Princeton Shotokan Sankukai

Teaching traditional Shotokan Karate
in Central New Jersey and online everywhere

Princeton Shotokan Sankukai FAQs and Policies

Special Policies During the COVID-19 Pandemic

1. Drop-off procedures

Parents MUST accompany their child into the practice room and WAIT until their temperature is taken before leaving.

We will not allow anyone entrance to the building who is not accompanied by a parent.

Penalties will be charged for any parent who does not accompany their child to the room and wait until their temperature is taken. The first instance will incur a $20 penalty and will go up $10 for each subsequent occurrence.

The reason for this rule is that if you leave and your child runs a fever, we will have to cancel the entire class at once. If we have to cancel class because your child has a fever and you have already left, you will incur a $100 penalty

2. Masks and Six-Feet of Distance
Masks are to be worn at all times. There are no exceptions. This includes parents who come in to drop off their children. Six-feet of distance between everyone who enters the room must be maintained at all times (except for members of the same household).
3. Temperature taking

Parents consent to having their children’s temperature taken before every class.

4. Do not come to practice if you are sick.

Even if you just have the sniffles or a cough, we will ask you to leave.

5. No running or horseplay before class.

Parents, when you bring your child into the room, please ensure they are not running around and goofing off. Children found to be running around before class starts will be asked to attend virtual classes.

6. You agree to the above terms. You agree to participate at your own risk.

New waivers must be signed before we can allow in person classes to begin.


New Members and Trial Classes

All new members, regardless of past experience, are required to attend a private trial class before deciding whether to enroll. The trial class is $20 and will last 20 minutes. This is so the instructor can meet you and you can get a feel for karate (if new) or talk about your goals for the class (if you have prior experience).

There are no trial sessions for the group classes.

Due to liability reasons, we cannot allow non-enrolled students to come and watch a class.

I’m transferring from another dojo located out of town. Can I keep my belt?

First, Welcome! Even if you practiced Shotokan in another dojo, our curriculum and expectations may differ so we cannot make any guarantees about whether you can keep your current belt or ranking. You can speak to the sensei at your trial class to determine a plan of action.

Is there a minimum age or other requirements needed to join?

Karate is for everyone of all shapes and abilities! While we strive to be as inclusive as possible, the basic requirements for attending class include being able to stand at attention and sit seiza for a few seconds without moving or fidgeting.

We don’t have a minimum age, but young children need to be able to listen and follow directions, and stand and sit still when asked. If a child has trouble doing this, we may ask you to wait until he or she is older.

In general, the average age of our youngest students is four years old.

Practice Attitude

Everyone is expected come to practice with a positive attitude and be ready to try their best. Laziness in class isn’t tolerated, and the using the bathroom is not an excuse to leave the room if you don’t like an exercise. There are plenty of breaks for bathroom use and for getting a drink of water. If you have an injury let us know ahead of time, not in the middle of class.

Pick-up and drop-off (Please refer to the COVID-19 policies for special procedures)

If your child is late coming to class, please ensure they bow when entering the room, quietly put their stuff down, sit seiza, and bow again before entering the class. Parents are asked to be on time when picking up their child from practice. Everyone will be given a 10 minute grace period and a warning. If you are more than 10 minutes late, you are between 10-20 minutes late, you will be assessed a fee of $10. After that, the fee will increase by $5 for every 5 minutes.

Do you offer private lessons?

Yes! Private lessons can be purchased either as a 1-time lesson or a package of 5 at a discount. 5-package lessons must be used within 6 months. Inquire for details!


By joining the class, you understand that your child’s photograph may be taken for the promotional material. These photographs may be used on our website or other social media pages. No names will be used without permission. Photographs of individuals (not in a group setting) will also not be used without prior permission.



We require all members keep their credit card information on file with us. Rest assured that your information is secure! Your dues will be charged automatically.

Even if you wish to pay by cash or check, you still must have your card information on file. All of our billing is done in-house, so feel free to contact us anytime if you feel there is a billing discrepancy. It’s easy for us to look it up and settle disputes quickly.

Billing Cycle

Our billing cycle runs either every 4 weeks or every 12 weeks depending on your plan. This is to ensure you are receiving the instruction that you paid for. If we have to cancel class due to the holidays or other reason, then we will extend your payment period by however long we are closed.

