Tuition Increases

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Kaygee

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They may not have known... Lots of things (lease periods, change in utility costs or services that came up, or just plain end of year review of the books) could have triggered the price bump.

On one hand -- it's "only $10" over what he'd decided was payable. There are lots of ways to economize an extra $10 a month, if you want to. Of course, depending on how tight things may have been -- most or all of those steps may have been taken already. I don't know his budget... and that's the other hand. Sometimes $10 is really not there...

It comes down to the question of how he values the training... and that's just something I can't answer for him.

The problem was, the $40 more a month I am now paying really "isn't there", but it is, ya know what I mean? You make little sacrifices here and there. Now $50 is getting a little crazy.....that's a bill payment. Not to mention, I feel guilty when I am paying all of this money per month to go to a gym when my wife can't get $130 every 2-3 months to get her hair done.....
 

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The problem was, the $40 more a month I am now paying really "isn't there", but it is, ya know what I mean? You make little sacrifices here and there. Now $50 is getting a little crazy.....that's a bill payment. Not to mention, I feel guilty when I am paying all of this money per month to go to a gym when my wife can't get $130 every 2-3 months to get her hair done.....
It's starting to sound like you're actually looking for us to tell you it's too expensive, and you should quit.

Sorry, it's your call. You have to decide if it's worth the money or not, and if you can do something like brown bag a lunch or 2 a month, or skip the fancy coffee or soda, or otherwise economize a bit to find the money. I'm not saying you live extravagantly, and like I said -- sometimes, there really isn't anywhere you can effectively economize. As I said -- I don't know your budget or economic situation. It's your call. You need to make it, in consultation with your wife.
 

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For what it's worth, I don't think $130 is too crazy for quality instruction at a good BJJ/MMA school. It's about the middle for instruction, from what I've seen.
 

James Kovacich

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Steves right, BJJ alone charges a lot. I paid $87/mo for 2 days and $110/mo for unlimited BJJ and that was the 1990's and the cheapest school around.

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Steves right, BJJ alone charges a lot. I paid $87/mo for 2 days and $110/mo for unlimited BJJ and that was the 1990's and the cheapest school around.

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Wow! In my opinion, that's just ridiculous! More power to ya if you can afford that, but I would never be able to.
 

Tames D

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They may not have known... Lots of things (lease periods, change in utility costs or services that came up, or just plain end of year review of the books) could have triggered the price bump.

On one hand -- it's "only $10" over what he'd decided was payable. There are lots of ways to economize an extra $10 a month, if you want to. Of course, depending on how tight things may have been -- most or all of those steps may have been taken already. I don't know his budget... and that's the other hand. Sometimes $10 is really not there...

It comes down to the question of how he values the training... and that's just something I can't answer for him.

You may be right. But being a business owner they would/should probably know if they are going to raise their rates 3 or 4 weeks before they do it.
 

Mark Lynn

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By the way as a school owner I have had this conversation a number of times in the last year with parents. I generally don't have a problem reducing fees on an individual basis if the family is running into difficulties. Once you reach a certain level, provided you have sufficient capacity with floor space and instructors, there is little marginal cost in discounting tuition, i.e. it costs me nothing to keep on a loyal student even at a reduced fee, so why not keep them around rather than have them quit over $30 or so.

You would know your instructor best, but I am offering a perspective from someone who does currently operate a ma school as a business.

Kaygee

I have to agree with dancing alone here, talk with the owner. I have had students who's parents have lost jobs and had them go a couple of months of not being able to pay tuition, only to have them make up the payments when they got back on their feet again. I had even told them not to bother and they did it anyway out of respect for me. As long as the parent or student is upfront with me then I'm always willing to work with them. When they try and whine and complain and gripe about it, that is a different story.

For me it is far more important to keep a student who enjoys class and is looking forward to being there than worrying about $10.00 a month. because if they leave over $10.00 then I have lost actually lost $120.00 a month and more importantly about $1500.00 a year (tuition plus gear bought through the school) (Note I'm using your tuition prices here) over what $120.00 ($10 X 12 months).

