Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How much does it cost?
A: That’s a loaded question! What would you Pay? At YMATC we offer a FREE trial week to all new students in each of our many programs. That way, you can try out each one of our classes before making your informed decision. Prices range all over depending on age, discounts and number of programs that a student is enrolled. Typically a student enrolled in training two hours per week would see fees of $125/ month (less than $16/class). We also offer multiple DISCOUNTS to offset the cost of training for families, post-secondary students, executive students, first responders and even those commuting from out of town. All of our programs are eligible for Kidsport and Jumpstart funding and we even have our very own Grant Program funding for youth, click here to apply:
Q: What forms of payment are available?
A: We accept cash, cheque, debit/credit, e-transfer and PayPal. Pretty much everything except buttons!
Q: What programs/styles do you offer?
A: We are always evolving at YMATC. We have classes for pre-school through adult and beyond. Programs we currently offer: Yoga, Mugido, Kickboxing, Boxing, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, TaeKwon-Do, Self Defense & Weapons, Little Ninjas and Kung Fu. We also hold Women’s Self Defense workshops and FREE Bullyproof sessions throughout the year.
Q: What age can they start at?
A: Our Little Ninjas program starts with pre-schoolers aged 3-5. This is an introductory program that builds skill sets not just for future training but also important for everyday life. We accept students of every age and those that are 7 and older have many more options to the different styles we offer.
Q: My child is younger than 3, but mature for their age, can they start anyway?
A: Your child must be 3 years or older in the same month that they start classes. No exceptions.
Q: How do I sign up?
A: We have a couple options for you and/or your child to get started.
1. Arrive 10 minutes early to fill out our waiver/ registration form the old fashioned (paper) way
2. Fill out our online form (click on any "Join Us" button) and be ready to go as soon as you walk in the door. Still plan to arrive a bit early to your class of choice.
Q: When is the FREE trial?
A: The FREE week trial we offer in all of our programs starts whenever you start. Your first week in any program is your FREE trial.
Q: Am I too old to start?
A: NO! The oldest student to walk in and start training at YMATC was 87 years young! Training in any of our programs can be tailored to each individual if needed. You are never too old to start learning. We have a broad spectrum of ages and abilities across our programs and no one is judged, only helped. If you have a concern about starting martial arts, give us a call and talk to your doctor and we’ll help you find the best answer to your training needs. “We don’t stop playing because we grow old. We grow old because we stop playing.”
Q: What do I need to bring/wear?
A: Wear something comfy. Usually sweat pants or shorts and a t-shirt do just fine. Bring a towel if you think you may break a sweat and a water bottle. We offer free water, but you’ll need something to drink it out of. Most of our programs are BARE FEET. Need equipment? CLICK HERE
Q: Where are you located?
A: YMATC is currently located at 295 Broadway St. W. in Yorkton, SK. We are directly across from Trifon's Pizza, or if you’re new to town, we’re right beside Co-Op gas west, on the corner of Broadway Street and Lincoln Avenue. Click the icon for Google Maps.
Q: What are your class times?
A: Most classes are held Monday to Friday in the evenings. Our class schedule changes periodically to accommodate new programs/classes. A current program schedule can always be found on our Google Calendar, website and our Instagram/ Facebook/ Google pages. For more information please don’t hesitate to contact us at 306-621-1555
Q: How long is a class?
A: Most of our classes run for a full hour. For the younger students (with a shorter attention span) we cut the time down to a half hour or 45 minutes. The shorter class times are reflected in the program fees per month.
Q: Can I take more than 1 class? How much extra does that cost?
A: Yes! We have many students training in multiple classes to better round out their martial knowledge and self defense training. You will only pay $25/month for each additional hour ($40/ 2 hours) class AND our discounts still apply.
Q: Do you offer private lessons? What's the cost?
A: Yes! While group classes offer the student a better value, sometimes an individual needs more attention. Whether you want to work on a specific skill set of techniques, you can't make it to our scheduled group classes, you need extra practice for an upcoming rank exam or you suffer from social anxiety in a group setting, we got you covered. Private lessons are $60/hour on average and all our discounts still apply (commuter, first responder, post secondary student, etc.). Work on striking, grappling, weapons, style specific curriculum or a mix for self defense. It's your private lesson so we can work on whatever you want!
Q: Do you offer group/ gym classes?
A: Yes! We can customize a class (or series of classes) for your work group, office group, social group, or school PhysEd class and tailor it to fit your group's needs. Choose from a variety of martial arts styles, self defense or pick one specific style. Please allow as much time as possible for booking in advance (two weeks minimum) to ensure dates and times are available.
Q: Do you teach outside of Yorkton?
