3600 Chamberlain Ln #136   Louisville, KY  40241  •  502.426.0333  

Louisville Martial Arts Academy
Frequently Asked Questions


#1. What is a martial art?
#2. What martial art styles do you teach at your Academy?
#3. What age is appropriate for martial arts training?
#4. Are your classes broken up by age groups?
#5. Will there be other beginners in my class?
#6. Can anyone learn martial arts?
#7. How long will it take me to become reasonably proficient and how long
     will it take to attain a black belt?

#8. Why do people bow when they go into the dojo?
#9. Is meditation part of some religion?
10. What are the benefits of learning martial arts at Louisville Martial
      Arts Academy?

11. Do I need previous martial arts experience?
12. Can I watch a class?
13. Can I try some classes before I sign up?
14. When can I start?
15. How coordinated and physically fit do I have to be to practice martial arts?
16. Do I have to be in shape before I start training here?
17. What if I am late for a class, or if I have to leave early?
18. I feel a little self conscious about starting. What should I do?
19. How risky is martial arts?
20. Will martial arts training make my child too aggressive?
21. My child is already involved in other activities. Why should I consider
      involving her/him in a martial arts program?

22. What's the point of playing games at the end of class?
23. What should I do if my child wants to quit?
24. How can I motivate my child to continue?
25. Can I watch my child's class?
26. My child has trained at another school. Can they start at the
      level they left the last school or will they start over?

27. What commitment is required?
28. Does it cost more to study more than one style?
29. Are there any limits to the number of classes I can attend?
30. What uniform do I need and how much does it cost?
31. Are family discounts available?
32. Do you offer other discounts?
33. What payment methods do you accept?


#1. What is a martial art?
A martial art can be defined as a system of techniques; physical and mental exercises developed as an effective means for self-defense and offense, both unarmed and with the use of weapons.

The origin and history of martial arts is a controversial issue. We can see signs of martial arts in Greece, Egypt, Korea, Africa, Japan, China, Okinawa, Thailand, as well as other cultures and countries. There is a clear trail leading from the Southern China regions up to Korea, Okinawa and Japan. The details before that, and the exact details of that transfer, are greatly debated by historians and martial artists.

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#2. What martial art styles do you teach at your Academy?


#3. What age is appropriate for martial arts training?
All ages can benefit physically and mentally from martial arts training. At the time of this writing, we have students from four through over seventy.

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#4. Are your classes broken up by age groups?
Yes, we offer separate class times for children and adults in Shaolin Kempo Karate, Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, and San Shou Kickboxing. Please see our class schedule for a breakdown of classes and times.

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#5. Will there be other beginners in my class?
Yes, we have experienced tremendous growth and we are always welcoming new students.

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#6. Can anyone learn martial arts?
Absolutely! Children and adults of all ages, sizes, and skill levels will both learn and benefit from these highly effective self defense systems. Every student is unique, we will help each one to reach his or her full potential as a martial artist and to grow on a personal level.

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#7. How long will it take me to become reasonably proficient and how long
      will it take to attain a black belt?

The ability to defend oneself from attack is dependent on many factors. Certainly, the longer you train, the more able you will become. The probability of success is relative to the strength and ability of the defender vs. that of the attacker(s). It is important to realize, however, that there are no guarantees! It is possible for a beginner to get lucky or an advanced martial artist to be caught during an inattentive moment. This uncertainty is one of the practical reasons why strategies that reduce the chance of conflict are more important to self-defense than physical prowess.

Beyond all that, a beginner should think in terms of years (as opposed to weeks or months) before s/he begins to be proficient at the martial arts.

The time it takes to become proficient varies according to the style and your abilities. At Louisville Martial Arts Academy, you should feel that you are getting the basics down and can defend yourself fairly well after your first year or two. To reach a black belt, the same variables come into play. There is never an easy answer to this question. How long it will take you depends on how often you train, how hard you train, and how much you practice outside of class.

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#8. Why do people bow?
Bowing is a gesture of kindness and respect. Common among Eastern cultures, the closest equivalent here in the West is a handshake, but the bow has some intentions that handshakes don't. Bowing is both a greeting and an acknowledgement of another person's worth. Martial Artists embrace a philosophy that all people are worthy of respect. Learning to respect others is paramount to correct understanding of martial arts. Great physical and mental power must be offset by making a habit of putting other people before oneself, otherwise karate students might easily become bullies. So as we gain strength with potential to harm others, we also endeavor to become kinder people. Bowing and other forms of martial arts etiquette are training tools to help the student make kindness a habit.

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#9. Is meditation part of some religion?
At Louisville Martial Arts Academy, each Karate class begins and ends with a period of silent meditation. The meditation is used to clear the mind of distractions and gets it ready to learn. It has no religious significance.

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10. What are the benefits of learning martial arts at Louisville Martial
      Arts Academy?

There are numerous mental and physical benefits to learning martial arts. On a mental level, students will enjoy improved self confidence, self esteem, and concentration. Physical benefits include life saving self defense skills and improved reflexes, flexibility, stamina, balance, and strength. In addition to better mental and physical health, our students have fun! Friendship and laughter are all part of the curriculum.

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11. Do I need previous martial arts experience?
No, most of our new members have no previous experience. If you have previous martial arts experience, of course you're also welcome.

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12. Can I watch a class?
You are more than welcome to observe any of our classes.

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13. Can I try some classes before I sign up?
Of course! We offer affordable and no-commitment options for new students.

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14. When can I start?
You can start any time, contact us today!

