14 votes

Etiquette for sparring with women - How to find the balance and not do disservice?

I will present a judo view of sparring, which will be partially applicable to a kickboxing situation. Judo has two key principles: mutual welfare and benefit maximum efficiency As applied to ...
user avatar
  • 13.6k
12 votes

Why did a Samurai always wear their katana on the left side?

It's similar to the concept of shaking hands with your right hand. The majority of people are right handed, so when shaking hands you present this hand and clasp to show you do not have weapons. With ...
user avatar
  • 13.6k
12 votes
Accepted

Etiquette when changing from karate to jiu-jitsu

There is a famous zen story, one of the variation is this… Nan-in, a Japanese master during the Meiji era (1868-1912), received a university professor who came to inquire about Zen. Nan-in ...
user avatar
12 votes
Accepted

Etiquette for sparring with women - How to find the balance and not do disservice?

As a short answer, I'd say that it comes down to trust and pattern recognition. Respect the level of experience. During sparring, if the woman recognizes the patterns in your attack and defends with ...
user avatar
10 votes

Addressing martial artists of another style

The Japanese term "sensei" isn't so much a title as it is a form of respect for those who have paved the way for you in some way or another. It is often given to teachers, but also to doctors, lawyers,...
user avatar
  • 2,247
10 votes
Accepted

Is bowing a universal sign of respect across all martial arts?

Not really. Bowing is mostly a Japanese phenomenon. Even then in Shorinji Kempo (a japanese style) we don't bow but rather put our palms together in a traditional Buddhist greeting. In Chinese ...
user avatar
  • 2,830
10 votes
Accepted

What is a grandmaster?

The short form of the answer is that it is entirely dependent on the organization and its standards and customs. For the longer answer, start by looking at the way the word "master" is used in ...
user avatar
8 votes

Is it appropriate to display the dojo kun at home?

Yes Of course it is appropriate. I am struggling to find a reason why not to do it if you are keen on it. It is a piece of nice calligraphy which would be enough to display as an art piece ...
user avatar
8 votes
Accepted

How to spar against a weaker opponent

Competition, in a club setting, should be all about learning: for yourself and them. Thus, Help them! Against a weaker opponent, your goal should be to make them better. So, allow them to practice ...
user avatar
8 votes
Accepted

How to Deal with Talkative Training Partner

Quite frankly, yes, that's basically exactly what you do, ask them to stop giving you advice. If you want to be nice about it, thank them, but say that you really need to concentrate, and the talking ...
user avatar
8 votes

Is it okay to get a custom belt if you're not a black belt?

For this question there is only one person to ask: Your trainer(s). Is it okay for them or not? If it is okay for them, always have a normal belt, just in case you do classes or training somewhere ...
user avatar
  • 477
8 votes

How to test teacher's ability?

At my kyokushin karate dojo, one of the instructors is nearly 80. He's physically incapable of performing most of the techniques he teaches. Like, one of his knees doesn't really bend anymore, so he ...
user avatar
  • 2,247
7 votes
Accepted

Why did a Samurai always wear their katana on the left side?

You've answered your own question. It's etiquette. Right-hand means you don't expect to use your sword. Left-hand means you're ready for action. The Samurai had loads of rules and etiquette to abide ...
user avatar
7 votes

Addressing martial artists of another style

I'm a Taekwondo Master, but having met plenty of martial artists over the years I've been referred to as Sensei by Karateka (along with their traditional "oss" shout) and Sifu by Wing Chun ...
user avatar
7 votes
Accepted

Why isn't striking part of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu?

BJJ inherits this treatment of striking in rolling from judo. Strikes were removed from judo randori (free play) because Kano could not figure out a way to train them safely. Only relatively safe ...
user avatar
  • 13.6k
6 votes

Why is a gi worn left side over right?

Origin of keikogi, and Japanese left-over-right dress tradition The uniforms of karate, aikido, kendo, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, sambo etc are derived from the uniforms of judo, which were themselves based ...
user avatar
  • 7,272
6 votes

Etiquette for sparring with women - How to find the balance and not do disservice?

I'm not sure why you feel the need to adapt your sparring to women specifically. I always try to adapt my sparring to the person I'm sparring with: make it interesting and challenging for them if I ...
user avatar
  • 181
5 votes

Judo zarei difference between men and women

1. Seiza gender differences The prescribed gender differences in seiza one sometimes hears stem from traditional Japanese seating etiquette, analogous to sitting sidesaddle/astride in equestrianism, ...
user avatar
  • 7,272
5 votes

Addressing martial artists of another style

[...] how to respectfully address masters of other styles. In exactly the same way as you would do in any other setting: politely ask them. If you do not know something, you seek knowledge. You read ...
user avatar
5 votes
Accepted

What is the etiquette for practicing with more experienced partners in BJJ?

There is a nuance in the question as posted. Ultimately, this practice may have to do with cultural differences between Brazilians who are more loyally subservient to a team, dojo and instructor, ...
user avatar
5 votes
Accepted

What Etiquette Should be Followed When Sparring at Another School?

Yeah, don't be that guy. You don't want to show up at a school asking for a fight. Even if you make it perfectly clear it's "just sparring", many people will see it as a challenge, and you're going to ...
user avatar
4 votes

What are the corrects words to greet our shifu?

This sounds like it's probably Cantonese or a related dialect. You're going to be best off finding someone who speaks the language to tell you the exact meaning, though whether it is "correct" is ...
user avatar
  • 8,533
4 votes
Accepted

What are the corrects words to greet our shifu?

In Mandarin, "hao" means "good", and is used as a greeting. (As in "ni hao". "Ni" means "you", but can also be replaced by a title, in this case Shifu.) The end of class phrase is probably "shi fu ...
user avatar
4 votes
Accepted

Switching schools/styles - Is it disrespectful to ask about differences in technique?

It should be fine to ask why techniques are performed in a particular way. Good practitioners understand why and do more than blindly follow what they have been taught. Good teachers will be able to ...
user avatar
  • 13.6k
4 votes

Aikido seiza: Why is the left toe placed over the right toe?

Kōichi Tōhei in his Book of Ki: Co-Ordinating Mind and Body in Daily Life (1976) states only: "rest one big toe on top of the other" when describing exercises from seiza position. Historically ...
user avatar
  • 7,272
4 votes

Aikido seiza: Why is the left toe placed over the right toe?

I don't know from personal experience, but I did have the opportunity to ask several high-ranking Aikido-ka. Two admitted never having heard of the practice, three others are aware of the practice ...
user avatar
  • 3,851
4 votes

Aikido seiza: Why is the left toe placed over the right toe?

Answer to a previous question: "Some schools cross the big toes, some don't." Then there is this discussion on a kendo forum. And the Wikipedia page on seiza: "...big toes sometimes are ...
user avatar
4 votes

Aikido seiza: Why is the left toe placed over the right toe?

I just went through my bookshelf and the first book I found which talks about this is Chino Susumu's はじめての合気道, which says: Point! 両足裏は親指が軽く触れる程度にして座る "Important: place the front of your feet such ...
user avatar
  • 177
4 votes

Etiquette when changing from karate to jiu-jitsu

When I was studying Tae Kwon Do -- if you want to be ultra polite... Explain the situation to your current instructor and if possible get permission and a reference letter. Even if you don't talk to ...
user avatar
4 votes

Is shaking hands after a judo competition bad etiquette in Japan?

I feel that this question can be split in two sub-questions: Is shaking hands bad etiquette in Japan? Does this apply to (Japanese) Judo? While I have trained in Judo for a few years, my best ...
user avatar
  • 2,247

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible