My son, who is almost 10, started with Martial Arts America when he was 4. He's been through their Tigers, BBC 1, and BBC 2 programs. He got his first degree black belt this spring. His confidence, pride, self control, discipline, perseverance -- they have all blossomed, thanks in great part to the MAA program. Most recently, he was pretty daunted by the black belt requirements -- but the support he got from the instructors and his fellow students allowed him to push through, and the joy he felt when he got his black belt is something I will never ever forget!!Ms. Hespen, the head instructor at the San Ramon school, is absolutely amazing. She is just the right combination of firm yet understanding, and she always notices when a kid is feeling a little lost or unsure. Mr. Ballecer, from the Livermore school, is also incredible -- he takes the time to get to know all the kids, even from other schools, and finds time at tournaments or workshops or workouts to give just the right words of encouragement. In addition to a fabulous teaching staff, I also love two other main aspects. First, the values that are taught at the school (the tenets of courtesy, integrity, perseverance, self control, indomitable spirit, and victory) match my own values, and it was terrific to have my son learn about them and see them in action outside our home. Next, I love how flexible the schedules are -- you can find a class any day of the week at a variety of times, so you can make MAA work with any other activities your kids are in. I can't speak highly enough of the program. It's just first-rate.
Being a Former U.S. Marine and learning different self defense tactics and as child growing up taking Karate and Aikido, I know the importance of taking a martial art and the value it gives the individual. I wanted to give Avianna an opportunity to incorporate her skills and strength from Gymnastics into a new discipline. I thought at her age she was ready to understand some of the forms and structure the martial arts provide. It was important for my wife and I to place our daughter in a positive, encouraging and healthy environment. We were looking for many things such as self control, respect and self defense. We found all that and more at the Martial Arts of America Studio in Pleasanton, CA. We have experienced improved listening and self control. We have also observed more respect for herself and others. Thank you very much. I like how they put the fun into martial arts with the children. Most of the Instructors still have the structure but also require the kids to have manners and show respect towards everyone. We appreciate all your hard work in developing the programming and encouraging my daughter to become a better person, which these skills can be kept for ever.
The sessions our children were in looked like fun! Our kids tried it out first (thanks to some family friends), and my wife and I started soon afterwards because we didn't see why our children should have all of the fun. Our kids are very confident when dealing with others, whether as group leaders or when supporting their teammates. Our children are also very resistant to peer pressures, which is very important to my wife and I as the parents of teenagers. Finally, they know that good things just don't happen to them without hard work on their part. The instructors are knowledgeable, engaging, and very personable. They are very good at identifying "opportunities for improvement" without making you feel like a failure. They treat you like family!