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15. How coordinated and physically fit do I have to be to practice
      martial arts?

Not very. Most of us come to the martial arts in order to become more coordinated and physically fit. Even if you currently feel like the world's biggest klutz, you can still practice martial arts, and by doing so, your coordination and fitness will greatly improve.

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16. Do I have to be in shape before I start training here?
One of the biggest misconceptions about studying martial arts is that you have to already be in shape to learn. If you wait until you are in shape to begin, you will likely NEVER begin. Most students come to us looking to get in shape and to develop a healthy lifestyle by learning something interesting that they can do for the rest of their lives. Two months after you start you will feel so much better, you won't believe it.

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17. What if I am late for a class, or if I have to leave early?
Naturally, you always miss something of value when you miss part of a class, but we feel it is better to come to part of a class than to not come at all.

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18. I feel a little self conscious about starting. What should I do?
Most everyone starting out expresses this same concern to a greater or lesser extent. Making the leap, so to speak, and crossing over the line to new and uncertain territories always requires a certain amount of courage and belief in you. Once you do the first and most important thing, inquire and get started, you will see how quickly you become comfortable with martial arts training. We have a terrific group of dedicated students and instructors who look forward to lending a hand and assisting you with your training needs. Remember, all of our students - and instructors - started out just like you.

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19. How risky is martial arts?
Whenever you participate in any physical activity, there is a risk of injury, whether it's volleyball on a family picnic or martial arts training. You're likely to be sore from the physical exercise of martial arts, especially at the beginning, but that's true of any new, regular physical activity. You are learning a martial art so you will get the occasional bruise. Our Academy has an outstanding safety record because we go to great lengths to ensure the safety of our students.

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20. Will martial arts training make my child too aggressive?
At Louisville Martial Arts Academy, children learn that martial arts are not an act of violence, but the art of how to handle themselves in a problematic situation. Aggression will be channeled into assertiveness to increase a child's self esteem and build discipline and character. Please see our Kids' Programs page for more on this topic.

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21. My child is already involved in other activities. Why should I consider
      involving her/him in a martial arts program?

Many children are already involved in activities outside of school, such as sports, music, clubs, scouting, and the like. The strategies and positive mindsets that are conveyed through the martial arts can prove to be beneficial to children's performance in other activities. More importantly, martial arts training will prove to strengthen the mind and the body, and will teach children skills that may be necessary to help them avoid harmful situations, or escape from negative situations that may fall upon them.

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22. What's the point of playing games at the end of class?
At the end of a good kid's class we like to play some sort of game. This is to end the class on a fun and positive note, at the same time developing coordination, teamwork, sportsmanship and self confidence.

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23. What should I do if my child wants to quit?
There will come a time when your child will say, "I'm too tired to go to class today." This is a critical point in your child's training. You must teach them to follow through and have a never-quit attitude. While the martial arts are an enjoyable and very worthwhile activity for children, it should be recognized that progress takes consistent class attendance, some practice and support from the family - your child can't drive to class.

Don't be concerned about "pushing your child." Children wouldn't go to school, brush their teeth or clean their room if you didn't "push them." There's a big difference between helping a child follow through on an agreed-upon goal and forcing them to participate.

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24. How can I motivate my child to continue?
It's realistic, however, to expect a child to resist his commitment, eventually. Most parents understand that this is a natural response, but should not allow this temporary attitude to lead to quitting. Quitting can quickly become a bad habit. Facing these types of challenges is an inherent part of martial arts training - and life.

Instructors can help, but parents must be primarily responsible for instilling a "no-quit" attitude in their children. Honoring one's commitments is the very foundation of setting goals and achieving them. Quitting only leads to underperformance and failure. The world is full of great starters. Teach your child the skills to set goals and see them through to their completion, however, and he will be one of the rare and successful finishers in the world.

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25. Can I watch my child's class?
Attending your child's class is important to your ability to motivate your child. When you know what he has been learning, you can then help him develop a positive attitude about his next class. Remind him how much he enjoyed his last class and that he can look forward to having fun with his friends again.

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26. My child has trained at another school. Can they start at the
      level they left the last school or will they start over?

Every style of martial arts is different. The perspective should be that they are not starting over but are learning a new and different style. Whatever you have learned is taken with you wherever you go and it will help you succeed. We have had many Black Belts that have come to our Academy to train over the years that put on white belts to learn something different.

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27. What commitment is required?
We have several contract lengths, varying from a commitment-free month-to-month program, to a year-long contract commitment.

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28. Does it cost more to study more than one style?
Louisville Martial Arts Academy encourages all of our students to train in the multiple disciplines we offer. There is no extra cost associated with studying more than one art or "crosstraining".

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29. Are there any limits to the number of classes I can attend?
We would encourage you to attend as many classes as you would enjoy. An average student attends 2 classes a week, but we have many students who train more or less often.

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30. What uniform do I need and how much does it cost?
The uniform - or expected/required attire - varies from system to system.

Karate and Jiu-Jitsu require uniforms and you will receive a free one when you sign up for one of these programs.

Wing Tzun, Kali and San Shou don't require specific uniforms, although we do encourage school and/or system related attire. For the most part, though, just wear comfortable training clothes for these classes.

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31. Are family discounts available?
Absolutely! We encourage families to train together, and we make it very affordable for the whole family to join.

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32. Do you offer other discounts?
We offer police, firefighter and military discounts of 25% off.

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33. What payment methods do you accept?
We accept cash, check, credit card, and electronic funds transfers.

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