Dec 14

7 Ways to Make a Living Teaching Martial Arts

By Michael Hodge | Instructors

You love your art, and what it has done for your life. Wouldn’t it be great if you could make a great living teaching BJJ, TaeKwonDo, or whatever style it is that you love? The good news is that you can, and there are more ways to do so than ever before.

Are You a Professional Martial Arts Teacher?

There is not just one way to be a professional martial arts instructor. But wait, what does it even mean to be a professional martial arts teacher? First, you need to hold at least a black belt rank. Second, you need to be a trained and qualified instructor, by way of completing a teacher training program (such as the Certified Martial Arts Teacher™), to effectively spread your art and make an impact.

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Dec 07

What is Krav Maga Like in Israel?

By Michael Hodge | Krav Maga

Today I interview Dan Gador. Dan is a 3rd degree black belt in Krav Maga, and runs a Krav Maga school in Kiryat Gat, Israel. He is also on the Leadership Board of the Global Martial Arts Association. I attempt to decipher the main differences between the style of Krav that you see instructed in its mother country, versus in other parts of the world. And, in doing so, we learn more about how this style developed into what it is today.

Dan’s Background

Michael: We’ll get started. Dan, can you tell us your name and just a brief background in regards to your martial arts training?

Dan: My name is Dan Gador. I’m 30 years old. I started training when I was 10. I actually started training because a lot of my friends went there, and it was kind of fun. But after a few months of training, I realized that I was actually pretty good at it and after, I think, three years of training, I started helping out as an instructor. That was when I was 13, I started helping with the instructions. And when I was 16, which is the minimum allowed age to do the instructor’s course in Israel, I went and did the instructor’s course.

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Nov 19

What are the Requirements to Becoming a Martial Arts Instructor?

By Michael Hodge | Instructors

Many aspiring martial artists fall in love with their art, and would be honored to spread its life-changing impact to others. You can feel a sense of evangelism and missionary-like drive to teach and make the world a better place through the tenets of Tae Kwon Do, or the brotherhood of BJJ. Most of these martial artists have the best of intentions, and some of them go on to opening up their own school, or teaching others in some capacity.

Can anyone start teaching martial arts?

Depending on the country that you live in, the answer is usually yes. Essentially anyone can open up a facility, call it a martial arts school, charge for tuition, and teach whatever they would like. On the one hand, it is great that governments give us the freedom to do as we please, and teach or congregate (if it is not immediately dangerous to society), without unnecessary oversight. On the other hand, this can lead to very poor experiences for students, due to the lack of a professional education on the instructor’s part.

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Nov 12

The Complete Beginner’s Guide to Shotokan Karate

By Michael Hodge | Shotokan Karate

Shotokan Karate is a dynamic martial art style created by the late, great Gichin Funakoshi. The style is characterized by highly concentrated striking, forthright blocking, powerful stances, and a series of captivating kata. Shotokan is a form of self defense that is built like a strong house – first a formidable foundation is molded within a student, and then one brick is layered on at a time. Rather than including endless variations and techniques, the style focuses on a handful of powerful blocks, strikes, and kicks – and then perfecting the body alignment and concentration required to place them within an actual fight.

This guide is designed for complete beginners to the style. You will be introduced to the style’s beginnings, the purpose of the various training types, along with some practical knowledge on its basic movements. This is a crash course in the white belt level of the style – focusing on the foundational movements, rather than the complex combinations and sequences (kata).  

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Oct 05

Qualities of a Great Martial Arts Teacher

By Michael Hodge | Instructors

Teacher’s Attitude

When I think back to the most impactful teachers from my life, there is a commonality. They tended to push me hard, and really challenge my capabilities; but from a place of love. They had a strong backbone and were even strict at times, but also pumped out positive energy and passion. As martial arts teachers, we want to emulate this double-edged sword of strength and caring. We want to show our students that we have great self-confidence, but are not full of ourselves.

