Signing up for karate can completely change your life or your child’s life. But how do you know which dojo will help you thrive and have the most fun? Follow these suggestions to find the right dojo and start kicking:
You want to make karate a regular part of your daily life. If your dojo is an hour commute away, it becomes easier to make excuses and fail to set up the right routine. You should choose a dojo that is within short driving or even walking distance of your home and school. Academy of Martial Arts has dojos located all over the Greater Toronto Area, so choose one that is conveniently located near you.
Equipment & Resources
A dojo does not have to have fancy facilities or expensive equipment to be a successful karate school. However, you’ll want to make sure they have the necessary equipment to meet your training requirements and that the equipment is well-maintained.
Martial Arts Style
There are many unique styles of karate that originated in different parts of Japan. Each has their own style, stance, strictness, contact level, and intensity. AMA teaches GoJu Karate, a classic system designed for contemporary times.
When you first start, you probably want to be part of a large group so you can blend into the background. As you progress, you’ll want more individual attention from your instructor. Choose a dojo that offers the best of both worlds.
Quality & Expertise
You want to choose a dojo with instructors who are invested in your progression. Ask in advance whether your classes will be taught by the lead instructor or an assistant. The right dojo will have qualified and extremely capable instructors, but as you advance and learn more specialized martial arts, you’ll want an instructor with that expertise.
Attitude & Spirit
You want to choose a dojo where the instructors and students practice what they preach. Respect, discipline, and safety must be more than empty words, they should be the lifeblood of any healthy and thriving dojo. Take the time to visit any prospective dojo in person and get a feel for the staff and students. Do sessions seem organized and disciplined? Are instructors respecting and respected? Does everyone seem to be having fun? Choose a dojo that embodies the great values of karate.
As long as you keep these factors in mind, you should easily find the right dojo to start your new life with karate.