Q: What is kindergarten Karate?

A:This is a special class just for 4 to 6 year olds. They will learn some basic karate moves in a fun way suitable for the younger member. There are badges to earn to show you are making progress, and when the student has obtained all the badges and reaches at least 6 years old they can come to the main class and see if they want to join in. Please look at this page for full information What is Shotokan Tiger Cub Karate ?

Q: Beginning Karate

A: The best way to find out if Karate is right for you is- Have a go! Simply turn up at one of our training sessions and introduce yourself to the instructors they will help you settle in straight away.You don’t need a Karate suit (gi) a pair of shorts or track suit bottoms and a t-shirt are fine. We train barefoot so you can join in a session with the absolute minimum of equipment.Your first three sessions are completely free, giving you the opportunity to decide if Karate is the right sport for you.If younger children are nervous or unsure mum and dad can watch from the sidelines for reassurance or better still join in the session themselves! We pride ourselves on our family atmosphere, and many family groups train together at our dojos. Although the environment of the dojo may seem unfamiliar our instructors will make you feel at home and you will soon begin to absorb the focused discipline and special atmosphere, which makes training in a Karate dojo such a unique and exciting experience.Some beginners sessions are held away from the main body of the class to ensure beginners are not distracted by the senior grades training, and that the all important first basics of Karate are taught effectively in a small group or one to-one setting. Once the basics are grasped beginners join the main body of the class and train with the senior grades  seeing where you are heading always makes the journey easier!

Beginners can download the membership form here final membership form karate

Q: Are your Instructors Qualified?

A: All our instructors hold an instructors certificate issued by our clubs governing body. You can rest assured that all our instructors have formal training in teaching karate as well as being expert practioners in their own right. All RSKC instructors are fully DBS vetted and certified.Profiles of individual RSKC instructors are shown elsewhere on this website

Q: Is your Club inclusive?

A: We believe Karate is for everyone, regardless of race, religion, gender or physical ability. The code of the dojo insists all Karateka regardless of age and experience are treated with respect at all times. Bullying is not permitted, neither is ‘macho’ behaviour. Karate is a personal journey we undertake together, supporting and helping our fellow Karateka in our dojo to achieve their full potential as we strive to achieve ours.

Q: A Typical Lesson

A: Every session is different however the following will always be practiced to a greater or lesser extent.

Warm Up: every session starts with stretching and warming up exercises. Karate is a physical activity and a warm up is essential too minimise the risk of injuries from sprains and pulled muscles.

KIHON: Basics -the class practices the essential basic techniques of Karate punches, kicks and blocks. Starting slowly to develop technique, speed and power are added as the class progresses. Every grade has its own set of basic techniques which must be mastered before further progress is made.

KATA: Are a set of linked techniques used to demonstrate the students proficiency and understanding of Karate. Essentially a fight without an opponent the techniques must be executed correctly, in the correct sequence with the correct combination of speed, power and control. Mental attitude and focus are also required to bring life and meaning to the techniques. Again each grade has its own Kata which must be learnt and mastered by the student.

KUMITE: Fighting. Our club follows the traditional method of teaching fighting techniques. Students must first demonstrate self discipline and control under the constraints of five attack and one attack techniques before semi-free and free fighting training is practiced. Self discipline control and restraint during all fighting exercises and within club competitions is emphasised at all times.Our instructors may develop lessons from the basic elements described above to include pad work, self defence, weapons training, as well as demonstration and competition techniques. Whilst sessions can be physically demanding they are never boring!

Q: Is Karate safe?

A: Injuries in the dojo are extremely rare-this is because emphasis is placed on control and respect for ones training partner. Government statistics show that injuries in martial arts ocurr less frequently and are less serious than those occurring in team sports such as Football and Rugby. Karate is a martial art however and physical contact is expected between participants, and accidents can occassionally happen. All RSKC members are expected to train with due consideration for their own safety and the safety of other members of the club. Qualified First Aiders are present at every training session.

Q: What is Shotokan Karate?

A: Shotokan Karate is one of the original styles of modern karate. Its founder is Gichin Funakoshi. Karate was first made public in Okinawa by Gichin Funakoshi in 1902, before then it was always practised in secret. Based on traditional Okinawan fighting techniques, whose own ancestry dates back to early Chinese Martial arts, Shotokan emphasises technique, stance and power to deliver fast, hard techniques capable of ending a confrontation with a single blow. Shotokan kata are taken from both the Shorei-ryu and Shorin-ryu style classifications.

Q: What Are the Benefits of Karate?