A: Classes No, having said that, we will work with you to find an instructor, if available for weekly classes. We also have a satellite program to train students to lead their own classes at their preferred location.
We will definitely teach workshops/seminars out of town! We will work with you to customize a workshop (or series of seminars) for your work group, office group, social group, or school PhysEd class and tailor it to fit your group's needs. Choose from a variety of martial arts styles/ self defense or pick one specific style. Please allow minimum 2 weeks lead time for booking and planning and to ensure dates and times are available. Click the button for more details and booking.
Q: How do I tie a belt?
A: An instructor is always available to help tie a belt. If you would like to save some time and learn for yourself, click here. We have published at least 2 videos on YouTube for belt tying and there are many others on the internet that are acceptable methods as well.
Q: Does my child (or myself) need to train twice per week in TaeKwon-Do?
A: Yes & No. If the student is enrolled in classes only once per week due to other commitments, etc, the student will take twice as long to advance. Our curriculum and rank exams are based on students training twice per week. We have exams 3 times per year (every 4 months) and students must have a certain number of credits (classes) as a requirement to advance. Training only once per week does not allow once a week students to advance at the same rate as twice per week students. This can lead to frustration, boredom and often quitting, especially at the higher ranks (blue belt +)where a twice a week student would take 8 months to attain enough credits, the once a week student might need up to 16 months to get the same amount of credits! If you are able, try to enrol for classes twice per week. This will help memory retention and overall satisfaction with the program.
Q: Will martial arts make my child violent?
A: Absolutely not! We don't teach kids how to kick and punch so they can go down the street and beat up the neighbor's kid. Instead, we teach kids self-defense as a tool for personal growth and development. Kids learn to treat others as they want to be treated. They learn to respect all living things – from their parents to pets. Often, kids who were violent before they joined our class changed, and became non-violent. So no, martial arts won't make your child violent, in fact, just the opposite!
Q: What if my child is not athletic? Will he/she have a hard time?
A: Often children who don't find success in team sports come to martial arts. And they love it. That's because with martial arts you go at your own pace.See, team sports actually harm the self-esteem of children who aren't very athletic. When they don't perform well, the other kids can be pretty nasty. And this can leave some serious scars on their self-esteem. But with martial arts, they can't let anyone down. Everyone goes at their own pace. Some kids learn quicker than others – but the children who advance quickly are not valued more than the kids who advance slowly. Everyone is greatly encouraged – regardless of their athletic level.
Q: Will my child learn a talent that they can be proud of?
A: Many children find pride in being able to do “cool” things like dancing, juggling, singing, playing an instrument, etc., etc., etc. I've seen many kids enter talent shows, and show off their martial arts skills. The crowd is blown away every time! There's simply something fascinating and exciting about watching martial arts. And your child will take great pride in his/her abilities.
Q: Will my child get hurt?
A: I've had children come to my program for years without ever obtaining a single injury. This is actually the case with most children. Have children gotten injured in my martial arts class? Yes, some have. But the injuries were no different than those which kids who play baseball and other sports get. In the words of a parent I recently spoke with, “The instructors pay attention to detail when it comes to safety.” From padded, sprung floors, to proper gear, to step-by- step instruction – we do everything in our power to insure your child's safety. I can't guarantee your child won't be injured – but I can tell you that almost no children receive injuries in our programs. And that's because we take everyone's safety very seriously.
Q: Will my child have fun? Will he want to stick with the program?
A: When parents take their kids to appointments – normally the parent has to run around and do everything in their power to get their children to the appointment on time. “Hurry up!” they shout, “We'll be late!” (How many times have you said this?) But with martial arts, something fascinating happens… Often the children are the ones yelling these things! They don't want to be late, and they never want to miss a class. In fact, I know of many parents who use martial arts as an incentive to get chores done. If the kids are good, do their chores, and do their homework – they get martial arts as a reward.That's because your child will have a ton of fun. They'll be laughing and smiling throughout the entire class. And because they'll constantly be setting and reaching goals – they'll want to stick with the program. It will become a part of their life as if it was always there.
Q: Are martial arts just for boys or can girls take classes too?
A: On this page I've said “he” a lot. But the truth is, there are just as many girls in many of our classes as there are boys (sometimes more). Girls love martial arts just as much, and get the same fulfillment out of it as boys do. Also, if I've learned anything in my years of teaching, its that girls are just as tough as boys. Many are even tougher! So you don't have to worry about your little girl getting hurt, or feeling scared because she'll be practising with boys. In fact, the boys may even be the ones who are scared.
Q: May I stay to watch my child's class?
