View Full Version : Cost of your training

04-02-2001, 07:56 PM
I have my first Hsing-i class this Sunday. The group meets once a week for two hours. The cost is $90 per month.

I am new to the CMA scene, and therefore unaware if this is typical. I am a poor grad student. I mean no disrespect, but every extra dollar I spend hurts. Is there any reason a contract should be signed (if that turns out to be their policy)?

"Luminous beings are we."

04-02-2001, 08:01 PM
This has come up before with lot's of input from different schools. $90 a month sounds steep to me but not uncommon. Depends on the instructor if it is worth it. Some yes, most no. Would you like to post their name?

Water Dragon
04-02-2001, 08:12 PM
Taijiquan = $ 150.00/year & Pain
Shuai Chiao = Pain & Bruises

Although there are many styles, they all depend on the strong beating the weak and the slow falling to the quick. These are not related to the power that must be learned -- Taiji Classics

04-02-2001, 08:26 PM
I don't think posting his name will help much, Joe Dunphey. I asked about him in an old thread and got zero responses. He was recommended on Mike Patterson's web site.

"Luminous beings are we."

04-02-2001, 08:39 PM
That's a really good recommendation but since I don't know him I really can't comment. I pay 35 a month for a really good teacher in TCMA. I also pay 110 a month for my daughters Tae Kwan Do. I have seen some of the best charging 90 a month and I would say this is well worth it and have also seen the opposite. This probably doesn't help much but it wouldn't hurt to try it out for a few months and see. Let us know what you find out!P

04-02-2001, 08:54 PM

Who is your teacher? That is awesome. How many hours of training time do you get for that? What size is your class? Should I be investigating other options as well at this point?

Sorry for the Inquisition, but you are always good with the answers.

"Luminous beings are we."

04-02-2001, 09:02 PM
It would be a bit of a commute for you. I study with Jason Tsou here in Los Angeles. I have been with him since 1984 and have always paid the same amount although the price can vary depending on how often you are going or when you joined.


Classes are around 4 hours long and size varies between 20 and 30 these days.

04-02-2001, 09:10 PM
I pay $40 for three months at the Ba Gua school I attend. Shr Fu Patterson charges $90.00 a month and up, uP, UP! But, he's got the largest TCMA school in Southern California.

In my opinion, there are teachers, and there are business men. What we do cannot be bought with money. The only way I could justify charging that much to my students, would be if I was spending the extra cash to improve our training facility. If the students are not going to benifit from paying a higher tuition, they shouldn't have to.

My school supports itself with the student's contributions. If we didn't have enough to stay open, I'd teach at the park FOR FREE! I don't know why this gets me so mad... Thanks for letting me vent.

"The essence of life is struggle and it's goal is domination. There are higher goals and deeper meanings, but they exist only within the minds of men. The reality of life is war."

04-03-2001, 01:12 AM

I knew you were too far away, I was just curious.(Never know where you'll end up)

Scarlet Mantis,

I am far too ignorant regarding neijia and the cost of lessons to comment. Sounds like you have a cool deal going as well.

"Luminous beings are we."

04-03-2001, 04:46 AM
Why do people expect teachers and artists to do their thing for no profit or for free? It's so valuable it should be free? I don't understand that logic. If my teacher can't charge enough to teach full time and also support his family comfortably, he'll have to devote his energies to a different, salaried job. That's a lot less time for his art and students, and I think it would be a shame. There is nothing wrong with artists being professionals in their field. Actually, I am paying a high price and I don't mind. I am getting valuable knowledge and I don't think my own hard work is enough of a price. That is paying me, not my teacher. My teacher worked hard his whole life and I should give him something valuable of mine, like money, to thank him for sharing his knowledge with me. If people want to teach for free, of course that's great, but I don't think it should be *expected* or considered a moral issue.

Sorry to rant, and I'm not directing this at any one person. It's just an issue of mine. Many of my friends are artists (painters, graphic artists) and are struggling against the prevailing mentality that they should provide art for free, just for the love of it. I think that's wrong. Nobody becomes an artist for the money, but if what they do is considered valuable, they should be able to make their living at it just as much as any mundane professional.

p.s.--My teacher does give discounts for people who can't afford his price but demonstrate their sincerity.

Dave C.
04-03-2001, 04:51 AM
The teacher you mentioned was a student of a gentleman from Taiwan named Huang Chien Liang. He runs the Guo Shu full contact competitions every year. That's why his student is listed on Mr. patterson's website. I know that Huang does several styles of MA but I think that his plum fLower boxing is supposed to be his forte.

As for Joe Dunphey, I remember that he entered the guoshu competition here in Taiwan back in the 80's and won his weight category.

They have a xingyi video available from wayfarer publications.

Good luck.

04-03-2001, 05:38 AM
If the teacher has this good reputation I'm sure he won't use a contract.

