How long in before you can / should teach?

Bob Hubbard

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Assuming no previous knowledge of an art, how many years should one seriously study it before one can reasonably be considered a teacher, and accepted as such? I'm genuinely curious.

With that asked, what is considered 'seriously study'?

For those teaching now, could you please elaborate on how you got to that point, and how long it took you? What (if any) specific requirements for your chosen art there are before you may teach?

Thank you.
:asian:
 
If a style has well defined criteria for specific technical requirements at each particular grade, and a program for certifying a member of that style/school as having had the necessary training to enable them to teach said material in a comprehensive fashion, then the time is relevant only to how long it takes that individual to accomplish the aforementioned things (i.e. high enough grade to allow for training below them, and completion of the instructor certification course).

If there is no certification course for instructors, then you run into the problem of any Tom, Dick or Irene being thrust into a teaching position with no real experience or training. That is bad for both the untrained instructor as well as the new student.

If there are no well defined criteria for specific grades, and no teaching certification, then you have nothing but a bee's nest being kicked about.

Gambarimasu.
:asian:
 
I dunno. I think personally I'll need instruction on HOW to teach,
once I'm "qualified" to teach.
 
You can be a teacher when you pass the teacher test.

You can be a teacher, of techniques as you learn them and train with others.

You can be a teacher when your teacher says you can go teach.

You can be a teacher when your instructor says you can teach a training buddy to help yourself practice and to help you learn the concept / technique better by also teaching it.

You can be a teacher to moment you see something new, by helping those who have not seen, learn the technique.

In Modern Arnis, I almost always worked with another training partner and I was either being taught to helping to teach others.

In Balintawak, I am a student, yet I can help some of fellow students work on techniques, by watching them or working with them. As they can with me. I know when something is wrong, or not quite correct. I may not be able to execute the exact timing or correct counter from memory, yet by working together we might remember what our teacher has taught us. Does this mean that we are teachers to each other? I think No. We are study partners.

If I go to a seminar and learn, then I may get something new from the instructor, yet I would not consider them to be my 'teacher'. My teacher is where I get most of my instruction and or influence. Nothing wrong in listing influences if they have.

Kaith, Your Thoughts?
:D
 
I'm not going to go into to much detail considering I've been ripped apart already and even after that I put everything in decent detail for them to rip apart some more.

But I have something to say. I think that when your ready then you are ready, period. The public has no right to say otherwise.

My Sifu is a good exmple. He started when he was 8 years old under his father. Thats the only source he's learned from. By the time he was around 20 he started teaching. Thats when he was ready. His father was a student of his instructor for over 10 years but received no paperwork because it wasn't given out to any of the students.

So in turn my Sifu does not issue the paperwork probably because he wasn't issued the paper work. He is a great master and is still teaching and is now in his 40's. How do you judge if he was ready to teach when he was 20 years old?

Also Kirk stated- "I think personally I'll need instruction on HOW to teach"

Good point. I earned 2 apprentice instructors certificates and what benefit did I get from it. Not much, for me. For the individual that is the right approach if you are going to instruct in that system. But for some, like me, I was groomed to be an instructor under my brother-in-law, but what I wanted to be was a fighter. My brother-in-law was an ex-professional fighter and taught me a bit of full contact kickboxxing but was only interested in building his school and grooming instructors. Sad but true. Also I do not teach anything that he taught me exept the kickboxing.

Another twist he made every new brown belt sign a contract that they would not teach his curriculum within 25 miles of him without permission to do so from him. What is a brown belt going to do, sign it like I did, while I lived 15 miles from him.

I'm not drifting here pay attention. By this point in my life I had many years of martial art experience a brown belt certificate, 2 apprentice instructor certificates and my sensei pretty much set the stage that if I cross him he can sue me in court, to top it all off, he's my brother-in-law!

Would you leave with peace of mind or stay knowing your being rear ended? Eventually I had to leave, that was just me!
 
We have students start teaching /instructing newer students after about a year. We then correct the technique of both at the same time while being sure to do so in a positive way.
With out the practice of teaching I think part of the learning is missed.
when we teach it should make us more critical of doing things correctly.
tshadowchaser:asian:
 
Originally posted by tshadowchaser
We have students start teaching /instructing newer students after about a year. We then correct the technique of both at the same time while being sure to do so in a positive way.
With out the practice of teaching I think part of the learning is missed.
when we teach it should make us more critical of doing things correctly.
tshadowchaser:asian:

I agree with that 100%. After teaching as a student, my technique in my class improved greatly because I was able to recognise so much more that I didn't before and once I made a mental note of it I was able to fix things more often and more effieciently.
 
After the discussion in this thread and a few others recently, I picked up my copy of Xing Yi Quan Xue which includes a short biography of Sun Lu Tang's life and training.

From what I have gleaned thusfar, he 2 - 3 years of training in Bajiquan and Shaolin, 7 - 10 years of training in Xingyiquan, 3 years of Baguazhang and a period of training in Hao style Taijiquan. That is a maximum of 16+ years of directly supervised training. He began teaching at around 30 - 31 years of age.

