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Old 08-30-2002, 11:09 AM   #1
Veers
 
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Dojo: Shinkikan Aikikai Aikido of Corpus Christi
Location: Corpus Christi, Texas
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 169
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Average $$$ per pop

How much do you guys pay for lessons? As in, if you pay by lesson, how much; and if you pay by month/quarter, how much? Just wondering so I can get an idea of how much this'll cost me (aside from the outfit, another $50)
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Old 08-30-2002, 11:20 AM   #2
Wayne
Dojo: Aikido of Madison
Location: Madison, WI
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 37
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For us, it is $60 per month for unlimited training. Most people attend 2 - 3 sessions per week although there are ~ 10 sessions scheduled each week. The student rate is $45 per month.
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Old 08-30-2002, 11:53 AM   #3
guest1234
Join Date: Jun 2000
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The best way is to go to the dojos you are considering, and ask their fees. It can vary too much, even within a city: one place I lived one dojo charged $80 (or was it $85) per month, another four blocks away charged $25. Just like Gis--some will cost 25, some 50, some 150+.

While you ask about fees, ask about annual dues as well, and if there is a contract required.

If cost is an important factor, consider checking out local community centers, junior colleges and universities, etc for clubs, as they are often less expensive (less overhead), ask at local MA supply places as some new dojos may not advertise (to keep down dues/fees)...and you can also ask the sensei at the high priced places if he'd consider working with you in paying less, but maybe helping out around the dojo/office etc, or even just a reduced fee (the place I trained with dues in the 80's often waived dues for students with financial problems).

I think a lot of dojo's put their fees in the handout they give to prospective students who drop by to watch a class...it's not an uncommon question.
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Old 08-30-2002, 12:43 PM   #4
Marc Kupper
Dojo: Aikido of Diablo Valley / ASU
Location: Walnut Creek, California
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 88
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Aikiweb did a survey on this very question. See http://www.aikiweb.com/polls/results.html?poll_id=121

Overall, if cost is a big issue for you then check out the adult education classes offered by most cities and try your local junior colleges.

Do your footwork and visit as many dojos as practical to both get prices and to watch classes. If you can't afford them then tell them that and also let them know you do want to try aikido. They may be able to point you to local clubs, people operating out of their garage, etc. that would be cheaper.
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Old 08-30-2002, 12:54 PM   #5
Veers
 
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Dojo: Shinkikan Aikikai Aikido of Corpus Christi
Location: Corpus Christi, Texas
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 169
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Thanks for the feedback and suggestion.

Well, I am going to go to the dojos and check them out and ask about prices. Also, there are no aikido dojos in the phone book (had to use this site to find the 3 in town here) so I don't tihnk I have that much selection. Anyway, I talked on the phone with an instructor today for 20 miuntes, but he said he didn't discuss money over the phone. From what he told me, I think he's my best bet even though I haven't talked to the others yet.

The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.
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Old 08-30-2002, 01:13 PM   #6
guest1234
Join Date: Jun 2000
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Don't let the refusal to discuss fees over the phone discourage you, many probably say that because they want you to come see and/or try a class, not just phone around for the best price---cost often has nothing to do with quality, nor either of those with how you will feel about a place.
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Old 08-30-2002, 07:50 PM   #7
Pretoriano
 
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Dojo: Aikido Santa Fe
Location: Aragua Venezuela
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 130
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Dojo Caracas, Venezuela Aikikai, $21.5 choose between 4 clases a day plus one for children Mon. Frid. Sat 9-12.

Pretorian
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Old 08-31-2002, 10:59 AM   #8
tedehara
 
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Dojo: Evanston Ki-Aikido
Location: Evanston IL
Join Date: Aug 2000
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We charge $20/month, which is ridiculously low for a major US city. However we only have one night of classes in Chicago. If we can find a few more students, we might be able to rent more time.

It is not practice that makes perfect, it is correct practice that makes perfect.
About Ki
About You
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Old 08-31-2002, 01:01 PM   #9
Nacho_mx
Dojo: Federación Mexicana de Aikido
Location: Mexico City
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 188
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Our dojo (In central Mexico City if someone wishes to visit us) charges $80 U.S.D. monthly. You can practice 5 days a week up to 2 daily one-hour classes. That comes to $2 U.S.D. per class...a bargain if you ask me. Daily fee for visitors is $10 U.S.D. and you can have 4 classes (2 in the morning, 2 in the evening).

