What does Kyoshin Dojo mean and what do those other funny names mean?
Kyoshin literally means “Strong Spirit” or “Strong Heart,” and dōjō literally means “way place” and refers to a place where “the way” of something is learned. Together they mean “Place of training in the way of the Strong Spirit or Strong Heart.”
Karate means “empty hand” and refers to the empty hand martial arts that originated in China and Okinawa. Aikijutsu means, “Dominating spirit art” and refers to an art of close combat that originated in ancient Japan. Kenjutsu means “The art of the sword” and refers to the sword arts of Japan. Kyudo means “The way of the bow” and refers to Japanese Zen Archery. Tai Chi Chuan can be interpreted as “Grand Ultimate Fist.”
We are a Traditional Martial Arts school offering several of the Classical Martial Arts Traditions. We focus on practical martial techniques, character improvement, and increased physical fitness. Our training stresses the Seven Virtues: Honor, Loyalty, Self-discipline, Integrity, Perseverance, Courtesy, and Indomitable Spirit.
A strong mind, a healthy body, a high moral character, and an ability to defend oneself are our goals. At the heart of our teaching are the techniques and principles of San Sai Ryu which means “Three Element Tradition.”
What does it take to become a student?
To become a student you need:
1. A desire to train seriously in the martial arts.
2. A personal interview with the sensei, “teacher,” in which you demonstrate that desire.
3. Observe a class and participate in a class.
This is a period of time where you can get acquainted with the class. You will learn the etiquette, procedures, etc. During this period you are not required to have a keikogi, “training uniform.”
4. A proper uniform consisting of a white keikogi, “training uniform.”
After choosing to become a member of the class you will need a uniform. Please see the Head Instructor for details.
When are classes held and what do they cost?
How do I know what equipment I need for class and where do I get all the necessary equipment?
Ask the Head Instructor what you will need for class and he will be happy to tell you. All the equipment that you will need for class can be purchased through the school. Ask the Head Instructor for a current price list.
What are all the different colored belts for?
The different colored belts represent the level at which a student is at in his or her training. As a beginner you start with a white belt. There is a minimum time requirement for each rank and once you fulfill this time requirement you are eligible to test for the next higher rank. During every class you are being observed to see whether or not you are ready to test. Once the instructor feels that you are ready to test, you will be told to prepare for the test and when the test will be conducted.
Are the martial arts a religion or do practitioners follow a particular religion? Why all the bowing?
No. People of all religions practice the martial arts. It is a pursuit that denies no one and benefits everyone. The bowing in the martial arts is done to show mutual respect, trust, and acceptance of others. It is also a greeting similar to a handshake. It should be sincere and respectful, not mechanical.
What's going on with breathing and meditation exercises?
Drawing in a deep breath and letting it out slowly calms us, gives us fresh energy, releases tension, and enables us to find a comfortable, alive, natural posture. Meditation allows us to calm our mind and focus our energy on the task at hand.
How long will it take me to get good or to get a black belt?
Achieving a black belt is a very difficult endeavor. How fast you progress is in direct proportion to the quality of your training and the amount of time you put into it. It is the same with any endeavor you decide to undertake. However, gaining a black belt is not the end of your training but only the beginning. It is then that you really begin to understand the essence of the martial arts.
Any further questions you may have may be directed to the Head Instructor.