"Frequently Asked Questions"
The IDSA Defense-Ability for Martial Arts Instructors and School Owners
Although there is a substantial amount of information posted here, it is presented in this forum merely to serve as an example and introduction to the various topics since it would be nearly impossible (and certainly impractical) to respond to all the different questions that have been or could be asked, consequently, most of the replies here are very limited in scope as well. We encourage you to contact the IDSA to obtain additional information and find out more about the the numerous options and solutions that are available to meet your specific needs and requirements.
Listed below are just a few of the many topics covered in the Defense-Ability for Martial Arts Instructors and School Owners manual that you will receive with your membership package. Understandably, no matter how many questions are asked or answers provided, each situation will always have its own particular circumstances that don't fall within the scope of any question and/or answer previously documented, therefore, one of the most valuable benefits the IDSA offers for its Members in this category is FREE & UNLIMITED administrative and/or technical support to meet the constantly changing requirements and specific circumstances of our Members.
Index of Sample Questions
Defense-Ability for Martial Arts Instructors and School Owners:
- What is the IDSA Instructor's Program?
- How Is The Defense-Ability Instructor's Program Structured? Is It Easy To Use?
- Can someone who is not disabled readily learn and teach the techniques to someone who is disabled?
- Does the instructor need to show the techniques in a wheel chair?
- What about techniques for those that are on crutches and not in a wheelchair?
- What time commitment is necessary to become an Instructor?
- How do I get students?
- Do you provide introductions, networking and initial contacts?
- What are the space requirements?
- What are the requirements for Instructor Certification?
- What is the difference in the two Instructor certifications?
- I have a Martial Arts school and we teach (specific style or styles), can I integrate and/or add the Defense-Ability / Combat Hapkido system to my current curriculum(s) or do I have to switch styles? Do I have to teach your system exclusively?
- I have a Martial Arts school and I know of several (disabled) individuals who would benefit tremendously from a program like this.... or
- (I have a MA School) and several individuals with a disability have approached me in the past and expressed interest in taking classes, but since I don't know anything about how to teach Martial Arts to the disabled I turned them away! I'm really interested in gettng these people back, in fact, I want more students to join my school. How do I get started? What do I need to do?
- Will I be able to offer my students who are learning Defense-Ability/Combat Hapkido rank advancement like other students?
What is the IDSA Instructor's Program?
Realize that the effort you will make (teaching this program) as an Instructor/Therapist or Healthcare Professional is by far one of the greatest services you can do for your community. It will undoubtedly provide you with some of the highest personal satisfaction, not to mention that you will certainly also be receiving a considerable amount of appreciation from those who will ultimately be your students/patients. Remember - there is much more to this than just learning Self-Defense; the entire program is based on the concept of, and need for THERAPY and ongoing REHABILITATION!
The IDSA Instructor's Program is specifically designed for Instructors and School Owners who:
- Are IDSA individual/Instructor members, affiliated schools or IDSA certified Instructors.
- Are interested in representing the IDSA in their area and intend to or currently have a group of disabled students.
- Want to encourage and motivate these students to join the IDSA
- Are interested in either teaching this program or supervising the implementation of the program as a consultant in their communities or at a local Rehab facility.
The IDSA is a serious and Internationally renown Association affiliated with some of the Worlds leading Martial Arts Organizations. IDSA Officers, Directors and Instructors are all reputable, experienced, Internationally recognized and rank certified by some of the Worlds most prestigious Martial Arts Organizations, including but not limited to, the World Ki-Do Federation. All Instructors joining this program are expected to uphold our policies and standards to assure that all our programs shall always have the highest degree of quality and integrity in the industry.
How Is The Defense-Ability Instructor's Program Structured? Is It Easy To Use?
Defense-Ability programs are based on the ICHF Combat Hapkido curriculum; therefore all of the techniques should be completely familiar to those who have studied this style. In fact, even Instructors from other Martial Art styles will easily understand the mechanics of the techniques. The main difference between traditional self-defense techniques and Defense-Ability is in the application of those techniques to specifically suit a wide variety of disabilities.
