This page contains the questions that I am most frequently asked.  

If you do not find the answer you are looking for please do not hesitate to e-mail me your question.
Classes take place in the UCAA Martial Arts Centre on the Ballybay Road, Monaghan (behind the Fitness Habit
gym).  Please click on the Adult, Teens or Kids Class Tabs to the left for full details.

Do I have to attend both classes?
If possible it is better for you to attend both classes as often as you can.  Every student misses a classes once in a
while.  But, for example, if you know that you will never be able to attend the Tuesday night class, you are still
welcome to join but it will take you a lot longer to learn and improve on the skills you are taught as you would be
missing 50% of your training.  But attending 50% of our classes is still better than attend no classes.  You can also
top up your training by attending some of our weekend seminars.

How fit do I need to be to start?
You do not need to be fit to start, as you work at your own pace or as hard or easy as you want. We start the class
with a good warm up and stretching so you will be ready for the training that follows. Martial arts training will
provide you with the skills necessary such as improved flexibility, coordination, balance, muscle strength and
muscle tone, not to mention fat loss. You will notice an improvement with each class.

I often hear concerns such as "I have no coordination", "I am not flexible enough", "I am not fit enough", but
remember, you train to get fit. You don't need to get fit to train.

Is there an age limit to joining?
There is no upper age limit to learning, remember you are never too old to learn.  As long as you have your health
you can always try something new.   We have classes for children between the age of 5-8, 8-11 & 12-17 years
old.  You must be 18 or over to attend the adult classes.  We have classes to suit all age ranges, our youngest
students are 5 years old and our oldest is 79 years old.  To find a class that suits you please click on the Class
Tabs on the left of the page.

Can I take part in a class?
Yes you can! You can Pay As You Go for your first couple of classes without any obligation to join.  Just arrive at
the class about 5 minutes before it is due to start so that I can have a chance to talk to you and so that you have
time to fill out a health screening form.  The reason for the screening form is so that I know you have no injuries or
health problems that may prevent you from taking part in a martial arts or exercise programme.

What martial art does your academy teach?
I teach Ryukyu Kempo and Kyusho Jitsu.  

Ryukyu Kempo is the art of self-defence which evolved in Okinawa, based on original Okinawan methods blended
with Chinese Kung-Fu.  Ryukyu Kempo contains all the secret fighting methods that were removed from
modern-day martial arts.  For example, modern-day Karate-do was developed from Ryukyu Kempo as an art to be
taught to school children with all of the dangerous aspects and techniques removed.

Kyusho-Jitsu is the Pressure Point striking of Ryukyu Kempo using theories from traditional Chinese medicine.  In
Kyusho-Jitsu we use the same acupuncture points that an acupuncturist would use to heal, only we use them to
cause injury in a combat or self-defence situation.  Strikes to the proper points - in the correct order, angle, and
direction - can disorientate, disable, or cause death to an attacker.

Do you teach katas?
Yes! Katas are an integral part of Ryukyu Kempo and many other martial arts, where they are also sometimes
called forms or patterns.  The difference is that we teach the true meaning of the kata.  All katas contain pressure
point striking in the correct sequence, angle and direction to disable an attacker.  

Do you teach defence against weapons?
Yes! However I do not teach weapon defences in great a detail until 4th kyu (unless you attend one of our weapon
defence courses).  From 4th kyu I will start teaching you how to defend against anything that could be used as a
weapon e.g. Gun, knife, bottle, bat, syringe, etc...

What does kyu mean?
Kyu are grades below black belt.  There are ten kyu grades.  When you start training you are tenth kyu, after two
or three months you should be ready to sit a grading and if you pass you will be promoted to ninth kyu.  This
continues until you reach first kyu.  This is the last kyu grade before sitting your black belt grading.  Black belts are
called dan grades so after passing your black belt grading you would be a first dan.

**The colour of the kyu grade belts can be different from club to club but the kyu numbers are the same.  The
colours above are what the Universal Combat Arts Academy uses.

How long will it take me to get my black belt?
This is a very popular question.  

Firstly what is a black belt?  A black belt is a grade that represents the knowledge and skill you have acquired
during your time training.  Acquiring that skill and knowledge takes time.  On average it can take four to five years
of continuous training to be ready to sit your black belt grading.  It may even take longer.  

Remember it is the knowledge and skill you gain from your training that is important and the learning doesn't stop
at black belt either.  As you can see from the previous question there are ten different levels of black belt, from 1st
Dan all the way to 10th Dan.   

I am already training in another martial art, am I allowed to train in your club?
Yes of course you are, all martial artists are welcome.  But first out of respect to your current instructor you should
let them know that you intend to come train with us.  You can just use the Pay As You Go option!!
**Colour belt kyu grades

10th kyu      white belt
9th kyu        white belt, yellow stripe    
8th kyu        yellow belt
7th kyu        yellow belt, green stripe
6th kyu        green belt
5th kyu        blue belt
4th kyu        purple belt
3rd kyu        brown belt
2nd kyu       brown belt, white stripe
1st kyu        brown belt, black stripe

1st dan        Black belt
2nd dan       Black belt
3rd dan        Black belt
4th dan        Master,  black & red
5th dan        Master,  black & red
6th dan        Master,  black & red
7th dan        Grandmaster,  red & black
8th dan        Grandmaster,  red & black
9th dan        Grandmaster,  red & black
10th dan      Professor,  red   
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