Useful Information

Below is a list of some of the words and concepts that you may come across when your looking for a karate club to join :
More specific information is available by clicking these links
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Dojo Etiquette
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Some Westminster and Ishinryu History
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Dan (grade)

Literally means "level". It is commonly used to mean the achievement of Black Belt status. eg 2nd Dan is the 2nd level of the Black Belt grade.


The place where we train.


Pronounced: ish-in-roo.
The name of the style of Karate practiced at our club.
Translated from Japanese the name means "Everybody with one heart".


The commonly accepted meaning of Karate is "Empty Hand" indicating that Karateka fight without using weapons.


A person who practices karate.

Kyu (grade)

A kyu grade is a level of achievement below black belt. The achievement is recognised by the award of a coloured belt.

The number of kyu grades and the colour of belt that represents the grade can vary greatly between styles. Ishinryu awards 8 kyu grades, starting with a red belt for 8th kyu.

The colours of the belts are:

  • 8th Kyu - Red
  • 7th Kyu - Yellow
  • 6th Kyu - Orange
  • 5th Kyu - Green
  • 4th Kyu - Green again
  • 3rd Kyu - Blue
  • 2nd Kyu - Brown
  • 1st Kyu - Brown again


Translates as teacher. Sensei is the title of the head instructor of a club.


A senior student. It is the title of anyone who teaches in the absence of the Sensei. It is also frequently used as an honorific title for a kyu grade student who is higher in grade than yourself and to whom you may look for support and guidance.
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