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  1. Courage is offline

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    Posted On:
    1/22/2007 2:42pm


     Style: Tactical, Kempo

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    I'm pretty sure all you have to do is say "hey, I want to make you more money" and they will have you teaching classes within six weeks, sans experience.
  2. Sam Browning is offline

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    Posted On:
    1/22/2007 2:48pm

    hall of famestaff
     

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    How are you sure? Did you ever meet anyone who went through this program?
  3. Courage is offline

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    Posted On:
    1/22/2007 2:52pm


     Style: Tactical, Kempo

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Not 100% sure but pretty close. At the very least, I do know that you don't need prior experience in the system to become a six week wonder instructor. Any and all black belts will do.
  4. StephenOliver is offline

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    Posted On:
    1/31/2007 1:27pm


     Style: Amer. TKD, Kickboxing

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    It's really interesting to scroll through the conversation in this forum. I'm always curious to a tone of conversation that implies only one way to think about any particular subject. In the martial arts individuals study for a variety of reasons. Maybe a generalization would be that they study for one or several outcomes. These include: Effective basic self defense, fitness/coordination/health, hard-core fighting & combat skills, for personal development/life skills/confidence, or for sport.

    None of these reasons are correct or incorrect they each are good reasons to study martial arts with a teacher, school, and system designed to accomplish those objectives.

    That having been said - My focus in the 1970's was my own athletic accomplishment from an aspect of fighting proficiency and accomplishment in sport oriented fighting (ie. point karate and kickboxing.) My perspective shifted as I realized: 1. My greatest accomplishment from martial arts training was not athletic prowess but character & personal development skills that come from training in a traditionally focused system. 2. That in order to devote full-time to martial arts that I must be primarily and educator rather than primarily a fighter or an athlete.

    My focus in teaching (I taught for Jhoon Rhee beginning in 1975 in Tulsa, OK and continuing in Washington, D.C. while attending Georgetown University graduating in 1982) while in Washington, D.C. then in Denver (I founded Mile High Karate in 1983) turned increasingly to kids & families with an emphasis first on Personal Development, Second on fitness and effective self defense, and third on benefiting from the sport aspect of martial arts.

    Our on-going effort is in developing a high quality student from a traditional martial arts perspective with a primary emphasis on developing confidence, character, and self discipline that comes from proper martial arts instruction.

    I'll quote my instructor Jhoon Rhee: "Martial Arts without Philosophy is Just Street Fighting" by the way Bruce Lee and MANY other of the most accomplished martial artists of the 60's, 70's, 80's, 90's and today agree with that statement, and believe that a solid grounding in traditional martial arts is crucial to higher development of physical and mental skills.

    That having been said, it's easy for the poorly informed to jump on one or two pieces of information and draw conclusions and sling mud while remaining either ignorant or unwilling to explore other points of view.

    For martial arts instructors: It is most common that the best and most accomplished martial artists never learn how to attract or retain enough students to ever shift teaching from a hobby in their basement (@ the gym, in the "Y", or at the local rec center) to a career that allows them an opportunity to really devote the time and energy into mastering their subject and to teaching skills at the highest level to their students. Instructors to attract enough of a following and to make enough of a living for a permanent facility (whether located in a Dojo by the lake, in a strip mall, or in a warehouse district) needs the ability to combine several skills:

    Marketing (simply the ability to convey the benefits of what they teach effectively to enough people to attract students to the school),

    Sales Skills (simply the ability to over come personal inertia among prospective students to move them forward to making the decision to train)

    Effective Teaching & interpersonal skills to allow them to keep their students training LONG Enough to achieve a level of Mastery. (the sad fact is that most students drop out in the first 3 to 6 months) Instructors who believe themselves to have the least BS or to be the least "McDojo" to use terms of this forum are the ones typically least likely to keep students long enough to achieve any success.

    Many of you may believe that to be a good thing. The problem is that MANY people can benefit from proper martial arts instruction who either never learn about the benefits - or, who come in with a lack of confidence or discipline and quit before accomplishing much.

