What is a typical training like?

Almost all Shotokan karate do clubs follow the same training layout.

You will hear the following a lot “Karate begins and ends with a bow” – It is a philosophy of politeness and also literally how we begin and end a Karate Class.

The Start Of The Class

  • You will arrive at the dojo (club) about 15-20 minutes early. Get changed and ready for the class.
  • Once you’re allowed to go in, you will bow and enter the dojo.
  • If needed, then soji (or cleaning) will be done to prepare the dojo for training.
  • The start of the class all students line up facing shomen (the front) from right to left starting with the most senior grade to the right going to the lowest grade to the left. If there are a lot of students with the same grade, try to go by height. This will make pairing up later easier and faster.
  • The whole class will now kneel from senior grades to the junior grades.
  • The whole class will then bow three times (sometimes four) – toward Shomen (the front), the instructor, Sometimes the senior grades, and lastly to the whole class.
  • You will then stand and the class training will begin.

The Training Part

A typical class will consist of three categories. Kihon, Kata and Kumite (basics, set forms and sparring). Depending on the needs of the class, the instructor may choose to do all three or focus on one in particular for that session. You will be learning everything from kicking to punching, knife hand strikes to palm blocks, defence to attacking and breathing to break-falls. The class will never be too much for your ability, although it will push you to the extremes of it sometimes.

A typical class will focus on both instruction and fitness. There will be a LOT of repetition. This is how we train the body and gain the muscle memory necessary. Even advanced students will spend many hours practising what you will be shown even in your first classes. Expect to get tired. This isn’t a walk in the park. You will feel it the next day, but in a good way.

The end of the class will be the same as the start.

  • Everyone lines up (in the same positions as you did at the start)
  • The whole class will kneel and recite the dojo kun
  • You will bow three times (sometimes four) – toward Shomen (the front), the instructor, Sometimes the senior grades, and lastly to the whole class.
  • The whole class will stand in order from senior to lower grade
  • Lastly the whole class will bow as the final move of the class.

Karate Begins and Ends with a Bow

Then we all come back next week and do it all again.

First Time Nerves?

If you are nervous about your first time, don’t be. What you can expect is the world’s best tuition and training from an instructor whose sole job is to help you every step of the way. We all had that first day in karate once, so we do know how you feel. The best thing to do. Is to come along, join in and give it a try.

Contact us on:
07900 217 014

Dojo Address:
Bayford Village Hall
Hertfordshire SG13 8PX

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