However what does grate on me is that if I give the parents a break on the price and I hear about (or see) the new Iphone, or hear about the latest video games they bought or whatever. Then I do feel slighted and mislead. If I give someone a break then they shouldn't be buying the latest tech gadgets.
 

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Wow! In my opinion, that's just ridiculous! More power to ya if you can afford that, but I would never be able to.

In the '90's there was a shortage of BJJ instructors outside of Brazil. Today you have a buyers market, you should be able to get what you seek.

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Mark Lynn

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You're right! I can get the kettle-bell and the 25lb dumb bells and medicine balls at a store and use them at home. That would cover the fitness classes that are offered at my gym. The martial arts training is good, but I never took MMA/BJJ before, so I don't much to compare it to...however, I did attend a lot of free trial classes at other gyms and they did not have the schedule that meets my needs. I could pull some of the other places off, but it would be tough and I always thought that the training should fit INTO my daily life with my family, etc, not the other way around. Which is why I chose the current gym.

Kaygee

You could buy the Kettle bells, the weights, dumb bells and medicine balls and use them at home but does this actually make sense? From the sounds of it these are peripherals or bonuses to going to this school/gym whatever. If you factor in the cost of buying all of these, storing them at home, taking up a workout space at home and actually setting aside the time to do it (away from the wife and kids) all to save an extra $10.00 a month? Especially when your wife needs her hair done, or a playroom for the kids, or a craft room, storage room etc. etc. I'll bet you will never get them and if you did your use of them would diminish. In fact if you didn't buy these things you would probably paying at least the $10.00 a month price bump for a full year if not more.

What you are actually paying here for is the instruction in an art that you enjoy, that fits your needs, your schedule, etc. etc. As an added bonus you get a better workout because of the weights, the kettle bells, medicine balls etc. etc. which ups the value of the service you are paying for. The other schools don't quite meet your needs, they are more of a hassle to get to etc. etc. so the chance of you using the classes to the fullest and enjoying them (less stress of getting there, meeting your schedule etc.) is actually worth the extra money.

The problem is how to get the extra money so that it doesn't stress the family or put them in harms way. If $10.00 a month is a true breaking point for the family then I would really consider finding a cheaper place or drop out and get the finances in the house better and then get back in. However I take it that the $10.00 per month will be a strain and what you are actually asking is this a good deal (even at $130.00 a month) and you feel slighted (in a sense) that the rates went up right after you joined.

The instruction at $120.00 a month was a stretch to your budget, but you enjoyed it enough to commit to the classes and felt comfortable about staying and paying that amount, I honestly don't see how an extra $10.00 a month would make me quit a gym that I enjoy. I know that someone posted that the amount at his gym never goes up once they joined and all, and that is great, however it doesn't apply to your situation so don't let that color your judgement. No matter what anyone else pays they all are in different circumstances, different facilities, with different instructors, different arts. I believe DancingAlone has the best post on this because he is putting it in the proper perspective.

He pays $180.00 a month for the school he is going to; he pays willingly because it is meeting his needs, he is paying for ACCESS to the type of instruction he desires, the work out he wants etc. ect. Now from your post $180.00 a month is way out of your price range I understand that. He feels he is getting a good deal for the instruction he is getting even if he isn't using it to it's fullest potential, he is still satisfied. What you need to decide is if you feel that you are getting $130.00 a month worth of benifit for the instruction, access to the gym weights etc. etc.

The next thing is can you afford it? If the money is that big of a problem then you have to ask how do I get it or make up the difference to afford it? Again I believe if you really see value in what the gym offers then you'll find a way to get it; work a second job a few hours a week, job out your skills to someone or your labor again for a few hours a month or a week, brown bag it, cut out pizza night for the family, etc. etc. Or you could go and talk with the instructor and explain your circumstances and ask to stay at the current rate for a few months. I know you have only known him a short time and it makes you feel uncomfortable, but again how much do you really want to learn from him. Is it enough to step out of your comfort zone and talk with the guy?

