In this special report we’ll share why half of the martial arts programs most parents sign their kids up for fail to deliver. In addition, we’ll share how to avoid common mistakes.

All parents explain to the school they visit that they want their children to do martial arts for such reasons as improving confidence or improving concentration. All school representatives say their school addresses these areas, but many parents don’t specifically ask how the school accomplishes what they claim.

Even if a school answers the “how” it is difficult for most parents to evaluate the answers they receive.

Here are some important questions to ask when considering a school:

1. Do you separate kids into classes based on their age and how do you break up the students into groups if you do that? (Make sure that from the age of 3 to 9 there are at least 3 groups. Younger kids can also get intimidated by the older kids.)

2. What is the average size of a classroom an instructor teaches? (The answers can immediately indicate if you should sign your child for a school and program or not. More instructors are needed for the younger children. For example, the 3 years old class needs one instructor for up to 4 or 5 student while the 9 years old class can have one instructor for 8 or 9 students.

3. What style of martial arts do you teach and what is the curriculum based upon? (You should also find out who/what is more important. Asking other people is very important as well. Children should be exposed to kicks, punches, grappling, and also falling techniques so they know how to fall safely. They also need to learn weapons (like sword, pole). Weapons can help children with control as it is always hard to control something else. However, teaching younger children about the knife attack or knife defence is not recommended and it is dangerous. Children like to show off sometimes and you don’t want your child to take a knife to school and ask his friend to attack him with the knife so he can show how to defend it. Please note that a good martial arts style for your child is the one that can develop all physical aspects of your child and not just kicks or punches.)

4. Show me the curriculum for your school. (A martial arts curriculum should be age and ability specific. Younger kids need more gross motor skills drills. As they get older kids need more techniques such as fitness and fighting strategies. Ask the instructor to explain the curriculum to you. If you see their kids’ curriculum is very close to the adult curriculum then you should be wary of signing up with a school. Adult curriculum are tiring, dangerous and designed for the real fight. For example, there is no need for a child to learn how to strike someone’s Adam’s apple on the neck.)

5. Is the instructor truly listening to you and your child’s needs or is he spending more time talking about himself? Is he talking about his and his school’s achievements or he is talking about how he can help your child and why he can do it?

6. Tell me about your experience and how long you have been teaching. (An instructor and school may have lots of achievements because he is a talented martial artist but he may not have the skills required to teach children. Being a world champion doesn’t automatically qualify anyone to teach martial arts… especially to children. A school may have lots of winning trophies because the school took its talented students to martial arts tournaments. But your child is different and may not be talented when it comes to martial arts.)

7. Can I speak with several parents and teachers here? (This will help you determine how skilled the school is and how satisfied the parents are.)

8. Observe how clean and organized the school is. (Disciplined instructors keep everything clean. Schools should always look clean. The floor should be vacuumed daily. First aid kits should be available. Remember, your child won’t be disciplined if the instructor is not disciplined himself.)

9. How capable are the instructors? (Instructors should act professionally and use positive language. They need to be assertive and motivating at the same time. Their class should be fun but not funny. They should control the class easily. They should always start on time and finish on time. They should have up to date first aid qualifications.)

10. How does the attitude of the students appear? (Observing the students’ attitude can indicate the kind of student the school produces. If the students are arrogant then perhaps you need to look at another school. If the students are humble, focused, polite, disciplined this is a good sign.)

11. Are instructors leaving a class to speak with you? (If the instructor leaves the class that he is teaching to answer your inquiry avoid that instructor. His focus should only be upon his students when he is actively teaching. An instructor should never leave his class for a new inquiry/sale. It is OK if he comes to you for less than 15 Seconds (during the water break) just to tell you that he is busy teaching and ask for your phone number so he can call you later. But he should NEVER leave his class while he is teaching.)

Are All Martial Arts Programs the Same?

For the general public, all martial arts look usually the same as people often look at the martial arts moves of the club. But martial arts schools are different. They can be categorised in this way:

1) Schools that focus on tournament: These schools concentrate on techniques that can earn points in tournaments. They tend to favour athletes who can win. Other students are the second or third priority, depending on their athletic ability.

2) Schools that focus on real street fighting only. These schools are not suitable for children as a) kids should not be exposed to some of dangerous techniques. And b) These schools are more for adults and not children.

3) Schools that concentrate on their style of martial arts. This means everyone should do the exact curriculum or Kata/pattern. The goal of these schools is to serve their martial arts style and not to serve their students. If, for example, part of the curriculum is to jump and kick in the air, then everyone should do that including mothers who had four kids. It is unreal to expect a woman who delivered four kids and her body (spine, back, bladder,..) has become weaker and unstable to jump and kick like a 23 years old man.

4) Schools that focus on individuals and their values, like: Self Discipline, Control, Focus, Perseverance, …The mission of these schools is to serve their members and make sure students personality and martial arts techniques develop at the same time. These schools don’t favour any individual. They may even choose a different teaching method for some individuals just to serve them better. At these schools, instructors’ expectation can be different for different students, according to students’ ability and mental readiness. As these schools value personal development as much as martial arts techniques, hence their lessons are much more lasting than other schools.

Special Invitation & FREE Introductory Session

We would like to invite you and your child to a free introductory session so that you can learn more about Family Defence and our breakthrough Martial Arts+ program. During the introductory session we’d like to learn more about your goals for your child and explain how our program works. We’ll also share some experiences other parents have had when their child participated in the program. You’ll have an opportunity to ask any questions. To book your free introductory session simply pick up the phone and call us at 0297447055.