The Martial Arts Industry Association exists to help grow martial arts participation by helping school owners succeed. Many school owners are never exposed to the foundational business concepts necessary to run and grow a successful business. At MAIA, we can help fill that need, as we are made up of school owners who have walked in your shoes, know your struggles, and can help with strategies to elevate you from novice to a "blackbelt in business".
By Al Bartlinski, CPA, CGMA
In my travels speaking at seminars, I have had the opportunity to meet many school owners. The successful ones were tuned in to the operational and financial details of running a school. They knew the numbers and their profitability and financial condition, and were frugal, but not cheap. They were willing to invest in their schools. They went to seminars, took meticulous notes, and implemented one thing at a time.
I would run into them a couple or more years later, finding that some, certainly not all, were facing tough times. When I asked, “What happened?” the reply used by more than a few was, “I took my eyes off the ball.”
I was curious as to what that meant and, more importantly, why it happened.
I found that it meant they stopped paying attention to the details of operations and finances — the very things that made them successful! Why did this happen?
For some, their success made them complacent. Others...
Martial arts? More like martial hearts! Give parents the best Valentine's Day gift of all — a stress-free date night while the kids spend a fun-filled evening at your school. Download the Free Resource Now.
February is just around the corner and with that, Valentine's Day.
Celebrate the Day of Love by planning a Parent's Night Out for your students. Give mom and dad a night out to spend the evening together.
Download the free Valentine's Day Parents Night Out Flyer for your school and get more kids in your door during this special holiday.
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By Herb Borkland
Andre Tippett’s immaculate professional football career is the stuff of sports legends.
A former University of Iowa All-American and 2008 NFL Pro Football Hall-of-Famer, Tippett got drafted in 1982 and went on to play 11 sea-sons — his entire pro career — for the New England Patriots. He was paid more than $1 million a year to create havoc for quarterbacks.
The 6-foot-3, 240-pound linebacker appeared in five Pro Bowls (1984–88) and, from 1984–85, achieved 35 sacks, the highest two-season quarterback sack total by a linebacker in NFL history.
In 1984, he established a new team record for quarterback sacks with 18.5. In 1985, the Patriots, for the first time in the team’s history, advanced to the Super Bowl. Tippett’s outstanding defensive playing was a major contributing factor to the team’s success.
When Tippett retired after the 1993 season, his 100 career tackles, 18.5 sacks in a single season and 17...
By Keith D. Yates
Coming to America
Adam Spicar (pronounced, spy’car) first came to the United States as a foreign exchange student in 1996 and went to high school in Arizona, where he graduated in 1997. He returned two years later to visit his host family and was able to travel and visit several other states in America.
Lucie Stolkova and Adam were what she calls “middle-school sweethearts.” She says she first fell in love with Adam when she was just 12 years old and they met on the school bus.
When Adam came back to America in 1999, she got permission from her parents to come with him. She was only 16 at the time.
“My parents were suspicious of America, but they trusted Adam,” she remembers.
She spent a couple of months attending high school in Arizona, but she admits she barely understood English.
Back in the Czech Republic, students often studied English, but she says it was mainly vocabulary.
“I knew what...
A poll was created in the Century Martial Arts School Network about teaching 3 to 6-year olds martial arts. Here are my reactions to that poll and some pointers for making your early age program better.
By Melody Shuman
Something interesting happened last week.
Something that if you weren’t on Facebook, could have got lost in social media’s short lifecycle…
A poll was created in the Century Martial Arts School Network.
In the poll, Danielle Rogers (who deserves all the credit for starting this conversation and to a lesser extent, giving me a spark to write this post) asked a simple question:
The question was:
“Do you have a program in your school for 3-6 year olds? Tell us why or why not.”
Now, if you go to the poll (which you can here if you're a member of the group) you can see gobs of people offering up their opinions on the early age class conundrum…
You can see people stating their cases for and against teaching...
It's almost the New Year, the time for resolutions. Grand expectations. Weight loss. Goal-setting. Making a change for the better and trying to stick with it for the next 365 days.
Then, the first week winds down and the confetti settles. Champagne gets flat. By this time, I can’t tell you how many Facebook posts I see saying things, “Can we just start this New Year over?” Or, “I need a re-do.” And, of course, the standard: “This is the worst year ever!”
Since we have such high expectations for the New Year, we get frazzled at the first thing that goes wrong. We tend to associate the first week of the New Year with how the rest of the year will go. We think, “Why does everything happen to me?”
Having expectations and setting goals is important and you should definitely do it. In fact, if you haven’t written out a list of the goals you want to accomplish, stop reading and do it now! We have all heard that you...
Last month, we discussed the first three mindsets of a successful martial arts school.
This month, we’ll address mindsets four and five.
With that said, if there’s one area that we are still weak in as an industry, it is student/parent communication.
What I’m referring to here is the importance of giving consistent, quality feedback to all of our students and their parents on their progress. We do this by sharing with them what they are doing well and how they can become better. As simple as this may sound, it’s extremely...
I've been operating a martial arts school full-time for 40 years. I think I may have made every mistake that can be made in this business. The reason I’m still in business, I believe, is because I asked for help. I learned quickly that others before me had already found solutions. In this reality-based column, I’ll point out key mistakes I made in my business career, which are common errors among school owners, both large and small, throughout our industry. Then I’ll share the solutions I applied to overcome them.
In our early years in running a dojo as black belt instructors, we came to work, taught classes and tried hard to manage a business that was our sole source of income. As instructors and owners, we made student progress the priority in the school. While that’s a respectable and sensible idea, it left out a very important pillar of our growth.
I think, in those early years, we were missing a huge opportunity. We basically never showed...
As we exit the holiday season and enter the new year, the media is bombarding us about how the internet is seizing more and more sales from the standard brick-and-mortar businesses.
I am happy to say that my schools are somewhat internet-proof. A portion of our sales do compete with the internet: items like weapons, gear, uniforms, etc. But we have many ways to combat this.
For example, we offer the very best pricing, whenever possible, for purchasing products within the school. We cobrand anything and everything possible, and that becomes the “must-use” products for our students. We frequently offer new t-shirt designs for our student that are only available at the school. Most importantly, we program all product into our curriculum whenever possible.
All that said, my ways of combating internet sales is not the topic of this article. Changing with the times and adjusting to the environment is.
Over the holidays, I went shopping at a...
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