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Code of Conduct and Standards of Behavior

 

The United States Naginata Federation (USNF) By-laws state that
“the purpose of this organization is to promote the study of the martial art of Naginata in the United States, and in doing so, uphold the spirit
of Budo and its ideals.” As such, the Federation, through the teaching
of Naginata, provides a forum not only for the advancement of members’ technical skills and understanding of this martial art, but
also for the self-development and personal cultivation of its members
to enable them to become contributing citizens promoting peace and harmony in society.

In addition, the USNF as an affiliate of the International Naginata Federation (INF) strives for its members to follow its Principles of Instruction 1 :

1AJNF Naginata Handbook, “Principles of Instruction” English translation, p.  2014.

Through correct Naginata instruction, practitioners will be encouraged to develop their technical skills, cultivate their minds, enhance their vitality, nurture their strength, preserve traditional Japanese culture embodied within the art of Naginata, maintain discipline, show courtesy and respect to others, always act in good faith, and strive to become useful member[s] of society promoting peace and prosperity among all people.

In this way, the USNF seeks to nurture members of good character, courtesy and respect.

While USNF membership is defined, in part by the USNF By-laws as those who have “satisfied all their current fiscal obligations to the Federation,” it is important that members fully appreciate their roles within and obligations to the USNF upon acceptance into the Federation.

Membership in the USNF is a voluntary decision, and as such, individuals should recognize that as members of the federation, they are expected (to the best of their abilities) to abide by the guidelines outlined in this Code of Conduct and Standards of Behavior.

USNF members are representatives of the Federation. Their actions and behavior are a reflection of their sensei, their dojo/club, their regional federation and the USNF. Just as the USNF is responsible for promoting the principles and ideals of Naginata, so too are its members responsible for exemplifying these principles, both in their teaching and their conduct inside and outside the dojo.

The USNF By-laws provides guidelines for what constitutes USNF membership and USNF membership in good standing. For a full list of these qualifications please reference sections 2.1 and 4.0. of the USNF By-laws (under “for members” menu).

1)  In addition to the stipulations outlined in the USNF By-laws, USNF members shall be considered members in good standing if they:

    1. Demonstrate  a respectful attitude and behavior toward sensei, seniors (senpai) and members both inside and outside of the dojo
    2. Maintain and exemplify the principles of Naginata and the spirit of Budo in teaching, training, and conduct both in the United States and abroad
    3. Follow proper etiquette in training, competition and interactions with sensei and other members as representatives of the Federation and Naginata
    4. Refrain from activities that could damage the reputation of the Federation.

2.  While the USNF does not presume to dictate how its members conduct themselves in their personal lives, it would be prudent for members to recognize behaviors or actions that may jeopardize one’s membership status2 :

    1. Participation in criminal and/or unethical activities;
    2. Any conduct which constitutes abuse, harassment or sexual harassment of any other member;
    3. Flagrant disregard for the physical safety of practitioners either through direct action (Including training while intoxicated, which could be injurious to USNF’s reputation as well as physically to others), inaction, or incorrect instruction, as it is the responsibility of all members to safeguard the health and safety of practitioners through the proper teaching and execution of Naginata technique, maintenance of the dojo and related equipment, and compliance with training protocols;
    4. Demonstration of an egregious attitude of disrespect or contempt toward other members, sensei or martial arts organizations (Including USNF), either through action, or verbal or written commentary on blogs, social media,3 etc.;
    5. Willful destruction or misuse of USNF property, USNF logo, or other symbolic artifacts belonging to the Federation with malicious intent or mockery.

In summary, the USNF Standards of Behavior not only seeks to provide its members with a framework for their actions in conjunction with the USNF and other martial arts organizations, but also aims to provide a foundation from which its members can through their years of training, cultivate a strong code of moral ethics for the benefit of themselves and the Naginata community.
     

2This is by no means an exhaustive list of all possible infractions that may impact one’s membership status. There may be other actions that may be found to violate, if not the letter, then the spirit of these standards.

3While we encourage our members to share their experiences and express themselves in a number of fora, we would advise members to use good judgment when posting comments and sharing material on social media, online forums, and personal/public blogs. The changing nature of internet privacy can make it difficult to limit the unintentional distribution of one’s personal comments. It is not uncommon for posted commentary or photographs, which may seem innocuous or made out of context, to be misconstrued or their intent misinterpreted by others. Such misunderstandings could lead to unforeseen political complications or compromise the reputation of the USNF and/or its members.