I will report more when I finish reading through the book and taking notes.

Gambarimasu.
:asian:
 
Assuming no previous knowledge of an art, how many years should one seriously study it before one can reasonably be considered a teacher, and accepted as such?

is the question about how long should someone study before they could be a good teacher? or rather how does your art handle teaching?

If it's about how long, it depends on the art and the person. As was stated some people might know material but be bad teachers, I know I'm a horable teacher.. I'm a fairly quick learner and I can teach myself (at leaste academicly) but I can't teach others, I just have trouble explaining things in a way that makes sence to people. I know some people that are natural teachers, those people I can see teaching at a relativly small amount of time in an art (depending on ability). Any one can teach what they know, but they have to be sure they know it close to 100% otherwise they aren't realy teaching anything acurate.. I think the aprentice instructor ranks in most systems fill a gap between being compitant in the art and knowing how to teach, this is a period where people realy learn how to teach a martial art, I think having this system (having an aprentice instructor certification or an instructor training course) is very helpfull to new instructors.
 
Originally posted by Kaith Rustaz
Assuming no previous knowledge of an art, how many years should one seriously study it before one can reasonably be considered a teacher, and accepted as such? I'm genuinely curious.

Thank you.
:asian:

Teaching isn't something you learn, not in most MA schools. And for some it isn't them to teach - it's just show and do.

If we don't look at this part of the equasion, I would say black belt. Most people would say, but that depends on how much the black belt stands for. And that is correct, just as much as saying a certain amount of years will garaty a certain level.

I'm assuming that a black belt has learned all the basic's and can alpy them. That's what a BB should represent in my opionen. Be able to apply your basics shows that there is a minimum understanding of the basic's.

But, and there's always a lot of 'but's' ;)
Many questions arise. Who can he teach, how much, when? Does he give correct credit, does he tell people if he's uncertain about a technique, and so on.

Now something totaly different but on the same issue. If your were to represent the style, how long do you have to pratice (which belt), to be able to say what your doing is ~100% that style. I don't know. But I'm guessing somewere around 20 years ( 4 -5 Dan...).

/Yari
 
You've already had some good feedback on the first part of your question, so I'll address the 2nd part.

Originally posted by Kaith Rustaz

With that asked, what is considered 'seriously study'?

For those teaching now, could you please elaborate on how you got to that point, and how long it took you? What (if any) specific requirements for your chosen art there are before you may teach?

Thank you.
:asian:

I think "serious study" will vary from person to person. I currently train or teach 10 - 15 hours / week.

From 1996 - 2001, I trained 20 - 30 hours / week.

The drop is mostly because my school is in its fledgling stages and I don't have many students. As my student count increases, my training/teaching time will increase.

From 1996 - 2001, I was training with my primary instructor in Sikal. I still visit him at least once a month to train. I've also got a couple of other instructors that I train with when I can. But from '96 to '01, I was a freak. This, combined with my previous background and my natural ability to absorb and retain information, allowed me to reach instructor level in that system in 4.5 years. My instructor has only certified 4 instructors. 5 - 6 years is the average of the other 3. I was able to train that much simply because I made it my priority to do so and I had (and still have) a very understanding wife. I'm not better or worse than the other 3. I was just able to dedicate more time to it.

But time isn't the only factor. Some people could train just as many hours and still not make it. Some people would overload their ability to retain information if they trained that much. Others could train more and retain it.

As far as the testing that was required by my instructor ... we went out in the woods and spent the day beating the tar out of each other while demonstrating the entire curriculum, and then some (impromptu extrapolation). At the end of the day, I had a pinched nerve in my shoulder and a great big, tired grin on my face. The shoulder took a couple of weeks to get back into working shape.

My instructor rankings in other arts haven't been nearly as rigorous.

In Eskrido, I was first made an honorary black belt (in my mind anyway), then worked to round out my knowledge of the system and am currently a 4th Dan ... but was never formally tested ... Grandmaster Cacoy watched me work and promoted me.

In Shen Chuan, the instructor test is usually pretty rigorous. I got a break because the rigorous test is kind of a "tempering." The instructor knew what I'd been through with my other instructor and knew that I'd already gone through an equivalent "tempering" process. Consequently, my test for that just consisted of demonstrating material as he asked for it and some impromptu extrapolation. But it didn't last hours and didn't include anyone getting injured.

But each instructor has different requirements.

Both my Sikal instructor and my Shen Chuan instructor also require that a person have a certain amount of teaching ability before they'll promote to "instructor."

In Sikal, one can be a "Lakan" or a "fighter." One can be a "Guru" or a "teacher." Or, one can be a "Lakan/Guru" which means that both fighting and teaching ability/skill have been shown. All 4 of us that have been promoted thus far have been "Lakan/Guru."

In Shen Chuan, they give an "Instructor" certificate that is separate from the Dan ranking. There are some who are black belts but not "Instructors." This means that they can perform the material but, as of yet, haven't shown that they're capable of teaching the material.

Both of these instructors, though, always try to insure that black belts (or people working toward black belt) get some teaching time. And they offer pointers to improve teaching.