Last edited by Nacho_mx : 08-31-2002 at 02:08 PM.
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Old 09-03-2002, 03:00 AM   #10
JJF
 
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Dojo: Vestfyn Aikikai Denmark
Location: Vissenbjerg
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 780
Denmark
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About 27$ a month. Evening classes monday through thursday and sunday. Plus the occasionally morning practice (not scheduled - decided on a day-to-day basis)

- Jørgen Jakob Friis

Inspiration - Aspiration - Perspiration
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Old 09-03-2002, 05:30 AM   #11
ian
 
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Dojo: University of Ulster, Coleriane
Location: Northern Ireland
Join Date: Oct 2000
Posts: 1,654
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We operate in a non-profit organisation, and since my club is affiliated with the students union at a university, we pay no hall fees. Thus, for any members of the sports centre we pay exactly nothing per session. Non-members have to pay a temporary membership of £2 per session. On top of this is a £5 annual insurance charge and a £3 charge for grading booklets. Gradings are free.

I'd hate to see aikido go the way of many karate clubs, with individuals setting up clubs purely to make money. Apart from full time instructors, I believe instructors or clubs should gain no financial reward from the teaching. The cost of training in some dojos can deter younger or less well paid students.

Ian

---understanding aikido is understanding the training method---
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Old 09-03-2002, 05:35 AM   #12
ian
 
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Dojo: University of Ulster, Coleriane
Location: Northern Ireland
Join Date: Oct 2000
Posts: 1,654
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P.S. why don't instructors want to talk about money over the phone? Does this suggest they would waive the charge for a new student? Unlikely! - I expect they hope to encourage a student to join, and they then feel obliged to pay the high fees. Money is a consideration when you want to train, because if you can't afford it you can't afford it. I would not trust anyone who is unwilling to discuss fees; why withhold information?

Maybe it is different in the US Colleen, but in the UK there is usually not much of a choice of dojos, so training isn't 'market driven' it is whatever is available.

Ian

Last edited by ian : 09-03-2002 at 05:38 AM.

---understanding aikido is understanding the training method---
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Old 09-03-2002, 07:15 AM   #13
Greg Jennings
Dojo: WPAFB JiuJitsu Group
Location: Springboro, OH
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 1,100
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I know folks get tired of me bringing this up but...

Our dojo charges nothing...period. No tuition, no grading fees, nada, nothing.

I generally give students completing tests a gift.

I know that this model doesn't fit every situation. It does, however, have a number of strengths and I highly recommend it.

Best Regards,

Greg Jennings
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Old 09-06-2002, 08:39 AM   #14
Choku Tsuki
 
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Dojo: Bond Street Dojo
Location: New York, New York
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Quote:
Ian Dodkins (ian) wrote:
P.S. why don't instructors want to talk about money over the phone?
My guess if the first criteria is $$$, then they can't be that serious so the instructor cuts bait.

--Chuck
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Old 09-06-2002, 08:59 AM   #15
opherdonchin
Dojo: Baltimore Aikido
Location: Baltimore
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 586
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Everyone who calls our dojo always asks about fees. I can't imagine calling a dojo and not asking what their fee is, and money certainly isn't a consideration for me in choosing a dojo. If I was talking to a sensei on the phone and asked about fees and the sensei didn't 'discuss money over the phone,' I would be distrustful and might (if I had other options that I liked) forego visiting the dojo.

Of course, much depends on how things are said.
Quote:
From what he told me, I think he's my best bet even though I haven't talked to the others yet.
I don't know what he told you, but this sounds suspicious, too. If it was me, and it isn't, I would definitely think twice before joining that dojo.

