Ask Mr. Due! (FAQs)

Why do they call you Mr. Due?

Many years ago, the younger brothers and sisters of the students could not say Mr. Perdue and would instead say "Misser A doo." Then it got shortened rather quickly to Mr. Due. It became a nickname that stuck.

How many times a week should my child or I come to class?

Students should attend a minimum of 2 classes a week (3 is best). Setting a schedule and being consistent is important. It is better to do 2 classes every week than missing a week and then trying to make it up the next week. Additionally, students that do not come to class consistently often feel out of place and then do not want to come to class. Students that do come on a consistent basis feel better and actually look forward to coming to class.

However, remember we live in Ohio. If a sudden sunny day pops out of no where, don't stick to your schedule. Let the kids get outside and play. Flexibility is important. Not just on the mat, but in how we deal with all of life. Be flexible. 

Can I go to either location?

Yes. No matter whether you signed up at the Westerville or Sunbury location, you can attend either school. In fact, we have alternated the schedule at the two schools on purpose.

What are the Uniform requirements?

Each student is issued an official Taekwondo America Uniform upon enrollment. All students are required to wear either their full uniform or their uniform pants, a souvenir Taekwondo America T-shirt from an event or a PWT T-shirt and belt. Female students should wear a plain white T-shirt under their uniform jacket when in full uniform. Uniforms should be clean and free of holes.
Should students practice at home?

Practicing at home is not required provided that students attend 2 or more classes per week. However, if students wish to practice at home, it should be done in an approved area with plenty of space. Board breaking should not be done until the student is taught how to do it in class. Parents can help by holding a target, watching forms and asking questions. But please, don't try to teach. That will actually create confusion.

How do I find out what is happening in the school?

Every week, Mrs. Morgan sends out emails to keep everyone up to date. We also suggestion you check the Upcoming Events on the web page. For Cancellations due to weather, check out the front page of the web page or our facebook pages.\

What if my child uses Taekwondo at home or at school?

Tell me (Mr. Perdue) IMMEDIATELY. While I understand that students can be a little over anxious to share and show off, this can be dangerous. Please inform me, or the person in the office, as soon as possible so that we can take steps to correct the situation.

What do the instructors expect from the students?

All of the instructors and I expect our students to give their best effort. Technique at the early stages of training is not as important as a positive attitude. If a student tries hard and has a good attitude, they will develop better technique over time because they are listening and learning.
How do the students earn colored "stripes" in class?

Each stripe is earned in class for achieving a short term goal that breaks up the requirements for advancement from one belt to the next.

How long does it take to become a Black Belt?

It is mathematically possible to become a Black Belt in just under 2.5 to 3 years. However, it takes most people longer to attain that rank. But remember, Black Belt is the beginning, not the end, of serious training. Black Belt indicates that the wearer is a serious student of the art.

What do the stripes down the pants mean? What do the different collars mean?

The different colored collars signify the certification level the instructor has attained. The thin red collar indicates that the instructor has passed the physical, written and oral test to enter our instructor training program as a level 1 instructor. They know all the materical and are now learning how to teach it. The thick red collar indicates that the instructor has graduated through teaching and training to be a level 2 instructor and can teach slightly more automously. The thin black collar indicates that the student has passed a second strict physical, written and oral exam and has attended various national training seminars and can teach automously. The thick black collar indicates that the instructor is Sr. Certified. A Sr. Certified Instructor is the highest instructor level short of Master and indicates that the instructor has passed all national certification requirements and has attended several national training conferences. Sr. Certified Instructors are capable of and may now open a school of their own if they wish. Lastly, there is Master Instructor. I don't think I need to explain that one. Masters are given a black stripe down the arm of the uniform. The stripe down the leg of the uniform indicates that the students is a 4th Degree or above.
My son/daughter is having a hard time learning his/her form, why? My son just got his/her stripe, he/she can’t be ready for testing already is he/she?

People learn forms in very different ways. I learn the framework and can fake my way through a form rather quickly. Then I have to focus on the details to get it testing/competition ready. My wife on the other hand is so detail oriented that she has to learn all the “little things” as she goes. It takes her longer to be able to do it on her own but when she does, it is nearly testing/competition ready. Neither learning style is right or wrong. It’s just how people learn based on their personality. The kids are the same way. 

How much should I be involved in my kid’s training? When should I make them practice at home?

You shouldn’t do either! The hardest thing for parents to do in martial arts is to give up control and let us handle it. All you need to do is get them in class (which is the hardest part). Then just trust our judgment. 

If I have a question, who do I ask?

For routine matters, the web site is full of information and for particular matters anyone behind the counter can help you. During the summer there are times when I do not have a dedicated counter person and one of the instructors will handle things between classes. Please do not call out onto the mats for any reason, even if you need help at the counter. That kind of distraction really takes away from our primary focus, helping the students learn.

How do I know when my son/daughter is ready for testing?

If we say they are ready to test (they get their black stripe), they should test. Parents should never judge for themselves. (For the record, the other instructors decide this for my kids.) Parents can be biased (both positive and negative) and you don’t know what is important at each level. Also, be careful when asking the kids if they are ready. Many of our perfectionists kids expect too much of themselves and tend to play it safe instead of taking a little healthy risk. Something they need to learn. If someone isn’t prepared or I don’t believe they can pass testing, I won’t let them test.
My kid has (fill in the injury or illness here), should he/she spar?

If you bring your child to class, assume they will spar. Just let us know if they have an injury or illness and let us decide whether he or she should spar or not. Since we spar ourselves, we know what really prevents people from sparring and what doesn’t. Many times what looks minor to adults we think is major and vice versa. If parents start making the determination of when the kids spar, the kids start to make up phantom injuries, “tummy aches” and “headaches” to avoid sparring if they aren’t in the mood to spar that day. Something they do not do with us. 

Why don’t you wear Chest Protectors when sparring?

Because students let the chest protector do the job and don’t learn good defense. The very thing that frustrates the kids most, getting hit, is what they need most. Every time we get hit, it motivates us to focus on defense and learn to block. In fact, almost all the kids that come in and tell me they got into a fight at school tell me “I didn’t even kick or punch, the kid tried to hit me and my hands just moved!” That skill is learned one way. Sparring.

How does the membership extension work?

We expect people to miss a week here or there due to injuries or illnesses. That is why we have unlimited classes, the stripe system and the number of instructors on the floor. We can get anyone caught up. We are experts at it. If you are going to miss a month or more for injury, prolonged vacation or playing select level sports, you need to let us know in advance. You continue to make your payments to the billing company so it doesn’t throw off the accounting, then when you get back we extend your membership by the appropriate time. 
My son or daughter is complaining about getting hit too hard sparring. What do I do?

First of all, read the articles on the subject that are on the web site under the tab of Mr. Due’s Message. You will see this is a common complaint. But trust me, it is truly rare that the kids get hit hard enough to cause a real injury. I can’t remember the last time a kid truly got hurt sparring. In fact, if they wrestle around at home. I guarantee they get more banged up doing that. They are reacting more to losing or the uncertainty of what to do than getting hit. Just email me at the address on the web page or tell the person at the desk so we can keep an eye on him or her and address the problem. 

Does my son/daughter have what it takes to become a black belt?

Yes or I wouldn’t have taken him/her as a student. I promise that it won’t be easy. But if they have the desire, the commitment and a positive attitude, they will become black belts and hopefully more.

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