I think these qualifications are pretty rare. I think most schools just use "black belt" to denote "instructor" and there's not really any effort to help people become "instructors." It's just assumed that, since they can perform the material, they can teach the material. This isn't always the case.

Mike
 
After 10 years of study and some of that as an instructor I felt I was seriously studying my art.
Reaching the 20 year mark I looked back at what I had done ten years befor and saaw mistakes and ideas that I had changed.
Reaching 30 years of study in the art I can say I am a serious student. I still have days when I screw up everything but now I can equate that to old age and a slipping mind.(LOL)
When is someone a serious student, I really can't say. I belive I was from the start. Learning and knowledge came in their own time and with experence came understanding.
tshadowchaser:asian:
 
Originally posted by tshadowchaser
After 10 years of study and some of that as an instructor I felt I was seriously studying my art.
Reaching the 20 year mark I looked back at what I had done ten years befor and saaw mistakes and ideas that I had changed.
Reaching 30 years of study in the art I can say I am a serious student. I still have days when I screw up everything but now I can equate that to old age and a slipping mind.(LOL)
When is someone a serious student, I really can't say. I belive I was from the start. Learning and knowledge came in their own time and with experence came understanding.
tshadowchaser:asian:

Yup. I think being a "serious student" is an attitude.

I think that people start teaching (informally, at first, when helping other students) when they are ready. It's a natural progression.

According to GM Cacoy Canete, he didn't feel that he had earned the title "master" until he'd been doing Eskrima for 40 years. But he says he still learns new things after 75+ years of Eskrima.

I think "serious students" will always be students, regardless of rank, skill, ability, or certifications.

Mike
 
As with everything, I'm going to leave this up to my dad. When he feels I have earnt the right to teach....I shall forefill my dutys. When he reckons I have surpassed him and boots me out then I will go on into higher learning. I have complete trust in my teacher and knows that he will make the right choice. :asian:
 
Alot of good answers in there...

I refrained from adding in anything so I could give folks time to answer.

My reson for asking had very little to do with the threads here, but is more personal in nature. I've found thru my own limited training that I learn things better when I 'teach' something to someone else. By this I mean see and feel a technique and can then practice it with someone else and help them 'debug' by sight, feeling. I enjoy this aspect. I've also on a few occations been priviliged to show some other individuals a few of the 'funner' (is that a word?) techniques I know and had fun doing it.

Experience wise, I know nothing. Rank wise, highest I've gotten is Orange in Modern Arnis... I'd like to learn a weapons system or kung fu style and teach that. I'm 32, not the most flexible or in shape individual, yet I have always had a desire to make a difference, somehow.

Titles, belts, ranks all really arent that important to me...I need to know in my heart that I know something that really will work. If I know its good, I can believe in it, and if I believe it, I can make it happen. Does that make sence?

I guess, I'm at that point in time where I've tried a whole bunch of things, know roughly what I want to do, and go, but dont really know how to get there, or where to start.

Sorry, I rambled off topic a bit...just, thinking...heh.

:asian:
 
Kaith,

You are exactly right...
If you want to REALLY learn something...teach it...

BUT, be prepared to teach it...don't go out as a brand new 1 year shodan and think that you are the *****...

:asian:
chufeng
 
chufeng,
I dont think I'll ever get to the point of thinking I'm 'that damn good'...but want to get to the point where I feel confident that I'm teaching something thats 'real'. Not just 'cool', ya know?

Example, last year at the WMAA camp I got to work for a bit after the camp with Rick Manglinong (Great guy BTW for stick work, does Ernesto Presas' system n more). That was the only time I 'saw' the technique...but I was able to 'demonstrate' and show the basics to my GF's instructors after her recent blackbelt test. It just stuck. (mind you, me and her have practiced it a few times since the camp). It was fun. I've also shown my nephew some of what I've learned in the Arnis classes and am now working to get him into the school (Dont want him doing the Anikin Skywalker bit on me. :D )

I know I dont know it all, or will ever truely know it 'all', but I'd like to start down the path...just not sure 'how' to. Hope that makes sence. (Its one of those heavy-thinking days, so I'm more muddled than usual. heh)

Thanks!
 
Teaching will help you grow as a martial artist. I let a couple new of guys in this week. One very advanced who I can not call my studnent but also one greenhorn.

Its not until these totally new people start that you realize how far you really have come. We may never come full circle but as long as continue forward, then you are on the right path and teaching is on that same path. Whether tyour just teaching your girlfriend or your brother or a whole group of people, it will enhance your learning process. Its a win/win.
 
Originally posted by Kaith Rustaz
Alot of good answers in there...

I refrained from adding in anything so I could give folks time to answer.

. . .
Experience wise, I know nothing.

Sorry, I rambled off topic a bit...just, thinking...heh.

:asian:


Kaith,

Yet you can turn on a computer and or a pocket computer or personal secretary, or PDA. ;) :D

So, you have experience and no something!


Seriously, take what you have and teach it to someone else and you will get better. You also know enough not think you know it all. :eek: :D

Good Training
 
I think students should start teaching early. It helps to reinforce knowledge when you teach. It also helps build self esteem.
 

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