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Why Do YOU Want to Start Martial Arts?

“I want to learn to defend myself!”

“I want to get in shape!”

“I want to improve my mental focus!”

Japanese Martial Arts

Get Started Today!

Fitness • Focus • Self-Defense

(734) 720-0330

info@japanesemartialartscenter.com

Martial Arts For Kids

Kids Karate Ann Arbor

Parents call us almost every day to ask about our kids martial arts programs.

The most frequent questions we get asked are:

“Can you help my child focus?”

“Can you teach my child some discipline?” or

“My child is getting bullied at school. Can you help?”

It’s very common to wonder about whether martial arts will be good for your child, and maybe if karate or judo will offer your child something he or she won’t get in school or while playing with friends.

Teaching Kids Great Values and Safe Martial Arts in Ann Arbor

Wouldn't it be helpful for you to stop in and watch a kids martial arts class with your child to make sure the environment is positive and safe? Wouldn't it be helpful if you knew what your child will experience, and that they wouldn’t be asked to do anything dangerous or violent, but would get in shape, learn good values, and develop habits to help them succeed at home and in the world?

Most of our instructors are parents, too, and like you we hope our children will develop their full potential, have a great self image, and be able to apply focus and patience to achieving their aims in life. We’d all love it if our kids were healthy and respectful at home, too.

Thoughtful, Carefully Developed Martial Arts for Ann Arbor Kids

We teach kids in a very carefully developed, thoughtful way. We disguise most of the learning as fun, and we vary the rhythm of class to keep them interested. You’ll see how our kids are learning to move well, to pay attention to their instructors, and to love the learning process. Most days, you’ll be able to see a range of abilities, from the newcomer who is often shy and who has trouble doing the stances and movements, to the child who has been attending for a year or two who moves sharply, pays attention, and who is beginning to become a role model for the other kids. When you and your child have seen a class and you’re ready for your child to try it out, you can set up the private intro lessons with one of our black belt instructors.

Kids Martial Arts - One Safe, Joyful Step at a Time!

The first step in developing young martial artists is to help them learn to love the experience. The second step is to let them feel the connection between joyful practice and accomplishment. The third step is to pay close attention and make sure we’re giving them what they need to feel engaged, and what they need to feel they're making progress. We’ve carefully developed our program to follow this plan, and it really pays off for the kids at JMAC. We think you’ll be delighted to watch your child grow, too!

Frequently Asked Questions

My child has trouble focusing. Can you teach him (or her)?

Yes! Almost every child who comes to our classes has trouble focusing at first. Some still struggle with focus (they’re kids, after all). But the energy level in our classes along with the varied tempo and volume really helps kids pay attention.

My child is disrespectful at home. Can you help?

Yes! We help make respect a fun and energetic part of training. Rather than demanding respect, we try to earn it, and the kids at JMAC respond very well.

Will my child get locked into a long contract when they start?

No! After your child’s intro lessons, we’ll ask you to sign them up for a membership. The membership is one year, but you can opt out any time in the first 60 days. That 60-day period gives you lots of time to make sure training at JMAC will work for you and your child. It also gives us a chance to assess you child and let you know if our program will be a good fit.

How to Get Your Child Started in Kids Martial Arts

We’d love to have you and your child watch a class at our dojo. Call us at (734) 645-6441 to arrange a time to visit or to get your questions answered. If you're more comfortable with email, you can reach us at info@japanesemartialartscenter.com.

Serving Southeast Michigan:

JMAC students come to practice from throughout Southeast Michigan, from such areas as:

  • Ann Arbor
  • Birmingham
  • Bloomfield
  • Brighton
  • Canton
  • Chelsea
  • Clinton Township
  • Detroit
  • Dexter
  • Dundee
  • Fenton
  • Fowlerville
  • Grass Lake
  • Howell
  • Inkster
  • Jackson
  • Lansing
  • Livonia
  • Manchester
  • Milan
  • Milford
  • Monroe
  • Novi
  • Okemos
  • Pinckney
  • Plymouth
  • Rochester
  • Romulus
  • Saline
  • Southfield
  • Tecumseh
  • Troy
  • Whitmore Lake
  • Wixom
  • Ypsilanti
  • University of Michigan
  • Eastern Michigan University
  • Michigan State University
  • Washtenaw Community College
  • Oakland Community College
Directions to JMAC

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Ann Arbor - Martial Arts Mecca

For the prospective martial arts student, Ann Arbor is a mecca in the Midwest. More than any other location in Michigan, Ann Arbor has a wide variety of martial arts styles taught by many well respected sensei (teachers). You can find training opportunities at community centers, college and university gyms, health clubs, fitness centers and dojos (training halls). Among the styles available are: aikido, iaido, judo, jiu-jitsu (also called jujutsu), karate, kendo, kung fu, MMA (mixed martial arts, sometimes called BJJ) tae kwon do, tai chi, and many westernized martial arts systems. At JMAC, we offer world class instruction in judo, jiu-jitsu, iaido (Japanese swordsmanship), and karate for kids.

Aikido

Aikido is a martial arts descended from jiu-jitsu. It includes joint locks, throws, takedowns, and pins. The philosophy of aikido is a peaceful one - to use the attacker’s energy to neutralize his or her attack without causing injury. Aikido is taught in several forms, such as Aikikai, Ki Society, and Yoshinkan. Aikido was founded by Ueshiba Morihei, who studied with Takeda Sokaku, the most famous practitioner of Daito Ryu Aiki-Jujutsu. Its principles can be found in almost every Japanese martial art, especially jiu-jitsu and judo. Read more about the physical and philosophical principles of Nihon Jujutsu.

