Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Martial Art Demonstrations - Tips

The purpose of demonstrations is to show people what and how your school practises. Apart from the actual martial art techniques themselves, people get a chance to witness how students from a school talk to each other, behave around one another and what the training requirements are for each rank in the school. Demonstrations are great marketing strategies for new schools or schools looking to expand there amount of students and are also great confidence builders for the actual martial artists taking part in the demonstrations.

Below are some considerations which need to be addressed in order to carry out a successful demonstration.


Time limits – Be completely aware of how much time you have to carry out your demonstration. A demo that lasts less than 20 minutes should be enough to not only show many techniques from different students but also short enough so people watching do not get bored.

Venue – If the demo is outdoors, will it be on concrete or on grass? Will mats be needed if throws and ground fighting is displayed on concrete? If indoors, how much space will you be allocated? Will it be big enough for ten, twenty or maybe more students? Find this out all in advance so you can prepare wisely.

Demonstrators – Nearly always, the teacher of the school will perform some demonstrations, however, it is also best for students ranging from beginners to advanced level to perform. This will show onlookers what they will be expected to lean if they attend lessons at the school and will also show how good the teacher is. If his/her students are good at what they do, chances are that the teacher will also be good.

Demonstrations – PRACISE BEFORE HAND! – Each demonstration by each person must be practised repeatedly before hand so they do not get it wrong on the day. The worst thing that can happen is that the person demonstrating forgets what he/she is meant to do and stops to ask the teacher. Make sure this does not happen so prepare well.

Sparring – People nearly always want to see sparring. However, sparring can sometimes get out of hand, especially if on lookers are watching. It can turn into a brawl and people can sometimes get hurt. This could be disastrous for the schools reputation, making it out to be somewhere where people get beaten up and can put onlookers off. If you are going to have sparring in the demo, make sure that the people who are sparring control it, keeping it as a training exercise and not a fight.

Equipment preparation – Pads, weapons, mats, etc. Prepare it all well in advance by placing it in a box ready in the car that will be driven to the demonstration so it does not get forgotten.

These are just a few pointers that are needed to carry out a successful demonstration. Above all else, make sure that each person performing is confident and treats it as just another part of there training, concentrating not on the people watching but on the techniques they are performing.


Marks

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