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DankMeme97
White Belt
White Belt

Joined: 15 May 2020
Posts: 2


PostPosted: Fri May 15, 2020 8:22 pm    Post subject: I want to learn Martial Arts, but can't go to a Dojo. Reply with quote

I want to learn general martial arts and mainly focus on Bo Staff training, but I don't have the time, ability to, or money to go to a Dojo. I'm not against self-training because that pretty much is the only thing I can do, but that is pretty ineffective. Is there anything I can do or any books/online videos or programs that I could watch. I'll most definitely do it if it's free, but spending a lot of money is kind of like yikes considering I'm only 15 and don't have a job. What should I do?
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Dean
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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 14948
Location: Houston, TX
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Sat May 16, 2020 3:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome to KF; DankMeme97; glad that you're here!!

Training yourself isn't the most ideal method of learning anything effectively from any MA (Martial Arts). Why?? Without the constant feedback from a qualified instructor...how can you know if you're even doing it correctly, and/or how can you know if that which you must correct has improved effectively??!!??

One can train via YouTube, for example, and/or one can purchase MA DVD's and/or one can purchase MA books of interest. The MA is quite difficult to learn for many, many reasons; timing, focus, correct usage of ones hips, posture, balance, footwork, varying the many aspects of strength, reaction-force, proper breath control, and responsing, just to mention a few. Without properly understanding these few I mentioned, MA techniques can become impossible, if not at least difficult to grasp.

Knowledge and experience is drastically important to become effective in the MA, but without the qualified guidance and constant feedback, it's quite possible that the knowledge and experience is ineffective through and through.

I do understand your desire to learn the MA that has become birthed within you, and that's the first most important thing; to acknowledge that desire. At at 15 years old, money can be one big bummer. After all, the money you can earn working part-time might or might not be enough to pay for MA lessons at a Dojo.

There are more affordable MA classes. For example, MA classes held at a Church or a Community Center, for example, might offer much more affordable classes...like free.

Once bad habits start to develop, they're difficult to correct. What feels right/correct, doesn't always mean that it is right/correct. Of course, without a qualified instructor, you won't know if any bad habits are developing. Without a qualified instructor, bad habits will start developing from day one of self-training.

It'll be a rough road to travel upon without a qualified instructor, but the MA journey is yours alone, and yours to be accountable towards. I've used the word, "qualified instructor" quite often here, and the intent that I use those words is that a black belt doesn't guarantee a qualified instructor; not all black belts can teach.

I wish you much success in your MA journey.



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Fat Cobra
Blue Belt
Blue Belt

Joined: 14 Jul 2018
Posts: 257
Location: Fort Drum, NY
Styles: Ryukyu Kempo

PostPosted: Mon May 18, 2020 9:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

DankMeme97, I understand your predicament. When I was young, growing up in Houston, TX (early to mid-1980s), we did not have money for lessons. The kids in my apartment complex really wanted to study martial arts, so we bought a few magazines and would share them with each other to learn moves. We would also copy moves from movies (some classics, like Enter the Dragon and The Last Dragon ).

If you can't afford training, don't let it discourage you. Sensei8 is correct that the best way to train is with a qualified instructor for all the reasons he listed. However, if I were you, I would look at some YouTube videos and some books, check out: Fumio Demura videos and his book, Bo: Karate Weapon of Self Defense. Just know that at some point, when you are older and can afford established instruction, this will move you much farther along your path.

Good luck and Karate no michi!
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Head of the Shubu Kan in Fort Drum, NY
(United Ryukyu Kempo Alliance)
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bushido_man96
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 28178
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE

PostPosted: Wed May 20, 2020 12:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Last Dragon is a fantastic movie!

Anyway, onward. I agree that training using online resources is limited at best, but, in a pinch, is better than nothing. Two things I would recommend:

1. Research the sources, and find good quality production and teaching material, and stick with it for a time. It'd be really easy to find a Muay Thai video one day for knees, and a TKD video another day to learn some sweet kicks, but in the end, I think what will benefit you most is to find a style to latch into for a time in order to learn some basics and get these basic movements down. It will help you establish a base at least, and when you feel more comfortable in your ability to acquire technical proficiency, you will benefit more when you expand your searches into other venues.

2. Find a good training partner! Talk to some friends, and try your damnedest to get at least of them to go all-in on this project with you. You can provide each other with feedback, and open up your training opportunities to partner drills, which are much needed to gain proficiency in the Martial Arts.

Here's a great article written by Zaine in regards to online training: The Perception of Online Martial Arts Training.

I've also got an article on training using media-based supplements (yes, shameless plug): Martial Arts Training Through Media Supplements.

Hopefully these will help you out. I would also highly recommend that once you are able to do so, look into joining a Martial Arts school with a good instructor. This will get you by for a while, but a good instructor will be able to take you so much farther.
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DankMeme97
White Belt
White Belt

Joined: 15 May 2020
Posts: 2


PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2020 4:12 am    Post subject: Ok Reply with quote

I'll look into it, I really appreciate the help.
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Spodo Komodo
Blue Belt
Blue Belt

Joined: 24 Mar 2010
Posts: 305
Location: Derbyshire, UK
Styles: Wado Ryu, Shotokan

PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2020 3:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

One thing I would add is to get something to strike against. If you have access to a heavy bag or even a kick-shield and a post to strap it to then use it to practice your strikes against. The striking surface will give you a little feedback and allow you to tune your movements for power and efficiency if you really examine your technique rather than just flail at the target. It isn't as good as a teacher but it is better than nothing. I learned what little Bo technique I have from meeting with a teacher for a day every six months so the rest of the time I was practicing kata and striking the bag. You can also video yourself and just see what you look like, always save your first video to check progress against though .
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