MBC approaches instructor certification very differently than traditional martial arts. In most systems earning a black belt means that you’ve proven your physical mastery of the basic skills of the art and that you are now “qualified” to teach. MBC considers teaching a separate and distinct skill set. We also acknowledge that some very talented practitioners of a system may never develop—or choose to develop—the skill to teach.
The first step in achieving any level of recognition in the MBC system is developing physical skills in the system. To achieve true instructor certification (Associate or Certified Instructor), you must validate your skills through formal proficiency testing, which is typically conducted at the annual Martial Blade Camp event. If you test successfully, you are awarded a Certificate of Proficiency and may simultaneously receive Associate Instructor status. You may also be required to refine your technical knowledge of the system before being recognized as an Associate Instructor.
Once you have been recognized as an Associate Instructor, you learn how to teach MBC per our established, and repeatedly proven, methodology. When you are ready, you can then test to become a Certified Instructor. This test is also administered at the annual training camp and requires that you re-validate all your physical skills and prove your teaching ability in front of the group and your instructor peers.
Based on this overall approach, MBC has defined a number of different levels of instructor:
Study Group Leader – An MBC-trained practitioner who has developed a skill set that is adequate to supervise MBC training involving other students and has displayed an attitude consistent with MBC’s goals and ethics.
Affiliate Instructor – An accomplished student of MBC who has trained directly with me and displayed the skills, understanding, and character to earn my recommendation as a source of training. Affiliate Instructors are typically already certified instructors of other martial arts systems and therefore have teaching experience. At their discretion, they may include as much or as little of the MBC curriculum as they want in their teaching; however, they remain a resource for accurate, authentic inquiries regarding the MBC system.
Associate Instructor – An MBC practitioner who has successfully tested for proficiency in the system (the equivalent of earning a black belt in a traditional style) and displayed the knowledge, understanding, and ability to teach the MBC system faithfully and accurately. Although these instructors are not required to restrict their teaching to the MBC methodology, in most cases, they elect to present the system in its original form without significant deviation.
Certified Instructor – An Associate Instructor who has completed the Instructor Training portion of the MBC curriculum and thoroughly mastered both the physical skills and teaching methodology of the system. Certified Instructors should, upon request, be willing to provide instruction in the core MBC system without significant variation.
Currently Michael Janich is the only person authorized to recognize and authorize any level of instructor in the MBC system. This web site is also THE official list of authorized MBC representatives. If someone claims to be teaching MBC or one of its related disciplines, but is not listed on this web site, he is not an authorized source of MBC instruction and the MBC system does not endorse or recommend his teaching.