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bushido_man96
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 27759
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE

PostPosted: Thu Mar 22, 2007 10:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

NinTai wrote:
We have been looking at it from the student point of view but what about
the instructor side.
It may sound harsh but my point is if you can't put 100% into your training
beacause of schedule conflicts (with another class), overtraining, injury
then why sould i give you 100% of my attention.


I have been an instructor in the past. In fact, I ran my own school for a time. I do feel that it is important for students to have trust in their instructor. However, it is not our responsibility as instructors to pull the wool over the eyes of our students when comes to the pros/cons of what each of us are capable of doing in regards to teaching and helping our students to become the best that they can.

NinTai wrote:
Well, if you ask for your instructors blessing and ignore him if he dosen't
give it then why bother asking?


Because instructors can be wrong, too. I will be the first instructor to admit that I neither know it all, nor claim to. All I can do is offer everything within my ability to each and every student that I come into contact with that is willing to learn. If they wish to seek another opinion, then I think that is fine. The only warnings that I would give is if I feel that they are not going to be working at a quality institution. Otherwise, I think everyone is allowed to make their own decisions.
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USCMAAI
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Joined: 16 Jul 2005
Posts: 144
Location: USA
Styles: Combat Karate, Kenpo,Jujitsu, and Boxing

PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2007 6:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

After reading these threads I feel lucky. I consider myself as "old school" as the next guy(well to some extent). But my instructor trained in several systems at once while in the Army, and expected his students to cross train as well. After getting my black belt in Kenpo, I was expected to train in Shotokan and Jujitsu. I was not allowed to promote to Master ranking in my parent style (Zanchin Combat Karate) until I had achieved 3rd dan in Kenpo and Jujitsu. My instructor cross trained me in Judo and boxing as well. His philosophy was to make you at home in all ranges of combat. In my school students even have to learn how to use a firearm as part of the requirements of becomming a black belt.
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bushido_man96
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 27759
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE

PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 3:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think that is very cool of your instructor to do that, USCMAAI. I don't know of many instructors that actually push you to go study other styles to get educated in the various ranges of combat. Learning to use a firearm is also a very wise idea, I think.
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Chikara
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Joined: 27 Aug 2008
Posts: 104
Location: USA
Styles: Isshinryu, Kobudo, Aiki Jiu-Jitsu, Aikido, Judo, Wing Chun, Systema, CQB (w/ strong emphasis on Krav Maga)

PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 1:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is exactly the question I've been asking everyone I know! I do a purely stand up style and my sensei was very upset that I went to check out another dojo. He insulted me a lot, it was not a pleasant experience. / /

It sucks because I'm a short woman and that style is a man's style. He's also constantly saying a woman trained in this style would have no chance against even an untrained man.

Sorry, lots of angst here. Anyways, I really appreciated your article and will probably read it a lot and share it with some friends of mine, if that's okay.

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joesteph
Black Belt
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Joined: 11 Aug 2008
Posts: 2753
Location: USA

PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 2:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chikara wrote:

It sucks because I'm a short woman and that style is a man's style. He's also constantly saying a woman trained in this style would have no chance against even an untrained man.


My Soo Bahk Do instructor's teacher is a petite woman, Chikara, I'd say about your height, 5'-5'1". She did not become a fifth dan because someone gave it to her; she worked for it and was encouraged by her own instructor--Grandmaster H.C. Hwang.

I don't know if what you study is actually a man's style, or has been taught in such a manner that it appears to be that way. The latter suggests looking into the mind of your instructor and, while we can't read thoughts, we can go by the behavior exhibited.

Behavior includes the words that come from someone's mouth; anyone can say something once and not really mean it, but a pattern of behavior, in this case repeating the negative on a regular basis, betrays the thoughts.

Frankly, Chikara, I say he wants to you to act in the role of how he himself views women. He likely harbors a fear of his own about women; he may consider the martial arts "the last bastion" of masculinity; you are a threat to him and continue to threaten him every time you return for class. Leaving his school would actually give him a sense of relief; he has caused the world to adjust to his distortion. The reason you left, he will justify, is not because of the art or his behavior, but that you have two X chromosomes, and he has an X and a Y.

All men don't think like this. There must be a tremendous number of women who study the martial arts under a male instructor and experience encouragement--genuine support, not lip service because it's politically correct. My instructor is a woman--fourth dan; she is also a trained fighter. I respect her. The assistant instructor is a man--second dan. I find nothing "unnatural" about this in that she put in the hard work hard to achieve her higher ranking/position, and none of the men in the dojang even bring it up.

