Outdoor Martial Arts Class Ideas

Spring has sprung and the sun is (hopefully) out in the air. Take advantage of the season, by hosting some of your classes in the warmer weather. There are many reasons to do this. The benefits of being outdoors are numerous; the fresh air will do your students some good.


Holding classes outdoors can also garner a lot of attention, leading to more prospective students and brand awareness. The marketing opportunity here is huge, especially if you have a large amount of family foot traffic in your area. For existing students, this keeps it interesting and should help you keep students coming to class.


Just a Warm-Up

Especially when it’s still cold out, a full outdoor martial arts class may be a bit much. Doing a jog around your neighborhood as a warm-up can be a great idea, as long as you have a path that is relatively safe and unobstructed. Just keep in mind to run against traffic so you can see what’s ahead, if the route is near a roadway. Make sure your class suits up into your dojo wear and logo training jackets, so that people follow your students back to your school.


Full Class

Find a large patch of grass with even footing and you have yourself a great outdoor martial arts class. Run through your class schedule as you normally would, while taking advantage of the wide-open spaces available to you. Since long exposure to the sun can be harmful without light protection - especially the closer you are to the equator – sunscreen is recommended. Similar to outdoor warm-ups, having uniforms with logos clearly visible can turn these outdoor sessions into excellent free marketing for your school.


Cross Training

Cross training can help athletes reach new levels, by activating muscles and motor skills that remain largely unused with their focused martial art. We’ve previously shared the story about how NBA superstar Blake Griffin grapples with UFC star Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone, to gain an edge on his opponents.


In a similar fashion, cross training can breathe some life into an old training routine, especially for your competitive students. Whether that’s doing plyometric exercises that maximize space usage (if you have access to a field, for example), or utilizing a playground to do a full body weight workout, there’s something for every aspect of fitness you’re trying to work on. Get creative with it. See a set of stairs leading to a grassy patch? Run sprints up the stairs, followed by a ground exercise like pushups, or a partnered sparring or grappling session. We think a varied training program adds a lot for students and acts as an excellent outdoor martial arts class idea.


Camp it out

Another great idea for an outdoor martial arts class is to take a camping trip together. The extra time together, especially outside of standard training, will help your group bond; increasing the sense of community at your school, along with greatly improving retention. If your school heads to nature on a regular basis, it might be wise to invest in some outdoor apparel. Staying comfortable outside is a key part to convincing your non-nature-loving students that this is a good idea.


Looking for other ways to improve retention? Check out our webinar on tracking class attendance to improve retention.


What is your favorite way to train martial arts outdoors? Let us know on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter and Google+ to stay up to date with all of your ChampionsWay news.