What's in a name?
by Michael A. Krivka

 

If you were to say: "I'm a doctor" or "I'm a lawyer", one would assume that you have the education, experience and credentials that allow you to use either of those titles. If you were to say: "I'm a martial arts instructor" then one would assume that you have spent several years under the tutelage of a professional instructor and have received credentials that give you the privilege of teaching others the discipline that you studied. Makes sense doesn't it? Not in the real world...

 

If you received this newsletter you are among a small number of people that are either studying Filipino martial arts or Jun Fan Gung Fu/JKD Concepts. You also happen to be involved in two martial arts that have more outright charlatans and frauds than all of the other systems combined.

 

It seems that every day I received a phone call from someone trying to find a legitimate instructor in the Filipino martial arts or Jun Fan Gung Fu/JKD Concepts; and almost every day I receive a phone call concerning someone who is claiming to be an instructor in the Filipino martial arts or Jun Fan Gung Fu/JKD Concepts. So, how do you sort out the outright frauds from the legitimate instructors? Try asking them a few common-sense questions:

  • Who did they study with and for how long?
  • Is the instructor they studied with a recognized authority in that discipline?
  • What system/systems did they study?
  • Does the instructor use the title "Master", "Sifu", "Guru" or "(fill in the blank)"?
  • Is the instructor old enough to have the experience he/she claims to have?
  • Does the instructor have documentation, that will substantiate his/her claims?
  • Did the instructor "break away" from his/her instructor?
  • Does the instructor claim to teach "Original ???", "Backdoor", "street lethal and combat proven techniques" or "Extra-Crispy"?

The best advice I can give anyone looking for an instructor in the Filipino martial arts or Jun Fan Gung Fu/JKD Concepts is to ask them the above questions and weigh their answers with a heavy dose of reality. If that doesn't work, ask around and talk to other qualified instructors, or their students, and find out what they think. If all else fails, call me and I can get you in touch with someone who can get you the "low-down" on them.

 

Remember, the best things in life are those that are hard won and hard to find. Keep the faith and keep training...

The Kutting Edge (MAK) Oct. 1993

 


For training contact Mike Krivka at (301) 404-2571 (9AM - 9PM EST).
For website issues contact Joe Marszalek.