Fourth Form FAQ
There are numerous benefits to practicing martial arts! Here are just a few, organized by three founding principles:
Body: Martial arts exercises more than just hands and feet. It’s an activity that builds muscles throughout the body and gives each student more control over their movements. It also improves balance, posture, and breath control.
Mind: Martial arts is not a brainless activity. It requires intense focus and awareness. Whether a student is performing kata (forms) or kumites (two-man routines), the mind must be actively engaged to both perform techniques correctly and to ensure everyone’s safety.
Spirit: Martial arts instills a sense of greater confidence and self-control. There is an art in martial arts, and that art nurtures our spirits. Practicing martial arts encourages students to become lifelong learners and to always strive for growth—not just in the style itself, but in all aspects of life.
Uechi Ryu is a traditional Okinawan style of karate that instills traditional values such as respect and self-discipline. It’s also a highly defensive style that focuses on positioning and body conditioning. Although it may not look as powerful or flashy as some styles, it is a style that, when practiced properly, ensures that you will be able to take a hit and respond appropriately before disengaging. It’s also a style that has non-violent, real-world applications—its Sanchin stance does wonders when it comes to balancing while walking on ice or standing on public transportation vehicles.
First off, it’s okay to be nervous! You are getting ready to learn an entirely new skill! That said, no, we are not like Cobra Kai. We do not subscribe to a “strike first, strike hard” mentality, and your instructors are not going to demean, humiliate, or insult you in class. We are, however, going to challenge everyone to grow and to become better versions of themselves, per our mission statement.
Also unlike Cobra Kai, we are a dojo that focuses more on real-world application and less on tournament competition. Students are welcome to compete in tournaments and we are happy to give pointers, but we do not train with tournaments or competitions in mind.
That said, if you’re asking whether or not karate looks cool (like in Karate Kid/Cobra Kai), then yes. We’d say it looks pretty cool.
Yes to all of the above! We have classes specifically for children, classes specifically for adults, and classes that mix the two age groups. We ask that children be at least 6 years old before starting to take classes. As for adults and seniors, it’s never too late to learn a new skill! Practicing martial arts is a great way to stay in shape at a pace that’s right for you. Just make sure to chat with us about any concerns (such as necessary medications or previous injuries) when you register for membership.
It depends on how much practice a student is willing to put in! That said, assuming that a student is dedicating themselves to the practice of the art, the time that it takes to receive a first- degree black belt ranges from 2-3 years. This timeframe usually consists of three distinct phases of learning:
In the first phase (usually the first six months) the student can often feel overwhelmed as they learn a variety of basic techniques. However, with time and practice, a student will grow in confidence with these techniques and will move to the second phase (technique refinement) before finally moving into the third phase of preparing for their black belt test.
You’re done if you would like to be, but we hope that you aren’t! There are ten degrees of black belt in Uechi Ryu, and receiving your first degree black belt is in many ways the first step on a longer journey in martial arts. Black belts also learn additional katas, kumities, and applied techniques.
Specialty classes include things like sparring classes and weapons classes. These are classes designed to put what you learn in Uechi Ryu into practice. Our weapons classes incorporate kali, escrima, and modern arnis (all forms of Filipino stick fighting) as well as knife fighting.
We are located in the L&G Center, near the corner of 44th and Burlingame.
1590 44th St. SW
Wyoming, MI 49509
We have multiple plans available for membership. We also offer a discount for families! No matter what your plan is, you are not under contract and can cancel your membership at any time.
If you find that you don’t like karate, we will also do our best to point you in the direction of a different martial art style or activity that might better suit your needs. Even if our dojo isn’t the best fit for you, we want to help you achieve your goals!
We love our instructors! Here’s a quick breakdown:
Chris Cohee (6 Dan)
Muhamet Vita (6 Dan)
Michelle Kutcha (5 Dan)
Mike Rooks (5 Dan)
Tom Darling (2 Dan)
Allison Hawkins (2 Dan)
Yes! Uechi Ryu is a defensive style that’s applicable in a variety of situations. That said, we also offer specific seminars for women’s self-defense. These seminars are not a part of our weekly class schedule but will be advertised both here on the website and on social media when they are scheduled.
Most definitely! Depending on time and the number of attendees, we are happy to develop a session specifically for your group. Contact us to discuss details and pricing. We’ll do our best to meet your needs!
We do our best to provide a safe environment for members while still recognizing that some mitigation methods are difficult to implement during workouts. Vaccination is not required. Masks are available for all who wish to use them but are not required for most classes. We do offer a class in which masks are required for those who are more comfortable in all-masked spaces.
For a full list of our COVID-19 policies, please refer to this page.
In the case of inclement weather, the dojo will be closed based off the opening/closing of Wyoming Public Schools. This information will be communicated to all dojo members via the website, social media–see links at the bottom of the page!–as well as text and/or email (student preference).
If inclement weather is forecasted after school hours or on a scheduled break, or if the dojo needs to close due to other circumstances (g. flooding, building has its electric out, etc.), we’ll make that call and communicate it in the same way!