I don’t know about you, but in Rancho Bernardo, I can’t help but feel like things are expensive.  I have friends who live up in Orange County, and we are always talking about how expensive it is to live in the areas we do.  It is worth it though.  There is a difference between cost and price.

There is a high value to living in Rancho Bernardo.  You have Poway Unified Schools, a safe neighborhood for your kids to grow up, and you can walk outside and play Pokemon Go at night and not worry about your safety (I will catch all the ghost pokemon some day).

The cost of something is different.  For example, when we moved to Rancho Bernardo I hired a cheap contractor to remodel our bathroom.  I will never forget the cost of this mistake.  My family waited four years for that bathroom to be finished, and the guys still owes me $2,000.  I ended up hiring a much more expensive general contractor to fix all of this guys mistakes.  The cheaper contractor cost me much more.  The price of the second contractor was much higher, but it did not cost me nearly as much (I am still getting flack from my wife).

Choosing a martial arts school for your kids is no different.  We believe that if a computer repair man is charging $25 an hour he must not be very good, but if someone charges $100 an hour he must be amazing.  Don’t be fooled.  Just because you are paying a higher price for your kids martial arts training does not mean that it is really teaching them martial arts.  At the same time I hear guys in their garages complaining about martial arts businesses all the time because they have “sold out.”  Meanwhile they are impacting one or two people in a positive way, instead of a few hundred.

There are some things you get when you join a commercial school that are hard to find these days.  A sense of community, events that get your kid involved in that community.  Having positive role models other than yourself instilling values in your kids.  Them getting physical activity in a positive environment.  And hopefully, they also learn how to defend themselves.

Now don’t get me wrong.  Martial arts cannot teach your kid discipline, self-control, and determination if you are handing them belts.  The discipline has to be rooted in skill, and there has to be an expectation that the belt symbolizes wisdom and ability.  If it does not, you are scamming people and running a con.  At the same time, I think the emphasis is too often on only this and not on the other positive ways the martial arts impacts people.  Don’t get in the habit of thinking the $250 dollar a month school is good and the $119 school a month is bad.  Do your own research, because they each offer something different.  Some of my best lessons have been outside of someone’s house or in a backyard.  You really have to educate yourself on what you want.

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