Help! I teach at a McDojo!
So essentially i have been practicing martial arts for quite some time, i have done: TaeKwondo, Hapkido, Judo, kick boxing, Gumdo, and a little bit of BJJ (i just started recently, and only have time to go about once a week :icon_cry: ). I am 3rd Dan in TKD and HKD. I first started traing in the martial arts with a particular grandmaster at what was a great school. I now work for that GM at one of his branch schools (oh man). My problem is this:
Just lately, in the last 6 months or so, my GM has seemed to have lost his love of the martial arts and seems to have just decided to give up. He has started to charge outrageous hidden fees, and promote students to higher ranks just to create revenue. Whats worse is that just lately he has been interrupting when i am teaching class and telling me not to teach what ever i am teaching...his reasoning: "it is too hard and they should just do (insert basic technique here)."
he does this during the advanced classes to make things worse!
I respect him because i have been training with him for a very long time, and i owe a lot to him, but i am losing respect as a result of his McMasterness...
I was wondering if you guys think i should should just quit and break away from him (something that would be quite difficult for me as he is like a father to me). Or if i should speak up, and confront him about it (which may piss him off and cause him to "disown" me
Please any response is appreciated
Wow, I've seen this happen before. It may be time for you to speak up and offer your assistance. In other words sever your ties with him. Open up your own school and if you still respect him just tell him you're doing this to honor his former teaching methods.
First, just be sure that your perspective isn't skewed. I.E. The school's training isn't getting easier, you're just getting stronger. Sometimes it can be difficult for instructors (especially young atheletic blackbelts) to remember what it's like to be a student who struggles, and sometimes is still lacking in fundamental areas. Assuming the school really is decaying...
As a student, if the training isn't what you want, just ditch the school and take your money elsewhere. As an instructor/employee/surrogate son your relationship is deeper and you should most certainly talk it over. You might still decide to part ways, but there's a slim chance you might turn things around if things have only been going downhill for 6 mos.
I have a very close relationship with my former head instructor and I've had a somewhat similar conversation (regarding training getting softer, not shady business practices) with him. I empathize, good luck.
Last edited by maofas; 4/11/2008 11:40am at .
If you are close "like a son" then you know who he is close to.
He might not discuss his personal issues with you, going bankrupt, domestic pressure, homesickness, midlife crises, or the breaking off of his major students (wars of succession). Whatever has him in a rut.
If you know that person who he confides in - his fishing buddy- a reletive, and you gage that it would be appropriate. Go an see if it something you can understand.
If he is actually Korean, generally family is tight lipped with outsiders. Especially if there is a cultural and age gap.
Mostly if you bail without any discussion it will look disloyal. You've been loyal, you might help him. Just dont expect an Oprah moment with tears...his is your GM afterall.
But you know all of this. You also know that doing nothing will solve nothing ether.
Deja Vu.. This was me a few years ago.. In my experience, these things were always there. It just took my reaching a certain level of confidence with myself and comfort in the situation to make the realization that they were, in fact, always the case.
In my case, Instead of being assessed, I was making the assessments while my Instructor sat on his ass and raked in the bucks.. It got to the point where I was working a full time job AND teaching his students on days off with no real reward other than a petty handout here and there, which was based on the merits of the whole Master > Student Instructor idea..
I drew the line when he finally charged one of our students $900.00 for private lessons up to Cho Dan and I ended training the student for almost 2 months, while he went and gambled or hung out with his McDojo Buddies.. That same student eventually got his Cho Dan and his Black Belt and then voiced his desire to stay with the Dojo, but to do some Kickboxing on the side.. The guy actually told the kid that he was not allowed to do that.. I was like, WTF?.. So i went to the kid and told him to make a choice, but that I was leaving.. He left and I got expelled..
Well to tell the truth he tells me quite a bit and i know a good amount of his problems...I just don't think the money problems or any of his personal problems justify the lower standards of the school. Your post does make a lot of sense though...thanks a lot!
Originally Posted by KO'd N DOA
He is like a father to you? You sure? I know a lot of people like to think that. They also like to think that the teacher considers them "like a son" in return. Unfortunately it is not likely in most cases. You may look up to him but how do you know he is not using you or is devoted to tou like you are to him?
Sorry, just saying, martial artists have a special thing I noticed where the students look up to and revere the teacher where the teacher could not care too much in return. the teacher does not always have bad intentions, it is just that the student is creating this relationship in their mind because that is what they want.
I know that happens a lot i have seen it happen with other masters. The only reason i say that is because when i was young he took me under his wing and i spent a lot of time with him and his family (outside of the dojang). He even approached my mother about having me come live with his family as his son (she said NO! lol) But i have no doubt in my mind he has lost a little bit of respect or something for me, and i will admit that i feel as if i am being used...
Originally Posted by LI GUY 1
Sorry man, it sucks to realize when someone is using you. I don't know anything about you and you may not be being used. You may be a son to him. I doubt it though, I doubt it in general for everyone. They like the status, martial artists are egotistical people. They like having peopple around them looking up to them. To be the leader of a herd of sheep.
Hell, I have a HUGE ego. I am invincible and a God in my own mind lol.
Originally Posted by hkdjohn
No you don't
At the end of the day your martial training is your martial art training.
You paid for whatever skill you have with your money, blood and sweat.
You owe yourself to do what you think is right.