by Nguyen “Tom” Griggs
Hello, my friends. I hope you all are doing well and finding ways to successfully navigate these difficult times. In this column, I want to talk about three crucial decisions that leaders need to make to survive our current chaos.
I ask that you bear with me. The stories I will use involve airline crashes, and the details are not pleasant. However, all are relevant to the situation that now faces the martial arts community.
In 2015, Maria Murillo, 18, and her 1-year-old survived the crash of a small Cessna airplane in the Colombian jungles. They spent five days on the banks of a river, surviving on coconuts and collected rainwater. When they were found, rescuers were astounded to learn that despite having sustained burns and broken bones, the woman had been able to run from the burning plane while carrying her child.
Bahia Bakari, 14, was the sole survivor of a 2009 crash of an airliner that claimed the lives of 151 people. She spent...
by Frank Silverman
As I write this column, I reflect on the past year: where we started, where we came from and where we are now. For most of us, the year began second to none. Business was booming, and the future looked bright. Then the world stopped turning. In March, we witnessed the fragility of the world’s economy, not to mention life itself, as the pandemic took hold and forced a shutdown the likes of which we have never seen.
Today, we’re looking better than we did at the onset of COVID-19 — at least, things are looking that way as I write this column. (Who knows what tomorrow will bring?) However, we are by no means out of the woods. Many schools are still struggling, and business is nowhere close to where it was at the beginning of the year. And then there are the casualties: the schools that closed their doors for a final time.
I don’t want this column to be a message of doom and gloom. I’ve said it before and it’s worth...
by Dave Kovar
I am an outdoor enthusiast. Hiking, biking, climbing, training — it doesn’t matter. If it takes place outside, I love it. Some time ago, I went on an intense mountain-bike ride with two friends. We picked a challenging course near Forest Hill, California. I do a decent bit of cycling on the road, but it had been years since I pushed myself on a mountain bike on a hard trail.
Both my friends had better bikes and a lot more trail experience than I, but I did my best to keep up, and we had a great time. The ride illustrated to me one of the wonderful things about martial arts training: The attributes of balance, timing, strength, flexibility and focus carry over to other activities. (Another bonus became evident that day: I had only one crash but managed to avoid injury.)
The highlight of the day was swimming in the American River after the ride. We picked the perfect spot for it. The water was deep, calm and cool. One of my friends mentioned that when...
by Kathy Olevsky
I’ve operated a martial arts school full time for 45 years. I may have made every mistake that can be made in this business. The reason I’m still in business, I believe, is I asked for help. I learned quickly that others before me had already found solutions. In this column, I’ll point out key mistakes I made in my career, which are common errors among school owners, both large and small, throughout our industry. And I’ll share the solutions I used to overcome them.
First, the good news: Many of us are back to teaching in our schools.
Now, the bad news: Some of us are dealing with a resurgence of COVID-19 cases, and our states are taking action to address it. I know a few martial arts school owners who could not sustain their businesses. As a result, they had to close their doors.
Basically, we all are operating on the same premise: We will open our schools if we can, and if not, we will operate virtually until in-person training is...
by Herb Borkland
Although he’s acknowledged by his peers to be a ninth-degree grandmaster, Kelly Cox prefers not to use the title. Even more rare among notable American martial artists is that online searches for either Cox or his Rendokan Dojo return nothing. This lifelong student of karate and sword fighting inherited one of the first martial arts schools in the United States and has formed his life around its tradition of severe humility and a ceaseless work ethic. He is currently writing a book that explores the boundless wisdom of original scrolls from the 1800s that he inherited from Christine and Ken Carson, who founded Rendokan in 1946.
MASuccess: Where did you grow up, and what did your dad do?
Kelly Cox: I grew up on a farm in East Texas. Dad was a farmer. We toiled in the dirt. I grew up picking vegetables, riding horses and herding cattle.
MAS: How did you first hear about karate?
Cox: I was 9 years old, and I heard about it on Steve...
by Michael A. Perri Jr.
This year has been one for the ages, with the wildfires, hurricanes, riots, a polarized country and, of course, the global pandemic. Many businesses have been so severely impacted that they’ve been forced to shut their doors for good. This includes some of our fellow martial arts professionals, people who were making a career out of sharing their passion. Although we’ve suffered setbacks, our industry still boasts people who are not only surviving but thriving. Schools that had the systems in place have managed to pull out record months financially regardless of the trials and tribulations they faced.
I’m talking about schools like Caleb and Heidi Collier’s Championship Martial Arts in Kaysville, Utah, where they took the systems and strategies of CMA’s Holiday Event and applied it to their “Christmas in July Sale.” It transformed what was regarded as a slow time of year into one of their most profitable months...
Productivity is one of the most underrated skill sets to becoming a successful entrepreneur. Learn these 5 productivity hacks today and start improving your daily habits.
By: Cris Rodriguez, MAIA Digital Marketing Consultant
Productivity is a skill set that you have to develop and it truly goes hand in hand with organization.
I get asked almost on a daily basis how I am able to juggle running 4 companies on top of being MAIA’s Digital Marketing Consultant.
My answer is pretty simple: I have adapted daily habits that allow me to be organized and productive.
Let’s dive into my Top 5 Productivity Hacks.
1 - Plan Your Day the Night Before
Going to bed each night having a clear vision of what the next day is going to look like not only helps you become more productivity, it actually helps you sleep better. Create your “To-Do List” before you settle in for the night and when you wake up you will have all of your priorities for the day ready to crush....
By Terry L. Wilson
According to the dictionary, the definition of racism includes the belief that certain ethnic groups are inferior to others, which supposedly justifies discriminatory behavior. In 1985 Tommy Gilbert, an African-American police officer in Oakland, California, and a part-time kajukenbo instructor, ran up against just such an attitude as he searched for a location for a new school. He found the perfect building in an ideal spot — which is when the trouble began.
Tommy Gilbert inquired about renting the facility and came face to face with a woman whose photo could have accompanied any dictionary’s definition of the word “racism.”
“Back in 1985 and ’86, my dad was teaching in the backyard of our home,” said Damon Gilbert, Tommy Gilbert’s son. “As the classes grew, Dad started looking for a storefront to open a school. The area he was looking in was San Leandro, California. It was a very nice, diverse area.
by Perry William Kelly
The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It is a very mean and nasty place, and it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t how hard you hit; it’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward.
Those well-known words come from the mouth of a fictional boxer named Rocky Balboa. The character, played by Sylvester Stallone, is telling his son what he needs to do to make it in life. I say that truer words have never being spoken, especially in our current times, when things are fine one day and the next, the world as we know it changes forever. Repeatedly.
Cris Rodriguez is like Balboa in that she won’t let setbacks define her future. Instead, she applies a counter to every submission attempt that life throws at her as she travels the path to success — even when one of those submission attempts involves running a...
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