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Home > Miscellaneous > Blood Borner Pathogen Policy

Contributed by Dennis Hooker

To protect the dojo family against disease, the Dojo has adopted the following policy intended to minimize the risk of transmission of HIV, Hepatitis-B and other blood borne pathogens during training activities. Current available medical evidence suggests that the risk of transmission of HIV during the type of contact that occurs in Aikido training is extremely slight. Organizations such as the NCAA, the National Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Sports Medicine, and the U.S. Olympic Committee have concluded that persons affected with blood-borne pathogens, particularly HIV, should not be barred from participating in contact sports. Certain federal and state anti-discrimination laws may also prohibit such a ban. These organizations have also concluded that the already slight risk of transmission of HIV and other blood-borne pathogen diseases can be reduced further by the adoption of the Center for Disease Control-recommended "Universal Precautions". This Dojo will observe these "Universal Precautions". Generally this means that instructors and persons training in this dojo shall treat all exposed body fluids as if they were infected. Specifically, the following measures will be observed at all times.


  1. If you have any open cuts or sores, you must clean them with a suitable antiseptic and cover them securely with a leakproof dressing before coming onto the mat. Make sure that the cut or sore stay covered while you are training. If your hands or feet have broken skin, suitable gloves or tabi may be worn to cover these areas. If you notice that someone else has an open cut or sore remind them of their obligation before training with that person.

  2. If a bleeding wound, even a minor one, occurs during training, the person bleeding shall immediately stop training and leave the mat until the bleeding stops and the wound is securely covered. Immediate measures shall be taken to stop the bleeding. If the person needs assistance with this then each person assisting shall wear a pair of latex gloves (which are available in the dojo first aid kit). Hands shall be washed with soap and hot water immediately after gloves are removed. All used gloves, bloody dressings and rags, etc shall be placed in a leakproof plastic bag provided for that purpose. All contaminated items should be disposed of carefully. Minor bloodstains on Gi should be treated with a disinfectant provided for this purpose. If there are major blood stains the Gi shall be removed as soon as possible, placed into a leakproof container and handled carefully until it can be laundered or disposed of.

  3. If you come into contact with the blood of another, you shall immediately stop training, leave the training area and wash the exposed area thoroughly with soap and hot water before returning.

  4. If blood is present on the mat, the training partner of the person bleeding shall insure that no one inadvertently comes into contact with the blood, while the bleeding person attends to his injury (in accordance with #2, above). The blood should be cleaned up as soon as possible by wiping the exposed surface with a disinfectant solution provided for this purpose. Each person assisting with this task shall put on a pair of latex gloves and shall wash their hands with soap and hot water immediately after the gloves are removed. It is preferable however that the person bleeding clean their own blood. Bloody rags and used gloves shall be disposed of as set out in Paragraph 2.


Finally there are other disease and illnesses aside from those transmitted through blood. You are reminded that you are responsible for not only your own health and safety but the health and safety of others with whom you train. If you know or suspect that you have any illness or disease which might infect others refrain from training until you are no longer a risk to others. This self-defense and consideration of yourself and your fellow Budoka is your responsibility and part of your training. It is embodied in the spirit of the Budo we study.

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