Ettiquette plays an important part in our training in Seido Karate. To show your respect for the dojo and the people who train within it, always endeavour to show strong spirit and good ettiquette.

Respect for senior grades is essential. Good ettiquette to seniors is an acknowledgement of their achievements and knowledge. It takes a great deal of perseverance and determination to move up through the grades in Seido. Ettiquette is simply common courtesy and respect - something which is sadly lacking in many aspects of todays society. You cannot respect others unless you respect yourself first. It is important to remember that this is not to be seen or interpreted as an act of subservience.

If you are unsure about dojo ettiquette please ask senior memebers of the dojo.


What to wear?: Comfortable clothing, eg: tracksuit pants/shorts and t.shirt. Please remove your shoes before entering the dojo. We train in bare feet. When you have graded you will be expected to wear a gi (karate training uniform). No jewellery of any kind to be worn.

Please arrive at least 10-15 minutes prior to class start time and introduce yourself to the instructor/s (black belts).

What will you do?: You will be taken through basic blocks, punches, kicks, stances and exercises with one of our black belt instructors. You will learn about the etiquette that is expected in the dojo and with Seido Karate.

What age can I begin Temuka Seido Karate?: 6 years upwards (we have people who still train in Seido Karate who are well into their 70's). Temuka Seido Karate encourages family participation (we have several families training together).

Do I have to be fit and strong to begin Seido Karate?: No. We are all individuals who come to Seido Karate at differing fitness levels. We do not expect you to arrive at a beginners class able to do 50 pressups or run 40km!! In time your fitness and strength will increase.

We ask that you do not leave a training session any time you feel like it. Once the class starts, we ask that you get permission from your instructor if you need to leave for any reason. This is part of our etiquette and shows respect for your instructor and fellow students (karateka).

If for some reason you can only train for part of the class, inform the instructor before the class commences.

We always endeavour to make you feel comfortable in an environment that is new to beginner students. We have all been through that feeling and understand that it takes time to feel comfortable in the dojo environment, learn unfamiliar moves and new etiquette.

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Take footwear off before entering dojo

Greet the floor "Osu"

Greet Jun Shihan Lance (or Kyoshi/Sensei/Senpai, "Osu")

Greet to others "Osu"


Be honest (in training and to one self)

Always be with an open mind

Do not give up halfway - but continue on

Above all - be yourself

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From the founder of Seido Karate Kaicho Tadashi Nakamura:

Dojo etiquette is one of the most important aspects of Seido karate. In a traditional school of martial arts such as Seido, discipline of the mind is as much a part of training as development of physical skills; treating the Dojo as a special, formal place with its own rules for behaviour helps one focus on that discipline and makes the experience of coming to karate class more than just a trip to the gym.

To show that we recognise the specialness of the Dojo, we bow as we come into the Dojo, as we step onto the floor, and as we enter and leave the locker rooms. To keep the setting as formal as possible, once we enter the dojo, we should not stop to talk to friends while still dressed in street clothes, and we should keep in mind that the Dojo is not a social gathering place. When we bow to our seniors, we are bowing out of respect for their years of diligent hard work and for their accomplishments. Finally, taking care of the Dojo by keeping everything clean is an outward manifestation of the attitudes which we are trying to build in karate, as well as an expression for others.

Often it is easier for beginners to treat the Dojo more formally, because the place is still new and unfamiliar. By the time we become grizzled old veterans, we slip into casual habits and sometimes become resentful of the rules, which we must follow. However, it is important to remember where we are when we come to the Dojo, and how important it is to foster the mental discipline which will benefit us throughout our lives.

"Courtesy and respect must be given to our family and friends as though everyday we were meeting them for the first time" - Osu Kaicho Nakamura

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Osu - This word/greeting/expression of understanding is a sound you will hear constantly throughout your training at Seido Dojos.

The word "osu" is a shortened form of the Japanese word Oshi Shinobu which means keep patience. This concept is very important for martial artists to understand. A lot of people who start to study martial arts give up very easily and quickly, and will finds all kinds of reasons (excuses) why they cannot train. This is not the way to study the martial arts, nor anything else that requires effort - and definitely not the way to study karate-do.

You must have strong patience, for this is how you overcome difficulties. Learn to use your strong spirit and along with it a loud and strong "osu". Within the dojo, Osu can be used as a greeting or as a way to recognise that "I am here, I will try hard, I respect and I won't give up". Saying it loud and clear reaffirms your committment to train hard and improve yourself.

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... to show respect

... to say you'll try your best

... to remind yourself to pay attention

... Saying OSU becomes as much a part of karate training as putting on a gi, tying a belt, kicking, punching and kiaing. OSU is acknowledgement; and expression of respect, trust and humility. It is a reminder to listen better, to try harder, to pay more attention. Carry your OSU along with your SPIRIT ... Use it often ... Just say OSU - "Strong determination makes all things possible" - Kaicho Tadashi Nakamura