1. Are there any contracts to sign?

There are no contracts to sign. North Hennepin Soo Bahk Do is designed to be affordable and flexible. You pay for one month at a time, for as long as classes are still a good fit for your needs.

2. Do you have to attend classes on all three days of the week?

No. The class schedule is designed to give students opportunity and flexibility in their training. You attend the classes that fit your schedule. Of course, the more you train, the faster your skills grow. 

3. I've never been athletic before, or been on a sports team. Can I still do Soo Bahk Do?

Of course you can! Soo Bahk Do is a lifelong activity for everyone of every ability.  It's an art whose purpose is to foster the development of the connection between the mind and body, which makes it a perfect place to begin or continue your personal growth in this area. 

4. Do you have to pay for classes whether you attend or not? 

Classes can be paid for individually or by the month. If you will not be attending during a particular month, you do not need to pay for that month. In fact, it's not uncommon for students to "take a break" to do other things (e.g., play on a football team in the fall, take swimming lessons in the spring, be in the school play, etc.), then return when their schedules allow.    

5. What is the difference between Soo Bahk Do and Tae Kwon Do?

Soo Bahk Do and Tae Kwon Do share the same origin. In the beginning, they were both part of Tang Soo Do, also known as Hwa Soo Do.  During the Korean War, Tang Soo Do was split in two, with the majority of the students joining the military, and the others refusing to become soldiers. These two factions eventually became Tae Kwon Do and Soo Bahk Do, respectfully.  In this modern day, Tae Kwon Do is practiced more like a sport, while Soo Bahk Do remains a traditional martial art, where philosophy is considered to be as important as technique.

6. How long does it take to become a Black Belt?

How long it takes to become a Black Belt or Dan ("holder of the midnight blue belt") in Soo Bahk Do depends a great deal on how often you train. The average adult spends between four and five years training before becoming a Dan.  The length of time for children varies depending on age, maturity and intensity of training.

7. Do I have to buy a uniform right away?

You do not need to buy a uniform to train. Events such as Regional Clinics and Tournaments require a uniform to participate. Classes at North Hennepin Soo Bahk Do do not require a uniform, though most people choose to wear them.  Parents often wait a few weeks or a month before purchasing a do bahk (uniform) for their child, to be sure the child is interested in continuing before making this additional financial commitment.

8. Do you have any family rates?

For families with three or more students enrolled, family rates may be applicable. Master Peterson, the owner of the school, makes these determinations.

9. I have two children who want to try Soo Bahk Do. One is old enough to join the Youth class, but the other is only 6. How firm is the 7-16 age range for the Youth class?

The age range for all classes are suggested, but not immovable. Lead instructors may give permission for students outside of the class age ranges to train, on a case-by-case basis. When such a request is made, it is often the instructor's option to have the child try the class for a few sessions, to see if it is an appropriate fit. 

10. Do I have to join the Soo Bahk Do Federation in order to train?

No, you do not need to join the US Soo Bahk Do Federation to train. However, you do need to be a member of the Federation to be officially promoted. In this way, your rank is registered. This allows you to train anywhere in the world and be recognized at your official rank.

11. I used to train in another martial art. Do I have to start at the beginning again if I start Soo Bahk Do?

Everyone starts at the beginning, it is the way of Kyum Son (humility). However, instructors always take into account previous training and martial arts experience both in providing instruction and in determining appropriate promotion decisions. Students who have earned rank in other arts are encouraged to wear their belts to their Soo Bahk Do classes, so that the rank can be acknowledged.

12. My child has ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), so has trouble focusing sometimes. Can he still participate in Soo Bahk Do classes?

Students of all abilities train at North Hennepin Soo Bahk Do. Part of the training process is to learn the art and skill of focusing attention. Many tools and strategies ranging from military discipline to humor are used to facilitate a child's connection to his/her surrounding, whether it be a training partner, a karate instructor, a parent or a teacher. Self esteem is fostered, with "I can" being the theme, rather than the "I can't" so many kids have grown accustomed to. This philosophy increases motivation which almost always increases success in all areas, including focus.

13. How are the classes structured?

Classes are structured to include a high energy, fast-paced segment, a philosophical lesson, and a segment on refining skills and teaching new ones. All classes are designed to challenge students, as well as increase confidence and overall physical health.

14. Does my child need to be well coordinated to be successful in karate?

Students of all levels of coordination are successful at North Hennepin Soo Bahk Do. Classes are individualized so that kids at all ability levels can get what they need at a pace they can handle. Because Soo Bahk Do has so many facets, it's not hard to find the strengths each child brings to his/her training. Everyone has something to offer, and each child enriches the class.

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