A: Yes! Parents are encouraged to watch their child in class. Having said that, make sure that you are actually watching, not playing games on your phone. You wouldn't want your child to think that your phone is more important, right?! They are easily distracted by loud conversations as well, so please keep the chatter down and take phone calls outside.
Q: Who is the instructor? What qualifications does he have?
A: YMATC’s owner and Master Instructor is Michael Forster. Master Forster is in his third decade of martial arts training. He also has other instructors, black belts and senior belt assistants who help with almost every class. This ensures a higher student to instructor ratio for assistance with learning and quality instruction that is YMATC’s standard. For more information, please don’t hesitate to chat with Mr. Forster about his background, world championship experiences and affiliations with the top organizations in the province, country and around the world!
Q: When can I start?
A: Besides our Little Ninjas and Yoga sessions, the programs we offer don’t have a “set in stone” start or end date, so when you’re ready to start, we’re ready to help you on your path. We realize that there are many other activities that students take part in throughout the year. Our programs and price structures are flexible to work around your other commitments. One of the best things about martial arts is that it’s available year round. Rain or shine, hot or cold, the weather doesn’t get in the way of our training.
Q: Do classes run through the summer?
A: YES! Although because of summer holidays, our schedule is condensed to reflect a vacation for everyone (including our instructors). Our prices are also reduced so that students taking only part of the summer to travel can come back anytime to continue their training. We encourage summer training to stay active in class which makes for an easier start up in the fall. Students training through the summer will also advance through ranks more consistently because the curriculum stays fresh in their mind.
Q: Will I be with other beginners?
A: YES! New students are starting almost every week, so you are not behind on anything. We realize that starting a new activity, especially one such as martial arts, can sometimes be overwhelming. The fear of the unknown is a powerful thing. Please rest assured that we will do everything to make you feel at home, like you’re one of the family. Training is constantly supervised by professional instructors and SAFETY is always number one. If you’re still apprehensive or unsure about any class we encourage coming in to gather more information, brochures, schedules and even just to watch a class. If you’re not sure you’ll know anyone at class, feel free to bring a friend along! Everyone gets a FREE trial week, so there’s nothing to lose!
Q: How big are the classes?
A: We’ve made it a policy to have a limit on each and every class size so that we can keep the student to instructor ratio low so the quality of instruction stays high. For the younger classes the limit is 10-15 students and for youth and adults we have no more than 20 at a time. This limit has a downside though, because once a class is filled up, unfortunately we must create a waiting list. It’s a good idea to call/ text ahead to make sure we have a spot for you and reserve it ASAP. 306-621-1555
Q: What is "Open Mat"? How does it work?
A: Open mat is a time slot where any student can work on anything they would like. Most popular is sparring or grappling but students can stretch, hit the bags, or even just watch others. Open mat times are included in every membership but if a student is only coming to open mat times, a drop in fee will be charged.
Q: How does the belt system work?
A: Well, that’s another loaded question! We have multiple belt systems, rank systems and some programs have no ranks whatsoever depending on the style. All systems start at white and end with black, but the colors in between will vary. All of our styles offer a curriculum that can be tailored to any ability (or disability) and allows each student to progress at their own rate. Everyone learns differently, so we offer exams and promotions multiple times per year to encourage students to climb the martial arts ladder. Once a student reaches black belt, the journey doesn’t end, it’s merely the completion of the first chapter.
Q: When do I get my Black Belt?
A: When do you want to get it? Anyone can buy a black belt. It’s just a belt. It’s the knowledge behind a black belt that gets complicated. Every style has different standards and curriculum that students need to fully comprehend before getting to the rank of black. The time to learn everything required for a black belt will be different for everyone, but on average a TaeKwon-Do black belt takes 4 years, a Haidong Gumdo black belt will take 2-3 years, a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt will take 10 years or more! You may ask why there is such a difference in time, and again it comes down to the amount of curriculum a student has to learn, their desire to learn it, their commitment to attend classes and their overall understanding of the material they learn. The averages outlined above are just that, averages. Students may take less time or more time depending how they learn and retain knowledge, and how often they practice.
Q: Do I have to be a certain age to get my Black Belt?
A: YES. We are not a "McDojo". We don’t hand out black belts to kids. Just like driving and voting, we believe there are certain responsibilities that come with achieving a black belt. Again the different styles have different standards, but the beliefs stay the same. The rank of Black Belt should be a respected achievement and should represent the wearer’s superior and intimate knowledge of the art they are wearing it for. Not to mention the countless hours of training invested. Anything worth doing is worth doing properly. Not, “well, you put in the time and paid the money, here’s your black belt.” Again the different styles have different standards, so our TKD black belts are minimum 14 years old whereas a BJJ black belt minimum age is 19. Remember that a black belt is only a white belt that didn’t quit.
