Jul 20, 2007

What is McDojoism? Read and never be fooled again.

God, that background is the most hideous thing I've ever seen.
But that doesn't take away from the fact that this FAQ sums up McDojos pretty well.

Here's a snippet:
The Guide to avoiding a McDojo

Ok, so you're interested in finding a good martial arts school?
Here are a few steps to follow:

1. Find out about the schools in your area and write them all down. List their location and style.

2. Check the list and eliminate any schools who's style you don't want to learn, if applicable. (Not recommended, but do it if there is a preference to what you want to learn)

3. Call around and get prices and how many days available for training, and write them down. Call them all and write it down.

4. If the school has a website, go to it, and read everything available. Does anything sound fishy? Does it sound good? Are there pictures of eight year olds with black belts?

5. Go to each school . Usually most schools offer at least a free day, take it. This will be your best indication on the school and the instructor.

6. Watch some classes: especially advanced classes if they allow it. You especially want to do this if they mandate contracts. Are there little kids with black belts? How many students are there? Does the instructor work with the students or do trainee or assistant instructors do all the work? Do they spar, if so what rules, and how often? Make a mental note all of this.

7. Ask questions. Ask how long on average it takes to reach black belt, the average length in between testings, what type of testing & association fees they have, how often they spar and what contact level to they use, etc..

8. If you hear any of these phrases (or something similar) to your questions, do take note:

"We don't believe pain or getting hurt is necessary to learning how to fight (or train)"
"Sparring with contact means you have no control"
"It's harder to throw a kick and stop it inches from someone's face than just actually hit them"
"If you can throw an attack and pull it without hitting someone during sparring, you can throw an attack and hit an attacker on the street easily"
"We have advanced training that allows us to promote faster than other martial arts"
"You should never wrestle a wrestler"
We have anti-grappling techniques that can stop any grappler"
"Our martial art comes from [insert asian country] and is over 5000 years old."
"We believe in upholding the noble principles of the Samurai & their code of Bushido"
"With our sophisticated training, you can become a black belt within 2 years"
"We charge more than other schools because we offer world class training, we've even had winners at national or world tournaments"
"If a child can do all the same requirements as an adult to become black belt, then why shouldn't he be given a black belt?"

9. Take in all the information and assess, do any follow-up questions if necessary, and then make your decision. Don't feel you have to rush into this. Don't focus on which style is better than another style, focus on the individual school and the instructor; that's where the difference is.

**Remember, finding a good instructor and school is more important than any petty conflicts over which style is superior. **

**There is no superior style, it all depends on the school, the instructor, and you.**

10. Make your decision, and enjoy.

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