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Traditional Martial arts have been watered down in the USA

Updated on December 19, 2015

Hello my name is Matthew Harvey and I am a black belt in Kenpo under Jim Green who is a Shichi-dan 7th degree black belt in Kenpo which it took him 45 years to achieve. It took me two years and a lot of blood, sweat, and bone for me to get my black belt but now a days I see kids getting there black belt in six months. I started to do some investigating about a year ago seeing how is this possible that some one can get there black belt in only six months to a year. Yes it only took me two years to get my belt but what you don't know I pretty much lived at the dojo. I'd work an eight hour day then spend another eight hours at the dojo before going home and I did that seven days a week. That was how I got my belt in only two years so how is it that a lot of schools get there black belt in only six months and only spend three hours a week. I started doing some traveling and talked to a lot of people. A giant portion of those people we're shocked when I told them it took me two years to get my black belt. Now mind you some true martial art schools will take longer. I have seen a kid that got his black belt in six months then they got their ass handed to someone that is a white belt in one of the schools that teaches the right way. Traditional martial art schools today just want your money or they learned their martial arts from a watered down school. Two things happen they water it down so you don't get hurt and you keep coming back or two they promise you that you will be a black belt in no time.

Water down

Now what I mean by watered down? A lot of your kata moves, the instructor won't be able to answer you what the move is used for or how to apply it in combat if you ask what the move is for. (For an example See video teach 1). What kind of an attack or defensive move in kata you can use to hold your opponent or hurt your opponent, all the moves are used for attacking and defensive move in your kata. If you ask what move is this used for in the kata and your instructor tells you "Oh it is for tradition" and he or she does not explain what the move is for then you have two things. One he or she is a fake and just taking your money or two he or she got there black belt from a watered down school that did not explain to them the moves. Ladies and Gentleman you need to research the school that you want to go to before you get yourself hurt because you are tot wrong and if your already in a school you need to ask questions to the school you are going to so you are learning the right way. The reason why you need to ask is so if you ever have to use what you have learned in a fight. You will feel fine because you asked and your instructor told you what the move is for in the Kata. If you were not told and they just said it is part of tradition you need to leave that school because if you get into a fight and you need to defend yourself you will know how to somewhat fight but not knowing how to apply your moves effectively and properly. With that you may end up get hurt even more.

Me explaining about water down Example 1

Cons in the martial art world

There are a lot of fake black belts out there, and any school that you go to you need to see there black belt cert so you see who he or she has learned under and use that to your advantage. The main reason you need to look at their certificate is because you'll see the name of the head instructor on the cert that trained them. Once you find the name look them up and call the instructor and trust me they will not get mad if you call because no Sensei wants their name on a fake certificate and they will let you know quickly if it is fake or real. They will have on record all of the black belts they have trained in a file. And if you do not believe that there not any fake black belts will tell you otherwise. Trust me you will find them on their heck maybe even the school you maybe going to. Again as you see below in the videos some fake Brazilian Jujitsu guy and a fake Kung Fu guy so please research who you are learning from and if you do not then the blame is on you.

One of many fakes

Another fake

Real schools

Finding a real martial school now a days is hard because a lot of people do not want to, one they don't put in the work or two don't want to wait that long for their black belt so a lot of schools shut down. A way to find a good school is one that can explain simply what the move they are teaching you and what it is used for. Two when you feel the instructor has good leadership skills on teaching that is a good sign that they are a well-seasoned and well trained instructor. Three if the school does full contact sparring then most definitely they are from a good school because in martial arts sparring is very important on your training for adults as well as children so you may know how to apply the moves you just learned and you are used to getting hit so you will not panic if you are forced to fight.

In certain states I’ll put my word on the line to what schools are good. In Kansas at the Budo Ryu Ninjutsu under Soke Anshu Christa Jacobson the Headmistress is a great instructor to learn under because she is highly knowledgeable in the art she is teaching where a lot of schools have no idea of the history of the art they are teaching. I have seen in her YouTube videos that she teaches with a strong leadership skill and they do full contact sparring which means she understands combat and how the value of sparring is. I do recommend you check out their website so you may learn more ( ).

Another great school to learn is the Fudoshinka dojo in Jackson Tennessee under Sherwin Moore who is a personal friend of mine and he has learned his martial arts in Japan as well in the United State under the same Sensei as I learned under, Jim Green. He is another person who is highly knowledgeable in the arts that he is teaching. You will feel that his leadership skills are great and shape and gain much from Sensi Sherwin. Check out his website at ( ).

And if you are looking for a good place to start martial art there are a lot of Brazilian Jujitsu School Out There and the reason for that is well it is very popular and fun to learn as well just make sure you do your research before choosing a school that will fit you.

There are a lot I can name but I’ll let you adventure yourself to find a school that fits you and your needs

The Budo ryu school


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