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by ShuhariAdmin

Dojo history…

In 2004, brothers Darrell, Brian, and Barry Power started the Missouri Karate Association (MKA) in Chesterfield, Missouri. For the first two years, they operated out of a health club, and then in 2006 they opened their own facility where they’ve been located since.

The Power brothers knew they were ready for a dedicated dojo space once they were scheduling youth classes six days a week. According to Barry, this level of commitment was only possible because they had four instructors.

Advice for other instructors…

MKA cultivates their young students for leadership positions in the dojo. About 70% of their students are 6 to 12 years old. MKA begins instructor training in their youth curriculum beginning at age 12. By the time these students are 15-16 years old, they are teaching the beginner youth classes.

Barry says, “It is really important to constantly cultivate new, young and positive instructors for your beginner children’s classes. Otherwise you will burn out. Or you will burn out the one or two black belts that you always rely on. You have to get over the idea that you are the only one who can teach the beginners. Having positive and vibrant instructors for your children’s classes is most important.”

Advice they wish they’d been given…

Study your local real estate market before committing to a long-term lease. In hind sight Barry says he wished he had negotiated a two-year rather than five-year lease. Of course, it is hard to predict the future, but it is worth thinking about what might become available in your target area over the next couple of years.

On operating like a business…

MKA has used the MindBody app for about seven years and recommends it. The system, which is well-known in the fitness and health industry, allows MKA to easily offer both a per class pricing option, for students who only attend once a week, as well as monthly pricing options for unlimited classes. Young brown and black belts are assigned the job of checking people in, which is easy to do with the app. The system also provides integrated billing, marketing, and communications functions to support your business.

Learn more about MKA here: http://www.mokarate.com

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Member Profile: Missouri Karate Association