As you begin searching for a martial arts school (whether for yourself or your child), one thing becomes evident very quickly: The choices can be overwhelming.
How do you know which school is right for you, and which ones may be a waste of money or a bad experience for your family?
All Martial Arts Schools Are Not Created Equal
Unfortunately, the simple fact is there is a wide range of quality when it comes to the Martial Arts training. You’ll find some schools that are literally top of the line with highly professional and expert instructors, and some are just the opposite.
Fortunately, there are some tell tale signs that can help you decide up front which type of school you’re looking at before you sign on the dotted line.
3 Things To Avoid When Choosing A Martial Arts School
1. Stay away from schools that let you buy belt levels. What is the point of advancement if you’re not learning? Will it really help your child’s self esteem if they know they haven’t really earned that belt? Ask up front if a school has requirements that must be met in order to move up to a new belt. If all you have to do is pay your fee, this is a school you want to avoid.
2. Stay away from schools with inflexible schedules. If an instructor tells you you’re “not allowed” to miss any classes you’re setting yourself up for trouble. Life is going to happen, and while we all want to be as regular in attendance as possible there will be times when missing a class is unavoidable.
3. Stay away from schools that don’t appear professional. This may sound nit picky, but you and/ or your child are going to be spending a lot of time in this school. If its not maintained, or not kept clean then the staff isn’t taking pride in their school. Take a good look at how the staff presents themselves. Do they look sloppy? If so its a good bet their instruction will be as well.
3 Things To Look FOR In A Martial Arts School
1. Look for a school that teaches more than martial arts. Martial Arts training has the potential to benefit you in so many ways. If your school is ONLY focused on memorizing choreographed moves or showy recitals it’s a wasted opportunity. Instead, find a school that strives to develop you physically, mentally AND emotionally. Only then are you getting all you can from your Martial Arts training.
2. Look for a school that teaches skills you can really use. Whether you’ve already settled on the Art you want to study or not, find a school that translates those teachings into real-world self defense skills. Admittedly some Arts lend themselves to this better than others, but if your training is only useful in the Dojo then, again, you’re not getting all you can from your Martial Arts training.
3. Look for instructors that are passionate, professional, and really know their stuff. Believe it or not it is possible to become an instructor in some systems with very minimal training. Especially if a school is not associated with any larger organization. Your Sensei is going to have tremendous influence over you or your child. Make sure he or she really knows the Art they are teaching. Where did they train? For how long? Who trained them? All of these are crucial questions to ask.
Why are we the best school for you?
1. You’ll learn how to defend yourself in a way that makes sense from day 1. From the very first lesson you or your child will begin learning the 12 most common attacks likely to be thrown at good people by dangerous aggressors. Developed after interviews with law enforcement, security personnel and emergency room doctors these techniques are further tailored to age appropriate levels.
You’ll learn defenses against bullying, kidnapping, physical and verbal assaults. And we guarantee you’ll always enjoy your classes!
2. You’ll learn an intelligent Martial Art that develops you in all 3 areas of the human dynamic:
- Mentality – how you think
- Emotionally – how you feel, react and interact
- Physically – how you look, your condition, how you project and protect
Here at Elements of Self Defense we teach the modern version of ancient Ninjustu. The Ninja have a long tradition of adapting their Art to evolving circumstances. The modern version was brought to America by Stephen K. Hayes, who was the first American ever allowed to learn this secret craft. Mr. Hayes adapted those teaching to the realities of modern America.
Our Head Instructor, Dustin Huber, trains directly with Mr. Hayes in Dayton, Ohio every month and is currently a 1st degree black belt. Every instructor here is passionate, knowledgeable and highly professional.
3. You’ll develop discipline that matters. It may be fun to stand in line and punch or kick really high, but how does that apply to 99% of life? Here instead you will learn:
- How to perceive real threats from fake ones
- How to use restraint when needed
- How to be actively self-aware
- Principles that clearly apply to your everyday life
4. You’ll develop focus that matters. Single-minded focus is great but multi-faceted focus is better! Here you’ll learn:
- How to focus on specialized tasks outside of self defense
- How to widen your focus to gain greater situational awareness
- How to shift and adapt your focus to changing environments
5. You’ll develop fitness that matters. Not all cardio and stamina is the same. What good is 100 kicks per minute if I have to crawl behind a car, jump over a wall, or run to safety?
Here at Elements of Self Defense you’ll develop a functional level of fitness that prepares you for a nearly infinite number of scenarios. Your confidence will skyrocket as you come to know your conditioning is not specific to one area.