What are the qualities needed to teach martial arts?

Teaching is a way of transferring knowledge through a set of specific lessons. A martial arts teacher must be a specialist capable of developing special physical and spiritual qualities in his students. The teacher must have a thorough knowledge of the subject that he teaches. 

The knowledge of a martial arts teacher should be based on a vast store of theoretical knowledge and personal experience of the practical application of martial arts.

Teaching is an integral part of martial arts. Any art devoid of qualified teachers is doomed to extinction. The very spirit of martial arts is fueled by the teacher-student relationship. Martial arts owe their rich history and culture precisely to the fact that knowledge about them is constantly and continuously passed from one generation to another. Experienced martial artists value strong bonds between teachers and students.

The essence of training martial arts

Often, only after reaching such a level of training that gives the right to teach, the student for the first time seriously thinks about how talented his teacher is. Only then he begins to realize that a brilliant fighter and a great master does not necessarily have to turn out to be a real teacher. 

Without sufficient experience in all fields of martial arts, it will be difficult to teach them to your followers. The teacher should be a broadly educated and versatile person with deep knowledge of all aspects of his professional activity since all the centuries-old wisdom accumulated in the martial arts can be comprehended only through many years of hard daily work.

After scrolling through the advertisements of local martial arts schools, you may come to the conclusion that numerous victories in a variety of tournaments and competitions are a prerequisite for teaching eligibility.  

In reality, however, it is what the instructor is as an individual that is decisive, not past achievements and successes. To become a good teacher, it is far from being enough just to be able to teach. You need to have a talent for understanding your students and the ability to maintain good relations with them. You need to have a kind of vocation for teaching and be clear about the goals of your work. You must have theoretical and practical knowledge of the subject and be a professional in your field. Among other things, it is important to firmly believe in what you are doing.

Teaching martial arts involves imparting knowledge to students, with which they can perform certain physical actions, and instilling in them the spirit of the art.Unfortunately, there is no such secret method or way that could bring instant success to any instructor.  

Each instructor’s teaching methods are largely determined by their style, character, culture, personality and individual experience. This means that there can be exactly as many different methods as there are teachers. However, in teaching there are general, binding principles for all, by applying which the teacher can make his work as effective as possible.

What are the qualities on a martial arts teacher?

A teacher must have many qualities in order to be fully qualified. Nevertheless, among them, are the ones that are decisive for the effectiveness of the educational process. In practice, it is impossible to find an ideal balance of all the qualities necessary for a teacher in one person. 

However, the weaknesses of the whole personality are inevitably compensated for by its strengths. It is for this reason that there can be as many brilliant teachers as you like, and each of them differs from the other in character and the pedagogical methods used. 

Below is one of the versions of what a teacher aspiring to achieve should be like. Review it and identify your strengths and weaknesses. Think about how to achieve the most balanced balance of qualities that you possess.

A qualified teacher must have a deep and complete knowledge of the art he teaches. In addition, you need to be able to use this knowledge in practice. Mastery is the sum of theory and practice.

A qualified instructor must know and understand the teaching methodology. Learn to communicate your knowledge to others in a clear, accurate, and interesting way. Then you can purposefully communicate your thoughts and requirements to all of your students.

A good teacher should have a clear understanding of the ultimate goals of their teaching work and the activities of the entire school. Develop your abilities:

  • perceive the pedagogical process as a whole
  • generate new ideas
  • feel and solve problems
  • set goals in teaching
  • define your life priorities
  • categorize emerging issues according to their severity
  • objectively analyze emerging situations
  • concretize generalizations and clarify ambiguities
  • plan your activities without fear and prejudice
  • to act confidently and in accordance with their conclusions about people with such abilities, it is often said that they know how to look into the future.

A teacher must be passionate and honest. Your ability to inspire students to achieve their goals depends on how passionate you are about what you are doing. Your students have faith in you and hope that you will meet their expectations. They want to see you as an honest and sincere person who knows how to keep the given word and with all their heart in love with martial arts.

A coach should be friendly and empathetic. Listen carefully to the opinions of students. Consider their feelings. Always think about what and how you say it. Be equally objective and fair to all students and guests of the School. Create a welcoming environment for your students in which they can fully focus on learning.

The instructor must be able to make decisions. You must be clear about what is important and necessary for your students, what is in their best interests. Learn to be able to anticipate the results of your decisions. The ability and desire to make the right decisions are essential conditions for success. Do not be afraid to take risks if the risk is justified and calculated.

A qualified teacher should be open minded. Always use common sense and assess any situation soberly. Let go of prejudice and pride. Introduce something new into the learning process whenever possible. If you find a successful new teaching or training methodology, feel free to use it in your work. 

This is the only way to progress. By following the crowd, it is impossible to become its leader. Common sense, intelligence, logical thinking, innovation, and impartiality are the qualities that can make you a true leader for your students.

He must be mentally and physically healthy. You will need the strength of the spirit to overcome all obstacles that come your way. Physical strength is necessary to maintain high athletic performance, despite the exhausting daily workouts. 

Eat well and live a healthy lifestyle. Be an example to your students in this. Regardless of a person’s age and physical ability, a healthy mind can only be in a healthy body.

A coach must be sensitive to the needs of their students. All your teaching activities should be focused on benefiting the students. As a teacher, you only exist because of them. Having lost your students, you will cease to be a teacher at the same moment. Therefore, with every decision you make, consider their needs.

Finally, a good teacher must truly believe in what he is doing. Remember the greatness of your mission to teach, guide, and help. Your attitude towards work and students will be reflected in them as in a mirror. The higher the quality of your teaching, the stronger your students will become. 

The stronger the students, the more confident your school will be. By guiding and educating students, you gradually influence the formation of their inner world. Your students, having changed in one way or another thanks to your efforts, will accordingly change the world around them. 

If you sincerely and selflessly help them in everything, it will inevitably inspire them to help others. So you can become the first link in an endless chain of mutual assistance and benevolence. And perhaps in a hundred years, the world will be a little better thanks to the efforts that we are making for this today.