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  1. --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!

    History of the Martial Arts Business

    History of the Martial Arts Business

    The Good Old Days – Never Were.

    Maybe you like I, remember the “Good Old Days?”

    Back when “true” martial arts training was the rule not the exception.

    Where you had to really be “dedicated” and have incredible “perseverance” to learn the martial arts.

    I remember my first or second lesson – oh, the joys of free-sparring as a white belt.

    Now, I know that I'm dating myself a bit – but, this was before pads. The good old days of groin kicks – with a “baseball groin cup” – supporting leg sweeps on tile floors – and, well…. He was attacking me when I hit him in the face full power – not my fault!

    It's an interesting commentary for those of us who have been training since the 1960's or 1970's. If you haven't been around that long just take my word for something – you had to be either really nuts or really stupid to continue training in the martial arts in the “good old days.”

    When I think back to the things that I accepted as “normal” I am just absolutely amazed that any of us lived through it all.

    Example?

    I was speaking with Allan Steen a few months ago at a Jhoon Rhee Reunion event in Washington , D.C. I talked with him about his tournament in Dallas – which was one of my early tournament experiences. I remembered it like it was yesterday many great memories of that tournament. When I wasn't fighting in the Junior Brown-Black division – I was following Pat Worley around with my movie camera (remember when they were film cameras – that needed to be processed?) I filmed all of his fights and watched them over and over and over to master his style and methodologies.

    Anyway – during my discussion with Steen – I laughingly recalled the rules – see this particular event was one of the early tournaments to use the Jhoon Rhee Saf-T-Pads. The rules went something like this – supporting leg sweeps were legal – you had 3 seconds once they hit the ground to score – head gear was not required – in fact – I'm not sure anyone had heard of the concept – and, the tournament was 100% on a concrete floor. Wait a minute, did I mention it was “full-contact” – if you knocked your opponent out you won (including, I might add if the floor knocked them out during a sweep.)

    Allen laughed and then said – yeah, we had 42 ambulance calls that day!

    You know – if I hadn't been so young and enthusiastic – I really would have rethought participating in an event like that – or, in the many other wacky things we did.

    I remember one of my instructors Gran Moulder (a 2 nd Degree Black Belt at the time with the Jhoon Rhee Institute.) Now, I'm not saying that Gran was wound “too tight” but, he was one of those marines who enjoyed “ NAM ” a little too much. After 2 or 3 tours of crawling through the Viet Cong caves with a Bowie Knife – and, staking out bodies at night to set ambushes – the marines decided he probably shouldn't go back – and, sent him back to Tulsa to abuse me and my classmates.

    I remember fondly the knife defense demonstrations we did back when I was 13 or 14. with that very same Bowie Knife. I would be the attacker and soon after the knife would come streaking past my testicles and then come slashing across my throat. Looking back – I'm not sure which one I cringe about more! These memories were brought back vividly several years ago while sitting with Jhoon Rhee and Linda Lee – another – old time martial artists was doing about the same knife defense demonstration and ended up slashing the throat of his assistant – that's right the “Good Old Days.”

    Comparing now versus then – I am absolutely sure about a few things. First, If you were to watch the old films – or, to have been there to see the Champions of the 1960's or 1970's – the fighters today – can run rings about them – in any arena. Second, if you were to look at the average quality of a Black Belt back then – versus now – my Black Belts now are a lot better. If you were to compare student retention – well – out of all of the hundred's of students we had come and go through our schools in Tulsa – I was the only one from the time I started to ever get a Black Belt – everyone else dropped out - usually at Gold or Green Belt. Finally, I'm sure how I survived – but, I do know that the craziness – never helped anyone achieve Mastery at any higher level.

    For More Resources and Support Tools to Grow your

    Martial Arts School Business:
    http://www.ExtraordinaryMarketing.com


    About the Author :

    Stephen Oliver began martial arts training in 1969 in Tulsa , Oklahoma at a branch school of the Jhoon Rhee Institute. He opened his first school in 1975. Later he moved to Washington , D.C. to work for the Jhoon Rhee Institute first as an instructor then as their youngest ever branch manager while earning an honor's degree in Economics at Georgetown University .

    In 1983 he moved to the Denver Metropolitan area and opened 5 schools in 18 months with only $10,000 in capital. He went on to promote the Mile High Karate Classic NASKA World tour event and serve on NASKA's Board of Directors from 1989 to 1999 and to serve on EFC's Board of Director's from Inception until 2002.

