Thread: My McDojo's "Point of No Return"
2/19/2005 3:20pm, #61
Uh, Khun Kao, no offense meant, but if I'd gotten my ass beat by a guy who teaches people to be ninjas, I think I'd take that little secret with me to the grave. Either that or spend a whole lot more time on MT, then go back there for some payback. . ."I had once talked to Billy Conn, the boxer, about professionals versus amateurs - specifically street fighters. One had always heard rumors of champions being taken out by back-alley fighters. Conn was scornful. "Aw, it's like hitting a girl," he said. "They're nothing."
- George Plimpton
2/19/2005 3:32pm, #62
Originally Posted by Vargas
- Join Date
- Feb 2004
- Baton Rouge, LA
That's all? Should we call the Dojo to attention when you enter and leave? How about a couple of Gold Oak Leaf Clusters on your Gi Lapels as well?
I like this thread. I come to this site to learn and I think I've passed on a few things that have helped others as well. If I can be a part of keeping someone from wasting their money or getting hurt I'm happy. Lots of good "warning signals" and "red flags" here - and I'm not talking about the 2-week Red Flag exercise at Nellis.
The thing about people leaving the dojo or wanting to train someplace else as well - I can't help but think of how some countries will do everything they can to keep people from leaving, while other countries have no shortage of people who risk their lives trying to enter.
2/19/2005 4:00pm, #63
- Join Date
- May 2003
- Washington, D.C.
I guess we'll disagree on that. I've trained with some badass martial artists/fighters in my day, and I can tell you that the guy who trained me in Ninjutsu was a legit fighter. I could care less if his martial art was combat ballet, he was a badass and I feel no shame in admitting that he whipped my ass, even if it was after only 2 months of Muay Thai.
I will also openly admit that I doubt I could take him now, after THIRTEEN years of Muay Thai and three championship titles. I'm not pulling anyones leg on this.... that guy was a VERY GOOD fighter. He was just one of the worst INSTRUCTORS I've ever trained under.
2/19/2005 4:07pm, #64Originally Posted by Vargas
Depends on your age. When the ninja craze was huge schools acted just like they did with BJJ. I remeber a Tae Kwon Do school suddenly teaching Ninjitsu. Just like now you'll find these kung fu/karate guys suddenly teaching Grappling/Shui Chao(?). So as emabarssing as it seems now, I knew people who were good fighters in the full contact era that fell into "ninja" trap.
It brung in the money. Not true Ninjitsu but still good fighting.
Khun Kao: Did you ever check his background?
2/19/2005 4:55pm, #65
Originally Posted by Khun Kao
- Join Date
- Sep 2004
Do you have any idea as to what experience he had in other styles perhaps?
Oh, and Hedgy, can we have a name for that quote?
"Im not going to lie to you, we teach you to **** people up in here"
2/19/2005 5:49pm, #66
- Join Date
- Mar 2004
To be truthful, I don't know the guy's last name, and if I did I wouldn't put his name on the internet without permission. Suffice to say he's pretty awesome. You could probably say "Anonymous BJJ purple" or something, I dunno.sudo make me a sandwich!
2/19/2005 7:34pm, #67
What I've discovered as an unfortunate recent trend across the board in sports with relatively "self promoting" types of certifications is that the "everyone can do it" and "pay for your cert" are alive and well almost everywhere.
I think deep down, most (if they are honest) people realize that they have been trained in crap. I think that unfortunately, self deception is also alive and well. No one wants to add up the time and money they have spent on something they thought was legitimate and discover that they have been severely deceived. It's part ego, and part "well it MUST have been good for something".
As an active scuba diver. The preponderance of totally BS dive certs out there totally mirrors the McDojo phenomena. Dive training and gear are extremely expensive and it seems to somehow piss people off...hehehe...when they are told they just blew $10,000 and 4 years supporting a marketing program. Yet, people absolutely rail on about how great they are or their training is even when directly shown that their skills are useless and that they are actually a hazard to themselves, others and the environment.
I think it's all a symptom of the "I want it and I'll pay for it" instead of "I want it, and I don't care how long it takes, I want to actually earn it." I also think that the whole trend towards non-judgemental or non-grading marking is totally bogus. Sometimes...it hurts...but you suck. If you want to get better...it's going to take more work and time, not a credit card number.The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposing ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function.
~F. Scott Fitzgerald
Whether it is a good thing or a bad thing, smashing things up is sometimes very pleasant.
2/20/2005 12:10am, #68
- Join Date
- Jan 2005
- Sweden, Stockholm
I'm fairly (read: very) new to martial arts so I have that 'when did you leave your first gym/dojo/kwoon/whathaveyou in the not so distant past'..
