About John Graden & The Martial Arts Teachers Association

Few have had more impact on the martial arts school business than John Graden.

John Graden rocked the martial arts business with his 1-2-3 combo of his book, Black Belt Management, creating the industries’ first professional association NAPMA, and then upgrading that to the Martial Arts Teachers’ Association (MATA). MA Success editor John Corcoran first called him a “visionary” in 1995. Martial Arts World magazine dubbed him, The Teacher of Teachers.  

Mr. Graden’s leadership was recognized in many mainstream media outlets including a cover story on the Wall Street Journal, documentaries on A&E Network, and as a guest on the Dr. Oz Show.

Mr. Graden is Not a Paper Tiger

For those of you who think he is all about the business, his WAKO World Championships with the USA Team and legacy as a Joe Lewis protege might change your mind. In fact, Black Belt magazine did a cover story on Mr. Graden and his brother Jim’s relationship with the late legend. The story was called, “Passing the Torch” and it was Joe Lewis saying that when he leaves he was passing the torch to the Graden’s.

Mr. Graden has authored most of the best selling books on how to run a successful martial arts school in addition to many other subjects.

John Graden’s Career Timeline

2016 – Author, Coaching Sensei (in production)

2015 – Author, Who Killed Walt Bone?

2014 – Founder, Empower Kickboxing

2012 – Founder, Empower Boxing

2011 – Author, The Art of Marketing Without Marketing

2008 – Author, The Impostor Syndrome

2004 – Founder, Martial Arts Teachers’ Association

2003 – Author, The Truth About the Martial Arts Business

1998 – Author, How to Open and Operate a Successful Martial Arts School

1996 – Founder, The American Council on Martial Arts (ACMA)

1995 – Founder – Martial Arts Professional Magazine

1993 – Founder – National Association of Professional Martial Artists

1987 – Host and Producer of the USA Karate TV show in Tampa Bay, FL

1986 – Opened USA Karate 1985 – Fighter, Coach, and Official for many World Champion WAKO USA Teams

Cover Story Wall Street Journal

Building Bridges

Cover Story with Joe Lewis

Named to 10 Most Influential Leaders