Anytime! Start with a single lesson to get a feel for our training. Just come to the Gilpin Community Center and register at the front desk. Grab a flyer so you know all the details if you decide to continue.
- Commitment (to show up regularly, applies to parents of students also)
- Focus (to pay attention and receive instruction without interruption or distraction).
- Determination (to work through things that are complex and difficult, as well as to show patience for subjects that might at first seem mundane).
- No, just wear comfortable exercise clothes to start. When you are ready to start wearing a uniform, we have several options, starting with our Free Box of clean used uniforms, along with various grades of new uniform available for purchase.
- If you choose to bring your own uniform, be aware that you should try to wear a plain white uniform until you are a blue belt. There should be no stripes of any color. Color uniforms from your previous school are okay until you test for promotion. Everyone has to wear white for promotion testing.
- Right now, some popular urban myths are circulating about the uselessness of our traditional uniforms. Many believe that we should train in street clothes, and our uniforms are really just pajamas (which always gives me a chuckle).
- It turns out that wearing a traditional uniform has many advantages that will become evident as you train. Without giving away everything, some of the reasons include:
- Freedom of movement: Ability to push your stretching and extension to limits you never thought possible. It’s true that yoga clothes could provide a similar effect, except that the tight fit can be overly revealing for some of our training. Let’s just leave it at that!
- Reinforced in all important areas: Regular clothes will tear easily in our style of training. Our uniforms are designed to practice self-defense scenarios, groundwork, grabs, and throws without damage.
Not usually, because they can cause major problems during training. If you have a special reason that you need to wear shoes, discuss it with an instructor and we can make an exception if you wear proper martial arts shoes. You can’t train in socks because you WILL slip and fall and have a bad day.
A water bottle! We take water breaks during training. There is a water fountain available , but it takes too long to leave the gym to use it, and besides: Germs!
- All students start out as white belts, it’s the only belt we give you. All other belts are earned. You will receive your white belt when you get a uniform.
- Your opportunity to grade up to the next belt color comes during Promotion Testing events which take place every three months: Feb, May, Aug, Nov.
- You may not be interested in earning belt color ranks, but there is a process for learning martial arts that involves understanding the basics before moving up to more advanced concepts. Earning rank tells us that you are ready for the next set of challenges.
Everyone trains together on Monday and Wednesday starting at 6pm. On Mondays only, children who are below the rank of green belt are dismissed at 7pm. The rest of us can continue with more advanced training until 7:30 (totally optional). We will touch on training topics that would be out of reach for children who are new to martial arts.
YES! This is because martial arts training is only safe when practiced with a certain level of order. Our rules are only designed to keep everyone safe, from themselves and each other. We don’t practice dogmatic traditions simply for the sake of being traditional or “military”. Everyone needs to have safe personal space to train, and that’s the reason for our rules. The rules are posted at the bottom of this page:
Elements of Our Program
“Begin by learning how to recognize and escape dangerous situations. Kids will develop bully prevention skills. As you advance, you will learn to take control of an attacker. You will develop hand to hand self-defense as well as defense against weapons.”
“Exercise doesn’t have to be boring! Build and maintain a healthy lifestyle that focuses on flexibility, balance, and whole-body lean muscle development. You don’t need to be in great shape to start, but we will get you there! We also make modifications for those with restrictions.”
“Kids and teens build discipline and focus, boost their self-confidence, and hone leadership skills and respect for others. All while learning cool moves!”
Guidelines for acceptable behavior during martial arts training
Martial arts training is a super fun activity when done properly, but can be dangerous when order is not maintained. The following guidelines are designed to keep everyone safe during training. The training Dojang is a place of peace, respect, and manners:
- When entering the Dojang, bow as you come through the doors. This is your signal that you’re leaving the outside world behind and entering a peaceful space. Conversations about the outside world are kept to an absolute minimum. Upon leaving the Dojang, turn toward the training area as you leave, and bow. This signifies your return to the world.
- When you arrive, all training equipment, water bottles, and shoes are to be placed neatly along the wall. When you are ready to enter the training area, you may walk laps around the training area until an instructor calls to form class. As an alternative, you may choose a space away from others to stretch or warm up. Occasionally, instructors may have a warmup activity set up that you can participate in if you would like.
- Students are only allowed to have contact during organized partner-work. At all other times, it is a violation of personal space to touch another student or instructor, even if they are a friend or family member.
- Students are not allowed into the storage closet unless given permission by an instructor.
- When an instructor calls to form class, all other activity and conversation needs to stop immediately. Sunbae line moves into formation, then looks behind them to direct the Hubae line into formation. Sunbae line maintains charryot (attention) stance until warmup begins. Sunbae line does not move out of formation to help others. Instead, simply indicate where they need to line up by motioning with the hands. Every member of the Sunbae line is responsible for those in line behind them, so use words and hand signals as necessary to keep them in formation.
- Training equipment (freestanding bags, pads, mats, etc…) should only be used when the instructor indicates that it is time for that activity. At all other times, hands off!
- Only one person should be using equipment at a time. When someone is working at a heavy bag, everyone else need to stay at a safe distance.
- Advanced students (green belt and above) may be training with weapons. All other students need to stay at least 10 feet away from anyone working with weapons. Students below green belt should not touch or handle weapons at all, unless under the permission and supervision of a Black Belt.
- Remain on-task during activities.
Remember that martial arts training involves plenty of high-intensity exercise, so you will have many opportunities to work out your energy throughout class, even if you follow these guidelines!