Let’s talk money shall we. Here is an image of a US 100 dollar bill. This could be an average cost per month for a single individual who wishes to attend martial arts classes at a typical school or training facility. Go ahead and take a look at it, then kiss it goodbye every single month. For some that 100 dollars is something they just cannot part with every month and for others it may not be such a big deal.
Personally for me it's a big deal. Seems to me that every bill I have now a days is at least 100 bucks. The electricity bill I receive every month, my monthly cell phone bill, the car insurance payment I make monthly, a quick stop at the grocery store each week and the list goes on and on. How many of these 100 dollar bills can any one person have to give away and still have a life?
I have been in the martial arts community since the year 2002. At that time I was paying roughly $55.00 per month to attend a small TaeKwonDo school that just opened up in a warehouse building. This was inexpensive compared to other schools I had looked at during the time period and I felt it was worth it to learn something I have always wanted to learn. Prices have increased since then and it is getting harder and harder to justify a new monthly bill in this present day and age when the cost of living has become so high.
Typical costs of For Profit Studios can have a wide range but seem to fall within the following:
- General martial arts classes for adults average between $50 -$100 per month for studio members with many reaching $200-$300 per month depending on school type. The fee generally covers three classes or more per week, but some studios offer unlimited classes to members.
- Some studios charge yearly membership dues as high as $100 on top of monthly membership fees
- Some require students to join a martial arts federation for an average of $60 annually on top of monthly membership fees.
- Many academies will charge based on what they call a black belt program. These programs can be several thousands of dollars per child for a 3 year commitment.
- Some studios that don't offer yearly memberships offer bundles instead, such as $200 to $250 for three months for unlimited classes.
- Sessions for children costs 20% to 50% less than adult classes, and rates are usually set on a sliding scale based on a child's age. Classes for ages 3 to 12 average $30 to $45 per month, and those for teenagers up to 18 average $50 to $60 per month.
- Some studios offer family rates of around 10% to 20% less for two or more members.
- Many studios have belt testing fees on top of memberships. These fees can be as low as $10 and may rise to $50 per test below black belt. Depending on the system and how many belt levels it has, this may add several hundreds of dollars to the overall cost.
Ideally it would be nice if everyone could just train for free. Practically we have to work within the economic system that drives our everyday life. To create and maintain a training facility costs money and to make it happen you must somehow get that money. This is just common sense, but we do not believe that a healthy life style choice should be weighed against your economic standing. It should simply be a personal choice.
MARTiAL YOU is all about simplicity and affordability. To achieve this, we will constantly be looking for ways to keep martial arts accessible whether it's through our Independent Scholarship Program or through our own future facility. It is our intent to open up opportunities and work together with schools all over the US to achieve the maximum benefit for everyone.
Many non-profits concentrate on youth and tend to forget about those youth after they have grown up. What about me! I use to be a youth and now I am in my 40s but wish to learn martial arts and give back to my community by teaching someday. Well guess what? MARTiAL YOU is about everyone. All demographics across the board will have the best opportunity to attend classes.
We intend to establish the following estimated guidelines in the beginning and look to lowing cost as we can:
- Monthly Fees per individual will be capped at approximately $35 which may be decreased further based on economic standing. This will allow access to the facility during appropriate class times for any chosen discipline.
- Monthly Fees for families of 2 will be capped at approximately $55 which may be decreased based on economic standing. You will be able to add additional direct family members for $10 each per month. Now direct means direct and not a boyfriend, girlfriend, friend of family or long lost cousins etc. Proof of relation will be required to prevent abuse of this rate.
- As of this business planning minimal testing fees for belts below black are intended to cover only the items required for testing such as a new belt, wood or brick for breaking, certificates and uniform alterations or changes. Black belt test fees are based on certification fees of each discipline, master instructor charges and custom belt costs.
Remember when comparing fee structures from school to school and from fitness facility to fitness facility that there are additional fees above membership costs to cover certain services or programs. Most gyms or fitness facilities including the YMCA non-profit that offer special programs such as martial arts, charge an extra fee per month on top of their membership fee for the martial arts classes. Also the lowest per month fee I have personally found for a quote "martial arts school" is around $50.00 per month and that goes up very quickly and can reach upward of $150-$200 per month for some schools.