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Thread: Customers and Students

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    Post Customers and Students

    The way I see it, martial artists can be split up into two different groups. I believe there are 'Customers' and 'Students'. I'm really looking forward to what you all have to say so I'm not gonna share my views just yet, but what I would like to know is what is your definition of a 'customer' or a 'student' and what do you think the main differences between them are? Which one would you classify yourself as? Have you ever experienced or seen a 'customer' crossover and become a 'student'? Basically I'm just curious on what everyone has to say about this topic.
    "A warrior's ultimate act is to put down his sword"

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    Default Re: Customers and Students

    Great topic.

    Customer: Someone who comes for exercise, basic self defense, or status of just taking a martial art.

    Student: Someone who trains for the love of the art, gives back to the art by helping others and is there for self improvement not the next belt.

    I consider myself a student. I probably wouldn't have until I found the right teacher.

    I think you can change from customer to student. I think very few people start out as a 100% student. It is up to the teacher to show them what a student is.

    We have asked customers to leave at ikkyo because they were not becoming students and we could not give a shodan to a customer. There were some other circumstances that forced the issue but it could be boiled down to that.
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    Default Re: Customers and Students

    That is a pretty interesting concept to be honest, I never really looked at things that way. I run a school, a small school. I have virtually no overhead at this point so I can be picky about who I do or do not train. I think having this luxory allows me to have more "students" as opposed to customers. If some day (after retirement) I decided to run a huge commercial endevor I would probably have to make the distinction and work to pull students out of the customers.

    Good topic! I like the analogy.
    www.hunterskarate.com

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    Default Re: Customers and Students

    Boy is this a great topic, because i am a prime example..lol When i first started going to Muay Thai i was a customer, i'd go workout bought all the fancy Muay Thai shorts and took a water bottle, like a regular shmuck After say about two months i just stopped being so fancy and went more often, I started attending the grappling classes as well, and i would go on open gym night and improve my jab and movement. Right before my eyes i saw myself turn into a student, I help now whenever i can, i go ALL the time, I often am the one to demonstrate for new students, i just love it all, It was very similar with Kenpo i learned from my Uncle and at first it was yeah whatever just something to do, and i just fell in love anyway that's my two cents

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    Default Re: Customers and Students

    That is an interesting question.

    I don't own the school, so it's probably harder for me to say. I know that I have been a student of the art for so long, I can hardly remember being a customer.

    My beginner class is pretty full. Most of the students show up to every class and if they don't come, they call. (Except the teens -- they're hit or miss).

    I know that many of the students are interested in exercise and in learning. I don't know yet if they have a love of the art itself or if they just enjoy the class.

    The way I figure it, if they love what they're doing and most of them seem to enjoy helping each other and teaching each other, then they will eventually become true students of the art.

    I don't think I became a true students until I was a purple belt, so only time will tell for them.

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    Default Re: Customers and Students

    I've trained at five studios along my journey. Although I enjoyed what I learned and worked hard, my mindset wasn't quite conductive to truly learn the art for what it has to offer. I then became a student with the 5th studio. I learned more (with the 5th studio) about Kenpo and myself than I ever did since beginning in 1985.... I guess I finally woke up ready to go beyond training.

    - Ceicei
    Studying martial arts is for life, not for the color of the belt.

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    Default Re: Customers and Students

    Some very good points so far and I am in complete agreement with what has been said so far. I would also like to add that I don't think there is any shame in being a customer. Everyone has different needs and want different things out of the arts.

    P.S. Gakusei, great definitions . They were spot on with what I had in mind
    "A warrior's ultimate act is to put down his sword"

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    Default Re: Customers and Students

    Customer-> "Ow! That hurt! Take it easy!"

    Student-> "Ow! That hurt!...now show me that again!"

    "It is sobering to reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for independence." Charles A. Beard

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    John M. La Tourrette (03-23-2007),Martin Seck (03-23-2007)

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    Default Re: Customers and Students

    Quote Originally Posted by Celtic_Crippler
    Customer-> "Ow! That hurt! Take it easy!"

    Student-> "Ow! That hurt!...now show me that again!"