The Defense-Ability Video Series-1 is primarily intended to be used by the disabled and rehabilitation center specialists, they are addressed at the disabled and formatted specifically for that purpose. Upon reviewing them, however, you should easily be able to detect and understand the underlying reasons why the techniques are applied as they are. Each technique, by the way, is detailed and thoroughly explained.
Instructors reviewing the tapes need to use common sense, imagination and pay extra-special attention to the way the techniques are applied and all the steps involved. The Instructor should use the tapes as a personal guide, and subsequently share them with the student(s) or facility they are working with. In the end, however, success and credibility will ultimately be determined by your own attitude, skill as an Instructor, confidence, overall "charisma" and willingness to listen and learn even more.
The IDSA is currently producing and entire series of videotapes, books, CD-ROMs and other training aids exclusively for able-bodied Martial Arts Instructors and School Owners interested in learning how to teach this program to disabled individuals or groups and implement the program in their schools and communities or to become special consultants to Rehab facilities in their area.
Additionally, and only for Martial Arts Instructors, if you decide to get involved in this program you will also have free unlimited access to our exclusive "Instructor Support Services", consisting of unlimited support, answers to questions and free counseling.
Can someone who is not disabled readily learn and teach the techniques to someone who is disabled?
This particular question represents the most accurate description of that obstacle that will always exist between those who are - and are not disabled. A former "addict" will always be able to relate better than a "counselor" - very true. There is no way anyone can possibly "know" what its like being disabled - if they are not.
The answer however, is "Yes". You can easily learn and subsequently teach the techniques by reviewing the tapes, and they do go into "details" for teaching them effectively - but theres much more to it than just that. A "counselors" success comes not from their academic knowledge, but from spending time and working closely together with the students/patients, learning and observing. The experience and expertise acquired from "hands-on" training becomes priceless and unique, superseding by far any education obtained from textbooks (referring in this case to academic courses like those for physical therapists). Consequently, textbooks can only provide a mechanical, medical and mostly general perception based on prior field experience and thats why usually there is always a lengthy and often mandatory "internship" period at the conclusion of the academic course - because thats where the real learning begins.
Nevertheless, we firmly believe that a knowledgeable and skillful Martial Arts Instructor who is well trained and possesses the necessary "insight" and "tools" can relate very well and have tremendous success with disabled students - regardless if that instructor is disabled or not.
Does the instructor need to show the techniques in a wheel chair?
For simple DEMONSTRATION purposes it might be helpful to be seated (in a regular chair is ok) when SHOWING or explaining the technique - however, from experience, whenever an Instructor attempts to TEACH the technique to another disabled person, it becomes very difficult only because its hard to maneuver the chair into a position close enough without the two chairs actually obstructing and interfering with each other.
It also becomes difficult to comfortably access or hold the students hand or arm and conduct a step-by-step technique follow-thru. In these cases the chair is actually a detriment because it becomes an obstacle.
The able-bodied Instructor actually has the advantage because he or she can stand, lean over, go behind and lean forward, etc., in all the ways necessary to assist the individual with the slow step-by-step follow-thru of the technique, the actual "hands-on" follow thru that is hard to do when the Instructor is seated because of limited reach and maneuverability.
Nevertheless, we recommend that before you proceed with demonstrating the techniques to a disabled student, borrow a wheelchair or use a regular chair and tie your legs to the footrests or side bars and immobilize them as much as possible. Perform the technique with someone who is AB (able-bodied) to get the "feel" of it, then execute the technique with someone who is disabled. That way youll have a better idea of how the technique feels and should work when you actually do it with a disabled student.
If you REALLY want to get a better idea, or at least close, of what its like living in and being dependent on a wheelchair, try the following exercise;
Sit on the floor with your legs crossed (Indian style) or kneel and sit on your legs for as long as it takes for both legs to completely "fall asleep". Then try to get up, try to move around. In fact, try to do anything. Youre in for a "numbing" experience to say the least! You might even need a WC after that exercise, although this will only give you the insight equivalent to a fraction of the "real thing".
What about techniques for those that are on crutches and not in a wheelchair? Are there techniques available for students who are ambulatory?
