The Koei-Kan dojo located in Utica, MI has over 1,000 sq.ft. of matted training area. Training area in covered in traditional tatami mats(three by six foot of rice straw covered in vinyl). The dojo also has two walls lined with mirrors which triples the students learning capacity. The facility includes locker rooms with showers for men and women.
The word Dojo literally translates as “The Place” (Jo) where one follows and seeks “The Way” (Do). In this case, the Dojo is the place where one follows the way of Karate. The Dojo may be any area in which Karate is practiced.
“Respect is earned, courtesy is demanded” is common phase that is heard and echoed in the attitude of Koei-Kan dojo. It is important that each student understands that the dojo is serious place where disciple, order and etiquette is a must. This creates an environment where teaching and learning occur more readily and the likelihood of injury is reduced.
The diagram below show a typical layout of traditional martial arts dojo. One area importance is the Shomen or main wall. In plain English one may call this the front of the dojo. This area is typically decorated with a picture of the system founder or important figure in the art. It may also be decorated with a section of thick rope(Shimenawa), a hanging scroll, a drum, a bonsai tree, a katana sword or flower arrangement. During many formal bowing procedures karateka bow facing the shomen wall to show respect for the founder, the system and the dojo itself.
The diagram below shows how students line up(according to rank) during formal classes. This true in almost all traditional karate systems.