    In 1992 he went earned his Master's in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Denver and went on to serve on their Venture and Entrepreneurship Advisory Board. He has also written several other books including: “How to Market Your Martial Arts School Using the Internet” and “Direct Response Marketing for Martial Arts Schools.”

    Mile High Karate:
    http://www.MileHighKarate.com

    Martial Arts Schools Coaching:
    http://www.MartialArts-Mastermind.com

    Martial Arts School and Karate School Management, Marketing, and Business Support

  2. It is Fake is offline
    It is Fake's Avatar

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    Posted On:
    6/02/2007 3:53pm

    staff
     Style: xingyi

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Comparing now versus then – I am absolutely sure about a few things. First, If you were to watch the old films – or, to have been there to see the Champions of the 1960's or 1970's – the fighters today – can run rings about them – in any arena. Second, if you were to look at the average quality of a Black Belt back then – versus now – my Black Belts now are a lot better.
    Not in the area you teach hell no. If what you said right here was true, I could walk into any McDojo and find someone capable of taking out Bill Wallace, Chuck Norris, Benny the Jet, etc etc etc. I can't.

    Now before you do what I think comes next, no you can't use the Gracies, K-1, UFC, Randy Chuck or any MMA fighter. Why?

    That isn't what you teach.



    If you were to compare student retention – well – out of all of the hundred's of students we had come and go through our schools in Tulsa – I was the only one from the time I started to ever get a Black Belt – everyone else dropped out - usually at Gold or Green Belt. Finally, I'm sure how I survived – but, I do know that the craziness – never helped anyone achieve Mastery at any higher level.
    Bwahahahahahahaha student retention does not equal fighters.

    Great strawman. Bravo. Bravo.
  3. It is Fake is offline
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    Posted On:
    6/02/2007 3:59pm

    staff
     Style: xingyi

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    History of the Martial Arts Business

    The Good Old Days – Never Were.

    Maybe you like I, remember the “Good Old Days?”

    Back when “true” martial arts training was the rule not the exception.

    Where you had to really be “dedicated” and have incredible “perseverance” to learn the martial arts.

    I remember my first or second lesson – oh, the joys of free-sparring as a white belt.

    Now, I know that I'm dating myself a bit – but, this was before pads. The good old days of groin kicks – with a “baseball groin cup” – supporting leg sweeps on tile floors – and, well…. He was attacking me when I hit him in the face full power – not my fault!

    It's an interesting commentary for those of us who have been training since the 1960's or 1970's. If you haven't been around that long just take my word for something – you had to be either really nuts or really stupid to continue training in the martial arts in the “good old days.”

    When I think back to the things that I accepted as “normal” I am just absolutely amazed that any of us lived through it all.

    Example?

    I was speaking with Allan Steen a few months ago at a Jhoon Rhee Reunion event in Washington , D.C. I talked with him about his tournament in Dallas – which was one of my early tournament experiences. I remembered it like it was yesterday many great memories of that tournament. When I wasn't fighting in the Junior Brown-Black division – I was following Pat Worley around with my movie camera (remember when they were film cameras – that needed to be processed?) I filmed all of his fights and watched them over and over and over to master his style and methodologies.

    Anyway – during my discussion with Steen – I laughingly recalled the rules – see this particular event was one of the early tournaments to use the Jhoon Rhee Saf-T-Pads. The rules went something like this – supporting leg sweeps were legal – you had 3 seconds once they hit the ground to score – head gear was not required – in fact – I'm not sure anyone had heard of the concept – and, the tournament was 100% on a concrete floor. Wait a minute, did I mention it was “full-contact” – if you knocked your opponent out you won (including, I might add if the floor knocked them out during a sweep.)

    Allen laughed and then said – yeah, we had 42 ambulance calls that day!

    You know – if I hadn't been so young and enthusiastic – I really would have rethought participating in an event like that – or, in the many other wacky things we did.

    I remember one of my instructors Gran Moulder (a 2 nd Degree Black Belt at the time with the Jhoon Rhee Institute.) Now, I'm not saying that Gran was wound “too tight” but, he was one of those marines who enjoyed “ NAM ” a little too much. After 2 or 3 tours of crawling through the Viet Cong caves with a Bowie Knife – and, staking out bodies at night to set ambushes – the marines decided he probably shouldn't go back – and, sent him back to Tulsa to abuse me and my classmates.

