Kouketsu Dojo Student Manual

UNIFORMS: Students ranked with white belt (9th kyu) or higher, wear a dogi or uniform. The uniform may be Dogipurchased from the karate club or any other source. If you purchase the uniform from a source other than the karate club, ensure that it is all white with no markings or tags. The original manufacturers’ labels are the only acceptable markings on the uniform (these labels are generally on the bottom right corner of the jacket (when worn) and the waist portion of the pants). It is also important that the uniform be fitted properly. The jacket, when tightened around the waist with the belt, must cover the hips, but not extend past the middle of the thigh. The sleeves of the jacket must cover at least half of the forearm, but not extent past the wrist. Women may wear a t-shirt underneath the jacket. The pants must be long enough to cover at least two thirds of the shin. However, the pant legs should not extent past the ankles.

All students who wear a uniform must also wear a belt. The belt should be about 1.5 inches wide and should be a length sufficient to allow approximately six inches free on each side of the knot.


HOW TO FOLD A KARATE UNIFORM: By Kent Ninomiya - Folding a karate uniform is one of the first things a martial arts student learns.

A karate uniform is called a "gi" in Japanese. That is what most martial arts instructors call it. It is important in this ritualized art to follow strict procedure and tradition when folding a gi. Follow these steps to learn how to fold a karate uniform.

Lay the top of your karate uniform on the ground front side up. Spread the arms straight out to the sides. Flatten all the wrinkles out of the gi.

Place the karate uniform pants flat on top of the karate uniform top. The waist of the pants should be at the top of the collar with the legs stretching down the middle.

Fold the pants legs in half so that the bottom of the pants legs meet the waist. Both the waist and the cuffs should now be at the collar of the gi top.

Fold the arm to your right over the pants. The fold should be at the edge of the pants leg. One arm should now be draped partially over the other.

Fold the arm from the side you just folded back toward the right side. It should line up with the right side of the gi. Repeat on the left side of the karate uniform.

Fold the left side over the pants at the edge of the pants leg, then fold the arm back to the left edge of the gi.

Fold the bottom on the karate uniform up at the line where the pants legs now end. This should be about two-thirds of the way down. Fold the karate uniform in half again. Press it down to get the air out. Your gi is now folded.

Obi" is the Japanese word for a sash that is worn around the waist. There are many different kinds of obi, including those worn with kimonos. In Karate, the obi is a colored belt that denotes the wearer's rank. It must be secured in a specific fashion to respect the traditions of the martial art. Follow these steps to learn how to tie a Karate obi.

Unravel your Karate obi and find the middle. Place that middle fold right on your bellybutton

Wrap both sides of the Karate obi around your body. The sides should cross in the middle of your back. Wrap one side underneath the other side. Bring the sides of the Karate obi to the front. They should be the same length.

Pull the left side of the Karate obi underneath the double wrapped part of the belt at your belly button and pull it out the top. Pull gently up on it at the same time you pull down on the other side.

Bring both sides of the Karate obi down in front of you and form an "X" with the top side over the bottom side. Put the top side of the Karate obi through the loop and pull both sides tight. Both sides of the obi should be even. Your Karate obi is now tied.

Folding your dogi

Keikogi (稽古着)

Keikogi (稽古着)

is a uniform for training, used in martial arts derived from Japan, or budō. (keiko means practice, gi means dress or clothes). The prototype for the modern keikogi emerged in the late 19th century. The keikogi was developed by judo founder Kanō Jigorō. Japanese martial arts historian Dave Lowry speculates Kano derived the uniform's design from the uniforms of Japanese firefighter's heavy hemp jackets called "hanten."[1] By 1920, the keikogi as it exists today was worn by Kano's students for judo practice. The Kodokan (judo headquarters) has a photo taken in 1920 that shows Kano wearing a modern keikogi.

Until the 1920s, Okinawan karate practice was usually performed in everyday clothes. Given the social climate between the Japanese and Okinawans during this time, karate was seen as brutish compared to Japanese martial arts which had their roots in samurai culture, such as jujutsu. To help market karate to the Japanese, Gichin Funakoshi—the founder of Shotokan karate and the instructor responsible for importing karate to mainland Japan—adopted a uniform style similar to Kano's design.[3] Over time, Karate practitioners modified the keikogi for karate by lightening the weave of the fabric and adding strings to the inside of the jacket that are tied to keep the jacket neatly closed. The jacket is also held closed by the belt or obi.

The top part of the keikogi is called the uwagi (uwa means "upper" and, again, "gi" means clothes). The pants of the keikogi are called shitabaki, which is the Japanese word for pants.