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Today someone at work asked me to start teacing them martial arts. His name was Steve and he's asked me to teach him. He has 6 months before he goes into the Navy. I told him I didnt want a 6 month student and that I wanted to teach people long term. He was offended, but I cant help the way I feel.
Someone once told me that a student appears before his teacher when the time is right. I cant agree with that statement. The way these McDojos have tried to make a pretty penny on the arts has made the system way different from the past. People can find a teacher without an application process. They can start learning a martial art without ever having actually talked to the instructor to see if they're right for them.
I have always sought out good teachers when Ive wanted to learn martial arts. I call or e-mail the instructor and ask tons of questions:
1) What organizations are you a part of?
2) What Dan rank are you and when did you receive this?
3) What is the lineage of your style all the way to you?
4) How can I contact your instructor?
5) Is your style homegrown? If so who is the Grandmaster of this style and what styles make up this art?
6) How do your daily calsses ran?
7) Are there contracts?
8) What promotion system do you run?
9) What type of promotions Time based, skill based, class based?
10) etc etc etc
Now, I ask a lot more questions than that, those are just off the top of my head. I ask the same from my students.
1) Why do you want to learn?
2) How long do you plan to study?
3) Will you be taking other arts?
4) What is your past in the arts?
5) What is your goal with martial arts?
6) etc etc etc
I want as much selectivity in my students as I do my teacher.
Why is it that people have gone away from this??? ****Money****
It's all about the hardcore green dollar.
I think people have gone away from the real reason we love the art, and ruined it for the american dollar. Dont get me wrong. I think its great that we can make money doing something we love. I just think it's become a little too rampant to the point where we arent selective about who we teach or who teaches us.
We have these McDojos that are promoting black belts in two years. Two years of private lessons I can remotely understand (if the student has prior experience) , but not two years of a regular class from a beginner.
Ive seen black belts in other styles promoted to black belt in a new style in a months period. (Made me walk out of that school by the way).
Earn your black belt from our 4 video tape series!!!
What is that about?
Sorry about the tangents. Just free writing. I just see sooo much garbage that it's hard to sort through to find the jewels.
My Kajukenbo instructor taught at a small rec center in the middle of nowhere.
My Jujitsu instructor taught out of his garage.
My Aikido instructor was teaching from a small $600 a month place.
Etc etc. I cant say I havent been wrong. I learned Tae Kwon Do from a McDojo that made me sigh a contract at age 14.
I took Isshin Ryu Karate and saw that black belt from Gojo Ryu get promoted in a month to Black Belt. You can justify this all you want, but it's not right.