A word of caution here, don't drive up in a BMW, with the latest iphone, and a tablet in your gym bag and tell me you can't afford the $10.00 extra dollars a month. That puts a price of the value you place on my instruction, and what you are telling me is that you don't think my instruction is worth X amount, when I have deemed it is and frankly I'd tell you to hit the road. But if the need is real and you really can't come up with an $10.00 a month and I'm going to lose you as a student, than what you coming to me and explaining things is telling me "Hey this guy swallowed his pride and came to talk with me, he values my instruction enough that he has stretched enough to take classes from me, but my price increases tips over his families' well being can I help him or do I lose him?". I'm not going to hold a grudge against you or think down about you, or even treat you any differently except with perhaps a bit more respect.

The instructor might be some bad *** on the mat, but he is still human just like everyone else, he still is a business man, he should have a real enjoyment being in the martial arts and he should recognize this in others who have a desire to learn from him. All of this to say I believe he won't hold it against you. It is still a simple business decision on his part; can I cut him (you) some slack, or can I afford to lose him? Be prepared to walk away if he can't help you and you can't make up the difference each month. And what happens after that could be the start of a new thread. :)
 
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Kaygee

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I think too much emphasis is being placed on the "$10 a month" thing. Understand that I went from an $80 a month expense to a $120 a month expense, which was really a pretty large strain on my family's finances. I know that, even though my wife says things like "if you enjoy it, go for it", it is not going to be something I can sustain. We were cutting it close when I was paying $80 a month, pulling off $120 a month is really getting out of control, in my situation anyway. Now, the fact that it went up $10, isn't really that big of a deal, but when my wife asked me for money a couple of days ago to get her hair done (I know, I already mentioned this) I felt guilty that I didn't have it. I was about $25 short. If I hadn't have changed schools, I would have had the money. I felt SO BAD!

But I am extremely sensitive and love my wife to death, so some people may not be able to relate.

I would have to mention to my wife, "hey, I know we had a huge talk and debate about adding $40 to our monthly expenses, but it turns out that we are going to have to add $50 to them because they are adding $10 to the tuition." I am not too sure that I want to have that discussion because I know she will say "go for it" because she sees how deeply I get into this sort of thing. As stated before, to the other students at this gym that have been paying $120 a month for years, the $10 increase is nothing....just like if I was at my old school where I was paying $80 a month for three years and they told me it was going up to $90.....I would be like, "well, ok".

Looking at $10 a month is looking at the "little picture", and I can see what everyone is saying.
But if you look at the BIG PICTURE, I look at it like this:

October monthly finances for Kaygee's "recreational" activites: $80
January monthly finances for Kaygees's "recreational activites: $130
Difference: $50

To me, that's the real issue here. I kind of knew that there were going to be months where I wouldn't be able to pull off the $120 a month and have to stay home during that month, so again, I stress the financial issues that I have at the moment (I won't have them in about 2 1/2 years yay). But it is what it is. $10 a month isn't that big of a deal. But, in reality, because I just started in November, it's really a difference of $50 a month.

Do I think that it is worth the $50 increase a month? Well, I did like learning the boxing, and the muay thai on the rare occasion that we learned it. The BJJ, well, I had a different opinion on that than I had before I started. I left Tang Soo Do because it seemed more like a "sport" than a self defense system. Well, I thought BJJ was the self defense system that I would need to complete myself, as if I was ever on the ground, I would know how to defend. But after my short stint with BJJ, I have discovered that it has just as much of a sports aspect to it that Tang Soo Do had. I asked about the praticality of BJJ in another thread and was told by people that practice it "don't stay on the ground" and "things like the triangle [and other submission moves] aren't going to work cause you won't have time to pull it off in a real fight". I knew that prior to taking BJJ, lol.

Who knows, maybe all of martial arts (outside of Krav Maga) have gone "sportish".

I do, however, beg to differ when it comes to the fact that I wouldn't work out at home. I don't need a large area, and I can ask for things like a kettle bell and medicine ball for Christmas and I WILL work out at home and use them. When I was doing Tang Soo Do, I practiced for 45 mins to an hour every day! I wanted my flexibility to be there and I wanted to be "point on" when it came to my forms because it seemed like many senior students would forget their junior forms because they weren't asked to do them during class.

I have a good work ethic! I believe that I will work out at home!
 
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Mark Lynn

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I think it is important to reread what you wrote in the OP

That being said, I joined a new gym at the beginning of November. The monthly there tuition is $120. I left my Tang Soo Do school, where the monthly tuition was only $80.

