WMA Karate Afterschool Program

Welcome to the WMA Karate after school program. This is to introduce you to the program, extracurricular activities and give you a summary of rules for the class. Parents, please review this information carefully with your children.

This program is based upon Korean art and modern teachings. Participants will develop basic martial art skills, better concentration and an increased awareness of safety issues related to self-defense. Families have reported young people obtaining greater confidence and other benefits.

Each of our students enters the program with a desire to learn, enjoy robust physical activity and participate as a team. In addition to learning the physical art, students, especially the younger children, are taught about safety issues. The instruction of your child is under the auspices of the World Martial Arts Association (WMAA), which has schools around the country and Headquarters classes in Brooklyn.

Event Schedule These extracurricular events, which are sponsored by the Association, are held during the year and involve additional fees. In order to keep up to date with the scheduled events, please check the web site regularly and send your contact information, including your child’s name and school, to howard@wmakarate.com

Tournaments. There are three tournaments each year in which students will compete against students from other schools. All younger children (5-6) will receive medals for competing and the winners will receive trophies and medals. The tournament is a good opportunity to meet students from other schools, see exhibitions by black belts from around the country, and experience the pressures of performing at your best.

Trips Tae Kwon Do in the Mountains – Summer Session. During the summer there is a training camp in the mountains. This is for higher belts (purple and above) and for children 10 or older.

Class Rules Although the program teaches non-contact karate, class rules are significant in maintaining the class structure and ensure that the participant derives all the benefit of the instruction. The following are important guidelines to understand and follow. If you have any questions regarding these or any other instructions, please consult your instructor.

1) Follow the directions of the instructor. If you have any question about an instruction, or if you believe that a command could be harmful to you or another student, immediately ask the instructor.

2) Practicing karate requires physical exertion. Participants are strongly advised to notify the instructor at time of registration and anytime thereafter of any past or present ailments or injuries. If at any time, you feel weak, dizzy, off-balance or out of breath, cease your activity immediately and seek the instructor’s attention. Any medical attention given to the participant will be of first aid treatment type only.

3) Do not spar unless under the supervision of an instructor. During Free Style Sparring, NO OFFENSIVE CONTACT is allowed at any time. There are no kicks to the head, face, neck or groin area allowed. Contact shall be limited to the execution of a defensive move (BLOCKING) during Free Style Sparring or Three-Step practice; provided however, that such defensive moves are properly executed with control and not intended to cause physical injury. NO CONTACT is allowed at any time except as set forth above for issues of safety and respect.

Promotion As you may already know, karate is often associated with belt rank. When a student starts the study of the art of Tae Kwon Do, s/he holds a white belt rank. Between each belt is a test, which if the student passes, s/he will be promoted to the next belt. The order of belts is: white, yellow, green, purple, brown and black. There is a youth ranking of stripe belts for students under the age of eight and a high belt ranking for the colored belts. The screening process for taking the test is careful to select those participants who possess the necessary skills to pass. The requirements become more difficult as one rises in belt levels and the time period between belts increases. Factors associated with test taking include focus (both physically and mentally), precision, respect, and maturity. While the requirements for a yellow belt may mean strong forms, purple to brown requires a higher level of focus and maturity and students are expected to be able to teach new students and be good role models. Length of time between belts can vary from child to child depending upon age, skill level, and the amount of time the student spends practicing. A student who practices twice a week with an instructor and practices everyday at home will most likely advance quicker than the student who practices once a week. As in other associations, there are fees associated with belt test. I will outline the fees in the future as students near readiness for testing.

Uniforms Uniforms must be worn prior to the student taking their first promotion test. Uniforms are white, lightweight, cotton and can be purchased from any martial arts supply store or WMAKarate Store Each uniform comes complete with a jacket, white belt, and pants. The jacket may become too warm during class, so a plain white Tee shirt may be worn instead. Tee shirts with karate design logos are available at our online store www.cafepress.com/wmakarate