Iaido in Ann Arbor

Iaido is Japanese sword drawing. It was created by the Samurai to defend against surprise attacks by an armed opponent. Most iaido involves the practice of pre-arranged forms, which are excellent tools for training the body, improving concentration, and entering into a meditative state. Finding a talented instructor in iaido with legitimate credentials is rare … in the Midwest it’s practically unheard of. For those with a desire to compete in swordsmanship for sport, kendo is the activity of choice. Those who are willing to endure an occasional whack on the head may pursue bokken kumite (sparring with wooden swords) with our director’s authorization once they reach black belt at JMAC. Read more about iaido at JMAC.

Ann Arbor Judo

Judo was founded by Professor Jigoro Kano. It is both a martial art and an Olympic sport. It includes throws, pins, joint locks, and chokes. It is among the most vigorous of martial arts and is very popular with children as well as adults. The Japanese Martial Arts Center offers classes in judo for children as young as 6 years old, and for adults (starting at age 16). One fact not widely known is that sport judo is a narrow cross section of the complete art of judo. Proponents of the entire art, such as Satoh Tadayuki Sensei of Waseda University in Tokyo, recognize that the founder’s vision encompassed not only “judo” throws, but joint locks, takedowns, redirection, strikes, vital points, dynamic ukemi, kata, and weapons. Judo training at JMAC includes many of these opportunities. Read more about Judo at JMAC.

Ann Arbor Jiu-Jitsu (Jujitsu / Jujutsu)

Jujutsu - which is also written "jujitsu" and "jiu jitsu" - is the ancestor martial art of aikido and judo. Although it includes many of the techniques found in aikido, as well as many more combative techniques that did not find their way into aikido, the philosophy of jujutsu is more practical. Techniques are applied more directly, with a greater emphasis on pain compliance. Those who study jiu-jitsu over the long term improve their fitness, concentration, and ability to defend themselves. The Japanese Martial Arts Center offers serious jiu-jitsu classes for adults starting at age 16. You can learn more about the differences between Japanese jujutsu and Brazilian jiujitsu.

Karate – Kids Karate in Ann Arbor

Karate involves mainly strikes, kicks, and blocks. It was originally developed in the Ryukyu Islands (now Okinawa), and was later exported to Japan before finding its way around the world. Karate is an excellent martial art for those who prefer striking, and helps develop physical strength, stamina, and confidence. There are many forms of karate taught around the world today, including Shotokan, Shorin-ryu, Chito-Ryu, Goju-Ryu, and Kyokushinkai. If you’re looking for a way to help your child learn enthusiasm, fitness, discipline, and manners while having a lot of fun, consider the kids karate program at JMAC. We have an incredible core of talented instructors who have made it their business to inspire kids to be their best. Read more about our karate program for kids.

Kendo

Kendo is a sport descended from Japanese swordsmanship. In Kendo, participants wear padded armor and attempt to score points by striking vital points with bamboo swords called "shinai." Practice is fast paced, involves much spirited shouting, and is a lot of fun. The Japanese Martial Arts Center does not offer kendo, but can refer you to a reputable kendo instructor in the area.

Kung Fu

Kung Fu is a Chinese martial art that actually includes many sub-styles. Like karate, kung fu involves strikes, kicks, and blocks, but also includes many esoteric motions that can be applied to take down or otherwise defeat an opponent. Kung fu often appeals to imaginative people because of the many references to animal forms, but it is also a very challenging and practical martial art.

MMA (Mixed Martial Arts)

MMA (mixed martial arts) to a modern competition-based collection of techniques. Most MMA schools teach striking as well as grappling. Although not a traditional martial art - and thus lacking many of the character development and spiritual aspects of ancient Asian arts - MMA is nevertheless a fantastic form of exercise and a lot of fun. Because many MMA fighters have employed judo and jujutsu successfully, the Japanese Martial Arts Center offers private instruction to top-level competitors as well as occasional workshops for our members.

Tae Kwon Do

Tae Kwon Do is the Korean counterpart to Japanese karate. As a striking art, it includes punches, kicks, and blocks, but typically Tae Kwon Do emphasizes more kicking than does karate. Competition (usually for points rather than full contact) is very common among Tae Kwon Do practitioners. It is an excellent form of exercise, but seems more susceptible to commercialization than more traditional arts such as aikido and iaido.

Tai Chi

Tai Chi is another form of Chinese martial art. It is usually taught with slow, controlled movements and deep stances. There are many health benefits associated with Tai Chi, including strong bones, cardiovascular health, and calmness.

Getting Started in Martial Arts in Ann Arbor

If you are considering taking up martial arts, you will find many superb opportunities in and around Ann Arbor, including outlying cities such as Brighton, Canton, Howell, Northville, and Plymouth. Students from the University of Michigan, Eastern Michigan University, Washtenaw Community College, Cleary College, and even Michigan State University have supplemented their education with martial arts and found that the physical activity helps them concentrate on their studies. We think the Japanese Martial Arts Center offers the best programs in Michigan, but we’re interested in people who are willing to work hard and do what it takes to become truly accomplished. We encourage you to look around to find the martial arts club or school that best meets your needs.