Putting myself in the line of fire here...
I teach for this gourp of schools. It works like this...
Someone wants to open a regional office and hires local instructors to cover areas within their state. We have no contracts but have minorly bloated prices on our merch. Per-class prices are $6/class. Sessions generally run about 13-17 weeks. This program is geared for children of all ages running as young as 4-5 years old. We do this (and the other brances of the company... Cheerleading, soccer, hip hop :5butthead, baton twirling, etc...) as an outlet to help kids focus and keep them off the streets. There are a ton of good things to this style of classes (sticking to MA) but then there are the downers too.
They try to push a regimented watered down Japanese style off on the newbie instructors and the belting is insanely accelerated. We run 2 sessions per year and each time the session is completed, they test for belting.
I guess my big question is this: Are we a McDojo in disguise? I thuroughly enjoy what I do for the kids so on an honesty level, I'd hate to be labeled as a McDojo pusher. :( Some of the stuff that I do to help make things better is make belting much more difficult to do every session after they exit green belt (completion of 3rd session) so they really need to start tightening up and perfecting their techniques.
All of this has come into play since I'm almost done completing my 1st full year with this company. I've seen a ton of bad habits from the returning students and wish to break them of these things under my wing. At the beginning of my second year (spring 06) as the session starts I will be implimenting my new expectations and info. The only returning student that is aware of these things is my highest ranking since he will drown in almost 2.5 sessions worth of catch up. So I gave him the choise to stay at his rank till we all feel that he is ready to promote.
Since becoming an instructor (real one, not just with this company) I've not used the internet too much for this profession till this year. Now I am a little paranoid about what kind of cruddy status that I may hanging out on. :( It kinda sucks. Help me out here guys. Just don't kill me with that special brand of bullshido love. LOL!
Is your company a non-profit organization? Also, what style do you teach? What is the company name?
You know what? I don't think I've ever inquired to see if they are non-profit or not... Me? I teach Modern Arnis. The company is probably going to kill me if I say (As I have some silly contract with them... oh well...) Young Champions.
(There's something in my contract with them that states I can't even give out my phone number or say Young Champions on my Voicemail. LOL!)
Are you teaching them what you promised?
Did you tell them they were gonig to be able to defend them selves on the street? If so, are they being taught going full contact (not all the time, but some times), aginst resisting opponets?
If yes, then good for you, your not a McDojo. You just test people at an extremly fast rate, be prepared to have white belts hand your brown blets their asses.
But if you promised them self defense and your not doing that, and your doing drill, forms, then happy slap sparring (point style sparring) your not teaching them how to defend them selves. Your keeping them off the streets (good job), but not teachign them what you promised. That is bullshido.
Ok, I think I found a website for "Young Champions". I also think they have a class relatively close to me. However, the contact info is basically non-existent.
If you could do me a favor and get me a contact number for some of the classes in/around San Diego/La Mesa/El Cajon, then I'll check it out for you.
Arnis is easy to learn, difficult to master. Not to mention the SHEER MOUNTAINS of the art that that Arnis entails. I like that you're training people in it, because god knows we don't have enough Arnis instructors in this country.. but seriously... belting like that seems REALLY insanely accellerated. We don't have belts with the instructor I go to, but if I were, to use their system, I'd be like white or white + 1. And I've been doing Arnis for over a year. (4) 2hr classes a month, not mentioning personal practice which I do 3 days a week for an hour.
So are you teaching them redondo, abaneco, sinawallis, and corto? Do they do any contact sparring with sticks? I doubt it given the liabilities being a childs class but couldn't hurt to ask.
Do you do footwork/striking/disarm drills? What's your curriculum I guess I'm trying to ask.
Do you have 1 class a week? If so, are you basically belting people after 13 hours worth of classes?
WARNING THIS USER TENDS TO BE FULL OF ****!
I think the bigger question is, why do you care what other people think?
Originally Posted by Dalum
Think of it this way, before reading some of the junk on here and Karateforums.com, do you even concern yourself with what a McDojo is?? You are happy about your art, the kids are staying out of trouble and working out instead of sitting at home playing video games all day. Prices are cheap. You are doing the right thing. For all I know, they learn more about how to protect themselves than playing video games at home all day.
After you log onto the internet and started reading all these junk, you started to have doubts about your own teachings. This is why you post this thread.
Why do you even care what these internet losers think about you??
I guess a better question is one you should ask yourself: Do you have the intention to cheat the kids out of their money, by making up lies and bull **** that you have come up with yourself, just to make them happy karate kids??
If the answer is "No", and you are teaching them with 100% true effort for the goodwill for the kids, then who cares what these online losers think about your teaching?? Do you have to go full-contact?? That depends on YOU (or your insurance company). A lot of people here are confused by judging a teacher or an art based on how brutal the school is. They think full-contact and brutal means the real deal, while non-full-contact board breaking are all McDojos. I think these individuals has more important issues they need to take care of themselves.
