Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

Before starting something new we all have concerns or worries for us or for our children if they are attending a junior class. JUDO & JUJITSU are very similar: Judo derives from the other JuJitsu; the former is a sport, the latter a form of defence and unarmed combat.

There seems to be a lot of Japanese language stuff

I am not sure its really Japanese, the way we pronounce some of the words would make someone from Japan wince.   We give it a go but most of the time, we repeat what we heard someone else said. Someone else who didn’t speak Japanese either. Its just terminology and we will give out sheets from time to time to help.

Haven’t got a suit (Gi)

You can turn up for your first few sessions in loose clothing and no-one will worry. You will need one of our special white costumes (gi) if you intend to commit to training, or intend to go for a grading though, which is when most people usually buy one.

I’ll be embarrassed

We were all beginners once, and know what it’s like to be trying something unfamiliar and are  pleased that you’ve chosen to do the same martial art as we have.  because we went through those first sessions like you , you will find a lot of support and kindness. And they’re already wearing that odd  white suit, remember. Most people, when they hear you do Ju-Jitsu (and after you’ve explained what it is), are usually impressed.

I’ve never done a martial art before

For most people practising Judo or Ju-Jitsu it is the first martial art they’ve tried (Ray Twitchen first studied Judo then Ju-Jitsu) and in some ways, that’s an advantage to them. Since martial arts differ from each other, people who have already studied an art sometimes find they have to ‘untrain’ themselves from one behaviour and into A new way of doing things.

There’s also a different emphasis in other arts: karate is more focused on punches and kicks, judo on throwing, aikido on locks and so on. The result is that while training in another art can help with certain aspects of Judo & Ju-Jitsu, it can hinder others. However, martial arts training of any kind is always useful.
I’ll be the only beginner

Yes you may be, but we all learn by teaching each other, a family friendly community club welcomes and nurtures beginners.

Beginners aren’t thrown in at the deep end: even if there’s only a couple of novices training, an instructor will work with them on the basics they’ll need and if one novice has only just started, they’ll receive one-to-one tuition so they aren’t at a disadvantage.

I’ll be the only woman

Judo and Ju-Jitsu have one of the best gender balances of the martial arts (about 60/40). Women actually make up a high proportion of students at Bushido Kwai Dojo because the majority of our juniors are girls.

But Martial Arts is Macho

This can be true, but not of Bushido Kwai Dojo. There is no breaking blocks, punching and lots of flying kicks. That’s not to say our style is lacking in martial qualities, only that it’s not about showing off. Its about quite self respect and it literally means the gentle art. Though I remember one sensei telling me Jitsu just meant cheating (not doing what was expected) You are more likely to find machismo in the queue for your local coffeeshop.

I’ll end up with no life

hmm, well I aim to have a social life so i will expect you to as well. Training once a week is enough at first. As you rise up through the grades, you’ll need to train more perhaps a couple of times, and more for periods as you reach the dizzying heights of brown and black belt), but this is no more than many people go to the gym or do fitness training.
I’ll have to fight people

In JuJitsu thats what we hope to help you avoid, this is not grappling or Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu or cage fighting. You will have to demonstrate techniques, and in gradings, you’ll have to show you can survive attacks, none of your training partners will be aiming to hurt you. No doubt if you take up Judo seriously, you may eventually want to enter competitions.

But it will hurt?

Yes,  Sometimes it hurts, which is true of all sports.  But of all martial arts, Ju-Jitsu has one of the lowest injury rates around.

All sessions begins with a warm-up to prevent over-stretching of muscles. Every beginner is first taught how to fall so that they don’t hurt themselves during practice. Couple that with the collaborative nature of our training and the reasons for the low injury rate are obvious.

No high kicks or jumping (so no risk of torn ligaments or dislocations from overstretching). We don’t practise strikes against hard objects (so the risk of breaking knuckles, fists, wrists, etc from body conditioning doesn’t exist). We’re not full contact (in the karate sense) so we don’t risk breakages that way. And we teach people to fall and break their fall, we do this well.

I’m not very fit or strong

As you train, your strength, flexibility and fitness will improve anyway, usually without your even noticing it. Neither great strength nor great fitness are needed. Indeed, one of its biggest principles is of using the opponent’s strength against himself, so if you’re needing to use a lot of strength for a technique, you’re not doing it right!
Is learning Judo or Ju Jitsu expensive?

Everything’s relative. We are no more than a couple of Coffees from Cafe Nero

Your first session will be free: we reckon if you and your children get a taster of Judo or Ju-Jitsu, you’ll come back for more and we’d prefer not to put you off from coming.

After that, sessions are £5 for kids and £10 for adults If you train regularly, you’ll also have to spend money on:

  • a special white costume (gi). It’s built from strong material and you don’t want to have all your T-shirts ripped. That’ll cost you about £20-30. Pricey? About the same price as a pair of trousers, they’ll last longer, they include a white belt (normally £5 in shops)
  • Club Membership (insurance) It costs £20 for kids and £35 for adults per year and £15-25 for British Judo council membership which allows you to grade.
  • Belts. They cost about £5 every time you grade as an adult and you can buy them from any good sports shop, kids are given coloured striped(mons) for their belts
  • Other bits of gear you don’t have to worry about until you’re a brown belt…
    gradings, courses, etc. It’s up to you if you grade, attend courses, etc., but they’re good fun, and they only cost about £12 for a day.
    And that’s about it. No having to buy a new costume every time you grade at an exorbitant price (one of our members who used to train in another jiu-jitsu style used to have to spend £200 every time he graded…). No new badges every time you go up a grade. No exorbitant membership fee. Even the sessions (which last 1 – 2hours) are cheap.