Interesting thread. Been there before and agreed then and certainly now with the proposition of self regulation.
I don't believe in massive, all encompassing organizations. They tend to forget why they were formed and end up being bogged down with administrative bull****.
be done must be done on a style level. . . or on groups of styles that have very similar goals. The IUKF and the regional CHAPTERS of Uechi-ryu has been working towards this goal for many years. Essentially all it does is require its member dojo and groups to:
1. Agree to abide by a common sense code of conduct and ethics.
2. Maintain a fairly high minimum standard of rank.
3. Encourage member teachers to be certified
by the Federation. Those who do get certified can prove to State and City politicians that they are already abiding by high standards, set by the industry's leading proponents. In so taking the lead in this issue, our member dojo are less likely to fall under the same political rules that absolutely will drop on unaffiliate schools in the future. The question is not if
, but when!
Karate teachers pride themselves on being independent
martial artist. They are very slow to accept change and are loth to join organizations and participate in anything not done in a Gi. Reminds me a lot of all my senior students years ago bragging about how they and their students would never wear pillows
on their hands and feet while sparring! They were not active in helping build tournaments and were not active in the politics that dictated the growth of the sport. The TKD people were and now we all wear "pillows" while complaining a lot!
If you charge your students one penny tuition a month, you are a professional! You are a business! You will eventually answer to someone about your teaching practices. You will be required to be certified
by someone or some group!
Hopefully when the time comes, our IUKF will be strong enough to convince the politicians that our programs and certification methods are superior to anything they might come up with. At the very least, we may
get off with paying the fees and policing ourselves.
When this time arrives, the martial arts will probably be categorized by what is taught and how it is taught. Some dojo are nothing more than baby sitting services. They should be governed by "daycare" laws. Other very commercial schools offer minimum self defense and more confidence building and motivational attributes. These schools should be in another category. Then you have more traditional dojo, where self defense skills are emphasized and the hard training involved is potentially dangerous to the unaware. Here, strong organizational certification programs are needed. The politicians don't understand what we do and would certainly tie our hands in their attempts to make us a "safe" place to study. I'm not suggesting that our dojo are dangerous, but they are not the baby sitting parlors parents park their kids at for 45 minutes, twice a week!
In the certification process, we must make sure the nutcases are excluded. Best they continue to practice with their 3 human makiwaras in the garage, without benefit of organizational affiliation. Hopefully they simply bury their dead in the quiet of the night and not inform their insurance carrier.
Legislation of the martial arts is coming. The politicians have been knocking at our doors for years. Because they aren't sure what or who we are, they accept getting the door slammed in their face graciously. But politicians are mostly lawyers. . . and we know how persistant they can be. . .
We were told the NJ legislation was killed last year! Funny how it keeps rising from the dead.