Then how would you know if I have a bone to pick?
Originally Posted by dljohns1
Like I said condescension and now backtracking. Instead of pointing out what is supposedly wrong with your review, your intelligence and understanding of Budo is questioned.
The funny thing about Budo is thta most people at a McDojo have altered the meaning anyway.
Why hello again Mr. Daniel Jennings. Good to see you are actively and enthusiastically reviewing our school.
One quick word then I have to get back to working out.
This man has every right to review the school, however you should know that he attended a total of three classes, almost three years ago, and then neglected to pay for the classes. My billing company did its job and tried to collect from this gentleman but he felt he wasn't required to honor the agreement he made with us.
I also find it enlightening that Mr. Jennings claimed his reason for leaving the school was that he moved to Wyoming or somewhere (less than two weeks after joining the school), yet he still lives in Grandview, just up the street from us. I believe you may have told a fib Mr. Jennings.
He can say whatever he likes, but whether what he says is worth reading is an entirely different issue.
Last edited by Master Locke; 3/20/2012 1:15pm at .
I would also like to respond to Mr. Jennings specific comments about the school.
Originally Posted by daniel64012
Locke’s Karate Academy is a traditional martial arts school located in Belton, Missouri. The school isn’t really all that great.
What he says here is mostly true. The school is in Belton, MO. Whether it is great or not is a matter of opinion. There are numerous positive comments about the school on review-type websites such as yahoo business and kudzu.
The instructor is almost always there but it’s really just a martial arts themed day care center, I mean kids out number adults several times over.
I, the instructor am always there unless I am out of town.
We are by no means a martial arts themed day care. Like most schools, we do have children's programs, but we also have adult programs. I keep stats on the number of kids vs. adults and while we do have more kids, we still have a good number of adults. I would say the proportion is 65% kids to 35% adults. That hardly makes us a day care. Also, unlike many schools, we limit the ages the kids can start taking classes. We have an 8-12 year old class, and a 6-7 year old class.
At least once he's had the kids play kick ball while hopping around on one foot. I'm not sure what that had Martial Arts.
His statement here that I had the kids play kickball is interesting. I teach all of the adult classes and none of the kids classes. I have instructors that teach all of the kids classes, so that wasn't me. Apparently he was with the school for such a short amount of time (3 classes over 2 weeks back in 2009) that he couldn't recognize his instructor.
I will say that the instructors do allow the kids to play games such as kickball at the end of class as a fun activity. Anyone that teaches kids knows that kickball is a great thing for the kids to do as it teaches them balance and coordination while allowing them to have fun.
Another thing is the instructor is Clueless, 1/3 of the class can easily be spent warming up and then the last 1/3 can be a ‘cool down.’
This comment about 1/3 warming up and 1/3 cooling down is semi-true. I spend exactly the first 15 minutes of a 60-minute class doing exercises such as push-ups, sit-ups and running along with stretching. The remainder of the class (45-minutes, which equals 3/4 of the class by my math) is spent training. We do basics, forms, sparring and self-defense during that time. I don't do enough cool-down at the end of class unfortunately. We usually finish with sparring and then end class. I probably should put in maybe 5-minutes of cool-down, but I don't. I certainly don't do 20-minutes as Mr. Jennings claims.
One of the biggest complaint that I have about the school is that for months after I quit the school I was still getting calls from bill collectors for his school even though I quit going there.
This statement is entirely true. I use EFC for my billing and they did in fact do their job and did their best to collect on the agreement Mr. Jennings signed with the school. The interesing thing is that he claimed that he could no longer take classes because he was moving to Wyoming or somewhere and would no longer be in the area. In fact, he still lives just a few miles away.
This school unquestionably falls into the category of McDojo. It’s school that just everyone should avoid.
Another matter of opinion, wouldn't you say?
3 - My reasoning is that the sparring is very light contact, not to mention the gloves, head gear, shin guards and chest protectors that are required (at your own expense).
