What to Expect During a Class
Classes begin promptly at the designated time: please arrive 15 minutes early to allow time to change and prepare for the class. The class begins with the students lining up in order of rank, facing the instructors, who then conduct the bow in. Any student who arrives late for class needs to get changed for class, then stand by the door until an instructor bows them into the class. They may then join in the activities.
After the bow in an instructor will begin the class with a warm up. This can vary in content, from running and exercises outside on the oval, to a formal examination style warm up in the dojo. Warm ups consist of aerobic exercises, dynamic stretches, push-ups and situps or core strength exercises, and leg stretches.
When the class has warmed up karate training can begin. The format and focus of the class varies from class to class, depending upon the needs of the students. Classes are often broken into rank groups, with each rank focusing on curriculum areas specific to their needs. A class could cover technique drills, kata, fitness and strength training, sparring, self defense, weaponry, or judo/mat work, often finishing with a cool down stretching routine.
Etiquette is a very important part of a karate class. When you come for your first class you will be given all the information you need to conduct yourself correctly in the dojo.
The duration of the classes are one hour for children and one and a half hours for adults - you will need to ask permission from your instructor to leave the dojo during class. At the end of class, the students line up facing instructors, and the class is bowed out.
For your first classes, you will need to wear loose, comfortable clothing suitable for exercising. We train in bare feet, so footwear is not necessary. You will also need a good size bottle of water to drink during and after class - groups are given regular drink breaks during class.