<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=1438971203078448&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">
Kovar Systems
Instructor Tips

How to Build a Martial Arts Instructor

By Ken Grube

Every Martial Arts instructor has one thing in common: a love for the Martial Arts. The passion your students see in your instruction is possibly the greatest reason they continue to attend your classes. Time and time again, we hear about the Martial Arts school that’s losing all their students to a competitor, and the reason why? The instructors didn’t relay the love they had for the curriculum to their students. On the other hand, we have schools filled with students excited to come to class to see their favorite instructor. Whether it’s in the big hugs or the countless stick figure drawings of your team, you’ll definitely know the impact you’re making on a student. For our instructors to become positive role models, we owe it to our students and to ourselves to develop an instructor training program. Having assistant instructors alongside your team of certified instructors will improve your program in more ways than one. The student to instructor ratio automatically decreases. When there are more eyes on the mat, the instructors are less stressed, and happy instructors lead happy students. Not to mention, the parents on the sidelines can see an immediate difference in ease of instruction.

If you’re thinking of starting a new instructor training program, as you should, consider the list of recommendations below.

Recommendations for an Instructor Training Program:

1. Be sure to create a name of your instructor training program.

2. Have a Curriculum - list all of the skills - required for your instructors.

For example:

How to start class
How to do your warm up
How to end class (pre-frame the next class)
How to demonstrate the curriculum
How to break down a move (Isolate and Exaggerate)
How to disguise repetition
How to make corrections
Three touch rule

3. Make levels of required skills for instructors to advance and improve.

From example above.

Level 1 being basic instructor skills, the must-have’s.
Level 2 goals are developing enough skill that the assistant instructor can take a small group of students during a break-out in curriculum.
Level 3 goals are to developing enough skill that an instructor, no longer an assistant, can run an entire class.

4. Establish the the frequency for your instructor training class. Twice a month is ideal, but you will need to provide feedback to your training students between classes.

5. Decide who will teach the training class. I recommend a senior instructor teaching the class at the start of program.

6. Set additional requirements to be in the instructor training program.

7. Your current instructors will also need to restructure their classes to be able to take advantage of your instructors in training. If the trainees don’t feel their time is being used efficiently they will stop showing up.

8. Determine if  you will charge anything for this program. It works well for us that we don’t charge.

You can find a list of our Teachers in Training eligibility requirements and additional documents in the Kovar Systems Resource Library as a Satori Business Member. For more information about joining the community, schedule an appointment by clicking here.

Many of us, including myself, got started teaching by being asked to help in class by our instructor, to volunteer our time; I did this for over ten years and thought it to be a great honor. Good luck, my friends, and continue to share the gift of knowledge!


Looking for more ways to develop your instructor team? The Satori Instructor Alliance provides school owners with the tools to build the world-class team of instructors your students deserve. To learn more about building your team and joining the Satori Alliance click here.

by Ken Grube