Opher

Yours in Aiki
Opher
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Old 09-06-2002, 02:28 PM   #16
Veers
 
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Dojo: Shinkikan Aikikai Aikido of Corpus Christi
Location: Corpus Christi, Texas
Join Date: Aug 2002
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Look, I don't know what his reasons were, he didn't tell me, and I'll be sure to ask him when I visit. Money is important to me because, after taxes and car insurance, I might not have enough given the job I hope to get. Therefore, it is a consideration for me. It is not the biggest, however; if he charges $40 and is a lousy teacher and another dojo is $70 and is a great teacher, I'll head over to the $70 one.
Quote:
opher wrote:
I don't know what he told you, but this sounds suspicious, too. If it was me, and it isn't, I would definitely think twice before joining that dojo.
Woah, down boy! Maybe I didn't elaborate enough... I didn't mean he smooth talked me or whatever, I meant he answered my questions, was civil, provides what I'm looking for in a dojo (mainly doesn't stress the spiritual side, but rather lets the class decide their path in that respect but is also ready to answer questions), and even though it really did strike me as odd that he wouldn't talk about money over the phone, that's hardly enough to turn me away.

The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.
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Old 09-07-2002, 12:53 AM   #17
pointy
Dojo: aikido of park slope
Location: brooklyn, ny USA
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 62
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Quote:
Greg Jennings wrote:
Our dojo charges nothing...period. No tuition, no grading fees, nada, nothing.
so how do you pay the rent? of course it'd be easier to not have to pay dues but there are certain realities like rent, phone bill, electric, etc..

wow, no dues. for me, some months it is a real challenge to come up with my dues...it must be nice.

fwiw, our dojo is $70/mo., $120/mo. for couples. and they have a reduced price if you pay for 6 months or a year at once.

i was interested in learning tai chi in my neighborhood (park slope, brooklyn). there is a school nearby so i called to ask about rates, among other things. they wanted $90/mo. for 2 classes per week. they also wanted a $90 "registration fee," which included a uniform - "a tee shirt." that quote is verbatim, people, and one expensive tee shirt! all i can say is, it's gotta be tough paying the bills being a MA teacher in today's world.
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Old 09-08-2002, 12:29 AM   #18
Bronson
 
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Dojo: Seiwa Dojo and Southside Dojo
Location: Battle Creek & Kalamazoo, MI
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 1,677
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My sensei's dojo charges $40/month for unlimited classes in three arts. If you want to take just the tai chi and chi gung it is $25/month. There are also family/group rates and student rates.

The dojo I teach at is $25/month unlimited classes in all arts (aikido, judo, okinawan karate, okinawan weapons, BJJ) except BJJ, they charge an additional $15/month). We operate as a non-profit organization. All the instructors volunteer their time and most still pay dues.

Bronson

"A pacifist is not really a pacifist if he is unable to make a choice between violence and non-violence. A true pacifist is able to kill or maim in the blink of an eye, but at the moment of impending destruction of the enemy he chooses non-violence."
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Old 09-08-2002, 01:44 AM   #19
Chris Li
 
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Dojo: Aikido Sangenkai
Location: Honolulu, Hawaii
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 3,079
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Quote:
evan sobel (pointy) wrote:
so how do you pay the rent? of course it'd be easier to not have to pay dues but there are certain realities like rent, phone bill, electric, etc..
IIRC, they have an unusual situation where they get the space for free.

In Japan (at least in the Tokyo area) very few people get actually paid for teaching. It's not unusual to be able to train with 7th and 8th dans (for example) for 10 or 15 dollars a month - that to cover the use fees at the facilities (usually a city or university gymnasium). Permanent private martial arts facilities are fairly rare in Japan because of the very high cost for space, and because there are very few professional martial arts instructors (relatively speaking) in Japan.

OTOH, the few places with permanent establishments (ie, Aikikai Hombu) run a little more because they have to pay the rent - an usually pay the teacher or teachers too, because anyone putting the (very large, in Japan) investment into a permanent facility is probably going to be doing if for a living. Aikikai Hombu runs around 80 dollars a month (depends on the exchange rate), which is pretty cheap considering that you can train 5 times a day. IIRC, Yoshinkan hombu was fairly similar, but they have (or had, last time I looked) a couple of different pricing structures.

Best,

Chris

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Old 09-08-2002, 07:37 AM   #20
rachmass
Dojo: Aikido of Cincinnati/Huron Valley Aikikai
Location: Somerset Michigan
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 794
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Hi all,

I am planning on charging $45 per month for three days of classes a week. Even with that, I am sure that I'll be paying a huge chunk out of my pocket every month for rent. The place I was scheduled to take this week just fell through! And all the places that I am looking at are $800 (or much more) or so per month for a 900 square foot space with a bathroom. Add to that utilities, and it is apparent that you have to have 20 members just to break even (and that is not counting the cost of insurance and mats!). I am not looking to open a dojo/club to make money, but I would hope not to have to be paying more than $200 out of pocket each month to do so.