Now, there were plenty of gyms out there that were around $100 a month that I was looking at before I made my choice to attend the gym I am currently at. A $20 a month addition to my family's monthly finances isn't THAT big of a deal, and I expected a monthly increase because the $80 a month I was paying for Tang Soo Do training was pretty cheap!
I chose to spend the extra $40 a month, (with A LOT of input from my wife, lol) because the current gym that I just started at has some great people and good instructors. My wife just said I should "go for it" since I liked the gym so much.


Out of all of your research/checking out different schools you found one you enjoy, it meets your needs. It has great people, good instructors, simply put you liked the gym better than the others and felt it was worth the extra $40.00 a month.

I just found out yesterday that as of January 1st, they are raising the tuition to $130 a month.

Now, don't get me wrong, I completely understand that things like rent and cost of living goes up, and, according to the letter, the tuition hasn't been raised for a few years, so I don't hold any sort of "ill-will" towards the instructor/owner for the tuition increase.

But I wonder....since I haven't put much time into this school at this point, should I just drop my expectations and go to a cheaper school? My wife and I had a long talk about adding an extra $40 a month to our monthly expenses so I could drop Tang Soo Do and attend the new gym last month.......now we would be adding $50 more per month.

Here's where I think you are slightly off on your thinking. It doesn't matter that the price hasn't been raised for a few years, that is for everyone else who's been there, it is to help justify to them that he needs to raise the price. The simple fact is the owner of the business has decided it is time to raise the price and he is giving everyone notice. You might not like the price increase but it is a fact of life that we all know will happen. NOW if they told you that once you join you always pay the same price and then said "So Sorry we are upping the price" then you would have an issue and rightly so.

Your comment I underlined, I think you are misguided on. Why should you drop your expectations? Regardless of how long you have been at the school if you can't afford it with the price increase you can't afford it. However the real question is are you getting the value for what you are paying for with the price increase? Personally I have always stretched to pay for better instruction, I'll pay to go see the top instructors in seminars, etc. etc. because I believe I get more from the instruction and it's worth it. I'll sacrifice my time for the trips, staying in the hotels etc. etc. (all of that costs money and time) and training long hours in the camps and seminars to learn from the top instructors. It's worth it to me, for other people they feel I'm nuts. Keep your focus on what you are learning and the value you get from it, and not well I'll just drop my expectations and go to the cheaper schools. With that kind of mental attitude/focus I doubt than you will really appreciate your training experience there.

HOWEVER if you can't afford it at the new school than reach for the best instruction you can afford and go for it. The old saying of having champagne taste on a beer budget applies here, if you focus on not having champagne and you feel slighted because of it, you'll miss all of the great beers out there. However if you really desire the champagne but you can't afford it; but you really want it, you'll work for it and make it happen. Plus along the way you get to once again enjoy the beers.

I guess it wouldn't be that bad if I was at the gym for a couple of years, because the $120 a month would just be "part of my monthly expenses" and I would only be adding $10 to it. Most of the guys that have been attending the gym for years have all stated that, "$10 isn't a big deal", and like I said, I am sure it isn't to those already used to paying $120 a month, which I am not.

But, in reality, come January, I am now adding an additional $50 a month to my monthly expenses as compared to what they were in October, and if I knew that it was going to be $130 a month before I joined at the beggining of the month, I most likely would not have even considered the school. The problem is, I am getting in fantastic shape, learning a lot and having fun......so this is where the problem arises.

A price increase is a price increase period, it doesn't matter if you have been there for a few years or not. Things change over time, while paying $120.00 for two years might be part of my budget; if I just lost my job, moved into a newer apartment, had a roommate move out, got divorced, you name it. That $10.00 could tip me over the edge if a life event happened. But even then, just like you, I would have to face a choice of can I still afford it. Even being there a few years you face the same choice, only now the attitude is "well what has changed to justify raising my rates up?" The facility is the same, the hours the same, the instruction the same etc. etc.

