It is very common for us at the Bushikan Dojo to receive phone calls or visits from parents interested in getting their kids involved in the martial arts, or adults interested in their own personal training that have very little knowledge or none at all of what the martial arts are all about. At the Bushikan Dojo that is not a problem; on the contrary, Sanguinetti Sensei is always willing to spend time with any newcomer to answer any questions or worries that the person may have. Sanguinetti Sensei not only has been involved with the martial arts for over three decades and understands the need to make the community aware of the true benefits of the arts, but he is a parent himself that understands the worries that parents have over any negative influence towards their children these days.

It is the intention of this section to answer many of the most common questions that people may have when they visit a Dojo for the first time. If some of your questions have not been answered here, please feel free to call us or visit us at the Dojo, we will be happy to answer them.

What are the traditional Japanese/Okinawan martial arts? Ancient self-defense systems where the practitioners learn to live their lives under a code of discipline, honor, and respect for themselves and others.

What is a Dojo? The western common interpretation referes to Dojo as the martial art school or building. The traditional Japanese martial art concept translates the kanji or Japanese character Do as 'the way, the path', and Jo as 'the place', for what the deeper meaning is known as the 'place where we find our way', 'the place where we forge our character'.

What does Bushikan Dojo means? The word Bushikan is composed by the kanji Bushi that represent 'Bushido or way of the Samurai, the way of the Japanese/Okinawan martial arts'. Also, Bushi represents an honorific title that only few had obtained in the martial arts, few as Chojun Miyagi Sensei, founder of Okinawan Goju Ryu Karate. Kan interpretes as 'the house, the building', for what Bushikan is translated as the 'the house of Bushido, the house of the martial arts'.

What M.A. are taught at the Bushikan Dojo? The arts taught at the Bushikan Dojo are Japanese/Okinawan. We teach Karate, Kobudo, and Self-Defense. Karate: Okinawan empty hand system. The style taught at the Bushikan Dojo is Okinawan Goju Ryu, one of the first two main karate schools born in Okinawa. Goju Ryu at the Bushikan Dojo has preserved the meaning of a traditional art and not as a modern flashy fighting system. Kobudo: ancient Okinawan system based on the use of agricultural and fishing tools as weapons. The style taught at the Bushikan Dojo is the Matayoshi Kobudo system. Matayoshi Kobudo is one of the oldest schools born in Okinawa, and as in Goju Ryu Karate, has influenced many other traditional styles spread around the world nowadays. Self-Defense: practical system that permits children and adults to apply simple and useful techniques to soft spots of an assailant when the need arises.

Does every Dojo offer the same as the Bushikan Dojo? No, the education obtained at the Bushikan Dojo is very different compared with most Dojos because Sanguinetti Sensei's unique vision, training, experience, and exposure acquired during his career living in different countries, including Okinawa, the birth place of Karate and Kobudo. Sanguinetti Sensei's teaching is not directed toward obtaining fast belts or medals and trophies to keep the students happy at the Dojo. His teaching is focused on exposing practitioners to the true martial arts where each student earns his/her own position at the Dojo because his/her hard work, dedication, discipline, and loyalty. He motivates everyone to do their best to be able to become the best that they can be.

What do we learn at the Bushikan Dojo? Members of the Bushikan Dojo are taught equally the importance of the physical aspect of the martial art or self-defense techniques as well as the philosophical part of the arts. Practitioners, in addition to the waza (techniques) will also learn the basics of Nihon go (Japanese language), rekishi (history of the martial arts), reigi (proper etiquette of the martial arts) among many other subjects. Students at the Bushikan Dojo are exposed to concepts rarely seen in the western world, concepts like the zookin gake. Zookin gake (top photo) is a traditional oriental custom where all the students; from white belt to black belt, without distinction of rank, line up one next to the other with a towel in their hands and at unison all push their towels across the Dojo floor cleaning the entire training area. The meaning is far away from being just a cleaning procedure; it is a daily routine to remind the practitioner to maintain a humble heart without egos regardless of their rank or seniority at the Dojo.

At the Bushikan Dojo students will be constantly reminded to exercise the concept of respect. With time that respect showed to Sensei (instructors), Senpai (seniors), and Doshi (classmates) during their time at the Bushikan Dojo, will become a natural concept in their lives outside the Dojo, making our students much better citizens.

Do I have to practice all the M.A. taught at the Bushikan Dojo? No, practitioners can decide what martial arts they want to practice at the Dojo. Children will be able to join Kobudo only under the approval of Sanguinetti Sensei.

Is my son/daughter too young to practice Karate? At the Bushikan Dojo we receive children from 3 years old if they are ready to follow commands and maintain focus in a structured group class. Each child is different and Sanguinetti Sensei will be happy to asses your child to determine if he/she is ready or if it will be necessary to wait a bit longer before he/she begins training.

Will my child become aggressive if he/she practices Karate? Many parents are concerned of that possibility mainly because the wrong message and image that 'action films' are portraying nowadays. Sanguinetti Sensei takes his role very seriously as an educator and is very strict in his constant reinforcement to children and adults to never misuse or play with the self-defense techniques learned at the Bushikan Dojo. Parents and teachers of the children at their schools are able to notice their behavior in this manner soon after they begin their training.

As an adult, am I too old to begin practicing the M.A.? Age should not be an issue to stop anyone from starting to practice the martial arts. Sanguinetti Sensei not only encourages adults to obtain the benefits of the practice, but also he tailors the classes for them to be able to have a progressive and smooth transition at the beginning.

I have a physical limitation, can I practice the M.A.? Unless it is a severe limitation, it should not be a problem to practice the martial arts. Sanguinetti Sensei shapes the training of practitioners with physical impediments to be able to train by working around their limitations.

I am overweight, can I practice the M.A.? Yes, actually starting the martial arts will be the perfect way to lose weight. Sanguinetti Sensei guides and supervises the training closely of beginners with weight problems for them to be able to train according to their conditions and have a constant and steady improvement.

Many adults related to the last three questions are concerned to join a Dojo and that adults already practicing will make them feel inferior or make fun of them. At the Bushikan Dojo as Sanguinetti Sensei always says, all the Dojo members become 'his family members' and every single member is there to support each other. As a result, every newcomer is always welcome and is helped to develop a good technique as well as good self-esteem.

One of the biggest differences between a gym and a Dojo is that in a gym attendees need to have a very strong discipline to be able to push themselves to have a good workout. In a Dojo like the Bushikan the energy flows between all the practitioners attending the class making it very easy for a beginner to get motivated to have a very good training.


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