I understand you are studying in another school, Chikara, which I assume to be another art style. Is your instructor a man? Do you find acceptance by your new instructor? Respect from your fellow students? Encouragement? Camaraderie? If the answer is yes, you've found an excellent dojo for martial art growth. Are you still studying in the old dojo where your self-esteem is always on the line? You've got nothing to prove by staying there.

While we speak of studying martial arts for self-defense, these arts are also a sport activity to be enjoyed. You've got more guts than I do, Chikara, putting up with the negative climate of that first dojo. I'd have said "Goodbye!" to that first one a long time ago, and embraced the second one with a hearty "Hello!"
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Chikara
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Joined: 27 Aug 2008
Posts: 104
Location: USA
Styles: Isshinryu, Kobudo, Aiki Jiu-Jitsu, Aikido, Judo, Wing Chun, Systema, CQB (w/ strong emphasis on Krav Maga)

PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 3:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, the dojo I go to now is the Isshinryu one. We go force against force and bang our bodies to get hard. I'm going to quit as soon as I've finished paying the contract off. I have no problem with contracts, they keep business going. But, I'm not about to waste $ on classes by not going. Besides, it's only until October anyway.

The new one is Aiki Jiu-Jitsu. It's taught by a male sensei, whom I respect and trust a lot. He came from a military background (I think Air Force) and he's seen true combat. He teaches us to save our bodies and not to absorb the pain, but to redirect the energy. He's the polar opposite of Sensei #1, he totally respects women. I've been doing classes with him about a month now. He has the men and women practice together too, unlike S#1.

Oops! Gotta go! Ciao!
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Tiger1962
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 21 Feb 2008
Posts: 1100
Location: U.S.A.
Styles: Former SBD; interest in all training styles.

PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 6:08 pm    Post subject: Re: Martial Arts "Monogamy" Reply with quote

bushido_man96 wrote:
In my experiences, my instructors would not look favorably on me looking into other schools and definitely not in joining them. The result of this action could mean expulsion. This results in what I refer to as martial arts “monogamy,” in which a student essentially ends up marrying his martial art and to an extent, his instructor. This isn’t a bad thing, as long as the instructor has all of the knowledge in the world to impart on his students. As far as I know, that guy does not exist.

Why do instructors do this? Why do they want to restrict their students?

First of all, I feel that they may be a bit egotistical about their levels of skill or knowledge. They are also territorial about their students. It’s kind of like when parents try to give other parents advice on how to raise their kids. Instructors have an “it was good enough for me, it’s good enough for my students” attitude.

Secondly, I think that an instructor feels threatened about losing a student to a school or instructor that their student will like better. No one likes to lose out on business. After all, most instructors are businessmen. They may point out that attending other schools is a conflict of interest. I have also heard instructors say that they don’t want their students going to other schools and sharing information that they have learned from them with other students or instructors. Some instructors would view this as disloyal behavior.


Don't feel bad, you're not the only one who has experienced this or seen this happen. This "law" also applies to the style I train under. I don't agree with it either for the same reasons you don't. The fact is, as you stated, no one person knows it all. This is also why I never "knock" any other martial arts style. I think they are ALL good and they all have something different to offer. No one style is the end all or perfect. If someone only wants to concentrate on only one, that's perfectly fine, but I don't think there should be school-laws that dictate what you can or can not do.

I say if you are going to train in different style, then do so, quietly and without blabbing it to your fellow students and teacher. Keep each martial arts knowledge separate from where you originally train. This is all out of respect for your instructor. It can be done, if its done right and without losing respect for the instructor. Some people just don't do it the politicially correct way though.

If I had the extra time and cash to learn a different style, I would just do so without the knowledge of my instructor. After all, I didn't sign a contract agreeing to stay "faithful" to one style. I would train a couple days in one and a couple in another. Incidentally, there are instructors out there who don't want their students training in a different style, yet, they either do so themselves or allow some of their very senior ranking students to do so. This is why this so-called law is bunk to me. If there is going to be a "law" - it should be univerisal and not apply only to "special cases" - because that only creates animosity, in my opinion.

By the same token, I also don't think that taking a handful of classes or a speed course in a different martial arts style than my own would make me qualified enough to call myself knowledgeable in it. But, there are martial artists out there who do and portray themselves as such to the more naive students.

I think an instructor would garner more respect & admiration from their students if they would just say, "look, if you want to learn a different style at the same time as you are training here, fine, just don't be practicing other things in our school than what you learn here, don't be promoting the other style to your fellow students, while training here and everything will be hunky dory." I would also behave the same way in the other school as well. This shows respect for the instructor and their style of teaching and also makes you a respectful student.
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Chikara
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Joined: 27 Aug 2008
Posts: 104
Location: USA
Styles: Isshinryu, Kobudo, Aiki Jiu-Jitsu, Aikido, Judo, Wing Chun, Systema, CQB (w/ strong emphasis on Krav Maga)

PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2008 8:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like your reasoning Tiger. What they don't know can't hurt them. Besides, they're both being paid for their services, they're not being cheated out of anything at all.
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baronbvp
Black Belt
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Joined: 27 Feb 2005
Posts: 1151
Location: Berlin, Germany
Styles: Muay Thai, boxing, JKD/MMA, Shorin Ryu, military combat arts, fencing, archery

PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2008 3:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've never know what it was like to be monogamous to one system. I have learned something from everything I've studied, including from people I've trained with informally.