In regards to your comment that I underlined. At the beginning before you joined the club was worth spending an extra $40.00 a month. Knowing nothing about the club but possibly a few free classes or work outs you felt it was worth $40.00 extra dollars above your previous training experience. What has changed? Now you have been there for several weeks and you are "getting in fantastic shape, learning a lot and having fun" clearly you now know more about the experience and have a better view of the experience. Where before you had an idea of what to expect now you know and you have seen some positive results. I still believe that the results that you have described and that you have experienced would not deter me from attending class if my tuition was raised just $10.00. Plus as you stated in the earlier post I wrote about, this school meets your needs schedule wise etc. etc.

Again if you can't afford it you can't afford it. If you really want to stay in the MA then you might have to select a cheaper school and work towards moving up to this one. Or take a break for a few months, pay off some bills, work a 2nd job, or whatever and set aside the money and then come back to it. From my experience as an instructor and a practitioner in the MA for 30+ years, you will find it easier to justify in your mind quitting if you "lower your expectations", or you feel you have been mistreated, you were wronged, slighted or whatever. If it is a money issue (among other issues) you will find a way around the problem(s) if you value what you are setting your sights on and work towards it.

Good luck
 

Mark Lynn

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Kaygee

First off please don't take my last 2 posts as that I'm putting you down or meaning to be offensive, I wasn't. I just read this post after I posted my 2nd post, which is why I'm posting now.

I think too much emphasis is being placed on the "$10 a month" thing. Understand that I went from an $80 a month expense to a $120 a month expense, which was really a pretty large strain on my family's finances. I know that, even though my wife says things like "if you enjoy it, go for it", it is not going to be something I can sustain. We were cutting it close when I was paying $80 a month, pulling off $120 a month is really getting out of control, in my situation anyway. Now, the fact that it went up $10, isn't really that big of a deal, but when my wife asked me for money a couple of days ago to get her hair done (I know, I already mentioned this) I felt guilty that I didn't have it. I was about $25 short. If I hadn't have changed schools, I would have had the money. I felt SO BAD!

But I am extremely sensitive and love my wife to death, so some people may not be able to relate.

With the detail you are now explaining the picture becomes much clearer, it doesn't appear you are able to afford this school. I too love my wife and in fact I have ticked her off by re-posting when I should be going over our finances with her.

I would have to mention to my wife, "hey, I know we had a huge talk and debate about adding $40 to our monthly expenses, but it turns out that we are going to have to add $50 to them because they are adding $10 to the tuition." I am not too sure that I want to have that discussion because I know she will say "go for it" because she sees how deeply I get into this sort of thing. As stated before, to the other students at this gym that have been paying $120 a month for years, the $10 increase is nothing....just like if I was at my old school where I was paying $80 a month for three years and they told me it was going up to $90.....I would be like, "well, ok".

Looking at $10 a month is looking at the "little picture", and I can see what everyone is saying.
But if you look at the BIG PICTURE, I look at it like this:

The price increase whether it is $10.00 or not, or how long someone has been there doesn't really matter, it all boils down to whether you can afford it and whether your are getting value for your money and the strain it will put on your family.

October monthly finances for Kaygee's "recreational" activites: $80
January monthly finances for Kaygees's "recreational activites: $130
Difference: $50

To me, that's the real issue here. I kind of knew that there were going to be months where I wouldn't be able to pull off the $120 a month and have to stay home during that month, so again, I stress the financial issues that I have at the moment (I won't have them in about 2 1/2 years yay). But it is what it is. $10 a month isn't that big of a deal. But, in reality, because I just started in November, it's really a difference of $50 a month.

The real issue is can you afford it. In the first post I took it as you were upset that the price had been raised $10.00 a month, that $120.00 was a stretch/strain but sustainable. Now you state that going in you knew there would be months where you would tip the budget over and you'd have to stay home. Honestly you are cutting things to tight if you are in that financial state.

Do I think that it is worth the $50 increase a month? Well, I did like learning the boxing, and the muay thai on the rare occasion that we learned it. The BJJ, well, I had a different opinion on that than I had before I started. I left Tang Soo Do because it seemed more like a "sport" than a self defense system. Well, I thought BJJ was the self defense system that I would need to complete myself, as if I was ever on the ground, I would know how to defend. But after my short stint with BJJ, I have discovered that it has just as much of a sports aspect to it that Tang Soo Do had. I asked about the praticality of BJJ in another thread and was told by people that practice it "don't stay on the ground" and "things like the triangle [and other submission moves] aren't going to work cause you won't have time to pull it off in a real fight". I knew that prior to taking BJJ, lol.