    You are so funny.
    The New Kenpo Continuum Book is now accepting submissions for volume 2. Our fabulous, ever-changing website is Sacramento Kenpo Karate.
    I'm a member of the Universal Life Church and the ULC Seminary. I'm also a Sacramento Wedding Minister and Disc Jockey
    New Cool (free) kenpo tool bar: http://KenpoKarate.OurToolbar.com/


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    Default Re: Customers and Students

    I see it as student/consumer. I owe it to meet their needs, make them to the best of my ability, provide resources to help them. In short, we're there for them.
    But, I also expect discipline, they also owe it to themselves to be the best they can be, even the children. Our place is unlike anything else they encounter(if they haven't already) we expect work, results, growth. They must meet us halfway. If one wants help, it's their job to seek help. I don't chase anybody.Since this is not my livelyhood, I can afford to be that way. I'm very open, flexible, but never short on the quality I expect from them.
    " Come with me, and I will complete your trainning."

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    Default Re: Customers and Students

    >The way I see it, martial artists can be split up into two different groups. I believe >there are 'Customers' and 'Students'.

    Well they are all customers. They pay for their training.

    Well they are all students. They come to learn what they don’t know.

    They come to learn what they want to know, and strongly desire to know.

    If they don’t strongly desire to know, they will NOT pay the fee to learn from you.

    They will go to tattoo Sam that teaches for free in his garage, which is fine. It is NOT a put-down for Sam (I’ve tattoos also), but a pointing out the internal criteria of the one wanting to learn more.

    1. They can be athletes, wanting to be the cream of the crop.
    2. They can be normals, just wanting something better than golf.
    3. They can be subnormals (people that need rehabilitation of one type or another)

    And knowing their needs in advance to training them is a big help in getting them where they want to go.

    ©Dr. John M. La Tourrette

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    Default Re: Customers and Students

    Quote Originally Posted by EndlessRising View Post
    The way I see it, martial artists can be split up into two different groups. I believe there are 'Customers' and 'Students'. ... what is your definition of a 'customer' or a 'student' and what do you think the main differences between them are?
    Suppose you could classify it that way. Ever hear that, in most schools, 90% are there just to pay the bills? That would be my criteria. Some are there for a lot of very valid reasons, but they won't put in the time and effort to really learn the whole art. Others want it all, and are willing to study and work hard for it. And the demarkation between the two groups is not necessarily a clear line.


    Which one would you classify yourself as?
    Right now, "observer". But I've been bothcustomer and student, to varrying degrees.


    Have you ever experienced or seen a 'customer' crossover and become a 'student'?
    I think people can, do, and most of us have, transitioned both ways at different times. It is a fortunate, and VERY dedicated few who are able to keep a consistantly high level of intensity in their training and studies over a lifetime. Most need some kind of break from time to time. Sometimes life circumstances dictate reassigned priorities. Some will never rise above what you call the "customer" level. And, that's ok, long as they help keep our tuition down and learn to dummy correctly.

    [quote=John M. La Tourrette;501431. They can be athletes, normals, subnormals[/quote]Well, sir, my score on this one is two out of three. Never been called "normal". I always took that as a left handed compliment and got on with things, though.

    Dan C
    There are things that are worth knowing for their own sake, worth finding for the pure joy of discovery.

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    Default Re: Customers and Students

    [quote=John M. La Tourrette;501431. They can be athletes, normals, subnormals[/quote]Well, sir, my score on this one is two out of three. Never been called "normal". I always took that as a left handed compliment and got on with things, though.

    Thanks Dan,
    It wasn't a compliment nor a criticism.
    It was a way that Dr. Morehouse catagorized his customers for sports performance skills and training.
    Sincerely,
    Dr. John M. La Tourrette
    Ps. Everyone, have a great week end;-)

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    Default Re: Customers and Students

    I just started in Kenpo this past Thursday, and just returned to martial arts roughly 7 months ago...My philosophy is this: If you really want something, your going to go at it, and go at it with as much intensity as you can muster...Sweat! Get hit, bruised, bloody, etc....You won't learn something properly without putting forth the effort in the first place...As my beloved grandmother(R.I.P.) used to say, "Boy, if your going to do something, do it right!" I guess that makes me a student.....?

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