The school has seen so much growth since we opened our new location in March! Thank you all for your support during this period of growth. Read on for updates about upcoming testing dates, the latest on student resources, COVID updates, and more. Student Resources
We have a lot of student resources on available to help you study curriculum (you can read the training manual and watch videos in both the dojo mobile app as well as on our student portal on the website), get in touch via Slack, a dojo Facebook group and more. I've compiled all the information on our student resources onto this page of the website: https://www.immortaltiger.com/student-resources Also related, I made a page dedicated to the sizing guides for uniforms and sparring gear, so for those of you ready to get equipment, please reference sizes here and then you can see what gear we have for sale in the dojo app retail section: https://www.immortaltiger.com/size-guides Welcome to all our new students!
We've had so many of you new students join us since we opened our doors to this new location back in March! When we moved here we were at a total enrollment of only 11, and as of the end of June we are now up to 37 currently enrolled students! Words cannot express my gratefulness to all of you and your continued support. You're all doing great and I love seeing the mat full of eager students ready to learn their next kata! Also major shout out to Mag and Jeff, 2 of our adult students who have stepped up and been regularly helping as assistant instructors in the kids classes so we can continue to give you the best experience possible in class. Promotions - Fixed Dates Once Per Month July Test - Saturday July 17th!
One challenge with our incredible growth is that it's no longer feasible to keep doing tests ad hoc in the middle of randomly classes every other week or so. Going forward I'm going to pick one Saturday a month that will be the testing date for that month, and we'll consolidate anyone who is ready to test on that date. Tests will start at 10am on those dates and be for ALL ages. For those who absolutely can't make it in on a Saturday, I will work with you to make alternate arrangements, but the goal is to get all of you testing on the same date per month if you're ready. Does this mean everyone tests once a month? NO. On average most people take 2-3 months to get to yellow, another ~3 months to get to orange, and then usually 4-6 months per belt after that (starting at purple you begin learning at least 2 katas per belt instead of 1, so this takes longer to memorize). When you have all your stripes though for your new material, then you are likely ready to test! Also as a reminder all tests are cumulative, which means you will do everything from prior tests in addition to your new material when you test. So if think you are ready to test for purple belt because you can do Iron Fan and Eagle Flies low really well, but can't remember Lightning Ram and/or Mountain Meets River, then we need to spend more time reviewing before you are actually ready to test. COVID Update Masks: Masks continue to be required for non-vaccinated students and parents. With so many young students at the dojo, we need to keep them as safe as possible! Beginning Saturday, July 17th - masks will be OPTIONAL if you are fully vaccinated. Fully vaccinated means it has been 2 weeks after you completed your vaccine shots. This will be the honor system, I am not going to force anyone to show me their COVID-19 vaccination cards. Cleaning: I continue to vacuum and mop with disinfectant RTU solution at the end of each day. Counters and benches are still being wiped down with anti-bacterial wipes and sprays. I also have hand sanitizer in a touch free dispenser on my desk, feel free to use that anytime! If you feel sick or feverish, please continue to play it safe and stay at home! The End of Formal Zoom Class
At this point in the pandemic, Zoom has only been for my 2 x south Austin adults, and 2 kids who are normally in person but went to live with their other parents for the summer. As the summer concludes and the adults and I return to work in the same office (where they will train in person with me during lunch) and the kids return to Austin for classes, we no longer will need to keep Zoom alive. HOWEVER - that said I will still be able to toss it up on an as needed basis in the future. We will just be retiring the 8-9pm formal Tuesday/Thursday class so that we can fill that with some other dedicated classes. With the soon to be free 8-9pm slot, I'm leaning towards adding 1 x night a week of iaido (Japanese Sword) and 1 x night a week of a sparring only only class for the teen/adults. Kids/Tigers don't worry you're not being left out for sparring, we will mix sparring into your regular classes in the near future as we know more with the progression of the pandemic. Successful First Seminar!
We had the honor of our first high ranking black belt visitor recently! 6th degree Master Instructor Marina Chacon, who also trains under Master Professor Bill Grossman (Ms. Cat's teacher) flew in from Nevada and visited us for classes on Saturday 19th, 2021. Master Instructor Chacon also runs her own school in Dripping Springs, NV, called Leaping Panther Kenpo Karate. That afternoon she also hosted a special seminar where she combined her years of Kenpo experience with her 20+ years of experience as a retired Lieutenant from the San Francisco Police Department and hosted a 2 hour seminar for all of us on safety and self defense. Dojo Improvements
Many improvements since our last newsletter in March!
New custom benches with built in cubbies and new black chairs
Our 2 x murals (the tigers mural is done and the back wall is super close to being finished, if you love them be sure to give Mag some kudos)
Retail pro shop wall display
Cat's 2nd Degree Black Belt
Most of you know I disappeared for a weekend in mid-June and flew to California to test for my 2nd degree black belt with 9th Degree Master Professor Bill Grossman as Bill Grossman's School of Kenpo Karate in South San Francisco, CA. Big shout out to everyone who helped out while I was gone for Saturday, June 12th while I was testing. Just remember the journey does not end at you student black belt, it's just the beginning!