A: As well as being an excellent form of physical exercise and method of keeping fit, Karate offers unique benefits to the practioner development of mind, attitude and spirit are as important as physical prowess. Self confidence, perseverance and the will to keep going -the indefatigable spirit of the Karateka, along with a continuous striving for perfection of both technique and attitude  all of these are among the many valuable lessons that Karate teaches. Outside the dojo these lessons develop a can do attitude towards the challenges of everyday life, be it exams at school or beginning a new project at work. This emphasis on personal development and self confidence makes Karate a great activity for children and teenagers.

Q: Is Karate an effective method of Self Defence?

A: Karate has evolved from a time and place where unarmed combat against a trained and well armed opponent was a real possibility in everyday life. Some of the techniques used in Karate are lethal, others will cripple or maim an opponent. However, it takes years of uncompromising training and practice to become an expert in self defence we would not claim that a few lessons with us will provide that level of expertise. Our philosophy is that of our art’s founding father confrontation and violence are to be avoided at all times by the practitioner of Karate. What we do know is that training in Karate will provide a level of self awareness and confidence which will assist in the identification and avoidance of threatening situations, as well as a basic grounding in effective techniques which will stop an assault quickly and permanently should confrontation be unavoidable. We stress that Karate is a self- defence of last resort and that members of the RSKC act within the law at all times.

Q: How long will it take me to get a Black Belt?

A: Progression through the grades of Karate is dependant on the drive and motivation of the individual practioner. However provide the required level of training is maintained and full commitment and effort is displayed during training sessions, most students manage to reach the required standard to take a grading through the kyu grades every three to four months. We have a programme of pre-grading training sessions before every grading to ensure students are performing at the highest possible standard before their examination. 10th Kyu  White Belt, 9th Kyu- Orange Belt, 8th Kyu  Red Belt, 7th Kyu Yellow Belt, 6th Kyu  Green Belt, 5th Kyu  Purple Belt, 4th Kyu  Purple Belt/ white stripe, 3rd Kyu  Brown Belt, 2nd Kyu -Brown Belt/one white stripe, 1st Kyu Brown Belt /two white stripes. Progression from 1st Kyu to Dan Grade. Black belt cannot be undertaken within six months of obtaining 1st Kyu and is at the discretion of the Chief Instructor- in practice most students realise they need 12 -18 months of training at 1st Kyu before they have attained the necessary standard to make the attempt for their Black Belt.We never push students to grade who are unready and we emphasise that Karate is a journey, not a race every student must make the journey at their own pace. All gradings are carried out by an external examiner from our Governing body to ensure that the club’s high standards are maintained.In practice, with commitment, perseverance and dedication a student could expect to obtain their first Black Belt in four years after beginning Karate.

Q: Are you affiliated to a recognised organisation?

A: Our governing body is the KUGB the Karate Union of Great Britain one of the oldest and well respected Karate Governing Organisations. Our training and traditions are directly linked to the founding fathers of modern karate through our affiliation to the KUGB. As well as administering our licences and insurance, the KUGB provide examiners for gradings  often high ranking and well respected Karateka of many years experience. The KUGB also provide special training sessions and master classes again run by senior instructors from the organisation. The KUGB runs an annual summer school where in depth training and techniques are provided to all grades from clubs around the country.Further to this the KUGB organises competitions and national championships as well as coaching national and international squads and individuals at the highest levels of the sport. The KUGB licence can be completed and paid for online at https://kugb.me/

Q: Can I compete in Karate?

A: The club recognises that formal competition provides a powerful incentive for many students, and is essential in building confidence, attitude and fighting spirit.The club runs small in house  competitions in both Kumite (fighting) and Kata (forms) throughout the year. All members are encouraged to participate, with competitions arranged to accommodate all ages and abilities including white belts!Further to this the club has a proud tradition of competing at regional and national level again club members are encouraged to join the Club squad and compete whenever possible. Individuals with definite aptitude and skill receive additional coaching to ensure they excel in competition.

Q: What will it cost?

A: Our prices have been updated for 2020 to reflect the reduced capacity and higher overheads we have due to covid 19. We are completely transparent with regards to our pricing. Karate does not require huge expenditure on equipment. Our training fees cover the costs of hiring the venue . All our instructors are currently giving their time as volunteers and are not paid. Training Fees are £6 per session.  Monthly discounts and Family discounts are currently suspended until we can return to normal mixed age classes .

Licence Fees

You must have a licence to practice Karate. Licences issued by the KUGB cost £27.00 per year for Adults and £24 for Children under 16. Your license not only provides third party insurance cover whilst training, but is also essential should you wish to grade. You may not grade without a current license. In addition to this you will require a valid license to participate in specialist training sessions run by the Governing body, as well as external competitions and events. The KUGB licence can be completed and paid for online at https://kugb.me/

Grading Fees

Grading fees are set by the KUGB and cover the training session held by the examiner before the grading itself (you are also being graded during this training session!). Current fees are £27.00 for KYU gradings.  This includes your new belt, kyu grade certificate and training time.


