On this page, you will find many answers to common questions you may have regarding joining Fabiano’s Karate! Compiled is a small list of the many common questions we get asked!
Why should I start karate?
The benefits of karate practice are HUGE! Karate can enhance your physical strength, coordination, balance, flexibility, and stamina. Everything that you do in your life becomes a bit easier because of karate. Karate not only trains your body it trains your mind too! This results in improved self-awareness, discipline, confidence and will power. Not only will you become more confident that you can defend yourself, but your confidence to tackle all of life’s trials will grow.
When do you start new students?
Anytime! We have a rotating curriculum that is designed for anybody to start whenever they want. The first class is very relaxed and structured as follows. The new student will warm up with the class, then break off for a one-on-one training session with a black belt. After this session, they will be briefly familiarized with some of the techniques we will be doing in class. The next class, they will join the class as a regular student. Our lessons and structure of classes put high ranks as responsible for helping out the new students, so in addition to the instructors in the room, there are a bunch of friendly & helpful faces eager to help you out!
How much does it cost?
Costs vary depending on the payment option that you choose. A list of our karate pricing is found here.
What is needed to join?
Setup a time to watch a class. Our contact information is found here. Heck, if you feel comfortable, join the class while you’re there! You’ll get the true experience of a real class, unlike some other schools where the free trial class is a big sales pitch. If you decide to join, talk to one of the instructors and they’ll get you signed up!
What do I need to wear? – Do I need to buy a uniform?
All students are required to wear a karate uniform (Gi) to class. All tuition options include the student’s first uniform, so there is no need to buy one. Should a replacement uniform need to be purchased, they are around $35-40 from us. Female students will need to have a plain white t-shirt under their uniform top!
Do I need to have previous karate or martial arts experience?
ABSOLUTELY NOT! Most of our new students do not have any experience, and that is 100% fine! We’ll be able to help you along every step of the way to your success!
How often should I practice?
That is a very common question that has an easy answer. Whenever you have time! We suggest setting aside at least 1 hour per week for practicing outside of class, that is only 10 minutes per day! Obviously the more you practice, the better you will become. The more you practice outside of class, the less repeating we need to do during class to have you caught back up to speed from the previous sessions!
How often are karate classes?
All of our classes meet 2 times per week for kids. We do not allow our children students to come to less than 2 classes per week, as we feel it is not enough to come only once per week. Adults are encouraged to attend at least 2 times per week, however they are welcome to come as many times as they want. We have 5 classes for adults to attend per week, so you are welcome to come to all 5 if you’d like!
How old should a child be before starting karate?
While many people feel that starting children at a very young age will develop good habits, we do not feel that students younger than 6 or 7 years old would be a good fit. In the past we used to start students at 4 years old, but we felt that we were just babysitters. The style we do at Fabiano’s is geared for Self Defense and that is just not possible to teach a 4 year old in an effective manner. In other words, we feel like we are wasting your time and money and not providing you with a quality service that we are known for. Age 7 seems about the perfect age to start karate!
Am I too old to start karate?
Karate is great for students of all ages, although a physical exam and doctor’s OK is would be a good idea for anyone older than age 50 or so. Older students may not be a strong or fast as the younger students, however their dedication and practice to the art can make them a very effective martial artist & it can help them in their everyday lives.
How coordinated and physically fit do I have to be to practice karate?
Most world karate champions, like any top athlete, were probably well-coordinated natural athletes before they began their karate training. Most of us, however, come to karate in order to become more coordinated and physically fit. So the brief answer is, “not very”. Even if you feel like the world’s biggest klutz you can still practice karate. By doing so, your coordination and fitness will greatly improve.
Will I get hurt practicing karate?
Karate training is very rigorous. Bumps, bruises and sore muscles are not uncommon. Serious injuries are extremely uncommon because karate emphasizes physical and mental control as well as respect for your training partner. Additionally, due to the precise control and supervision, minimal contact is made during training sessions. The result is that karate practice is considerably safer than many other popular sports such as basketball and soccer.
How long must I train before I can defend myself?
The ability to defend oneself from attack is dependent on many factors. Certainly, the longer you train, the more able you will become. The probability of success is relative to the strength and ability of the defender vs. that of the attacker(s). It is important to realize; however, that there are no guarantees! It is possible for a beginner to get lucky or an advanced karate person to be caught during an inattentive moment. This uncertainty is one of the practical reasons why strategies that reduce the chance of conflict are more important to self-defense than physical prowess.
Beyond all that, a beginner should think on the order of years (as opposed to weeks or months) before he/she begins to be proficient at karate. Herein lies the danger of the many so called “self defense courses” that typically run from 6 to 8 weeks. Nothing of great lasting value comes easily or quickly. The most important thing a short course can teach you about self-defense is how vulnerable you really are if attacked and that you should be extremely cautious about dangerous environments. The value of any physical techniques taught in such a course is questionable.
It is important that new students not expect instant results! Karate takes time and it takes years to become good at it, no matter how often you train. Don’t forget to make time for other things too, especially those who have schoolwork. Remember that schoolwork comes first!
Will I have to compete in tournaments?
While we encourage participation in the tournaments, our answer is only if you want to! We participate in a number of regular competitions as a supplemental form of training and a means to test skills. Competition is stressed as an important, but optional, training opportunity. Tournaments are not usually forced in traditional karate. More important is development of body, mind and a non-violent philosophy. We do think tournaments are
What do I call the teacher?
Instructors are addressed as “Sensei”. Sensei is a Japanese title of respect (sort of like “Sir” or “Mister”). It means “teacher” and is literally translated as “before birth” which infers that the instructor is someone older than yourself. In this case we are speaking of “karate age”. In other words, an instructor is someone who has more karate experience than yourself. Sensei and “Master” are titles which people use to refer to or address someone else. It is considered very improper to refer to oneself as Sensei or Master.
“Sempai” (“senior”) is another term of respect that is often used when addressing someone who is not an instructor, but is senior to you in karate experience. You are welcome to use this terminology to show respect towards your fellow “karate elders”, but it is not required language at our school.
Why must I Bow?
Bowing is a gesture of both kindness and respect for another person. Great physical and mental power must be offset by making a habit of putting other people before oneself, otherwise karate students might easily become bullies. So as we gain strength with potential to harm others, we also want to become kinder people. Bowing and other forms of martial arts etiquette are used as tools to help the karate student make kindness a habit.
What are the belts (ranks) in karate and how long does it take to reach them?
Beginning students first go through the “kyu” ranks. Students typically rise in rank by one kyu every few months, dependent on the effort put in by the student. Kyu ranks and the color belts that go with them are found our our Belt Testing Page.
Six months after students attain 1st kyu, they may then start testing for “dan” (black belt) ranks. Students who train regularly typically require 3 to 5 years to reach the first level (Shodan) of black belt. Each succeeding black belt level requires increasingly more time to attain. For example, it generally takes at least 2 years to go from Shodan (1st degree) to Nidan (2nd degree), at least 3 years between Nidan and Sandan (3rd degree), and at least 4-5 years between Sandan and Yondan (4th degree).
What are the dojo rules?
Dojo rules can be found on our Rules Page.