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Etiquette is an essential part of the training and shows the maturity of your practice as much as the techniques. Although dojo etiquette may seem confusing and feel overwhelming at times, if you watch carefully and keep an open mind you will be able to understand it in no time!


Bowing is a way we show respect for the practice, the founder, our teachers, our partners and ourselves. It is a way to show our humility and a way to thank each other for practicing. There are several specific times when we bow:

  • When entering and leaving the dojo we bow at the door.

  • We make two seated bows when stepping onto the mat after changing. One towards the kamiza and one towards the center of the mat.

  • When class begins and ends we all bow together.

  • We bow after the teacher demonstrates a technique.

  • Students bow to each other before and after practicing a technique.

When we bow, we bow at the same level as each other. It is improper to stand while another student is bowing seated.

If you have a religious conflict to bowing, please find another gesture to use to show this respect.


Students must attend two classes per week. To learn Aikido, you must maintain consistency. If you are unable to attend the minimum two classes for any week, you must let Sensei know. 

A few minutes before class begins, the students line up to signify to the teacher they are ready to learn. It is also a way to focus and let go of everything that has happened before class.

After a demonstration, the students are urged to practice with the uke, or the person who was used by the teacher for the demonstration. In a similar spirit, students are urged to go after any visitors to show that they are welcomed to train in the dojo.

When receiving instruction from the teacher, the student must be sitting in seiza (seated posture with legs folded underneath them) and bow afterwards.

This art is studied with your eyes and body. Talking should be kept to a minimum on the mat.

In the dojo we don’t lean against the wall.


Everyone must have their nails clipped, and wear a clean gi. Jewelry must be removed for you and your partner’s safety and if piercings cannot be removed, it is recommended that they are covered with medical tape (otherwise it is at your risk). Please do not wear anything strong smelling like colognes or perfumes.

After classes we all clean together. We share the space and it is our responsibility to take care of it.


Try your best to not be late to class. If you know you are going to be late make sure you let Sensei know you will be late. If you are late being let into class is at the teacher’s discretion.

Before you step onto the mat when class has already begun you must ask for permission. If you need to leave the mat for any reason while class is in session, you must let the teacher know (if you need to run off the mat, your partner should let the teacher know).

If you have an injury, please let the teacher know. If you get injured during class, immediately let the teacher know.

If you are going to be out of town for an extended period or aren’t able to follow your usual schedule for any reason you must let Sensei know.

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