Martial Arts Instructor News and Articles

John Graden

John Graden

Executive Director

John Graden led the martial arts into the modern era by creating the first professional association, trade journal & instructors certification program.

While promoting free seminars can be good for creating awareness and traffic, it’s even better if you can get paid for it. Here is an example of how I got a local non-profit to sponsor a COBRA-Defense Children’s Abduction Prevention (CAP) seminar that I taught at James Theros’ Level 10 Martial Arts in Palm Harbor, FL.

I’m not including the names of the contact and non-profit.

Five days out from the seminar, I received a letter in the mail from a local non-profit organization. I went to their website and submitted this email on Monday for a Saturday seminar. 

Email 1- From Me to Them

Subject: Letter from JSP re: Anti-Bully and Child Abduction Prevention Workshop

Hi Mike,

I received a letter today from you guys with an insert for the Non-Profit. That is commendable. 

I am looking for an organization that would partner with me to teach families how to deal with bullies and how to prevent child abduction.

The idea is simple. 

  1. I set a date for a 2 hour Anti-Bully and Child Abduction Prevention Workshop seminar. 
  2. The company agrees to purchase 50 tickets @$20 each. The company and I promote the event to our platforms. I also promote it to the Tampa Bay media. 

For $1,000, the company enjoys the goodwill of providing invaluable training for Tampa Bay families and whatever additional business the exposure brings.

I am teaching one this Saturday at 9am in Palm Harbor. If you’d like to bring your family, just let me know. You can find out about the event here. 

Anti-Bully and Child Abduction Prevention Workshop

Thanks,

 John Graden

Executive Director

USASelfDefense.com

Email 2-Their response

Hi John,

The Non-Profit is fund raising to assist the less fortunate in our community such as house repairs, providing food, hygiene products to the homeless and so forth. Your endeavor is also commendable. At this time we would like to donate funds for 5 tickets hoping this will help you reach your goal. If you know of anyone who may need our services please send them our way and also if you know of people that would like to donate to our cause have them reach out to me.

Email 3-My response

Sent: Wednesday, August 07, 2019 11:00 AM

To: Michael T

Subject: RE: Letter from JSP re: Anti-Bully and Child Abduction Prevention Workshop

Good morning Mike,

Thanks so much for your response and donation. I think I know the perfect family for your 5 ticket donation.

I can also help with the Non-Profit with social media, press releases, etc…

Email 4-Their response

Hi John,

I just talked to my partner and we will go 10 tickets now, let me know how to get you the funds. Credit Non-Profit and thanks for any media coverage.

The week after the event, they sent me a check for $290. Not bad for a couple of emails.

This kind of sponsorship really has no limits in size or scope. Have you had events sponsored? Would you like to learn more about this? Just comment below.

Learn More About COBRA-Defense

Notice Tyson’s hand is by his face, not his hip.

His chin is down instead of up.

His shoulder is up instead of pulled back.

His body is sideways to his opponent instead of squared off.

His legs are under his body not spread apart like he was riding a horse.

With this kind of form, he would fail his orange belt exam in most schools. 

How does that make any sense?

Sensei Tyson?

If Mike Tyson or a world champion kickboxer came to your school to teach your black belts. What do you think he would work on? Double punches, square blocks, and keeping your chin up?

I’m pretty sure he would emphasize head movement, how to snap your punches and a defense that does NOT include pulling your punch back to your hip.

I’m sure the students would learn advanced applications to adjust for different fighters. Notice I said advanced applications, not advanced strikes.

When you focus on application, you can apply that to almost any technique.

For instance, if the drill is about how to fight a taller fighter, the answer is more about footwork to stay on the outside until you can secure quick access. My brothers are 6′ 3″ and 6′ 4″ so I know something about fighting a taller opponent.

Drills that teach that application do not require complexity. They require simplicity.

The more complex a skill becomes, the less chance it can be used. Have you ever seen a double punch? Only in kata and here:

If you eliminated all kata and traditional skills, you could devote that time to drills and conditioning that would give your students a true advantage in sparring or self-defense.

Imagine teaching fewer skills that are easy to teach and learn than traditional skills and kata.

You could spend more time on the application of those skills rather than stepping up and down the classroom and holding blocks and punches out in the air, which leaves you wide open for a counterattack.

Rather than spending student’s time with the complexity and frustration of spending years perfecting the bad habits of pulling their hand back to their hip, keeping their chin up, aiming and holding a punch in the air, and blocking with power while stepping forward, your retention will improve. Your student quality will improve. Your curriculum consistency will improve.

This is the core of our white to black belt curriculum Empower Kickboxing.

It’s an old saying, but true. “Less is best.”

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1 Comment

  1. Paul Mormando

    I would love to learn how to implement this as well Great idea!!!!