But just in case--don't sign one! They represent the cynical money-grubbing Scarlet Mantis so hates. (Being required to pay for something you think is valueless is indefensible.) If you do sign one, don't expect to get out of it if you don't like the class. My cousin in Colorado had this experience at a TKD school. They hire professional collection agencies to enforce the contracts, so be ready for a lawsuit or ruined credit rating if you try to back out. Contracts are the work of the devil! :D

04-03-2001, 08:46 PM
K Chow, you seem very knowledgeable about how the Mc Dojo scam works here in the U.S. I hope that this is not becoming a worldwide phenomenon.

I have absolutly no issue with the idea of an artist making a living. I would hope that such an artist would be doing thier art even if they weren't getting paid. I would also expect that a poorer student who was commited to thier training would be accepted by his/her teacher.

Up until the sixties, TCMA were not often taught for money. There were traditions that had to do with "gifting the teacher" but you gave what you could, not what your contract demanded.

My personal beef has to do with "teachers" who blatantly take advantage of thier students by charging exorbitant fees, jacking up the cost of rank testing, forcing contracts on students, etc. etc. etc.

"The essence of life is struggle and it's goal is domination. There are higher goals and deeper meanings, but they exist only within the minds of men. The reality of life is war."

04-04-2001, 03:00 AM
I haven't seen contract scams here yet. There is no means yet by which to give someone a bad credit rating. I have family in the U.S. and lived there myself for about 6 1/2 years, so I am pretty familiar with how things work there. How about Europe, anyone? Is this situation there similar to the U.S.?

doug maverick
04-08-2001, 08:09 PM
wow thats alot i pay 90$ a month too. i take wing chun and xing yi and i go to each class three times a week.

04-09-2001, 11:46 AM
This is going to sound like a lot but it isn't.

I pay $110/month.I'm training under Joel Rizzo in
Bak Fu Pai. The school is open from 10am to 10pm. Two beginners classes a day and one on Sat. This sounds like alot but it isn't really. For our 4th year at the current location, we had dinner payed by the school plus door prizes and a raffle. Everyone , student or not, got a door prize. Herbs, royal jelly, Tiger bone patches and alot of other stuff was given out. Raffle tickets were $10, over $10,000 worth of stuff was up for raffle. I personaly won about $700 worth of herbs. yay Plus custom calenders and cake.

8 Sweaty Palms
04-10-2001, 08:32 PM
I pay $100 per month for my Bagua training, which is only twice a week for now. At first, I thought that was a bit thick for only two sessions a week (money is always tight for us). But to be frank, I'm too sore and confused to do more anyway for now. I'm amazed at how tired just moving around and walking can actually make you.

It's not good to get too wrapped up in the give/get details at first. The burden is on you to learn, not for him to teach you. He's just the guide.


wisdom mind
04-10-2001, 10:51 PM
contracts ARE the work of the devil!

burn dem

04-14-2001, 06:05 AM
The question of it being worth it is the question indeed. 20Yrs ago my Sifu charged $60 a Month,
and we trained 6 days a week under his direct teaching. And it was like this until his dimise
in 1996.

$90 a mo, 1 day at two hours a week?
I personally have a problem with that. I don't care who your teacher is. This is the internal,
there are far too many things to learn. At that pace you'll be learning forever. especially with the fact that most people don't train until they get in school. even if you have a famous teacher,
No matter what his level of skill is. you'll never
get a piece of it if 1. He doesn't put time into you. and is also on the go because he's so in demand. 2. The internal is individualized, inparticular Ba-Gua. Also, the fact that if you subsribe to the chi theory, our growth in this
must be monitored. in order to know when the appropriate changes must be made.

8 Sweaty Palms
Yo man,
You've got to pick it up. 2 days? at how long?
And gathering from what you wrote, you only train when you go to class.
If you want to excell in the internal you must train beyond the class. You go to class to learn,
not go over what you already are supposed to know.
Inparticular you people who can't spend the time with your sifu that you should.
We all have had that dream of becomming the Successor of some great Sifu. The first thing is
getting him to notice you. and you can only do that through your ability which will only appear through training. Every Kung fu teacher wants a student they can teach the real stuff to.
If your embraced this way you'll see the cost of training changing from money too the sacrifices you inpose on yourself.

Just my opinion.

04-15-2001, 05:49 AM
As for contracts, A good teacher does not need them!! I invite my students to try other arts!! If they find a better art than the dim-mak/taijiquan/baguazhag I teach, then I would like to attend the class with them! Or maybe my arts are not for them, why make them stay?
Money is all relative to location/other occupation/standard of living ect...if your teacher does it full time and doesnt want to live on the streets he might have to charge alot. On the other hand if he does it part time (as I do)
then he can afford to be cheaper. "You get what you pay for" is not always true.
kind regards,