Q: What does my monthly fee include?
A: Besides the obvious program instruction and life saving skills to protect yourself and others your monthly fee is split up to cover so much more: registration fees, unlimited open mat times, exam/ rank promotion fees, website membership & curriculum videos, administration and office fees, decades of experience shown with professional and patient instruction, instructor/coaches' training and upgrades, low student to teacher ratio, access to our student association grants for competition and extra curricular seminars, electricity/ heat/ water utilities, building/ property maintenance, supplies and sanitation, property mortgage, property taxes, banking/ accounting fees, insurance/license/franchise fees, equipment & merchandise stock/ storage, access to fitness equipment, drinking water, social outing, structure, discipline, coordination, moral values, focus, balance, self-control, peace of mind, physical & mental exercise, core/ strength conditioning, active lifestyle, stress relief, OH! and TAX is included.
Q: What is the difference between Karate and TaeKwon-Do (or difference between the martial arts styles we offer)?
A: Another loaded question. Besides the different countries that each was created in and their individual cultures and philosophies, the easiest way to describe style differences is this analogy: each style has evolved just as languages and dialects of those languages have evolved. Everyone that speaks might not sound the same even though the message is identical.
Q: What is the difference between TaeKwon-Do and Martial Arts?
A: TaeKwon-Do IS a martial art. The difference being some clubs only teach a specific style or program (such as TaeKwon-Do) whereas we offer many different styles of martial arts (because different people have different interests and goals) so our club name uses the umbrella term of "martial arts" which is necessary to reflect that.
Q: What is the best style? What is the best style for me?
A: There is no single best style and don't let anyone tell you different. If there was a "best style", everyone on the planet would be training in it. Each style has it's benefits and shortcomings depending on what you're looking for. The best style for you is the one that keeps your interest and helps you to accomplish your goals. Sometimes that can be done with one style, sometimes that can only be done by training in multiple styles. The question you need to ask yourself is: "What goals would I like to accomplish?" Once you know your goals, we can help you decide which style would suit you best.
Q: What do we call you? (in regards to an instructor's title)
A: Yet another loaded question. As martial arts are steeped in respect it is important to address your instructor with a proper title. Having said that, Master Forster is not everyone's Master Instructor, nor is he a Master in all martial arts. While wearing his TaeKwon-Do uniform and belt, he should be addressed as Master Forster. He should also be addressed as Master Forster if you see him in a Haidong Gumdo (Korean Sword) setting and at Ultimate Combatives/ self defense classes. As a parent that is not taking classes, technically Master Forster is not your instructor, however, it is still important to set an example for your child, so please no first names, but you can use "coach", "sir" or "Mr. Forster" if you forget. This also works for Kickboxing and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Mr. Forster is a Black Belt in BJJ so "professor" is the correct title when he is teaching BJJ, but "coach" works fine. Same goes for outside of all classes in a social setting or out and about in the world. If you see your instructor at Walmart (for example), it's OK to keep the same respect and use titles and last names, but we cannot get upset at you for using first names outside of class. Protocol in class should be "yes sir" or "no sir" (use ma'am for female instructors) when asked a question directly or otherwise. Having students from many backgrounds, you may wonder if Sensei would be a proper title, and it is if you're taking a Japanese art. If not, follow the guidelines above. Clear as mud? Still unsure? Just ask your instructor/ coach/ Master in person.
Q: Is that a real sword?
A: YES. If you can see it and touch it, it is probably real. What you meant to ask is “Is that a sharp sword?” NO. Our sharp swords are put away so little hands stay uninjured with all fingers in tact. The swords and blades you see at class are all training weapons and are very dull to help keep everyone safe.
Q: Are you open?
A: If you're standing outside our building and the door is locked, then sorry, we are closed. Check our class schedule to swing by later or click here to contact us.
Q: I registered on this website, why don't I have member access yet?
A: Being a website member hinges on being a current and active YMATC member. If you (or your child) are not taking physical classes, you will not have member access on our website either. If you have registered and paid for any program at YMATC, you will be granted appropriate website access until such time that your YMATC membership runs out.
Q: What are your policies surrounding Sars-Cov2, regulations and restrictions?
A: We don't have enough space on this website to answer that question. It's best to discuss your concerns with us directly 306.621.1555
Any students that are feeling ill should stay home and focus on recovery before returning to class.
Q: What if I have more questions?
A: If you have a question that we didn’t answer above, please feel free to email, call, text message, message us on Facebook/ Instagram/ Google, or just drop by when classes are in session. We will answer any question you have and if we don’t have the answer, we will find it and get it to you ASAP.