Check Your Ego at the Door

There is a fine line between showing off to stroke your own ego, and inspiring a sense of wonder into your students. Some of us have experienced instructors who are so strong, athletic, and capable that they are constantly showing off their moves. Don’t get me wrong, we need to show our students that we know our stuff, and I never recommend asking your students to do something that you would not do. But, your student base is not an audience, for whom you are entertaining.

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Aug 04

Learn How One Martial Arts School Owner Launched a Successful Online Course

By Michael Hodge | Instructors

In this article, we meet Dustin Koppel. He has been a career martial arts instructor for over ten years and has owned a school for five years. He currently owns two successful schools in the Knoxville, Tennessee area, and teamed up with the Global Martial Arts University to launch an online Krav Maga program. In this interview, he discusses what it has been like since starting the online program back in 2016.

Dustin’s GMAU Course Success Story

This is an interview between Michael Hodge, the Director of the GMAU, and Dustin Koppel, the Krav Maga head instructor.

Michael: Why did you want to launch your Global Krav Maga Course?

Dustin: So, I met Michael Hodge back in early 2009. He owned a school out in Texas and I was actually here in Tennessee working and we developed a friendship. A couple years later, he reached out to me and was talking about this idea that he had with Global Martial Arts University and teaching Krav Maga online.

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Jan 20

Is Your Personality Type Holding You Back from Succeeding in Online Martial Arts?

By Michael Hodge | Home Study Students

This is a guest post authored by Adam Bein, currently a yellow belt in the Global Martial Arts University Shotokan Karate program. He maintains a helpful blog for other shotokan home study students.

You’ve signed up to learn Shotokan Karate through the Global Martial Arts University.  You pay your fee and you’ve begun to watch videos and practice.  Wouldn’t it be nice to know what hurdles YOU face studying martial arts online due to YOUR specific personality type-that other people who have a personality type different from yours, do NOT have to deal with or face?  Another way to look at this; how does your type of personality get in the way of advancing in online martial arts training? Furthermore; how can you leverage the benefits of YOUR personality type to maximize returns and advancement in online martial arts training?  The big question is: Is understanding your personality type key to excelling and progressing, and not dropping out of, online martial arts training? I say “Yes. Understand yourself and your chances of advancement in online martial arts training are significantly greater.”

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Jan 18

My Karate Journey with the Global Martial Arts University (Guest Post by Jonas Bieri)

By Michael Hodge | Shotokan Karate

This is a guest  post written by Jonas Bieri, of Switzerland. He is currently a 3rd kyu brown belt in Shotokan Karate-Do with the Global Martial Arts University. He also maintains a blog about his karate journey.

When my kids started Karate at a local dojo, my interest in the Shotokan style started. Watching them train, learn and grow made me want to practice Karate, too. Observing their world-class japanese instructor teach them techniques, mindset and stamina, and seeing all the kids improve, rank, sometimes fail and retry, motivated me enormously.

Being already a student in a local Goshindo Jiu Jitsu dojo and training once or twice a week, I did not want to spend yet another weeknight away from the family to practice Karate, so in 2016 I joined theGlobal Martial Arts University with their distance learning course to learn Karate at home via video lessons instead. We have some free space in the corridor between the kids’ rooms, that’s where I placed a mirror and now call it my home dojo.

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Jun 28

Launch an Ultimate Bo Program in Your School to Increase Excitement, Retention, and Revenue!

By Michael Hodge | Instructors , Ultimate Bo

As a career martial arts instructor and school owner, it is easy to get stuck in the same routine. Clean the mats, return phone calls, check emails, handle customer service issues, write out some class plans, and go teach. What happens is when tend to fall into a comfort zone.  A place where we do, more or less, the minimum effort to achieve our short term goals and complete our daily tasks. This makes life more comfortable, less risky, and also, less rewarding.

What does this have to do with launching an Ultimate Bo program in your martial arts school? By injecting new life into your school, via an exciting new class and add-on program, you will be keeping it fresh. Your students will have something new to work toward or to begin training in. They will become more well-rounded martial artists, you will improve your own understanding of weapons combat, and will have fun and grow your business along the way.

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