Health & Safety Policy

a) The Executive Committee of Shitokai Scotland considers the promotion of Health & Safety as a necessary pursuit of instructors and members at every level within the Association.

b) It is therefore this Association’s policy to carry out all necessary and reasonable actions to prevent personal injury to members and visitors alike as well as prevent damage to property. Protection from all foreseeable hazards will be the aim, insofar as any members and the general public are likely to come into contact with the Association and its activities.

c) In particular Shitokai Scotland recognises a responsibility:

i) to provide and maintain a safe and healthy training environment.

ii) to provide adequately trained instructors, who are capable, so far as is reasonably practical to enable members to practise safely.

iii) to encourage the use of appropriate protective equipment when necessary.

iv) to maintain a continuing interest in all health and safety matters as far as they may affect the safe operation of the Association’s activities.

d) Members have a duty to assist in the operation of this policy:

i) by encouraging safe practices.

ii) by using protective equipment when required.

iii) by reporting any incidents that have lead or have the potential to lead to injury or damage.

iv) by adhering to all Shitokai Scotland procedures set up to ensure a safe environment on their behalf.

v) by assisting in full with any internal investigation pertaining to any incident, the purpose of which is to introduce measures to prevent recurrence.

2   Responsibilities

It shall be the responsibility of each and every member to ensure that they have familiarised themselves with the contents of this policy and shall include:

a) General

Familiarising themselves with the training premises in use at the time, noting:

i) all relevant fire exit routes.

ii) proximity of first aid facilities (all Shitokai Scotland Instructors should carry a personal first aid kit).

iii) Fire extinguishers. However please note that in general these should only be used by trained personnel ie not Shitokai Scotland members.

iv) location of toilets and changing rooms.

v) rules and regulations posted on notice boards of premises in use.

vi) location of telephones for use in an emergency.

vii) location of nearest casualty hospital.
All members and visitors to the training premises shall comply with the Shitokai Scotland Health & Safety Policy and any instruction or advice which may be given in their best interest by the person responsible for the training premises or any Association member legitimately so entitled.

b) Members

It shall be the responsibility of each and every member and/or visitor whilst using the training premises:

i) to consider all aspects of Health & Safety with regard to themselves and of any other person or persons who may be affected by his or her actions.

ii) to co-operate fully, with regard to any duty requirement imposed upon any Shitokai Scotland instructor or any other legitimate persons, in accordance with the requirements of any statutory provisions, to enable that duty or requirement to be satisfied, so far as is necessary.

iii) to familiarise themselves with Shitokai Scotland’s Health & Safety policy at all times.

c) Instructors / Persons in Charge

It shall be the responsibility of each instructor or person in charge, to:

i) to familiarise themselves with the Shitokai Scotland Health & Safety policy and be prepared to enforce it at al times.

ii) monitor all suggestions or complaints from members or other instructors pertaining to Health & Safety matters and to take positive action where deemed practicable.

iii) to ensure that a record is maintained of all incidents/injuries in a club ‘accident book’. This ‘accident book will require to be produced as and when required when asked by any member of the Shitokai Scotland Executive Committee or any other persons with a legitimate reason for being allowed sight of same.

iv) be directly responsible for the running of all clubs under their control.

v) ensure adequate provision of all members, paying particular attention to the monitoring needs of children, inexperienced members, vulnerable adults and assistant instructors.

vi) take any action necessary to ensure that legal safety obligations have been carried out by the owners/authority in charge of the premises eg unobstructed fire routes, working fire door mechanisms etc.

vii) ensure that any training equipment or safety equipment is in a safe, clean and serviceable condition.

viii) ensure that any potential instructor is given access to suitable training courses and materials as required in order to satisfy the coaching criteria as laid down from time to time by the Scottish Karate Governing Body and/or Sport Scotland.

ix) ensure that only authorised persons are placed in a position of supervision of others.

x) introduce control measures as deemed necessary in order to control any hazards.

xi) ensure that all persons acting on their behalf comply with this and any other statutory Health & Safety requirement.

xii) ensure that all instructors/assistant instructors have suitable professional indemnity insurance and comply with any directives which may be laid down by the insurers from time to time.

d) Executive Committee

It shall be the duty of the Executive Committee Officers to:

i) advise the instructors/members of any required standards of Health & Safety.

ii) have representation on any meetings arranged to discuss matters of Health & Safety.

iii) provide and maintain all Health & Safety documentation pertaining to the Association as a whole. The responsibility for maintaining same documentation at club level will be the sole responsibility of the individual club instructors.

iv) endeavour to provide adequate opportunity to provide information and training courses relevant to education on matters of Health & Safety for all members/instructors.

v) seek advice when deemed necessary from Sport Scotland or other bodies able to provide informed instruction and/or guidance.

3   Personal Safety Equipment

There is a wide range of personal safety equipment available for the health and safety of not only the wearer, but also others engaged in activities with them. Certain types of hand mitts, groin guards etc. are not suitable and the club instructor should advise students which items are approved for use in dojo training situations and competitions as these may not necessarily be the same.

