Dojo Etiquette

Dress Code
Students should be in full Gi (uniform) that is either black, white, blue, or red. A Pelletier’s t-shirt tucked in with their belt is an acceptable alternative. If the student is missing any part of the required dress, they should wear all personal clothes with no belt. This should not be a regular occurrence.

We are a traditional Okinawan school where we show respect towards the Dojo, our instructors, and fellow classmates. One way we do this is through the use of traditional bowing. Bowing is done to start activities like class, kata, sparring matches, and self-defense. You should also bow when leaving the floor (the carpeted area) or asking a higher ranked classmate for help.

When bowing to a higher rank the lower rank bows first, does not look at the higher rank, and does not straighten up until they have.

Starting Class
At the start of class there may be formal bow from the sitting position, called seiza (say-zah). This is followed by the mokuso (moe-cue-so), which is a time of meditation, clearing the mind of distractions from your learning during class.

Joining Class Late
Students should be at the Dojo and ready for class at the time it is scheduled to start. If class has already started, the student must stand in the front right corner (near the water fountain) and wait for the instructor to bow you in. Then join the back line after the last student.

Leaving Formation
Classes traditionally line up in order of rank with the highest rank in the front, right corner and progressing in rows (next highest to their left across the Dojo and then starting another row from the right). If a student has to leave formation for any reason, permission should be requested from the instructor. The student should then walk behind their line to the right side of the formation. A student should never “break” formation, that is, walk through the rows.

As a martial artist you should always conduct yourself in a respectful manner by following the Dojo precepts (humility, self-control, integrity, courtesy, discipline, and perseverance). You should always treat others as you would want to be treated. Respect the Dojo by helping to keep it clean and being careful not to damage it or the weapons and equipment that we use. Respect your instructors and fellow classmates by not arguing and using self-control when working with a partner. Respect the other classes going on by remaining quiet and still until they are done. Respect your belt and uniform by keeping it clean and off the floor.