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.

Review your martial arts school insurance by asking yourself a few simple questions TODAY to protect your business in the New Year!

Are you launching any NEW PROGRAMS in the New Year? YES__ NO__

Discuss new programs such as Self-Defense Classes, After-School Programs or Day Camps with your insurance agent. If you have not offered the program in the past, make sure your current insurance will cover it!

Do you need to perform any EQUIPMENT Maintenance? YES__ NO__

Make sure all pads, safety gear, and weapons equipment are in good condition. Keeping your school’s equipment is in top condition helps you look better to new prospective students and prevents insurance claims!

Is your location ready for WINTER WEATHER? YES__ NO__

Are you responsible for clearing ice and snow or is your landlord? If you don’t know the answer, ask now! Make sure your school, as well as, the sidewalk and parking lot are safe for your students in the winter weather.

When in the New Year does your INSURANCE renew? DATE________

Be ready for your insurance renewal! Review it 60 to 90 days ahead of time to make sure all of the information that you have provided to your insurance agent is accurate and up to date. Don’t get caught with a claim that you are not covered for by not communicating. In the New Year get a competitive quote if you have not done so recently. You might be able to get more coverage and save money.

Brought to you by Sports Fitness Insurance Corp (SFIC). SFIC is the Official Insurance Provider of the Martial Arts Teachers Association (MATA).

Get a year-end review of your insurance at MATAInsurance.com

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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