    My belief systems about how instructors should approach the “Business” of running a martial arts school is certainly not a secret although it has clearly been misrepresented in this forum.

    If you’re curious I’d suggest that you review: http://martialartsresources.com/news...e/archive.html
    http://webmation.com/articles/stephen-oliver.asp
    and,
    http://www.ExtraordinaryMarketing.com


    For Students and Prospective Students:

    It is important for a student to properly evaluate their needs and reasons for training prior to choosing a school. If a family is interested in developing focus, character, discipline and in training in a fun environment then my Mile High Karate schools would be an excellent fit (http://www.MileHighKarate.com, http://www.FreeKarate.com) If a student is interested in being most effective in hard-core combat, in becoming a UFC fighter, or in learning self defense skills that are most appropriate for police or military application my schools would not be a good fit. And, anyone looking for a gym environment mostly without traditions or the trappings of traditional martial arts instruction would not feel comfortable in my schools.

    Just because a school does not focus on “Hard-Core” fighting or UFC’ish sport application does not make it BS or a McDojo – it may just mean that the instructor and students have a focus different than those aims.

    Our curriculum is very well founded in effective martial arts, fighting, self defense application. Our staff includes many very accomplished martial artists and teachers with one of the most rigorous training programs that I’ve yet to come across. As mentioned in the forum – our director of instruction is the first PKA World Kickboxing Champion Jeff Smith (ie. Lightheavy Weight) He fought on the Ali-Frazier undercard and participated in the original mixed martial arts competitions as well as many point tournaments (more about him: http://www.milehighkarate.com/foundi...bers.html?SID=) I’ve trained continuously since 1969 – beginning training with Jhoon Rhee & Jeff Smith in Americanized Tae Kwon Do which was heavily influenced by Bruce Lee and others and have included many concepts from escrima, JKD, & BJJ among others in our evolving curriculum.

    Stephen Oliver
    Founder: Mile High Karate
    StephenOliver@MileHighKarate.com
  5. StephenOliver is offline

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    Posted On:
    1/31/2007 1:51pm


     Style: Amer. TKD, Kickboxing

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    By the way.

    To respond to a couple of other questions in the forum:
    6 week instructors? We have run a 6 week training program many times - although the outcome is not someone who will be training advanced students or running a school independently. The 6 week, 12 hours a day, 6 days a week program entails over 250 hours of martial arts training + teaching technique etc, and at the end the person is qualified to teach prospective students, beginners and be actively involved with community outreach activies and to work as a program director. Most Mile High Karate schools have a head-instructor or master-instructor who is a 3rd, 4th, or 5th degree Black Belt - meaning 9 to 18 years of martial arts experience. We have a huge base of very high quality instructors.

    Second issue: Pricing. It's interesting that this forum has a fixation on this as if low price is a sign of dedication or quality. Our objective is, in part to allow martial artists to make a living from practicing and teaching quality martial arts. In educational institutions arguably Harvard, Yale, or Stanford is the best (or one of the best) educational institutions in the United States. My University - Georgetown is consistently rated in the top 15 or 20 in the U.S. They are ALL at the highest end of the tuition spectrum. The local Jr. College may be cheap but lacks the quality or the reputation.

    Certainly there are quality schools that do not have as high a tutiion (UCLA, Berkley, etc) but they are mostly supported by Donations (as is 50% or more of the costs of operating Harvard, Yale, & Stanford) and by Government support (such as California's support of their excellent schools.)

    Since mostly Donations and Government support are unavailable or inadequate for martial arts schools we must rely on the student tuition. Therefore that tuition must be adequate to pay the overhead and salaries of the employees. A quality school may have $15,000, $18,000, $20,000 (or much more) in expenses before generating any profit which must be paid by student tuitions. Do Mile High Karate schools charge a reasonable (but high relative to other schools tuition) - you bet. And appropriately so. $300? $197 for a new student, up to $359 for our leadership programs - more in some cases. The quality of the teaching & teachers must be on par with the tuition to attract enough quality students. We have lots of students.

