The etiquette is relevant for beginners, advanced students, masters and teachers.
- The fighting instincts increase if they get free reign outside the training practice. In order to direct and control such behaviour patterns without violence and aggression, rules and discipline are necessary. The basis for this is the etiquette.
- The etiquette also includes politeness, good behaviour, hierarchy, respect and gratitude.
- Other aspects from the etiquette stem from the Japanese tradition and the history of martial arts.
Dojo Etiquette (Reigi) Vienna Aikikai Union
„The etiquette should be an expression of the humanity and the heart. It is not sufficient to merely adapt to the shape. If there is no respect inside the heart, the shape will only be an empty shell without a soul. (Shihan, Tamura Nobuyoshi Seinsei, 8. Dan Aikikai in „Aikido – Etiquette and Transmission“, May 2000)
- Always consider that your partner is a human being. Treat him or her with consideration and don’t force any techniques on them.
- Keep your emotions under control, avoid fear, confusion, disdain of others and an exaggeration of your ego.
- Wear slippers (Zori) outside the mat area (Tatami)
- Your training outfit should always be clean and hygienic.
- Your finger and toe nails should always be cut short (danger of injuries)
- Therefore, also don’t wear jewellery, watches or rings during training.
- Always bring your weapons to training.
- Be on time for training. Training starts with the putting down of the mats or cleaning of the mat area.
- Should you happen to be late after all, wait for a sign from the teacher, step on the mat area and bow towards the Kamiza. Then sit down at the side of the mat in Seiza, and take your time to prepare mentally for training (through a short meditation). Bow towards the trainer and take part in training.
- During training, focus on the here and now, on the techniques shown and keep chatting to a minimum.
- Get to know your position.
- Respect your teacher (Sensei) and the advanced students (Sempai).
- Help the less advanced students and beginners (Kohei) with the techniques and the etiquette.
- Give new students and guests a friendly welcome and include them into training.
- Have respect for older students and teachers, be understanding towards younger ones.
- Bear in mind that many students already are masters in a different discipline.
- All these relationships work together, make sure you find the correct balance in each case.
- Follow the teacher’s instructions promptly and be diligent in your practice.
- Don’t change clothes in the mat area.
- Bow when entering and leaving the practice room (Dojo), as well as entering and leaving the Tatami towards the Kamiza.
- Don’t leave the Tatami during training.
- Should there be reasons to make leaving the room necessary (e.g. for going to the toilet, or if you’re feeling unwell) inform the trainer, or if this isn’t possible, another student.
- Never sit with your back to the Kamiza (also when folding the Hakama)
- Don’t sit on the Tatami with your legs stretched out, with the soles of the feet facing the Kamiza.
- Before and after each exercise, bow before your partner.
- Don’t bend over on the Tatami, so that your backside shows towards the Kamiza (including when picking up your arms).
- The Doja is no dining hall, therefore refrain from eating or drinking there.