Is training expensive?
We don't believe so. The actual fees may vary slightly from club to club, but can be split into three parts. Firstly, the mat fees are typically £4 or £5 per session and go towards covering the cost of hiring the hall and buying new mats, striking pads etc. Secondly, there is an annual membership fee which pays the club insurance. Unlike some clubs, there is no immediate pressure to pay the membership fees as soon as you start training. You get a few weeks to decide whether you like the training before you need to join. Finally there are grading fees, which are used to cover hire of venues and provision of belts and certificates.
We understand that learning a martial art isn't for everyone. As such we always offer the first lesson free of charge.
What should I wear?
Again, there is no requirement to spend out on expensive outfits as soon as you start training. If you are coming along for your first lesson, wear something loose and comfortable (e.g. not jeans). For Judo, it is best to wear a long sleeved top that is not too stretchy (e.g. a sweatshirt), as it will get pulled about a bit.
If and when you decide you want to keep training, then you can get yourself the training outfit (called a 'gi'). Gis can be brought through the club instructor, online or from most local sports shops.
How do I progress?
Students progress through a series of coloured belts with the colour showing the students proficiency. These belts are awarded at 'gradings'.
The belt colours in Kyushindo are: White (beginner), Yellow, Orange, Green, Blue, Brown then Black. Junior black belts can be awarded 13 years old, but can then be converted into a full black belt at 16.
Progress between belts typically takes around a year per grade. There are a number of gradings organised each year and depending on how many you attend, you can be awarded either one or more coloured tags as a measure of progress towards the next coloured belt, or the full belt.
Can I come and watch?
Yes - anyone is welcome to come along and watch a session; whether you are interested in giving it a go, just want to find out more, or if you are a parent of someone in a junior session.
Do I have to do both Karate and Judo?
Although some clubs teach both the Karate and Judo side of Kyushindo, these are usually done as separate sessions and there is no requirement for you to do both unless you are interested.
However, the two arts are intended to work well together, e.g. Karate's blocking and striking techniques can be used against opponents at arms length or further, whereas Judo can be more useful if an opponent tries to grab hold of you. There is also some overlap between the two arts and some techniques, such as breakfalls and rolls, are taught in both.
Does Kyushindo make money?
Unlike many martial arts schools we are a 'not-for-profit' organisation. None of our instructors take any money from the payments made and all excess money is returned to the wider style to help purchase equipment and improve facilities.
Once a student reaches black belt level we require them to have public liability insurance, undertake first aid training and child protection training (for which we offer NSPCC approved EduCare training modules). As we appreciate these can be expensive costs, these are subsidised through the money we receive.