My home dojo (where I will still be training) charges $85 per month for unlimited aikido practice (10 classes per week total offered).

all the best,

Rachel
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Old 09-08-2002, 07:38 AM   #21
JO
Dojo: Aikikai de l'Université Laval
Location: Sainte-Catherine-de-la-J.-C., Québec
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 292
Canada
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I just paid 387$ Canadian for a 9 month period, tax included. We have 3 2h classes a week. We are a university club and the prices are set by the university sports complex rather than by my instructor. Students at the university pay quite a bit less (not much more than half if I recall). Visitors, or those not showing up enough to pay for a period of several months can pay by the class, 5$ for a member of the sports complex, 9$ for non-members.

Jonathan Olson
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Old 09-08-2002, 09:12 AM   #22
Greg Jennings
Dojo: WPAFB JiuJitsu Group
Location: Springboro, OH
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 1,100
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Quote:
evan sobel (pointy) wrote:
so how do you pay the rent? of course it'd be easier to not have to pay dues but there are certain realities like rent, phone bill, electric, etc..

wow, no dues. for me, some months it is a real challenge to come up with my dues...it must be nice.
As Chris said, we have a situation where we have no rent or utilities. Our instructor and I do not get paid for teaching. Rather, we have, over the years, committed significant amounts of our own money to the dojo.

Recently, the membership, Myers Sensei and I abstaining, voted to take up voluntary donations for dojo upkeep. I think this is excellent, but I don't want anyone that wants to train deterred in the least by a set tuition.

While doing things non-profit is difficult, it has a number of advantages. One is that there is no pressure to tone down your training to accomodate the average, sedentary, person.

Best Regards,

Greg Jennings
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Old 09-08-2002, 06:24 PM   #23
Choku Tsuki
 
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Dojo: Bond Street Dojo
Location: New York, New York
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Quote:
Rachel Massey (rachmass) wrote:
I am planning on charging $45 per month for three days of classes a week....
To help with startup costs, offer a better deal for 6 months. Also if you are figuring on Zebra mats, see if each member of your core group will pitch in for one 2 meter x 1 meter mat.

Good luck,

Chuck
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Old 09-08-2002, 06:44 PM   #24
rachmass
Dojo: Aikido of Cincinnati/Huron Valley Aikikai
Location: Somerset Michigan
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 794
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Hi Chuck,

I bought 32 (granted, only 576 sqft) Swain mats while I was getting ready to take the space that just fell through. Now I have tons to pay off just on that expense. What do you think would be a better deal for six months? How much of a discount would you offer if you were in my position?

Also, I had been planning on taking a space between Ann Arbor and Toledo, as I have a good friend who practices in Toledo and she said she would help me out (also, we have routinely had folks come up from Toledo to train in Ann Arbor, but then say the drive is just too far). Now I don't think I should limit my search to this area, but surrounding areas heading towards Detroit as well. If anyone out there in the Detroit/Toledo area has a suggestion.....

Best,

Rachel
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Old 09-09-2002, 12:52 PM   #25
Choku Tsuki
 
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Dojo: Bond Street Dojo
Location: New York, New York
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Posts: 123
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Quote:
Rachel Massey (rachmass) wrote:
What do you think would be a better deal for six months? How much of a discount would you offer if you were in my position?

Rachel
I dunno. I like the psychology of it more than the money; everybody wins. Let's say six months for $216, a 20% savings? Consider a registration fee (but grandfather the regulars in). A deal for couples too perhaps. Maybe someone up in your federation/association will offer their services gratis for your opening celebration/seminar? A few bucks there wouldn't hurt.

Location, location, location. Where is your core? Make it easy for them to show up 'cuz you need them.

Everyone wants to help you get going and unfortunately money is what you need now. Now it's your turn to receive.

Good luck!

Chuck

Later, you can also offset cost by selling supplies. Kiyota Company has the best services and prices (but no web site; they'll send you a catalog):

Kiyota Company, Inc.

2326 N Charles St

Baltimore, MD 21218

1-800-783-2232
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