Karate Begins & Ends with Respect

This is often translated as “Karate begins and ends with rei” meaning to bow.

In a literal sense this is true, every lesson starts when you walk in the door and bow and ends the same way on leaving. At the start of each lesson the instructor also leads a physical bow to show respect to our instructors, students, equipment, and the place where we train.
Others would add that respect goes beyond a physical symbol toward other people or places. Adopting “respect” for yourself and others can be embraced on a far deeper level.
Respect for others could include paying attention to the lessons given by the instructor, or by being considerate and supportive of your training partners.
Perhaps you could respect YOURSELF more, by bringing a positive mental attitude to training, making every effort possible to adopt a growth mindset, maintaining a humble persona or avoiding ego-driven behaviour?
Or could you respect yourself more by recognising the effort you put in? It’s VERY easy for the dedicated student to be harsh on their own performance, constantly criticising themselves for not being good enough.

If this is you ask yourself – would you do the same to those around you? Or would you recognise the better elements in their technique and the effort they’re putting in?
Can you acknowledge the areas you have to develop, while ALSO recognising the parts you ARE getting right?
If we asked you right now what you think respect is, what would you say? And if we asked you after a years’ more training and development, would your answer be the same?

At JKS Edinburgh, we believe that karate begins and ends with respect. This respect is shown both physically and mentally and is the foundation of our training and practice. If you are interested in learning more about karate and our club, we welcome you to come and train with us.