Good instructors should be approachable, friendly and considerate. They are part of what makes for a great martial arts experience, so you should feel comfortable asking questions or verifying information. Instructors should have school and training information available to you, as well as their credentials and training background; verify their training. Ask what their program’s or school’s governing body is, and how long they have been a member. All information should be verifiable.


The school you choose should be clean and organized. The instructors should act professional and look professional. Make certain that the workout area is clean and free of clutter. All equipment should be in good repair and as clean as possible.


The feel of a school when you walk in should be positive and comforting. That’s not to say that you won’t be nervous, but the instructor should give you a reassuring feeling that he/she will push you positively toward your goals. A positive attitude travels from the instructors to the students and the school. You should feel welcomed and encouraged into the school that is right for you.


Class size should always be manageable for the instructors, so note how many students and instructors or assistants are in each class. Each student should have the time with the instructor that they need to get the most from their training. Note how many intermediate and advanced students there are in the school. Qualified, good instruction and positive attitude is reflected in the number of students who have continued to practice.


Make sure the program the school offers is what you are looking for. If you have health issues, such as breathing, make sure the class is not a high cardio class or that the instructor can modify the program to fit your needs.


Fees can vary from monthly to yearly to multiple year contracts. You need to be comfortable for what and how you pay. Ask if there are late fees, penalty fees for paying ahead, or what the fees and stipulations are if you need to get out of a contract. Most schools offer trial or beginner lessons so you can see how the program runs and if the program is right for you. Ask for fees up front. There is no reason to continue through the trial if the program fees are not affordable to you.