It's your life - no one can tell you what to study or not study.
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Tiger1962
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 21 Feb 2008
Posts: 1100
Location: U.S.A.
Styles: Former SBD; interest in all training styles.

PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2008 8:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry, I tried to edit my original reply but was unable to do so.

bushido_man96 wrote:
  In my experiences, my instructors would not look favorably on me looking into other schools and definitely not in joining them. The result of this action could mean expulsion. This results in what I refer to as martial arts “monogamy,” in which a student essentially ends up marrying his martial art and to an extent, his instructor. This isn’t a bad thing, as long as the instructor has all of the knowledge in the world to impart on his students. As far as I know, that guy does not exist.Why do instructors do this? Why do they want to restrict their students?First of all, I feel that they may be a bit egotistical about their levels of skill or knowledge. They are also territorial about their students. It’s kind of like when parents try to give other parents advice on how to raise their kids. Instructors have an “it was good enough for me, it’s good enough for my students” attitude.Secondly, I think that an instructor feels threatened about losing a student to a school or instructor that their student will like better. No one likes to lose out on business. After all, most instructors are businessmen. They may point out that attending other schools is a conflict of interest. I have also heard instructors say that they don’t want their students going to other schools and sharing information that they have learned from them with other students or instructors. Some instructors would view this as disloyal behavior.
You’re not the only one who has experienced this or seen this happen.  This so-called "law" applies also to the style I train under.  I don't agree with it either for the same reasons you don't.  The fact is, as you stated: no martial arts instructor knows it all. This is also why I never "knock" any other martial arts style.   I think they are ALL good and they all have something different to offer.   No one style is the “end all” or perfect.   If someone wants to concentrate on only one style, there’s nothing wrong with that, however if they also want to learn more than one, that’s fine too.   I don't think there should be school laws that dictate what you can or cannot do outside the dojo.I say if you are going to train in different style, then do so, quietly and without blabbing it to your fellow students and teacher.  Keep each martial arts knowledge separate from where you originally train. This is all out of respect for your instructor.  It can be done, if it’s done properly and without losing respect for the instructor.  Some people just don't go about it the right way.If I had the extra time and cash to learn a different style, I would just do so without the knowledge of my instructor.  After all, the flip side is I didn't sign a contract agreeing to stay "faithful" to one style.  I would train a couple days in one and a couple days in another.  Incidentally, there are instructors out there who don't want their students training in a different style, yet, they either do so themselves or allow some of their other students to do so --- perhaps students they might have a friendship with or relationship with outside the school.  This is one reason why this “so-called law” is bunk to me.  If there are going to be rules, then those rules should apply to all students, teachers, instructors, & assistant instructors & instructors-in-training.  In my opinion, not doing so creates animosity amongst the other students when they learn of this.I also don't think that someone taking a handful of classes in a martial arts style other than their primary one would make them qualified enough to call themselves knowledgeable in it.  But, again, there are martial artists out there who do this and portray themselves as such to the more naive students and/or lower rank levels. For example: an instructor who wants to incorporate a few lessons of another style into their classes as a way to keep them from exploring other styles.  That’s not always such a great idea either.  First of all, does that instructor have the genuine knowledge to teach those lessons? Secondly, what about the students enrolled in the school to learn, let’s say, Tai Chi or Karate, and now have a half hour of grappling or flips thrown in as well. They didn’t sign up to learn grappling or throws. They signed up to learn Tai Chi or Karate.  Not all students welcome those ” freebies” that are thrown in.  It’s like someone pretending to be a doctor for an hour and not having any doctor training except for a few classes. This is why students should not be limited to cross-training.  Let them get knowledge of other styles at other schools providing they are respectful about it.  What you do outside the dojo is your business.I just think that an instructor would garner more respect & admiration from their students if they would just say, "look, if you want to learn a different style at the same time as you are training here, fine, just don't be practicing other things in our school than what you learn here, don't be promoting the other style to your fellow students, don’t share our stuff with the other school, etc., make sure your requirements are met for testing and everything will be hunky-dory."  I would also behave the same way in the other school as well.  This shows respect for the instructor and their style of teaching and also makes you a respectful student.  Everyone ends up happy.
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