Who knows, maybe all of martial arts (outside of Krav Maga) have gone "sportish".

Ok so now it sounds like you aren't real satisfied with your school. You've had an awakening to the BJJ, you don't get taught Muay Thai much but liked it, and you like the boxing. Also it sounds like you aren't interested in the sporting aspect of the martial arts, yet chose a school that teaches MMA (or three sports). I'm sorry it looks like you chose the wrong school and that it is to expensive. Also you expressed that you are more interested in the self defense aspects of the MAs instead of the sporting aspect. If this is what you truly expecting/feeling etc. etc. than I wouldn't bother with talking to the instructor, working another job, or any of the other suggestions, it is clearly the wrong school for you.

I do, however, beg to differ when it comes to the fact that I wouldn't work out at home. I don't need a large area, and I can ask for things like a kettle bell and medicine ball for Christmas and I WILL work out at home and use them. When I was doing Tang Soo Do, I practiced for 45 mins to an hour every day! I wanted my flexibility to be there and I wanted to be "point on" when it came to my forms because it seemed like many senior students would forget their junior forms because they weren't asked to do them during class.

I have a good work ethic! I believe that I will work out at home!

Your two comments here are really why I reposted and I apologize if I offended you, I in no way meant to infer that you don't have a good work ethic. I was posting from the view point that you really liked your school, that it really had vaule to you and that you enjoyed the martial arts training you were getting there. I was taking it that the weight training the kettle bells were a side issue, a bonus so to speak. Being a secondary issue I sought to keep the focus on the main issue affording the tuition, so I was trying to come at your problem froma different angle (by stating the cost, the work out area, etc. etc.) in regards to paying an extra $10.00 per month. If it was a secondary issue and the MA training was the main focus, but you just got into using weights there as part of the workout, I was mearly saying that if you remove the primary focus of MA training and want to do weights at home then the ethusiam for it will probably die off and the money spent would have been better put to the class. I was trying to keep the focus on affording the class not buying other stuff on the side. I misunderstood and I wasn't trying to offend you.

Seriously in this post I believe you have stated everything you need to about it, the school isn't meeting your needs. It's fun and your wife was gracious enough to let you go for it, but it doesn't seem to really be worth it. BJJ isn't what you thought it was, MT is fun but not being taught often enough, Boxing is cool, but you are learning sports that have some self defense value but are really what you are looking for. Certainly not $50.00 above and beyond what you can reasonably afford and are comfortable with.

I understand your situation better now.
 

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Kaygee

MT is fun but not being taught often enough, Boxing is cool, but you are learning sports that have some self defense value but are really what you are looking for. Certainly not $50.00 above and beyond what you can reasonably afford and are comfortable with.

I understand your situation better now.

Sorry I meant aren't what you are looking for.
 
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Kaygee

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The Boar Man,
I didn't take anything you said as offensive! I appreciate all of the input and advice that you have given me!

And I think I have the wrong "idea" when it comes to martial arts. Like you said, I was learning three sports anyway. It seems they are all sports nowadays as none of them are really practical to today's growing dangers that we could face.

But the Boxing and Muay Thai was really fun and it was nice to finally learn how to hold my hands and throw some punches! Maybe I just need to drop out of martial arts all together as they all seem to be kind of pointless. Either they are "outdated" and have me doing things that were only feasable in the 14th century, or they are just a sport with rules., or they are a dojang filled with teenagers. There doesn't seem to be a place for a 39 year old guy that just wants a good work out and wants to learn how to defend himself if something ever happens, like it does these days, or make some friends, anymore. :(

I don't know....