    Stephen Oliver,
    Mile High Karate
  6. Sam Browning is offline

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    Posted On:
    1/31/2007 2:03pm

    hall of famestaff
     

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    How do you calculate an appropriate monthly rate to charge?

    In the legal profession for hourly work we typically take the prevailing hourly rate. $200 in my area plus expenses.

    Now we deviate downward based on custom and market forces. A residential home closing in Connecticut will cost say 500-$550 for the seller and $650-700 for the buyer based on the amount of work involved and the number of attorneys who will provide this service.

    Also we charge the little guy differently then a corporation. A flat fee of $1,500 for an uncontested divorce or $3,000 for a contested divorce is common in my area.

    I don't think that one can compare martial arts training to a college education in terms of expense. For example there is a wide gap in the services provided (dorm, meal plan, multiple professors, gym, career counseling center ect) There are many more expensive services provided as part of the tuition.

    So do you use the number of classes a student can take a week?

    And what exactly do you teach in your leadership class that makes it so valuable?
  7. Sam Browning is offline

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    Posted On:
    1/31/2007 2:05pm

    hall of famestaff
     

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Incidently on legal fees, typically our overhead is about half the hourly rate. Secondly in any case we handle hourly there is a certain portion of time we are unable to bill for because it involves administrative functions. So without complaining one could take the $200 per hour, reduce it to $100 because of overhead, and deduct another $25 for time we work but can't recover.
  8. It is Fake is offline
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    Posted On:
    1/31/2007 2:18pm

    staff
     Style: xingyi

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Did you actually read the thread?

    Or are you mad because the system is being discussed?

    You have three types on this thread.

    1) People that agree it is a business, out for money, and that there is nothing wrong.

    2) People that think it is utter crap.

    3) People that are straddling the fence.

    So, why come here and blast generalization? You are guilty of blaming the whole forum(generalization), even those that stood up for you, as basically being ignorant?

    Very Hypocritical in my opinion.
  9. OnceLost is offline
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    Here's looking at you, squid.

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    Posted On:
    1/31/2007 2:18pm

    Join us... or die
     Style: Ke?po, MMA ultra-newb

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    StephenOliver, thanks for stepping up and starting to answer some of the questions this thread has generated. I look forward to the rest of the discussion.
    "Reason is a choice. Wishes and whims are not facts, nor are they a means to discovering them. Reason is our only way to grasping reality -- it's our basic tool of survival. We are free to evade the effort of thinking, to reject reason, but we are not free to avoid the penalty of the abyss we refuse to see."
    - Terry Goodkind, "Faith of the Fallen"
  10. Omega Supreme is offline

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    Posted On:
    1/31/2007 2:41pm

    staff
     Style: Chinese Boxing

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    I don't buy it. Respect for the man for at least addressing the issue but I don't think you fully understand what goes on here. This is not a MMA only site. I as a traditional instructor would not be here if that was true.

    To reverse the quote that you retorted with Philosophy without martial arts is just Philosophy. Sorry, it doesn't cut it hear. As a marketing person I give you two thumbs up as a martial artist, well I really don't know you well enough to test your skills. What kind of teacher are you though? I've been to those schools which have followed "your ways" and even if you could produce a few legit schools, most of them that I've found have been, you've guessed it, Mcdojo.

    I run two successful schools and I get your literature all the time, as a matter of fact when I first opened one of my fellow instructors brought some of your material to me. After looking at it, I threw it out. I will not compromise my integrity for the almighty dollar. I've been open for over 12 years now and have three establishment, one full time school and two branch off. I get the money that I deserve, I get the students and my tuition is $50 below that of the current market. I love watching peoples faces after they've gone to the other schools payed their super tuition and then come to me and see that money doesn't always buy the best.

    If you want to keep pushing this stuff on everybody go ahead but I'm not buying it. And stop sending me ****, damn, almost everyweek I get this seminar **** in the mail.
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