Learning new skills online has lots of advantages over learning them in a classroom. The most significant advantage is the sheer convenience. When you learn online, you can train whenever you want and pretty much wherever you choose, including at home. You don’t have to travel or rush to get to a class on time at a set location.
Like anything, though, there are trade offs when you swap one training method for another.
Even though it’s very flexible, learning online presents some challenges that can be confusing to some students, especially new ones. This includes the initial uncertainty people often have about how to use an online course’s learning platform and how to get the most out of all its features.
Because only full (i.e., paid) Global Martial Arts University (GMAU) students have access to all the lessons, classes, and website features at all levels of their courses, we understand that new demo (i.e., free account) students can get confused about what’s available to them on our online training platform.
To help demo students better understand how to access their courses’ features and train with us, our founder and director, Sensei Michael Hodge, created the How to Train in the GMAU (Free Account) video.
In this video, he gives you a tour of the GMAU Student Dashboard (i.e., online user interface) to explain what parts of our courses are available to demo students.
Here’s a summary of what Sensei Michael explains in the video plus a few extra tips for you about how to train in the GMAU…
- Demo (free account) students only have access to the first (beginner) level of the GMAU courses they’re subscribed to.
You train in your course by selecting the Training link on the main menu and watching/doing the various lessons and classes available.
- You can use the Guided Training feature to play and follow-along to the beginner-level lessons and classes in their recommended order.
- The lessons are relatively short because they’re designed for you to learn the techniques/material in a relatively quick and easy way.
- Doing the classes is like being in in-person classes in a real dojo or gym. They include follow-along warm ups, lessons, drills, conditioning, and sometimes cool downs. It’s important to do classes multiple times to get more reps and training-time in.
- When a lesson or class video is tagged as “(enroll to view),” only full students can play it.
- It’s also a good idea to practice on your own without watching the videos. This forces you to focus on yourself even more. Be sure to include exercises, techniques, and any drills you need to get better at.
- When you watch beginner-level lessons and classes, the video time gets automatically added to your Progress Tracker and personal Journal. But only full students can log their offline-training time to their Journals.
- Each course has assignments and tests at each level for students to have their skills reviewed for feedback and graded for ranking up. But only full students can access them. Assignments and tests aren’t mandatory unless a full student wants to get instructor feedback and earn ranks.
- Only full students can use the GMAU email system to contact their course instructors for motivation and support.
- On the Community page you can see what other students in your course are doing in the Student Activity and Student Victories sections, give other students High Fives for their accomplishments, see who’s training the most on the weekly Leader Board, and view what’s being talked about on the course forum.
- On the Discussion Board you can see what’s being said but only full students can post and interact with others on the board (and the GMAU Facebook Community).
- As long as you enter your address in the Settings area of your student dashboard, you can use the Student Locator to see other GMAU students who live near you. This gives you the opportunity to reach out to them to become possible training partners.
- You can use the Shop tab on the main menu to access the online GMAU Store, where you can buy branded t-shirts and other items.
- If you encounter a bug on the website or need technical support or billing help, select the Support tab in the main menu to access the GMAU student-support portal and create a new support ticket. Before you create a ticket, please check out the FAQs and other helpful articles on the portal for solutions to common student concerns.
We hope this “Getting Started” video and article helps you understand what’s available in your demo course so you can get going faster and more smoothly with your training!
We also hope you enjoy your demo-course experience with us so much that you ultimately enroll to become a full student in your chosen course(s).
Remember that when you enroll as a full student in a GMAU course you’ll get access to the entire program, not just the first level (as you do in the demo version).
To fully enroll, select the Enroll Now button on your demo-student dashboard, choose your favourite payment-plan option, and follow the prompts from there.
We look forward to getting you on your path to black belt and beyond through the GMAU!