Personal safety equipment includes the following;

i) Competition mitts. These should be of WKF approved quality or equal and must not have a covered thumb. These items are compulsory for Kumite competition. (However for dojo training, cotton mitts with a minimum thickness of padding of 1cm may be allowed at the instructors discretion.

ii) Gum-shields. These should be individually fitted. This is a compulsory item for Kumite competition; however their use is also advised during dojo sparring sessions.

iii) Chest protector (ladies). This is not a compulsory item; however use is advised during Kumite competition.

iv) Groin guard. This is a compulsory item for Kumite competition; however use is also advised during dojo sparring sessions. These should be of an approved type and should not simply be a jock-strap with a loose plastic cup insert.

v) Shin protector. This is not a compulsory item and where used should be of an approved soft type ie not hard football shin pads.

vi) Forearm protector/instep protector. These are not compulsory items and where used should be of an approved soft type. NB instep protectors are prohibited for use in WKF competition events.

Safety equipment should be worn during all activities where accidental injury could result. Such equipment will normally be specified by national or international regulations eg WKF Rules of Competition.

For personal hygiene and efficiency during kumite matches, borrowing and lending of equipment is not to be encouraged. All members should purchase their own personal safety equipment items.

Any refusal or non-compliance with any reasonable request to wear adequate safety equipment must result in the exclusion of the individual concerned from any activity requiring such protection, for the health and safety of themselves and others.

4   First Aid

Under the Health &Safety Regulations 1981, pemises must have first aid provision.

At least one first aid box should be kept on each of the premises used or occupied by any of the Association’s member clubs. Where applicable a qualified first aider or responsible person shall be expected to maintain the box. In addition each club instructor will carry a small first aid kit to all training sessions.

A ‘responsible’ or ‘appointed person’ is someone who is authorised or expected to take charge of a serious situation (eg to call an ambulance) if there is a serious illness or injury. The person will act in the absence of the trained or qualified first aider, or where a qualified first aider is not required.

A qualified first aider is a person who must have undertaken training and obtained qualifications (usually via St John Ambulance or Red Cross). The certificate is valid for 3 years.

All Shitokai Scotland instructors must have completed an approved first aid course as required by the Scottish Karate Governing Body. This will require to be renewed regularly as required by the SKGB and is also a pre-requisite for award of an SKGB Coaches Licence.

A record (Accident Book) must be maintained in conjunction with the first aid box. In addition each instructor must maintain a suitable accident book as a requirement of Shitokai Scotland’s insurance broker.

Members should be made aware of any activity that may be considered to be potentially dangerous and for associated exclusions to their personal or professional indemnity cover as a result of such practices.

5   First Aid Special Precautions

i) In any situation requiring first aid certain precautions should be taken in order to reduce the risk of transmitting infections such as AIDS and Hepatitis.

ii) First aiders should always cover any exposed cuts or abrasions they may have with a waterproof dressing before treating any casualty whether or not any infection is suspected.

iii) First aiders should also ensure that their hands are washed both prior to and following the application of any dressings.

iv) Whenever spilled blood or other body fluids require to be mopped up, disposable plastic gloves should always be worn and paper towels used. These items should then be placed in plastic bags and safely disposed of, preferably by burning. Clothing may be cleaned in an ordinary washing machine using the hot cycle. The AIDS virus is killed by household bleach and the area in which any spills have occurred should be disinfected using one part bleach diluted with ten parts water. Caution should be exercised as bleach is corrosive and can be harmful to the skin.

v) If direct contact with another persons blood or other body fluids occur, the area should be washed as soon as possible using ordinary soap and water. Clean cold tap water should be used if the lips, mouth, tongue, eyes or broken skin are affected and medical advice sought.

vi) First aiders who may be called upon to give mouth to mouth resuscitation should be aware that mouthpieces are available for this procedure for specially trained persons.. Mouth to mouth resuscitation should not be withheld in an emergency if a mouthpiece is not available. No case of infection has been reported from any part of the world as a result of giving mouth to mouth resuscitation.

6   Competition Safety

In addition to the requirements listed elsewhere in this Health & Safety Policy, it shall be the duty of all competitors and officials/organisers to observe the following requirements.

i) Medical: At all major competitions other than club level, a medical doctor must be in attendance in addition to first aiders and equipment.

ii) Floors: Mats (preferably) or sprung timber floors (where mats are not available) for competitions which involve foot sweeps, throws (only on matted areas) and takedowns.

iii) Licences: Every competitor must produce a valid licence to any official with a legitimate right to request sight of same in order to validate member to member insurance cover.

iv) Referees: Shall endeavour to ensure that the safety of the fighters are their first priority and must stop any kumite competition at the first sign of any distress or any inability to defend. Experienced referees should be dispersed around competition areas where more than one area is being used simultaneously, to guarantee the smooth running of the bouts and ensure adequate safety of the competitors and supervision of less experienced referees/judges.

v) Rules: All major competitions other than at club level, must be held under approved rules of the World Karate Federation (WKF) as amended from time to time.

7   Disciplinary Procedures

Failure to observe the rules and guidance as laid down in this Health & Safety Policy may lead to disciplinary action being taken by the Executive Committee.