Annual Fees

Annual membership fees are $50 per person. This is charged once a year on or around the anniversary you joined. Annual membership fees must be paid even when your account is frozen. Annual fees will be charged for as long as your account is active.

Entrance Fees

There is a one-time $100 fee for all new members

Membership Cancellation
We are not a contract school and you may cancel your membership at any time. WE REQUIRE A 2 WEEK NOTICE IN WRITING FOR ALL CANCELLATIONS. If your billing cycle falls within these two weeks, you will be charged for 4 more weeks of instruction.

If you rejoin the dojo at a later time, you will have to pay the entrance fee ($100) and the annual fee ($50) again. If you will be absent for more than 2 weeks and are planning to rejoin the class at a later time, it is recommended that you freeze your account instead of cancelling it.

Freeze Policy

A one-time $30 fee is assessed for all account freezes.

You may freeze your account for a minimum of 2 weeks, and a maximum of 1 year.

Your annual fees will be taken while your account is frozen.

Refund Policy

There are no refunds. If we have made a billing error, don’t hesitate to get in touch.


Referral discounts: Refer a friend and you and your friend get $50 off your next bill Family discounts: inquire for more details!


Exam policy

In a normal year, belt exams are offered in October, February, and June. All exams are taken with the permission of the instructor.

Keep in mind that there is no guarantee that a student will pass the exam, even if they have permission to take it. It is an exam, after all!

Criteria that we look for when giving permission to take and during the exam:

  1. The minimum number of attendance points.
  2. Practice attitude (see above)
  3. Degree of improvement Exam applications must be turned in by the deadline, or incur a late fee.

Exam results are given in the next class. If we don’t hear from you or you don’t come to class for 1 month after the exam, it’s an automatic fail.

In order to skip a rank, a student needs at least twice the number of required attendance points for the current exam. The examiners will decide whether you can skip a rank. Students may not decide they want to skip a rank, even if they have the minimum number of attendance points.

Exam Programs

It is the students’ responsibilities to know which exam they are going to take, and what the exam consists of. It is the parents’ responsibilities to make sure your children are aware of their current level and next exam requirements. For example, we will ask the examinee which kata they must perform before they do it. If they do not know, it will count as a zero.

We send out exam programs to all registered students periodically. Do not lose these. We are happy to answer any specific questions ahead of time, but will not answer questions like “what does my child need to know for the exam.”

What is “Kari-kyu?”

Kari-kyu roughly translates to temporary pass. Kari-kyu means that the examiners thought your exam had potential, but would like to see more improvement before awarding a full pass. Karikyu is not a full pass. If you get kari-kyu, you must retake the same exam the next cycle. You can however, change your belt and you will receive a certificate.

For example, if you take the exam for 8 kyu and receive kari 8 kyu (temporary 8 kyu), you must retake 8 kyu at your next exam. You may not try 7 kyu or kari 7 kyu. You may however wear the belt for 8 kyu (in the dojo only).

What is a “dojo-kyu”?

Our dojo-kyus consist of the ranks of pre-kyu, 12 kyu, 11 kyu.

We have found that there is too much of a gap between someone with no experience and the first official kyu grading. We want to acknowledge all the hard work and improvement everyone makes on the way to the official levels by having you take exams to change your belt color!

This system is unique to Princeton Shotokan.

Exam Sequence and Practice Requirements:

Exam Sequence and Practice Requirements

Exam Sequence and Attendance Requirements


  • Kyū rankings: color belts
  • Dan rankings: black belts
  • AI: Assistant Instructor (Assist with teaching duties) AE: Assistant Examiner (Assist with exam duties) Clinic: Practical examiner test
  • I: Full Instructor
  • E: Full Examiner

Other notes:

  1. For your first exam, consult with the instructor
  2. If you have 5, 4, or 3 kyū, you are eligible to take the AI-D exam. However, you must have over 40 attendance points (not 27) and a 2 black belt practices (not 1).
  3. Attendance points are calculated from your last exam
  4.  Sparring and Black belt practices also count toward the overall attendance points.
  5. From the Clinic exam through Sandan, you are called a “pre-official.”
  6. From I-D and up, you are called “sensei”

The above policies are subject to change at any time and without notification (rev. 8/31/21)
[email protected]


Please download and fill out each form. Bring completed forms to class with you.

General waiver and informed consent
Credit Card Recurring Authorization Form
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