Inside the Dojo
Traditions at the dojo set the baseline for great reverence for elders and instructors, a lifestyle of continuous learning, a practice of meaningful actions.
These traditions include:
Seiza – kneeling at the beginning and end of class, Purpose: Improve flexibility, patience, and awareness of sempai-kohai hierarchy.
Mokuso – meditation, Purpose: Improve posture, stillness, and mindfulness.
Dojo Kun – precepts of karate that are recited in English or Japanese, Purpose: Use small reminders “Seek perfection of character” etc. that build one’s understand of karate as well as resilience to keep striving for better
Rei – Bow to Shomen, Shihan, Sensei or Senpai, Purpose: Acknowledge the presence and wisdom of a fellow karate-ka, instructor, or senior
Senpai – Kohai – a system of seniors and juniors, Purpose: Keep order inside and outside the dojo.
Soji – cleaning the dojo which teaches several important lessons and is a great warm up or warm down, Purpose: Create and recreate a clean and orderly environment for learning. The actual movements also help the karate-ka improve flexibility and agility.