Yes, there are. The techniques contained in the program are intentionally setup to be very basic and flexible in this regard. There is sufficient room for modification to accommodate nearly every type of disability without compromising effectiveness. Additionally, the IDSA is currently developing a specialized curriculum designed specifically for these types of students.
What time commitment is necessary to become an Instructor?
It all depends on the Instructor, their schedule and ability to assimilate the information. It shouldnt take more than a few days to become familiar with the video program and Instructors manual. Thereafter, its just a matter of making arrangements to attend a seminar or private session. Naturally, the most efficient and economical manner to do this is to attend an IDSA and/or ICHF seminar close to your area.
Additionally, many of the IDSA seminars are scheduled directly by Rehab Centers/Hospitals around the country for their patients. If such a seminar is going to take place in an area where there are ICHF charter schools or members who may be interested in becoming certified, they will receive a flyer announcing the seminar and an invitation to attend as my personal guest. Certification can be issued thereafter, if the Instructor qualifies.
How do I get students?
Once an Instructor has been certified, the process of getting students becomes somewhat of a "joint venture". The IDSA is an International Organization with contacts around the World and we will provide you with the tools and support to recruit additional students.
Do you provide introductions, networking and initial contacts with Organizations for the disabled?
Developing initial contacts is an important part of IDSA services. If the student or Rehab Facility doesnt come to you first (which is usually the case), then well get you to them and handle all the introductions and initial contacts from that point on. All you need to provide is the facilities name, address, phone number and a contact name if available - well do the rest.
What are the space requirements?
You can easily teach the program at your own school or facility - just make sure its accessible!
Or, once you have successfully implemented the Defense-Ability program at your own school or facility, then you can approach a local Rehab Facility where the availability of students and space should not be any problem. Remember, the majority of Rehab facilities will not only welcome the program with open arms - they will get you the students - plenty, and many times more than you can handle. Most Rehab facilities are desperately looking for new and exciting programs to offer their patients. Programs that they can proudly say "no-one" else has.
Rehab Centers are also a business and dont survive on good intentions alone. Think of the tremendous boost in morale and the ability to promote/advertise the fact that they have programs no else does. Where do you think they get their patients? From local hospitals, Insurance or Doctor referrals and so on. Rehab is a very competitive market - just like any other business. They have to be able to attract patients in the same manner a Martial Arts School gets students - thats why the best of them always have the best to offer their patients in terms of state-of-the-art facilities and patient programs.
What are the requirements for Instructor Certification?
To obtain certification and all the IDSA support that comes with it we have established the following minimum requirements so that an Instructor will have the adequate amount of skill and knowledge necessary to implement the program:
*These requirements are subject to changes and revisions.
- The Instructor seeking IDSA certification must be at least a Black Belt in Combat Hapkido (or other Martial Art).
- The Instructor must attend and complete at least one "hands-on" seminar with Master J. Schmidt. This can be done either as a private session, at a regular IDSA seminar hosted by a Martial Arts School, a Rehab center/ hospital or otherwise, or during an ICHF seminar that Master J. Schmidt is attending. A seminar or private session can be scheduled at our facilities in Asheville, North Carolina, or at any suitable location elsewhere in the country.
- The Instructor must obtain and be reasonably knowledgeable in the Defense-Ability Video Series-1 and Instructors Manual prior to attending a private session or seminar.
- Certification is provided in two categories: IDSA Instructors Certification and IDSA Instructors Advanced Certification (see next question).
What is the difference in the two Instructor certifications?
"Advanced" certification is essentially an "advanced Dan rank" (Disabled Self-Defense Expert). Advanced certification is available to Instructors who have completed all the standard certification requirements and are currently working with a group of disabled individuals or have implemented some type of program at their school or a Rehab facility, and:
- Are prepared to begin dealing with "mixed" and larger groups or larger Rehab facilities.
- Want to become more knowledgeable or specialized in working with certain types of disabilities and the corresponding advanced techniques.
- Are ready to begin training with weapons and advanced techniques using the wheelchair and other assistive devices as defensive weapons, as well as advanced ground grappling defenses for the disabled.
