Question: How much does it cost? Is it too expensive for me?
Membership dues are paid quarterly. Dues are never more than $45 per month per person but may be less depending on the payment plan selected and/or a family discount. There are no contract requirements, or any other hidden fees.
Question: What is karate?
The main doctrine of traditional karate is the blocking of an attack and then countering with devastating strikes from various body parts – hands, feet, elbows, knees, etc; for the purpose of self defense, and life survival. We always rigidly adhere to this core doctrine. Additionally, less injurious techniques are featured to address situations that might be encountered in which strikes are inappropriate. Control techniques, joint locks, pressure points, throws, grappling, ground fighting and other strategies are featured in the training curriculum in order to provide a well rounded and comprehensive program. But this is only the physical component, the techniques of fighting known as Jutsu.
The mental and emotional components (mind) taught at our academy are known as Karate-Do. Do is the term used to describe the “Way” of Karate. Ancient martial arts masters perfected methods (a Way) to unify the mind and body, which can empower a person with extraordinary capabilities. The “Way” concept also implies there are multiple ways of being and of behaving, both morally and socially, to reach the ultimate goal of mankind: harmonious integration with the laws of the universe. It includes discipline and a constant search for self-perfection, implying the practice of numerous virtues, which lead the individual to perfect union with himself, his environment, and other human beings. An important aspect of Karate-Do is the quest to achieve maximum human potential as an individual.
Question: Is karate hard to do? Can I do it?
Traditional martial arts training can be undertaken by any person of any age (see portion regarding children) without the need to “get into shape”. Television and motion picture portrayals of the martial arts include dramatic high-flying kicks and acrobatics for their entertainment value.
However, traditional Isshin-ryu Karate training does not include such showy, inefficient, and ineffective techniques. Therefore, you are not expected to do such things. Individuals with pre-existing conditions like asthma, bad backs, knee problems and learning disabilities can undertake training because the program can work within the framework of such health problems. There is no “beginner’s” program. Each new member is taught according to their unique strengths within a standardized, common sense curriculum which progresses at the same rate as the individual.
Question: How often do I have to do it?
For normal progress, you should attend six (6) lessons during a month. We understand that time management is a challenge for most people, and our class attendance expectations are balanced accordingly. We believe strongly that participation in Karate should enhance a person’s life, with training often serving as a therapeutic, stress relieving event, as opposed to just another burden in an already hectic daily schedule. The two classes offered per week are structured, which means that some group practice occurs. Working with a partner is included, along with new information and instruction being presented during every lesson.
Question: I thought Karate was an activity for children. How many children will be in my class?
None. Preteens 11 & 12 years of age are permitted in the class only when accompanied by a parent who is an active participant in the class. Minimum enrollment age is 13. Preteen and teen members consistently comprise around 1% (one percent) of our membership.
If the correct maturity and sincerity is present, we believe that 11 to 13 years of age is an appropriate time to begin training. The public perception of karate has been distorted into unrealistic proportions by Hollywood motion pictures, television, and the dominant media culture. Consequently the expectations of parents and children (especially those who are too young) often meet with disappointment when in a traditional martial arts training environment.
Serious adults dominate our membership. Preteen and teen members do not affect the integrity of the core curriculum or the mature ambiance of the classes. As a member of the dojo, you will be training with other adults, not children. Historically traditional karate has never been an activity dominated by children. It is a lifetime activity for serious adults interested in enhancing their health, their mind, their personal safety and the security of their loved ones, and the pursuit of self-realization.