The moment you doubt yourself and your art, you become less of a figther and a teacher. Don't let anyone stop you from knowing you are the real deal. Everyone has an opinion, but not everyone got what it takes to truely represent it, so why even bother with what they think?
For all I know, this guy can't even kick higher than his knee! So why bother?? Who the **** make 4-5 year old kids go full-contact??? One step at a time! If the little babies are not ready for full-contact (of couse they aren't), then let them learn tag sparring to exercise distance, get use to the heart beat, satisfy their ego, etc. When they grow up and is ready to move on, then they can go to a boxing gym or something.
Originally Posted by Teryan
If they can do point sparring, they can just as easily put on heavier protective gears and punch harder. Full-contact is not really such of a big deal unless you are going bare-fist. But who the hell practice bare-fist??
There is a reason for every styles of teaching and exercise. Trust yourself, thats all you've got to do.
Let the talkers do the talking. You do the training.
Last edited by SammyKing; 12/29/2005 6:57pm at .
Yeah, young champions are a notorious Mcdojo group that manifest themselves in several different formats. The laughable part of it is that you don't have to hold a high rank in order to teach. They've also pushed no contact sparring tournaments over priced uniforms and not very good quality of teaching. Usually you spout off the requirements in a hand book and pass them no matter what.
Mcdojo level 8 out of a possible 10 because of the lower price for classes. I do believe they pawn themselves off as non profit btw.
Stop right there. The way you are describing "McDojo" makes it seem like its a label that's based on opinion. It's not. A McDojo isn't a McDojo simply because a group of people think so. It is based on concrete characteristics that make a martial arts school more of a business rather than a place where people can come to learn martial arts free of politics and commercialism, as it should be.
Originally Posted by SammyKing
Dalum, analyzing your situation by pure commercialism, let me see if I have the facts right:
1.) You test every session, about 13-17 weeks. Assuming an average student would attend class 4 times a week, that's about 68 classes before they test for a belt. That's highly, highly accelerated - many adults cannot take in information that fast, you can't expect 4-5 year olds to. But the perils of early testing have been debated endlessly here, you can search for that topic for more viewpoints.
2.) The company you work for makes instructors teach a watered down version of martial arts. They also set the testing schedule. I assume they set the fees, $6 classes per week. Now the average going rate these days is about $100 a month, give or take about $20 depending on demographics, for unlimited classes a month (meaning anywhere between 5-30 offered classes a week of varying hours). Compare that to what your company offers. Also they don't like you using their name in voicemail or online - pretty shady.
With all that together, I'd say yes you are stuck in a McDojo system. The term "bullshido" generally refers to what people teach, not how they run their school. It is very feasible to be stuck in a McDojo, and not teach bullshido. BJJ is an art that is known for its strong anti-bullshido-ness, but many schools you see today charge upwards of 200 dollars a month, with contracts, and such, which is McDojo (least by middle class standards and the status quo).
So that right there offers one solution, if you are stuck in McDojoland, perhaps the restrictions placed by your company are light enough so that you can teach some really quality non bullshido stuff, which would counter the McDojo feel.
Sammy king, the person's post you are referring to about full contact, Teryan, wasn't saying to put the kids in full contact. He was saying don't be doing things like telling kids you are teaching them self defense and then not doing full contact, pad work, or live resistance. Teryan was saying as long as you are advertising correctly and telling the students exactly what they are getting (whether it be just watered down stuff or more forms based stuff), that is ok. He wasn't telling Dalum to go make his classes full contact with 4-5 year olds.
Originally Posted by SammyKing
And the moment you don't doubt yourself and your art, you assume yourself as to be perfect and no longer need evolution or adaptation. Dangerous thinking. Best way to evaluate yourself is by your peers. He's come to a website where what we do is root out what he doesn't want to become, and we're gonna give it to him straight. All this crap about you shouldn't care about what others think and you should have respect and all that garbage is what kept traditional martial arts static for so long. I for one am glad for instructors like Dalum who have the guts to ask for peer assessment and the truth, no matter how hard it hits.
Originally Posted by SammyKing
WARNING THIS USER TENDS TO BE FULL OF ****!
A group of people think so..........isn't that what its call an OPINION????
Stop right there. The way you are describing "McDojo" makes it seem like its a label that's based on opinion. It's not. A McDojo isn't a McDojo simply because a group of people think so
The last time I check, I don't see any Federal laws defining what a Mcdojo is? The rest of your post applies to simply that: An opinon.
Sorry, maybe your doubt yourself 24/7. But most confident fighters and teachers don't. Doesn't mean it'll stop me from growing. Doubting yourself will do that. I can't even believe someone would tell other MAs to doubt their own art.
And the moment you don't doubt yourself and your art, you assume yourself as to be perfect and no longer need evolution or adaptation. Dangerous thinking.
Reading that statement doesn't make sense, you are trying to find little details of my post to pick on, coming up with counter arguements. See? Why would anyone value such opinions?? You are arguing for the fact of arguing. Why would anyone need any opinion from a board like this??
Last edited by SammyKing; 12/29/2005 7:23pm at .
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