I have a Martial Arts school and we teach (specific style or styles), can I integrate and/or add the Defense-Ability / Combat Hapkido system to my current curriculum(s) or do I have to switch styles? Do I have to teach your system exclusively?
One of the greatest advantages is that the IDSA Defense-Ability/Combat Hapkido systems of self defense can very easily be integrated or added to any curriculums and/or Martial Arts style(s) you are currently teaching. In fact, there are numerous schools around the World that have benefited tremendously from adding the Defense-Ability/Combat Hapkido systems of self defense to their program offerings. We never expect or demand that an Instructor or School owner switch styles and we certainly don't impose any requirements such as teaching our systems exclusively.
Our primary interests are;
To provide the (disabled) student with access to facilities and the highest quality training possible;
To assist the Instructor and/or School owner in attaining overall success, regardless of their Martial Arts style. As one of the leading Martial Arts Organizations in the World we will make every effort to help the Instructor/School owner to achieve this goal, and in todays highly competitive market, one of the best ways to accomplish this is by having a variety of different programs to offer your students and positioning yourself as a leader in the community.
I have a Martial Arts school and I know of several (disabled) individuals who would benefit tremendously from a program like this.... or
The response to this question could easily span several pages, therefore, the first thing you should do to get started is contact IDSA HQ at your earliest convenience to discuss all the different programs, services, options and benefits that are available to you.
Will I be able to offer my students who are learning Defense-Ability/Combat Hapkido rank advancement like other students?
The Defense-Ability program was specifically designed to be a complete system that provides "traditional" belt ranking for students who wish to pursue it.
As the Instructor or School Owner, you have the freedom to issue rank according to your criteria and under the guidelines of your style/system. We do not impose any limitations in this regard, nor do we subject the student, Instructor or School Owner to any specific requirements for rank advancement under other Martial Art styles.
If a (disabled) student aspires to earn a Black Belt in the traditional sense (in this case, through the IDSA and ICHF), keep in mind that, disabled or not, the basic procedures and protocols for rank advancement are essentially the same, or at least very similar to those of any Martial Art style and invariably requires that the student must of course first diligently practice and thoroughly learn the system curriculum (Defense-Ability, Combat Hapkido or otherwise). The student must subsequently demonstrate their skills and efficiency through a formal "testing" session with his/her Instructor, Master or Grandmaster if that were the case.
In order to obtain rank, rank advancement or other Certification under the IDSA or the ICHF, the student must of course learn, practice and be efficient and skilled in the execution of the techniques in the Defense-Ability curriculum, Series-I, which essentially follows the ICHF Combat Hapkido curriculum. The Defense-Ability program / Self-Defense system is designed to encompass everything from what is traditionally considered "white-belt" through "Black Belt, 1st Dan".
The Defense-Ability curriculum is flexible insofar as application and modification of techniques to suit individuals with varying disabilities, and the rank testing procedure is equally as flexible. Ranking is based on the (disabled) individuals skill and application of the techniques depending on their particular disability and relative ABILITIES. We fully expect that not everyone is going to be able to execute each and every technique better than or the same way as another student, however, we do expect the student to be efficient and skilled at the execution of those techniques which are within their particular scope of abilities.
The following (disabled) individuals can apply for IDSA Black Belt rank or equivalent rank certification:
- Disabled students who DO NOT hold any traditional rank, yet wish to obtain IDSA Black Belt, 1st Dan rank certification in the Defense-Ability system of Self-Defense
- Disabled students who currently hold a Black Belt 1st Dan or higher rank in another Martial Art style and wish to obtain an equivalent-rank from the IDSA in the Defense-Ability system.The IDSA does not usually offer "color-belt" ranking in the Defense-Ability system of Self-Defense, only Black Belt 1st Dan and higher. However, due to popular demand we have implemented a "color-belt" ranking system - Please consult with IDSA HQ to obatin more information about the general guidelines, procedures, certification and testing requirements for IDSA rank certification or equivalent-rank certification.
Please contact us for additional information and to obtain answers to specific questions.