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Finding A Good Dojo


There are many, many different styles of martial arts available to choose from. You may want to join a dojo for any number of reasons.

  • Exercise & Fitness
  • Self Defence
  • Personal Improvement & Development
  • Competition
  • Social Activity

For every persons objectives there is more than likely a dojo or martial arts style out there that will match those goals. The challenge can be finding the right dojo that suits your needs. With the huge diversity of martial arts styles available it's a good idea to know at least a little of what you are looking for.

Here are a few things to consider when shopping around for a martial arts school to participate in.

Evaluate what it is you want to achieve from your participation in a martial arts.

  • Do you want to participate in a style that is non-contact, moderate contact, or hard contact?
  • Are you interested in traditional martial arts, or do you just want to get a pair of gloves on and get into the ring?
  • Do you want to be competitive?
  • Are you looking for a sense of community in the club you attend, or a more strict military type atmosphere?

Here are a few things to consider evaluating in a potential dojo.

  1. The instructor should be willing to speak with you regarding any questions or concerns you may have. Of course this should be done within reason, do not interrupt a class in session to speak with the instructor. Approach the instructor before or after class or make an appointment so that you may sit down at a time that works for both of you.

  2. Ask the instructor about their qualifications.
    a. Have they had a police background check done?
    b. What requirements are there for them to be an instructor in their organization?
    c. What qualifications do they have to teach children?
    d. How long have they been training?
    e. How long have they been teaching?
    f. Would they be willing to allow you to speak with some of the clubs students?

    Having a black belt or lots of medals and trophies may make someone a good martial artist technically, but it does not necessarily make them a good instructor or give them adequate people skills.

  3. Go to a dojo and observe a class or two. If the instructor does not allow you to watch a class, then go elsewhere....quickly.

  4. Overall attitude. Is the attitude of the instructor positive and helpful, or arrogant and demanding? Are they willing to answer difficult questions in a professional manner, or do they get agitated or aggressive?

  5. Is the facility clean and well maintained?

  6. Do the instructors have first aid training and is there a first aid kit at the facilities?

  7. Do the instructors themselves still train and try to expand on their teaching and martial arts skills?

  8. Ask the instructor their opinion of other martial arts. Are they accepting and respectful of different styles of martial arts, or do they feel the style they teach is the only one of value?

  9. Does the organization have by-laws, policies and procedures that they adhere to and are available for viewing?

I'm sure there are other points to take into consideration, but this should help you get started.
Thanks for reading!

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Beginner Class

Starts January 11, 2018
Tuesday & Thursday
6:00pm - 7:00pm

Advanced Class

January 4, 2018
Tuesday & Thursday
7:00pm - 8:00pm

Homburg Centre for Health & Wellness
Saint Marys University

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