Some Questions about Practice

How often should I practice?

While everyone is different, we generally find that students benefit the most if they attend at least two practices a week.  If time permits we encourage you to attend both practices every week and if possible to do some personal practice (10-15 minutes per day) the rest of the week.


Can I still practice if I miss a class? 

Yes!  Almost everyone misses some practices sometimes.  If at all possible try to find time to practice the movements you know on your own (even 10 minutes a day is beneficial) and then come back to class when you can.  No matter how many classes you miss, you can come back to class at any time.


My body is stiff and out of shape—can I still practice?

Yes!  One of the side benefits of our practice is that it is great exercise.  Don’t try to do too much too soon—do the movements to the limit of your flexibility.  Over time you will find your body becomes stronger and more flexible.


I have an injury or other health problem-can I still practice?

Yes!  The movements in karate can be modified differently for different people.  Before you start, discuss your injury or health problem with the instructor, who will make sure the movements are modified to accommodate you.  


I’ve practiced another style of karate or some other martial art-can I still practice Shotokan karate?  

Yes!  Of course, you may find we do some things differently than your old style and naturally we will expect you to do things our way (when in Rome, do as the Romans do).  But we are more than happy to have people from other styles practice with us.  Many of our most senior people came from other styles.


Are there any rules for how to behave in the dojo?

Yes!  There are a number of rules we expect students to follow (Dojo Etiquette). Mostly these are common-sense rules to ensure everyone can practice in a safe and respectful environment.


Dojo Etiquette

  • Remove your shoes before entering the dojo.
  • Bow each time you enter or leave the dojo.
  • All jewelry must be removed prior to class. Long hair must be tied back.
  • Try not to be late for class. However, if you are late come anyway and wait just inside the door for the instructor to bow to you, which is an invitation you to join the class. You would normally bow back. If you will be consistently late because of a conflicting schedule let the instructor know.
  • No talking during class.
  • Never leave the dojo without permission.
  • No one may leave practice during class (e.g., to get a drink of water or to take care of an injury) without the instructor’s permission.
  • Do not consume alcohol or drugs before coming to class.
  • Everyone must have a clean, presentable keikogi (beginners may try out a class in regular gym strip).
  • Keep your finger and toe nails cut short to avoid injury to others. Maintaining personal cleanliness is an act of consideration and respect for yourself and others.
  • Regular attendance and CSK membership is a must to take a kyu test.
  • If you have a previous injury or other health problem, alert the instructor before class begins.
  • If you are injured during practice or have some health problem, alert the instructor immediately. If you are bleeding from a blister or other cut you must clean up your own blood.
  • All equipment, both yours and the instructor’s, should be treated with respect and not thrown around.
  • Do not instruct other students during class.