Like any industry or community, sometimes new members and parents have questions about the terminology that we use. Here is cheat sheet of some of the terminology that you will hear within our studio (aka dojo).
Studio: Let’s start with this one. Most people are used to hearing the term Karate Dojo or Martial Arts Dojo. We generally refer to ourselves a studio because our focus is on so much more than just the kicking and punching. We have such an educational base to our programs in all aspects. So it means the same thing but we think the distinction better represents what we do.
Karate vs Martial Arts: At Pro Martial Arts we teach a mix of the Korean arts of Tang Soo Do, Tae Kwon Do and Hapkido. For convenience we sometimes refer to these as Karate but technically are Martial Arts (i.e. Karate is a Martial Art). Please don’t get confused because we use them almost interchangeably and we try not to get hung up on names because ultimately the system provides the opportunity to develop a potent blend of strength, flexibility, coordination, and balance, while learning effective and proven self-defense techniques.
Black Belt: Martial Arts distinguishes levels of proficiency based upon belt colour. Students start with a white belt and progress through the ranks to a Black Belt. We believe that the goal of every student should ultimately be a Black Belt as a demonstration of their work and mastery of the discipline.
Camo Belt: The Camo Belt is unique to Pro Martial Arts and is awarded to students after 8 classes. At this point they have already earned their white belt by learning their 7 magic words, but the camo belt symbolizes that they are making Karate a good habit and are demonstrating respect.
“3rd Dan” (pronounced Don): Why do we have so many Dons? Most students strive for their Black Belt and once achieved, some strive for more. Many of our instructors are 3rd Dan which means they are a 3rd degree Black Belt.
ARMOUR: ARMOUR is a complementary program to our Martial Arts instruction that focuses on Bullying Prevention and Predator Prevention. The lessons were developed based on research from reputable sources specializing in child safety, child psychology, education and crime prevention. This program is designed to ensure that students have the ARMOUR needed to stand tall against bullying behaviour and predator activity – both online and in their everyday lives.
Little Rhinos: This is our introductory program focused on kids ages 3 to 5. We use a fun, interactive style to teach the basics of Martial Arts, strength, balance, manners, listening skills, respect, discipline, increased focus and other life skills.
Basic: This is our general class to teach Martial Arts, self-defense and important life skills to students age 6+. This class is the stepping stone for our Leadership program.
Leadership: Leadership students are those who have chosen to seriously pursue and improve in Martial Arts. When a student demonstrates progress and commitment as well as leadership skills on the mat with their peers, they may be invited to join the leadership program where they can accelerate their development through increased training time and focused classes.
Bow on: At the start of most classes you will hear the instructor telling students to “bow on”. When going on the mat or leaving, students place their hand over their heart and bow as a sign of respect.
If you ever feel lost in the vernacular or have questions, please let us know. Our goal is to create a welcoming experience for parents and students of all levels. Whether the desire is Black Belt or simply learning to better defend oneself, we want to support your goals.