This page covers some of the frequently asked questions we receive about training at Ken Shu Dojo Karate Club and the costs involved to take karate classes with us.
The trial offer of two free classes, who is this for and what’s involved?
It’s open to anyone aged seven and up (our eldest current member is over 70!). There is no obligation after the trial course if karate is not for you. Please see our class timetable for available classes to suit your age and individual requirement.
What kit do I need to bring?
Just loose-fitting clothes – tracksuit bottoms or leggings and a tshirt. We train barefoot so no shoes/trainers or socks (unless you have a foot condition). Water is also recommended.
What happens after the free trial offer ends?
Should you wish to continue, you will continue to train using the beginners’ syllabus. On completion of eight classes minimum you will be graded on the content you have been shown on the course. There is a £25.00 charge for the grading and you will get a new belt and certificate. This grading usually takes place at the end of the month in the main grade class.
Is there a club membership fee and what kit is needed when I move into the main class?
We don’t believe in club membership fees, however you will need a association membership and this includes your member-to-member yearly insurance to train. The cost is £25.00. You become a member of our association/governing body and get a grading booklet. You will also need a “karate gi” (suit), these are available at all good sports shops or through us, all we ask is that it is plain white, there are plenty of examples in the pictures on this site. Costs of karate gis vary.
In the main class will I be thrown to the lions and get a hard time from the established club members?
No, we treat each student as a individual, we are well aware that no two people are alike, you will progress at a rate you feel is good for you with a little pushing from us. If needed, we will put one of our instructors with you for some one-to-one training in the main class. As for the senior club members, we at KSD are a non-egotistical club, we don’t suffer bullies, every member is part of the KSD family.
What are gradings and do I have to do them?
Grading is a way of testing you on the content you have learnt. The period to grade is approximately every three months based on training twice a week. If you pass you will receive your next belt. This is the path to Black Belt, we do not insist on you grading after the first one, the choice is yours.
What benefits will I get from training/learning karate at KSD?
Confidence, fitness, self protection/defence, discipline, respect and traditional karate (not to be mistaken with “sport” karate taught elsewhere locally). We have a great bunch of members and we have a great social side to the club. You have to remember the benefits listed can be gained but ONLY if you put the time and effort into your training – you get out of karate what you put into it, just like anything in life.
Do you do anything as a club or do you just train at your location?
No we get out and about when the right opportunity comes our way. We have trained in Barcelona and a trip to Switzerland is on the cards as well as other opportunities. We have trained with the following Japanese karate masters: Fumio Demura; Akiro Sato; Keiji Tomiyama; and Masataka Ohshita – all from the direct source of our style Shito-Ryu Shukokai.
Do you have a competition side to the club?
As mentioned, we are a traditional club teaching what works in the real word. We do offer a competition side and we have a squad that’s preparing for the up coming competition season.
How do you feel about a student from another style cross-training?
We don’t have a issue with it. We know no one style has all the answers so we encourage cross training if it’s what you want. We’re not blinkered by our own style either, we recently spent four hours training with Morio Higaonna Hanshi (10th Dan Goju Ryu).
Sadly most clubs say your not allowed to train in styles simultaneously but you can licence and train with as many clubs as you like. After all, the martial arts journey you’re on is yours and yours alone. ANY licensed member of our association (CMAA) who would like the opportunity to cross-train can do so with any club in the association in any style.
Who are KSD affiliated to?
Does the club have separate classes for beginners, children, adults and advanced students?
Yes KSD offers lessons for all. We are open five days a week, three hours a night in the week and also on a Sunday. Traditionally, the first class of the day sees the children and family members training together (e.g. adults and kids, parent and child etc.) and the last lesson of the evening is adults/seniors (although there are some higher grade children allowed).
I’ve studied karate in the past and am thinking about restarting do I have to start again as a while belt or may i wear my current grade?
We have options available to all re-starters. If you can prove your karate history in terms of old licences or grade certificates you’re able to wear your old grade. Our association states that no one has the right to strip you of your past grade, however you would not be able to progress beyond your current grade until you have been grade assesed up to your current grade in the KSD syllabus. Once you have met that requirement then you will start working toward your next grade. Grade assesments are approximately every three months and a min of 21 lessons up to 4th Kyu. Grading requirements above 4th Kyu will be discussed on an individual basis.
I study karate with another club but frustrated and considering training elsewhere or quitting. Would i be able to train at KSD?
Indeed! We welcome everyone no matter what club or style they have come from. KSD will never talk ill of other clubs. If you do choose us, we respect where you have come from. You will have to buy a new association licence costing £25.00 and we would require proof of your training at your previous club.