Martial arts training can be a great way to improve your fitness and self-control. You should research before you decide to learn martial arts. There are many schools and martial arts styles, so not all are the same.
This article is too long to discuss which martial arts style to choose. I will say that different martial art styles may be more appropriate for some people than others. Do your research and check out the classes at a few clubs that offer different styles.
The Teaching Method of a School is More Important Than the Styles
It is important to know how each school approaches teaching. Many martial arts schools teach techniques only that apply to traditional styles. These schools continue to follow the same methods developed by the founders of each style over time. Some studios borrow techniques from many martial arts disciplines and incorporate them into their programs. These schools are more free-thinking and incorporate both traditional and new techniques.
Mixed martial arts have seen a rise in combative martial arts. However, not all martial arts can be considered artistic or spiritual. Every school will claim their teaching style is superior. These claims should not be taken too seriously by prospective students. You should choose the approach that is most appropriate for you.
Be sure to watch the Instructors in action before you sign up
Schools often promote the backgrounds of their instructors to get students. You must realize that just because a black belt has more degrees than another, it does not necessarily mean that they are a better instructor. Instructors with winning competition records are not necessarily better. There is no correlation between instructor quality and number of championship titles won. Be cautious when using the term master.
Some instructors prefer the method of the old masters, where discipline is enforced just like in the military. Although martial arts classes can teach you general discipline, it is not bad to have. However, the traditional teaching methods, such as reprimanding students verbally or physically for using incorrect techniques, may seem a little harsh in modern times.
It is crucial to observe prospective students in class. To determine if the teaching style suits you, you should see it. After instructors have finished speaking, ask questions. If you feel that instructors are not right for you, you can move to another club. Many legitimate schools allow potential students to try out classes or witness them in action before they commit to joining.
Competition Versus Non-Competition
Schools that are keen on competition encourage students to take part in tournaments. This is a requirement for students to progress through the various levels.
Some schools are completely against competition and will keep it to themselves without interfering with other martial arts clubs. Many Chinese kung Fu clubs don’t compete, and certain styles like aikido offer no competitive outlet. Many schools prefer to be relaxed about competition and let students decide if they want to participate in tournaments.
It is important to consider whether you want to participate in competitions as a prospective student. You should not be forced to participate in tournament competition if you are certain that you don’t want to. Do not join a school that does not encourage competition if you are interested in it.
Martial Arts Training Environment
Schools may offer classes in community centers, gyms, or even basements. Some schools have basic studios that lack modern equipment. Others have modern equipment and clean changing rooms. These will all be included in the school’s membership fees. It is up to you to decide what you can afford and in what environment you feel most comfortable.
Some schools require an annual contract, while others are only required on a monthly basis. Initiation fees, testing and grading fees may be required for advancement. These additional costs can add up. Ask about what happens if your membership is suspended due to injury or prolonged illness.
You may consider taking short-term courses offered by community centers if you are unsure if martial arts is right for you.
There are many choices in terms of martial arts styles and schools available on the market today. Before you commit to any club, make sure you do your research.