A karate suit (gi) is essential. The club can sell the club badge to place on your gi, so you can purchase a gi from anywhere so long as its all white and karate style.  The Club has a selection of good quality second hand suits available for a £5 donation which may make economic sense if you are undecided after your initial lessons, sizes and availability are limited though. Mitts are essential for Kumite. We use standard (no velcro) white lightweight sparring mitts in both training and competition these cost £10.00 and may available from the club. (Chief Instructors tip a dojo full of white mitts all look the same, please make sure yours are clearly marked with your name!!). We recommend a gumshield for Kumite -costs £3 to £5 for a basic shield available from good sports shops. Students may wish to have a custom fitted shield made by their dentist, costs vary but £50+ is typical. Male students are recommended to invest in a groin protector for Kumite, costs £6.00 available from the club. Female students are recommended to invest in a chest protector for Kumite- costs £20.00 available from the club. Experience has taught us that the initial outlay to commence training after the first three lessons is less than £50.00 (suit and license fee.) Equipment for Kumite can be purchased after the initial grading to orange belt (Gum shields make nice Christmas stocking fillers!)A water bottle and a sports bag/carry all to transport your kit are then all that is required to participate in Karate.

Please note that prices for equipment and suites may vary from these published prices as stock prices do change. Always check the price you will pay when ordering.


Q: I used to do Karate -can I come back?

A: The RSKC welcomes Karateka of any age and ability. We have welcomed back students who have taken breaks in their training from a few months to over ten years! Our Chief instructor will assess you during your first sessions to establish your grade progress back through the rankings is normally rapid as old skills are remembered and fitness returns! We particularly welcome Karateka from other styles who wish to return to training . Experience has shown us that contributions from other styles enhance and develop our own understanding and practice of Karate. For those older karateka who may be returning after an extended break in training  remember the passage of time and that your joints are not as young as they used to be warm up properly and don’t overdo it during your first sessions back in training!

Q: Is it all Kicking and Punching?

A: We pride ourselves at the RSKC that we have created a club with a genuine family atmosphere. Parents and children train together. We celebrate our members birthday’s after training once a month. Our committee organises social events such as bowling or trips to the pantomime for the juniors and nights out or sit down meals for the seniors. We have a fine tradition of reaching out to the local community – we are familiar faces at summer fairs and fetes where we put on demonstrations, and we have held sponsored events in support of local charities such as Rossendale Hospice. Our instructors have offered courses in Personal Protection and Awareness as well as taster sessions in Karate to local school children as after school activities.We have a dedicated and dynamic committee who promote the club and support our member’s best interests including a junior committee member who ensures the youngest voices in the club are heard! Parents and relatives of our students play an active role in supporting their children at the club and in its activities, and their concerns and suggestions for the clubs progress are addressed in an open forum Annual General Meeting. Our pride in our achievements in Karate is matched equally by our pride in the way our club as embraced not only its students but also the wider community in which we train.

Q: This website doesn’t answer all my questions!

A: Then please contact us to discuss any questions regarding our club and its activities that may remain.email or better still, why not visit us at one of our training sessions meet our instructors and meet the members and ask your questions directly. You are always welcome and we will be happy to advise you!

Q: Haslingden Primary School Dojo Where are you in Haslingden A: Our Dojo in Haslingden is at Haslingden Primary school on East Bank Avenue opposite the swimming baths. Parking is at the front of school. Training takes place in the sports hall. Use the side door near the car park that takes you past the changing rooms  and then into the hall.
Q: All Saints High School Dojo  Where are you in Rawtenstall. A:  We have now moved our training for both Sundays and Tuesdays to Haslingden Primary School.
Q: AB&D Centre Bacup Where are you in Bacup? A: This is next to the Postoffice in Central Bacup up Burnley RoadParking is available opposite the building. Training takes place on the second floor in the Dance studio. Entrance is at the side. If the door is locked,  press the bell pushes at the top.  
Q: Rossendale Dojo Show me a map with the Dojo locations. A:
Q: Can I practice Karate? A: If you aged between 6 and 65 years (or older!), and in reasonable health you can certainly practice Karate. If you have any special needs please advise our instructors we pride ourselves on tailoring training to the individual to ensure that our students always train within their envelope attaining their full potential, safely and at their own pace
Q: What is your email address I want to send you an email. Can you give me your email address. A: No problem, you can email us using

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