New to karate?
Never done karate before? No problem. Beginners and new members are always welcome. There’s no need to book, you can just turn up. But you can contact us ahead of the class if you want to let us know you’re coming so we can discuss fitness and any injuries you may have.
What is the minimum age?
6 is the minimum age at Senshi Karate. Children younger than that often struggle with coordination and concentration.
Am I too old?
Haha, you’re hilarious! No, you’re never too old. Be realistic though. If you start karate when you’re older, you might never do full splits. You won’t be as fast as a 20-year-old. And you’ll probably never get to 9th degree black belt. But you can still get to first degree black belt. And, according to a recent report, karate might be just what you need if you’re aged 40-60. Click here to take the How Are You test to find out more. There are plenty of other benefits of starting karate too.
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How much does it cost?
- Per class: Adults & children £6 each, pay as you go
- First class is FREE
- 10% discount if you pay for a full term upfront. 2018 Spring term upfront fee with discount is £65 per person for 1 class per week. Cash, bank transfer or PayPalContact us for more info
- Unlike other activities, we don’t tie you into onerous monthly or annual contracts. Annual membership to Senshi Karate is FREE. Train when you like, take time off when you like
- 25% off all uniform & equipment bought through the club
- Uniform: If you want to continue training, you will need a karate “gi” or uniform. You can buy this yourself or choose any of these with a 25% club discount. Budget £15-25 for a cheaper uniform.
- KUGB Licence: You need an annual licence from our association body, the KUGB to be able to take part in their events and to be able to grade. It is also your insurance cover. This is £24 for kids under 16 and £27 for adults. You can print and send by post or apply online. This fee does not go to Senshi Karate.
- Gradings: Every 3-6 months you should be ready to take the grading for your next belt. These are run by a senior instructor from the KUGB. Budget about £25-35 for the training class before hand and the grading itself.
- Mitts & gum shield: If you enter competitions or as you get to senior grade, you will need approved mitts – about £10 – and a gum shield – about £5.
There is no charge for awesomeness…or attractiveness.
– Po, Kung Fu Panda
What should I wear?
Regular karate students wear a gi (karate uniform) in class. If you are a beginner and don’t have a gi, wear sports clothing or loose clothing suitable for stretching and flexing. If you continue training, you will need a white karate gi. You can buy this yourself or choose any of these with a 25% club discount. Budget £15-25 for a cheaper uniform.
What should I expect?
It should be enjoyable. Karate is not for everyone; equally, there are those who dedicate their lives to karate. If you don’t like it, that’s no problem. The first class is free so you’ve not lost anything.
Will I get injured?
Senshi Karate does not practise full contact karate. While injuries can sometimes occur, we teach control and discipline. Those simply looking for a fight have no place in our club!
What equipment do I need?
As you get to higher grades or if you want to take part in competitions, you will need sparring mitts and a gum shield.
Is Senshi Karate family friendly?
Are there changing facilities at the venues?
- New Haddo, Greenwich has no changing facilities but you can change in the toilets.
- Meridian Sports & Social Club, Charlton has rudimentary changing facilities & showers.
Is there parking at the venues?
- New Haddo, Greenwich has no onsite parking and limited parking nearby. You’d be better off using public transport.
- Meridian Sports & Social Club, Charlton has onsite parking and on-street parking nearby.
See our Where? page for more info.
Can I get to the venue by public transport?
- New Haddo, Greenwich is very close to Greenwich rail & DLR station and plenty of buses run nearby. Also, it’s near Greenwich Pier.
- Meridian Sports & Social Club, Charlton is well-served by buses.
See our Where? page for more info.
Do I have to take part in competitions?
You can if you wish. The KUGB, to which Senshi Karate is affiliated, runs several high-quality competitions a year and it is a great way to meet fellow “karate-ka”. But you don’t have to if you don’t want to.
Why do I need to obtain a licence?
The licence entitles you to take part in KUGB events and allows you to grade. It also provides insurance cover.
How often can I grade?
You may be eligible to grade every 3 months. It is up to your instructor to decide if you are ready. No one wants you to fail least of all your instructor.
How long before the average person gets to black belt?
As the saying goes: “An average person can’t get a black belt”. Every person who gets to black belt is driven and focused. If this is you, and you train twice a week or more and are good enough, you might be a black belt in about 3 years. Many people take 4-5 years or more.
Daniel-san… Karate here [taps his head]. Karate here [taps his heart]. Karate never here [points to his belt]. Understand?
– Mr Miyagi, The Karate Kid
What style of karate does Senshi Karate teach?
Senshi Karate teaches traditional shotokan.
How can I be sure Senshi Karate classes are good quality?
Senshi Karate is a not-for-profit club, meaning the motivation is the karate, not the money. It is affiliated to the KUGB, Britain’s largest shotokan karate organisation. The instructor continues to train regularly and attends the senior KUGB courses. All gradings are conducted by KUGB senior examiners independent of Senshi Karate.
Is Senshi Karate safe for my children?
Of course. Senshi Karate does not teach full-contact karate although injuries sometimes happen. And the instructor is CRB / DBS checked. More info about child protection here.
Can I do my DofE with Senshi Karate?
Yes. If you’re aged 14-24, the Duke of Edinburgh Award’s website says “As long as you pick something that requires a sustained level of energy and physical activity, the possibilities are endless.” Karate fits nicely into that and Senshi Karate is listed in the Opportunity Finder section on the official website. What are you waiting for? Contact us or turn up to the next class!
If you’re looking to practise outside class, the syllabus is here so you can look up videos of the moves you need to work on. Here are a few to start you off:
- Oi tsuki (stepping punch)
- Age uke (rising block)
- Soto uke (body block)
- Mae geri (front kick)
- Gedan barai (downward block)
The following excellent kata videos are by Sensei Paul James, 6th Dan with our KUGB friends at Ikkyo Karate in Aberystwyth.
Contact Frank Jennings for more information email@example.com