ChampionsWay is always proud to work with amazing martial arts professionals from around the world. It’s the support of these schools and leaders that has allowed us to grow and expand our capabilities. However, we also find it important to get to know our clients. Not only do we want to help them succeed, we want to help them celebrate their work, their passion for martial arts and their students.
This month, we’re happy to feature Sensei Jeff Tovar of The Dojo Martial Arts School are our client spotlight of the month. With an easily recognizable love of helping others, Sensei Tovar’s compassion for students always shines through. Learn more about Sensei Tovar and his school, in the interview below:
CW: When did you first get involved in martial arts? When did you decide to transform a love of martial arts into a career?
Sensei Tovar: Like many other marital artists, I started when I was 7 years old. During the 90s, I was training in ju-jitsu and was asked to become the Head Children’s Instructor. My parents always taught me to help others. The program grew and the experience was so positive; helping youth and adults realize that they can do anything they put their minds to and helping them develop the confidence needed to be successful in life. I already knew I wanted to become a teacher but, at the time, it was a schoolteacher. I quickly realized that martial arts was my life my career; my journey in life.
CW: What drives your school and keeps students coming back? What sets The Dojo Martial Arts School apart from other schools?
Sensei Tovar: Here at The Dojo, we feel like a family. We are The DOJO family! We encourage & live martial arts but, at the same time, I try to teach the value of time management with other things in life like football, baseball, soccer, gymnastics, etc. Students & kids want to try different things. As an instructor, we do not want our students to quit or stop coming to class so we teach martial arts to be a lifelong commitment, not just about attaining your black belt. It goes way beyond that. We feel we are different from other schools because we practice always being prepared. We do not train for tournaments; we are always ready for a tournament. If a bully picks on little “Jose,” he needs to always be ready; he can’t tell a bully “Come pick on me in 2 months. I need to get ready or drop weight.”
CW: If you had to choose one life lesson that you instill in students, what would it be?
Sensei Tovar: To love everyone & to love yourself. Do not hate! If you can’t accept who you are, you improve in anything you do in life.
CW: Where do you see The Dojo in 5 years time?
Sensei Tovar: Our San Antonio program has been open for 2 years now. We are still a young school. In 5 years time, I expect growth with all of our programs. We will have our After School Programs in place and Summer Camps, Spring Break Camps, Fall Camps in full swing. We are blessed with the location of our facility. It has lots of room for growth.
CW: Which ChampionsWay features have you used the most? What has become the most important for your classes?
Sensei Tovar: Being a “One man Show,” I needed a program to help manage my members and leads. ChampionsWay has helped me 100%. It has helped me in many ways, from member retention to membership & products sales growth. With the help of the student retention program, I can see how active each member is. It’s easier to keep a member than to have to get a new one.
CW: How has ChampionsWay helped The Dojo work more efficiently or serve students more effectively?
Senei Tovar: ChampionWay has helped our Dojo in many ways. The Membership management and payment systems are super easy and work great. I am able to see on a daily basis any past due accounts and upcoming expiring membership. With the check-in system, if a student in delinquent, it automatically tells the student to contact our staff for payment arrangements or even an option to take care of it right then and there without me getting involved. It even sends birthday reminders for me. That’s awesome!
All photos courtesy of Sensei Jeff Tovar