    I remember fondly the knife defense demonstrations we did back when I was 13 or 14. with that very same Bowie Knife. I would be the attacker and soon after the knife would come streaking past my testicles and then come slashing across my throat. Looking back – I'm not sure which one I cringe about more! These memories were brought back vividly several years ago while sitting with Jhoon Rhee and Linda Lee – another – old time martial artists was doing about the same knife defense demonstration and ended up slashing the throat of his assistant – that's right the “Good Old Days.”

    Comparing now versus then – I am absolutely sure about a few things. First, If you were to watch the old films – or, to have been there to see the Champions of the 1960's or 1970's – the fighters today – can run rings about them – in any arena. Second, if you were to look at the average quality of a Black Belt back then – versus now – my Black Belts now are a lot better. If you were to compare student retention – well – out of all of the hundred's of students we had come and go through our schools in Tulsa – I was the only one from the time I started to ever get a Black Belt – everyone else dropped out - usually at Gold or Green Belt. Finally, I'm sure how I survived – but, I do know that the craziness – never helped anyone achieve Mastery at any higher level.
    Just in case.

    There is so much stupid crap in here it is ridiculous.
  4. Sam Browning is offline

    Join Date
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    Posted On:
    6/02/2007 5:11pm

    hall of famestaff
     

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    I think this is a duplicate of another article he posted. No duplicates allowed. I'll erase the earlier one.
  5. bitparity is offline

    Registered Member

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    Posted On:
    7/11/2007 3:35pm


     Style: BJJ/MT

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    In my opinion, things were always better in the old days. Except for some things that are better now than they've ever been. Or maybe... things have always been the same, or rather, things have always been different.

    Whatever the case, I think the true answer is: WHO GIVES A @#$%!!!
  6. Phrost is offline
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    Posted On:
    7/11/2007 3:42pm

    Business Class Supporting Memberstaff
     Guy Who Pays the Bills and Gets the Death Threats Style: MMA (Retired)

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Staff: We need to set a policy on the moderation level for the articles here. MABS, or YMAS.

    Criticism is perfectly fine, but we need to decide what the line is between criticism and non-productive responses.
  7. MEGALEF is offline

    Still digging on James Brown

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    Lund, Sweden
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    Posted On:
    7/12/2007 9:30am


     Style: BJJ & Judo (1k)

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Haha.
    This needs to be moved to the humor articles. Boyd and Hedgehogey couldn't top this.
  8. Coach Josh is offline
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    Silent Guardian

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    Posted On:
    7/12/2007 2:49pm

    Business Class Supporting Member
     Gladiators Academy Lafayette, LA Style: Judo, MMA, White Trash JJ

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Stephen,

    You speak of the good old days and vaguely refer to how careless and unsafe training was then. I will give you a point on that the retarded factor was still evident when I started in the late 80's. Your attempt to justify the methodology you employ is weak. In an attempt to mass produce martial artist you forget one thing. Not everyone is equal and not everyone is cut out for martial art training.

    Real training gyms have for a long time understood the need for safety while sparring. Pads and safety head gear are used in every boxing gym and full contact club across the country. Contact is delivered at various levels depending on the stage of the participant. The real truth is that the techniques that are learned during full contact are effective and no one doubts the use of them.

    This is where your Mcdojo status comes into play. You will promote people on the basis of showing up and paying fees. As long as they meet some arbitrary minimum requirements they advance in your schools. Back in the day of many martial arts you had to go out and prove yourself to earn a rank. This is still the way it is in BJJ and Judo. Now people are becoming educated on real training. Now people are seeing through your fancy sales pitches and are seeking real instructors to train them.

    Grant it Mcdojo still has the kids market but you know what even that is slipping. Wrestling and children's grappling are moving up everyday. All those little kata robots are growing up and seeing that all that BS they learned is just BS.

    Continue to justify your self in whatever means necessary. Just stop deceiving people about what kind of martial art they are getting into. Call it a performance art or physical exercise with Asian uniforms just stop comparing it to people who train their collective asses off to become just a fraction better than they were the day before.
    Judo is only gentle for the guy on top.
  9. pseudo-genki is offline

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    Posted On:
    7/13/2007 10:50pm


     Style: BJJ

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    This man's grammar and writing style gave me a headache. What's with all the - dashes - everywhere? Did someone say he had written a book? What an editor's nightmare.
  10. kwoww is offline
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    poser

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    Posted On:
    7/15/2007 8:40pm


     Style: punching bag / crew jitsu

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by pseudo-genki
    This man's grammar and writing style gave me a headache. What's with all the - dashes - everywhere? Did someone say he had written a book? What an editor's nightmare.
    He seriously needs to learn how to use parentheses, colons, and semicolons.
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