ITP MEMBERS RESOURSE PAGE
INSTRUCTORS TRAINING PROGRAM (ITP)
PREAMBLE: The art of Bukido Taijutsu should not be seen as merely a system of fighting techniques or a method of self defence. The dedicated student and instructor alike should see the art as a living thing, a living energy that manifests itself through them, the practitioner. This in essence is one of the traits that sets this ancient system apart from modern day “sport” arts. This art is not a subject matter to be studied. It is a journey towards mental and physical freedom.
Through training in this art the student starts to transform themselves from a typical modern day human being filled with insecurities, anxiety and frustrations to a more balanced and centred person. Training for the serious student becomes more than just a hobby or an activity to be performed when the mood is right. It becomes a lifestyle that penetrates to the core of the practitioner whether in the Dojo or not.
TEACHING: THE LEARNING EXPERIENCE
For this reason it becomes just as important to share our experiences with others as it is to deepen our own experience of the art. The one sided aspect of simply learning and never passing on experiences will limit our own joys and depth of experience. In this very infinite and dynamic art the act of teaching should not be seen as just the passing on of information but rather as a learning experience as well. Every time we “teach” a technique or principle we are re-experiencing it, seeing it from a different angle, under a different light. There is an old Taoist saying. “You can never step in the same river twice.” Why? Because that river is moving, changing, flowing. It’s alive and is never the same. Our art is the same. It’s dynamic and in a state of motion. The ingrained concept we have of “Me teacher, you student, I teach, you learn” is a boundary to our own personal growth. This mentality has to be transcended before we can grow fully and develop into mature, effective martial artists.
INSTRUCTOR’S TRAINING PROGRAM
The INSTRUCTORS TRAINING PROGRAM (ITP) will be set in place to assist the development of Trainee Instructors, Certified Instructors, Accredited Instructors and Sensei. Any member of the ITP will receive extra curricular training in the form of meetings, seminars and workshops and informal training sessions with the Sensei, to help speed up their progress and their attainment of higher rank. As the student/instructors progresses he/she will go through various stages of certification, firstly within our own Dojo and then finally through the proper accreditation with the Martial Arts Industry Association (MAIA). It should be noted by members entering into this program that this will eventually lead to a proper recognized qualification that will allow the member to have a career as a martial arts instructor. Below is a summary of each level and it’s key points.
Probationary period / minimum rank / allocated classes:
The minimum rank of any one entering the ITP would be Orange belt. There will also be a 3 month probationary period where trainee instructors will have to prove their commitment to such a program. During this time both the trainee instructor or the Sensei can cancel the participation in the program.
Students may be invited by the Sensei any time after their Orange belt grading to join the ITP. It is by invitation only. The Sensei will assess students in terms of their performance in gradings, quality of techniques, character and dedication before inviting students to enter the program. It has to be remembered that an instructor in the art represents the art and all aspects of the person have to be assessed, not just physical performance.
The student will have to commit to at least 2 classes a week and their attendance to these classes will be monitored. If an unacceptable amount of classes are missed and the student is irregular they will not enter the program. This guideline will remain the for the life of the program.
Once the student has been active for three months and has proved themselves as an asset to the program and has attained the rank of at least Genin (green belt) they will receive their first level of certification. This certificate would be Level 1 Trainee Instructor.
When the member attains their blue belt they will get another certificate, Level 2 Trainee Instructor.
Once the member reaches the rank of Chunin (red belt) they will be reassessed (in various ways) and if meet all the requirements will become a level 1 Certified instructor. This means they will receive a certificate that states they have undergone the training and teaching experiences required to represent the art.
If the student goes on to attain their Purple belt they will become a level 2 Certified Instructor and if they attain their Brown belt they would become a Level 3 Certified Instructor. Separate certificates will be awarded each step the member progresses.
Once the member is certified and has the required skills, dedication to classes, talking ability and leadership to run training sessions with minimal supervision there will be a Fee Reduction System set in place to compensate the member. This will progressively start from the Red belt only for people who have been members of the ITP since the Green belt level. People joining the program at the Chunin level will not have access to such a Fee Reduction System. Such members as this will lack the many hours experience and extra curricular training required to be a competent instructor. It will also discourage people just joining the program for the financial benefits. Members can join the program at any stage in their journey but their membership to the ITP would be subject to the same conditions as the lower belts. ie: a 3 month probationary period and a minimum of 2 gradings before certification would earn them Fee Reduction.
At this juncture it is important to realise that rank alone does not guarantee someone is a suitable instructor. An experienced mid ranking member who teaches regularly and knows all their techniques makes a far better instructor that a high ranking student who has never taught and forgets even the most simple of techniques.
Fully Licensed Instructor:
When the member reaches the Black belt level, they will be assessed by the Sensei and if meet all the requirements will be promoted to Fully Licensed Instructor.
Once a member of the ITP has reached the Red Belt and has successfully become a Level 1 Certified Instructor they may be eligible to study through the MAIA (Martial Arts Industry Association) and become accredited instructors. This accreditation is not so much to do with the art that we study but rather industry standards, duty of care, child protection, legal responsibilities etc. This accreditation program gives the instructor the tools to run a safe and proper school. This is not merely an internal certification but a nationally recognized accreditation. This will allow the member to follow a paid career in the dojo, run a branch Dojo, set up new schools or travel and teach.