Guidelines for Parents

It is important to remember that one of the key aspects of Karate is teaching the student about discipline and respect.
Children learn this best from observing how their parents behave.
The vast majority of parents are wonderful and supportive of both the club and their children's experiences, both good and bad.
Unfortunately, in recent times in all sports, most coaches and athletes have had to contend with an ever-increasing problem of aggressive parents in sport. Karate is no exception.
Please follow the following guidelines and rules.

It helps our children if parents lead by example by following the rules of Dojo Etiquette.

2. Avoid coaching children from the sidelines.
We understand you get excited about your child's performance, (even frustrated when they have difficulty).
The children's main focus should be enjoyment and achievement of personal goals.
We are letting them try for a reason. Continual correction discourages.

Best results are achieved by compliments and praise followed by quiet, private, constructive criticism. This is the best and easiest way to ensure the child has a good time free from pressure.

If you feel there is a need for some extra help:
Our instructors will be more than happy to give some extra help privately at the conclusion of the class, for those with a particular need. This avoids embarrassment for your child and helps them feel special with some extra attention from their instructor.

3. Gradings and Badges
We understand how anxious parents can be, many of the instructors are parents themselves with children doing Karate. We all want our children do well and be successful. Please don't second guess a decision by instructors about who has passed a grading or badge test and who has not. It is not acceptable to compare your child to another and question a grading decision accordingly.
Junior gradings are based on different criteria to full belt gradings; it takes into account the age and concentration levels of younger children. Your child must be under 8 years old to receive a junior grading, 8 years and one day is too old. Exceptions may be made for children with disabilities; requests can be made only through Shihan Rene.

4. Accept the Referees and or Sensei's decision.
We understand the excitement of your child performing. But it is important to set a good example please accept the referees decision. Remember Karate is also about humility and good sportsmanship. In life decisions don't always go our way.
Please always remember Karate is a not just a sport but a discipline teaching respectful behaviour, humility and good sportsmanship.
If you still feel you have a legitimate grievance. We all do from time to time, please.
We will listen if you:
a. Calm down and put the situation in perspective.
b. Take your grievance to the most senior instructor present.
c. Wait for an opportunity and speak to the instructor privately
d. At no time confront a junior instructor or assistant.
e. Approach your instructor calmly and explain the problem as you see it.
f. Accept the resolution.
g. Don't discuss the issue with other parents first.

Our instructor/coach will then approach the instructor, referee or tournament convener on your and Sports Karate Australia's behalf. (if appropriate).
This is the only acceptable way of handling these types of problems.

5. Discipline.
It is not acceptable for any parent to interfere with the discipline of the class at any time, this includes:
Please remember we are one of the few organisations that encourages parents to stay and watch classes, it is a privilege which can and will be revoked.
You can express concerns in the ways outlined below.

6. Expressing Concerns.
We want to encourage communication particularly with parents; we often learn valuable things about members needs in this way.
We expect that most people will like to discuss something from time to time; it is only natural in an organization the size of Sports Karate Australia that there will be differing opinions and valuable ideas.
If you have a concern, or you would like to communicate your feelings on any issue, it is best to air it straight away have a chat with your child's instructor after class.

Approaching your instructor
Please be sensitive to our Junior Instructors and direct issues to the senior instructor available.

1. Parents obeying the Dojo etiquette.
2. Parents addressing the instructors as Shihan Chief Instructor, Sensei (Black Belts including Juniors) and Senpai (Black and White Belts and Brown belt assistant Instructor)
3. Parents being seen to show respect to instructors, other parents and all students.
4. Parents getting in and helping to lay out the mats, unpacking etc.
5. Parents showing self-control and pursuing the correct procedure when and if any difficulties arise.
6. Parents refraining from forming cliques to disrupt and undermine the hierarchy of Karate.
7. Parents refraining from gossiping about instructors, other parents, or any student.
8. Parents showing a positive attitude.
9. Parents volunteering to help out - there are many opportunities for parents to be involved.
10. Become involved in the competitors club.
In conclusion, we look forward to maintaining a positive experience for both you and your children.
We strive to maintain a relationship with your family which is mutually respectful, with positive and beneficial communication for all concerned.
We thank you for your understanding and cooperation.

Shihan Rene Roggeveen