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Kyokushin Karate

Kyokushin kaikan is a style of stand-up, full contact karate, founded in 1964 by master, Masutatsu Oyama.

Kyokushinkai is Japanese for “the society of the ultimate truth”. Kyokushin is rooted in a philosophy of self-improvement, discipline and hard training. It is known as the 'strongest karate'.

Kyokushin has influenced many of the “Full-Contact” schools of karate, emphasizing realistic combat, physical toughness, and practicality in its training curriculum. The Knockdown karate competition system pioneered by Kyokushin has been adopted by many different karate styles and organizations.

Over the years many other styles have developed, from their Kyokushin ancestry.


The meaning of "OSU'
"OSU" comes from the "oshi shinobu" which means to "persevere while being pushed" it is the most used word in Kyokushin and used in a number of ways but mostly "to acknowledge the situation". The instructor may ask a question that requires a "yes" you should say "osu" he may also ask a question that required a "no" again you should answer with "osu". Confused? It will be come very obvious when you are in a class.

"Osu"; means patience, respect and appreciation. In order to develop a strong body and strong spirit it is necessary to undergo rigorous training.
This is very demanding, because you must push yourself to what you believe to be your limit, and you want to stop; to give up. When you reach this point you must fight yourself and your weakness and you must win. To do this you must learn to persevere, but above all you must learn to be patient. This is "Osu"!

The reason you subject yourself to hard training is because you care about yourself, and to care about yourself is to respect yourself. This self respect evolves and expands to become respect for your instructor and fellow students. When you enter the dojo you bow and say "Osu" . This means you respect your dojo and the time you spend training there. This feeling of respect is "Osu"!

During training you push yourself as hard as possible because you respect yourself. When you finish you bow to your insructor and fellow students and say "Osu" once more. You do this out of appreciation. This feeling of appreciation is "Osu".

Thus "Osu" is a very important word in Kyokushin Karate because it signifies patience, respect and appreciation. That is why we always use the word "Osu"; to remind ourselves of these indespensable qualities.


1. When entering or leaving the Dojo, stand in the doorway, face the front, bow and say “OSU“. This represents a mark or respect for the Dojo and the people in it.
2. If late for training, kneel at the side of the class towards the back, facing away in SEIZA (formal kneeling position). When the instructor acknowledges you, first of all you stand up, turn to the front. Furthermore you bow and in conclusion say “OSU” then “Shitsurei Shimasu” (excuse me for disturbing). Then quickly join the back of the class.
3. Do not eat, drink, smoke or chew gum in the Dojo.
4. Always move quickly in class when instructed to do something. DO NOT STROLL.
5. Do not practise KUMITE unless instructed to do so.
6. Do not break rank for any reason, without asking permission from the instructor. If you must leave your position, do not walk between the instructor and the class. Walk behind the row you are in to either side and proceed from there.
7. Always address the instructor and seniors by their proper title (SEMPAI, SENSEI, SHIHAN) inside the Dojo. Acknowledge them with a loud “OSU” when they speak to you.
8. Your training should be a serious matter. Do not laugh, giggle, talk or cause disruption during the class. You should always stand in FUDO DACHI when awaiting the next command.
9. All directions, by instructor, should be obeyed in the Dojo, without question. You will not be asked to do anything that your instructor has not done him/herself already. If you cannot keep up, do the best you can.
10. Keep fingernails and toenails short and clean.
11. During the break: No sitting on chairs, leaning against the wall or lying down. Do some training rather than waste time.
12. It is everyone’s responsibility to ensure the Dojo is clean, tidy and safe at all times.
13. Your karate-gi must be neat and washed clean at all times. Your belt should NEVER be washed, only aired dry. It symbolically contains the spirit of your hard training, and under no circumstances are male karatekas allowed to wear t-shirts or other clothing underneath their karate-gi.
14. Don’t wear jewellery or watches during training.

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