But I did not take offense to anything. Thank you very much for your input!! :)
 

Tony Dismukes

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The BJJ, well, I had a different opinion on that than I had before I started. I left Tang Soo Do because it seemed more like a "sport" than a self defense system. Well, I thought BJJ was the self defense system that I would need to complete myself, as if I was ever on the ground, I would know how to defend. But after my short stint with BJJ, I have discovered that it has just as much of a sports aspect to it that Tang Soo Do had. I asked about the praticality of BJJ in another thread and was told by people that practice it "don't stay on the ground" and "things like the triangle [and other submission moves] aren't going to work cause you won't have time to pull it off in a real fight". I knew that prior to taking BJJ, lol.

BJJ can be taught from a sportive approach or from a combative/self-defense approach or from some mixture of the above. If you want the self-defense aspects and your school is strictly sportive, then you may want to find a different school.

I reviewed that other thread. I didn't see a single BJJ practitioner saying anything like ""things like the triangle [and other submission moves] aren't going to work cause you won't have time to pull it off in a real fight". I did see a number of people advising you to take the top position if possible. This is correct. In a real fight you always want to be on top if possible. The whole point of the guard is that sometimes you are unable to get the top position. If for whatever reason (the other guy is bigger, stronger, a better wrestler, catches you by surprise), you end up on the bottom, the guard offers you a way to defend yourself and defeat an opponent even if you can't get that top position. Submission moves (from top or bottom) are totally feasible in a real fight - you just have to remember that in a real fight they aren't for making someone tap - they're for breaking joints or choking someone unconscious.

As far as going to the ground or not - that's totally dependent on the situation. The important point is that you have the skills to defend yourself either standing or on the ground and the ability to safely transition from one to the other depending on what you need to do.
 
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Kaygee

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I just think I am finally convinced that, in a real life situation, the guy who gets the punch off first and is bigger/badder, is going to win anyway.
If a person sticks me and my wife up, or me and my daughter up, none of the stuff that I learned is going to help. It's fun to stand there and practice it, but in reality, the guy has a knife and is most likely drugged up...you're not getting that knife..
The forms that are in traditional karate's, they are just for the "art" aspect nowadays and would never work in a real life situation. These are sports now!

Thru it all though, I learned a lot! I learned that maybe I should be spending my money and time on something else other than martial arts. And isn't learning what life is all about?? :)
 

Monkey Turned Wolf

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I just think I am finally convinced that, in a real life situation, the guy who gets the punch off first and is bigger/badder, is going to win anyway.
If a person sticks me and my wife up, or me and my daughter up, none of the stuff that I learned is going to help. It's fun to stand there and practice it, but in reality, the guy has a knife and is most likely drugged up...you're not getting that knife..
The forms that are in traditional karate's, they are just for the "art" aspect nowadays and would never work in a real life situation. These are sports now!

Thru it all though, I learned a lot! I learned that maybe I should be spending my money and time on something else other than martial arts. And isn't learning what life is all about?? :)
To be perfectly honest, I think you need to try ken/mpo before you quit. Not because it's my style, but because the primary focus is winning those split second encounters. Outside of that, if you feel the martial arts aren't for you, then they aren't for you, simple as that. (can't comment on if other arts work in real-life situations since I only know kempo and sportfighting, not much in between)
 

harlan

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Kaygee, it's good that the experience is helping you to focus on what you really want. It's a process. But I'd like to suggest that your opinion regarding the effectiveness of empty-hand martial arts (bolded) is probably erroneous. Just because you can't find good, effective training at an affordable price doesn't mean it doesn't exist.

... It seems they are all sports nowadays as none of them are really practical to today's growing dangers that we could face...they all seem to be kind of pointless. Either they are "outdated" and have me doing things that were only feasable in the 14th century, or they are just a sport with rules., or they are a dojang filled with teenagers. There doesn't seem to be a place for a 39 year old guy that just wants a good work out and wants to learn how to defend himself if something ever happens, like it does these days, or make some friends, anymore. :(
 
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Kaygee

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But I'd like to suggest that your opinion regarding the effectiveness of empty-hand martial arts (bolded) is probably erroneous. Just because you can't find good, effective training at an affordable price doesn't mean it doesn't exist.

You are right, and I am sorry. I am just frustrated right now because I have put so much blood, sweat and broken/sprained body parts into this and it seems like it is coming to a pointless end to me.
But for me to damn the entire martial arts world and all of its styles, is immature and wrong, at best, and I apologize for that!
 
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