This is entirely true. In fact he left out a bit. Beginners are not to be touched when they first start sparring. I want them to grow accustomed to the new and somewhat intimidating experience, so the students are explicitly told not to touch a white belt.
I absolutely do require the students to wear all of the equipment Mr. Jennings mentioned above. Those are all for safety and I think fairly self-explanatory. The students are also told when they enroll that they do have to purchase their own sparring gear sometime before their first belt test. The school has equipment for people to borrow until they can purchase their own, but they are made explicitly of this requirement so it shouldn't have been a surprise.
1 - Other than the safety gear stated above there is weapons, nothing else. No cage, no nothing else.
We do have the standard kicking paddles, square hand targets, blockers, Wavemasters, etc, but since we are a traditional martials arts school (Tang Soo Do, Okinawan Goju-Ryu, Matayoshi Kobudo and Hapkido), not MMA, we have absolutely no need of a cage.
6 - It's actually a good sized building, it can get crowded sometimes but it’s in a building dedicated to the school, the building is nice, clean and well kept.
Thank you for the kind words.
1 - The instructor is there 70%, but I’ve seen him have kids play kick ball during class, no joke.
This was addressed above, but again, I am there 100% of the time unless I am out of town. I do go to seminars, especially during the summer, but otherwise I am always there.
The instructor probably did have the kids play kick ball, but I have no problem with that.
4 - Instructor is more interested in making sure we honor customs than anything else, like learning.
I agree and disagree. I make no bones that this is a traditional school, so custom, tradition and courtesy are paramount. However, the mantra I tell the students is to try to learn one new thing every day. I don't ask them to remember ten new things as they will be overwhelmed and forget them all, but instead to get better at one new thing every day. If they are learning, then I suppose this statement is inaccurate.
3 - The styles taught are nearly 100% striking, but not much time is used teaching.
The two primary styles are Tang Soo Do and Okinawan Goju-Ryu, both of which are indeed striking styles. Mr. Jennings did three Goju classes, but I will admit that we primarily worked on stances those days. I strongly believe that without stances, the techniques would be ineffective. Had Mr. Jennings come to more classes, he would have been taught more punching, kicking, kata, sparring and self-defense, but unfortunately he quit after his third class.
1 - There are a few weapons but classes are non-contact.
I teach Matayoshi Kobudo (Okinawan weapons), but you have to be a brown belt or above in one of the core styles to take these classes. I assure you that when we train Kobudo, we do a lot of kumi practice (striking, blocking), but Mr. Jennings would not have been eligible for this program.
I think I've covered everything. If there is anything that I've missed, I'm sure someone will let me know.
Sounds like Dani didn't have the urge to supplement his review with decent research. Attending 3 lessons would be ok if he had asked the right questions in that time. However it looks like he jumped to a quick conclusion.
Really? So, how long have you trained at this school to draw your current conclusion?
Originally Posted by J0hnnyB
I have not trained there, just comparing the original review with the latter one. Of course the Dojo would defend itself but I doubt it would be dishonest cuz any false claim revealed further would crumble his argument. Bullshido should ask the reviewer to ask the dojo questions about the curriculum and training involved past the 1st week before submitting.
No, Bullshido shouldn't ask the reviewer to do anything.
You'd be wrong because it has happened exactly the way you just described.
What's the problem here? Sounds like the textbook definition of McDojo. Come on, 60 minute classes. How are you going to train in an hour? The Sensei doesn't even try to deny it. So what if the reviewer bailed? I know I wouldn't have lasted for 3 classes full of kids and at least 1 kickball game. Get collections off of this guys back. You didn't offer him any value, so forget the agreement.
Personally, I prefer classes to last longer than 60 minutes too, but I don't think that makes it a MCDojo per se; that is a common class length in MA schools that hold several classes per night. When a student signs up, is he not made aware that classes run 60 minutes each?
Originally Posted by Shorin79
Having said that, assuming no facts were misrepresented, the OP's views are his own and perfectly valid. The same goes for the instructor's response. That's how its supposed to work -- to allow the reader to draw his own conclusions.