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Home Training – Your Private Dojo

Your home dojo can be as simple or elaborate as you want it to be. One thing you have to consider is how much space you have available to train.


Some people are blessed with an entire room they can utilize as a training area. An extra bedroom, an unused family room, or part of a garage, are excellent for your home dojo.

If you don’t have the luxury of any of these you can set up a temporary training area in almost any part of your house. You’ll need about 16 square feet. Roughly, if you can step off 4 good front stances to the front and 2 good front stances to either side, you probably have enough room to practice any kata. This will also give you enough room to stretch and warm up.


The most important piece of equipment you will need is you. Many people get very excited when they begin karate training. They set up a place to train. They fill it with tons of expensive equipment. They practice for a while then burn out and have a very nice training area that goes to waste. So the most important piece of training equipment you need is your willingness and dedication to training.


To train you need someone watching you to make sure you are performing your techniques correctly. In your private dojo that person is you. Mirrors are the most cost effective way to see yourself as you practice. You can usually find mirrors at a decent price at any thrift store. The long door mounted ones usually work best. If you can, place one on each wall so you can see yourself in any direction you turn. If your space is limited, try to practice in front of the mirror on your dresser.

Video Recorders

Almost everyone has a camcorder these days. Most cell phones come equipped with one. If you’d like, try filming your kata. Nothing beats being able to sit down and critique yourself then make the needed corrections.


You can kick and punch air all day long and it will never give you the real feeling of actually striking something solid. This is important in order for you to experience how your body will react when you make solid contact. It will help with your balance, timing, body shifting, and reaction. Once again, thrift stores often get heavy bags. If you don’t want to wait you can try such resources as Craig’s List.

There are many types of bags to choose from. The standard hang-from-the-ceiling-bag may not be practical for your needs or space. There are heavy bags that are free standing and come on a base that may be filled with water or sand. There are also some that come with a stand that will fit in the corner of the room.


Mats are nice. You really don’t need them but there is a certain amount of comfort that comes with them when you stretch. A yoga may will work just fine for that. If you want to cover a large area you can purchase jigsaw type mats at almost any department or sporting goods store.

There is a ton of equipment you can get for your dojo. You can be as extreme or as basic as you want or need to be. The important thing is to TRAIN. The more you train, the better you will become .

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