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Thursday, May 23, 2013

Choosing A Martial Arts School, 3.0: Seeking and Evaluating

At this point in the process, you should have a pretty clear idea of what you’re looking for (or at least, what you are NOT looking for). Now let’s turn to the process of seeking a coach or school that can get you where you want to go.

This is the part in the process where most people throw their hands up, honestly. Because if you want to do this right, it is not a fast process. I’m going to recommend that you put some serious time in, both online and in person, in order to settle on the best martial arts school for you. It may read like, and sound like, a lot of work. It is a lot of work.

Consider what you’re committing to. Martial arts, at their core, are about practicing how to hurt other people. And there is a possibility, when you practice it, that you will get hurt. If you are training for self-defense, you potentially literally trust your life to the teachings you decide to follow. Even if you are not interested in self-defense, the possibility for injury remains very real. Choose wisely.

Check school websites. Make phone calls. Visit places. This last one is the most important; the martial arts are not something that can be experienced online or through video. You can only truly evaluate a school by going there and experiencing it. We’ll talk about how best to do that in a bit.

For now, just remember the advice of the knight in Indiana Jones: choose wisely.

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