I did try aikido in.. 3rd grade I think, but since it was only 2 or 3 classes (which I didn't really like that much for various reasons) I dont think it counts as 'leaving my first dojo'..
No, my first real martial arts experience was at this Shaolin Gong Fu place run by some swedish fellow by the name of Andreas Beskow - I believe one of the first (first?) westerners to train at shaolin..
Truth be told, I did get in to all the martial arts stuff through 2 things, first and foremost my interest in korea, second of all, martial arts movies (both interests were sort of inspired by the same person actually).. So naturally I first started looking for TKD places etc.. but kung fu seemed like more fun the more I read about it - and a bit more exotic, soft and stuff (very important when it comes to convincing your parents + I actually thought it was fun/cool - I was 14 at this point I believe)..
So yeah, in january 2004 (just after turning 15) I joined this place, had 3 free classes and signed up for the entire term (I dont remember what options they had, I think they had monthly and weekly payement plans as well...but I wouldn't have been interested anyway) for 258.198$ (1800:- , swedish currency, which is pretty much the standard price for 1 term in almost all martial arts schools I have seen here).
Was fun in the beginning, my terrible shape ensured that I was properly exhausted after every lesson, there wasn't really that much form stuff in the beginning so I was happy about that as well. Drills were fun, kicking high was fun (I had been working on my flexibility some before going there so I could actually kick, what I considered, decently high), learning some chinese words were OK and the stances felt painful but in a good way (like when you are all sore after practice, very rewarding in my mind..).
All was well and good. At this point I was aware of MMA (I thought of it as brutal BUT probably the best in terms of realism) through tung-fu, but I was hoping to 'find one of the good traditional places and become a good fighter anyway'.. Yeah.
Anyways, training was moving along and I still sort of liked it, a little less than before but still was fun.. I asked him stuff about various techniques and forms and was fairly satisfied with the answers (like I asked him about some block and he asked me to punch at him - though I think it should be noted that me punching now.. isn't that pretty, me punching then, wasn't pretty at all - and he'd show it, I was satisfied with that).
When I asked him what kind of grappling/takedown defense there was after a lesson he said something about having 'kung fu in your fingers'.
Yeah. That was sort of a red flag for me.
That and the fact that he announced we would have GRADINGS. Now, one of the reasons I joined a chinese style was that they weren't supposed to have these kinds of gradings (there was talks about having some kind of something representing your rank, though he wasn't sure what it would be yet)..
And worse, we had to know the technique names in chinese ..
I can take tests in school. I am there to learn martial arts, not chinese (which I would be only too happy to learn in my free time, just not while I'm trying to to learn how to kick someones head in! Err yeah).. This sort of put me off. Lots and lots of forms and jumping and forms in preparation... not fun. Couldn't go to sparring night because I was too inexperienced (well that was understandable all things considered..), sparring would begin after the grading though.
Some weeks prior to the grading I got sick, and I basically kept on putting up going back.. again and again.. I just realized that hell, I dont like this.
In retrospect I think I should have just gone back and told him "Hey I had fun, but this isn't my kind of thing, I wont be coming back, take care" but I sort of just clinged on to the 'I'll go back next week, tomorrow, after the summer break" etc..you know?
He was a nice guy so I think I should have done that.
Anyways, went into lazy mode until january this year when I finally checked out an MMA place called Pancrase Gym, which is run by Omar Boiuche (who is sort of well known and in my experience an excellent instructor and seems to be a nice guy).
So yeah, I've only been there for a month or so, loving it though.
I think the absolutely biggest differance was the atmosphere, the other place was strict, chinese words, lines, a god damn hard floor with some mat on it, chilly etc.. Yeah just not very hospitable in my opinion.
This place.. absolutely GREAT atmosphere, everyone there was serious about what they did but still VERY nice. People had been telling me this forever, oh so true (ie, they came here to learn how to FIGHT, but were still respectful and really nice).
Yeah this is an awful lot of text for so little time... I just felt like typing something up, hope I didn't bore anyone.
Last edited by hanbang; 2/20/2005 8:42am at .
2/20/2005 4:10am, #69
Man, this stuff hurts. I hate hearing these stories. But I like to see them on the board, too. Public service -- maybe someone else will see what's happening to them in your situation.
But I'm glad most of you seem to have gotten out alive.Monkey Ninjas! Attack!
2/20/2005 12:24pm, #70
- Join Date
- May 2003
- Washington, D.C.
Well, you may have a point. Its not like I ever saw him totally flip out and cut someones head off! And he couldn't play guitar either....
Maybe he was 1/2 ninja?