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What should I expect at my first class?


It’s going to be abit noisy when you get there as everyone gets ready to start training, when the class starts discipline will kick in and everyone will calm down. 


If you have any questions. One of our instructor team will be there to answer them.

Once class gets going, you can expect to be challenged. We will have you taking part with the rest of the students, both adults and children, and will give you the space to practice and understand.  Our instructor team will be there to help guide you through. We will try to go at your pace and make sure you are challenged, but learning. 


You will feel welcomed and will soon share the sense of belonging the rest of us enjoy. 

What should I wear?

Just loose-fitting clothes - tracksuit bottoms or leggings and a tshirt. We train barefoot so no shoes/trainers or socks (unless you have a foot condition). 

Water is also recommended. 

What will I be doing?

All our classes are different and we cover a large range of topics. If we know we have a new starter, we will ensure that we cover our basic techniques such as punches, kicks and blocks and possibly some Kata. 

What on earth is Kata?

Kata is a set routine of techniques that depict a battle against one or more person. It’s practiced alone and over and over again until it becomes second nature. Each move in Kata, from the smallest step to the biggest strike, all has meaning and it’s this meaning we try and focus on in classes. 

What are gradings and do I have to do them?

Grading is a way of testing you on the content you have learnt. The period to grade is approx. every three months based on training twice a week. If you pass you will receive your next belt. This is the path to Black Belt, we do not insist on you grading after the first one, the choice is yours.

How do I keep in touch?

We update our website on a regular basis as well as a Facebook page (search Black Paw Martial Arts). Our Facebook page is our main source of club information and I strongly recommend anyone involved in the club follows it. 

Are you insured?

Yes we are. We have good public liability insurance, each student is insured separately and our Instructors have specific instructor insurance. All of our Instructors have up-to date criminal record checks completed. All of these documents are at every class, and available to view at any time. 

Will I get hurt?

There is always a chance with every part of Karate that you may receive an injury. However every care is taken to make sure that you are as safe as possible. There are a few people get winded and a couple of bust noses but nothing that doesn’t build character. 

Will this stop my kids getting bullied?

Unlikely. It may help your children in the event that they are physically attacked, but that type of skill will only come with time so is no quick fix. What we can help with, almost immediately, is confidence. Giving your children the confidence to say “no” and to be able to avoid physical confrontation in the first place. 

What benefits will I get from training/learning karate at BPMA?

Confidence, fitness, self protection/defence, discipline, respect and traditional karate (not to be mistaken with "sport" karate taught elsewhere locally). We have a great bunch of members and we have a great social side to the club. You have to remember the benefits listed can be gained but ONLY if you put the time and effort into your training - you get out of karate what you put into it, just like anything in life.