the changing rooms. You may leave your phone on but please do not use it during the lesson - except for emergencies or important calls."

"Some people prefer to wear T-shirts or vests under their Karate suit for comfort or modesty, this is fine but please wear plain white."

"Yes, a cheap car park is available just outside the Karate school, you can also park on the roads nearby (buy ticket form pay meter - free after 6pm). There are bike stands just opposite our school, at the Phoenix Cinema."

"Quite possibly; I aim to take long-term students with me across to Okinawa, Japan, periodically to train with the KarateMasters there!"

"Possibly, check out dojos.co.uk to see if there is anything nearby."

If you have any further questions, please don't hesitate to contact us and we'll also add your query here as a Manga panel - yay!

(Licensed Manga images © ComiPo - not subject to Public Domain)

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