Class sizes?

Discussion in 'Grappling Technique' started by Envious, Mar 23, 2008.

  1. Envious

    Envious Purple Belt

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    Lately our club has had a massive influx of new students.

    This is causing me grief because when I began there were maybe 20-25 students, we are now somewhere between 300-350. While I am happy with all the success that the school has earned I believe that students are beginning to suffer.

    Classes are way over filled, if you have a question for the instructor you can end up waiting 15-20 min to get your opportunity. There is one instructor for upwards of 50 students.

    So my question is what is the appropriate instructor to student ratio?

    Also, at what point do I throw out my loyalty to this school and look in different directions?
     
  2. Ghosted-Barra

    Ghosted-Barra Orange Belt

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    I would say 25 is pushing it.
     
  3. blanko

    blanko Guest

    i think it's more of a white:blue:purple ratio that matters more. If you have a large group of high blues/new purples that allows you to handle the new white belts alot easier.
     
  4. theNuge

    theNuge Brown Belt

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    Does your school split up the blue belts and above?
     
  5. Richard Emling

    Richard Emling Black Belt Professional Fighter

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    you need to talk to some of the outher students im shure they feel the same. then as a group write a letter voiceing your concern and have all the students sign it
     
  6. slideyfoot

    slideyfoot Artemis BJJ Co-Founder

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    RGA has over 300 members, as far as I'm aware, though normally classes will be between 20-30 something, perhaps a little more. The way RGA deals with those numbers is firstly by splitting classes into 'beginner' (up to four stripe white) and 'advanced' (three stripe white and up). Secondly, there is a blue/purple/brown/black (but normally Oli, a blue) helping out.

    Are there any decent higher belts good at explaining technique who could act as assistant instructors? That might be something to suggest to the main guy, presuming they could afford to pay someone to take up the role (unless they were willing to do that for free, but that would seem a little unfair. If not a wage, then maybe reduce fees for them or something?)
     
  7. Ghosted-Barra

    Ghosted-Barra Orange Belt

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    Ours does.
     
  8. Balto

    Balto Silver Belt

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    50+ in a class is way too many students for a single instructor.

    The solution is to either split up the class times (6-7:30 is white belt class; 7:30-9 is advanced class) so that the single instructor can teach smaller groups, or to have more than one instructor teaching each class. I would think the better solution is to split up the class times because having more than one instructor requires a huge amount of mat space.

    I personally would not pay for instruction in a class of 50+ with one instructor. I have taught before, and I can honestly say that there is no way I could effectively teach a group that size by myself. One time my buddy and I were teaching a group of 50-100 Navy ROTC Midshipmen, and it was just a total disaster.

    I'd bring the concern up with your instructor and see what he says. He may already be aware of it and working on a solution.
     
  9. ozarkdt

    ozarkdt Yellow Belt

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    Our problem is the exact opposite, although we have had better student retention this year. Out of the original class that started up when i began, two remain. As we are brown belts now we are taking up more coaching duties, geting certified and attending coaching clinics. As a Judo club, the learning curve of ukimi is a steep one for some students, the simple truth is that until you learn proper ukimi-waza, Judo hurts.
     
  10. Envious

    Envious Purple Belt

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    It does to an extent.

    They have it divided into three sections, blue belt class, purple belt class, and brown belt plus randori.

    The blue belt is really the beginner class, so techniques up to blue belt, same with the purple belt class and so forth. The blue belt class has the highest number of participants, with the least amount of instruction. I love that class but there are so many students and 99% are complete beginners (obviously). I am not at a stage in BJJ where I should be offering instruction to newer students and practicing my escapes on beginners doesn't help my game either.

    This brings up another point, if I would like to attend purple belt classes but there is additional fees to move up to that level of membership.

    It is an amazing school with top notch instructors and overall good people with that being said I think my days might be numbered.
     
  11. Foppa21

    Foppa21 Black Belt

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    Even for my classes of like 15 max usually, I find that there's not enough to go around with regards to attention from instructor. But put it this way, no matter what, human nature dictates that we always want more.
     
  12. cheath

    cheath Blue Belt

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    Wow, I realize how good I've got it! In my classes, there are on average 8 members (2 of us are white belts, the other 6 are blue), and our instructors. I love that ratio, and we get a good amount of personal instruction. But at worst case even if the total class size goes up to like 10 or 12 (I've never seen bigger than 12) the blue belt to white belt ratio is has never dropped below 1-to-1, so it's cool.

    I was at a place with a higher ratio for a week, and I hated it. It would've taken me three times as long to learn there what I've learned at my current place. I'm so spoiled that I'm afraid after I move I won't find a place I like as much!
     
  13. MonkeyNuts!

    MonkeyNuts! Rear Naked Poker

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    Your club gained 325 students? In what duration of time?

    What exactly did your school do to get that many new enrollments?
     
  14. davejitsu

    davejitsu Purple Belt

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    I have 15 guys on the books but most times it is around 6-10 guys at night. It works well...guys are always saying they want to get more guys in there, but I like small classes and no egos
     
  15. El Ninja

    El Ninja Blue Belt

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    Mine is pretty small. The maximum number of students that we will get for every training session is about 10.
     
  16. blandy

    blandy Blue Belt

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    I think there is around 60-70 members atmy club, biggest class size is around 25-30 which was right at the board line of being too much for one person to instruct even with the help of a few more experienced belts. Can't begin to fathom what 1 instructor for 50+ must be like
     
  17. Envious

    Envious Purple Belt

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    That was probably over 2.5 year time period.

    New enrollments are due to kids programs, TUF, after any UFC event and we are the only Gracie school in the area.
     
  18. D Train

    D Train Silver Belt

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    When we get over 20, it gets a bit difficult (due more to space than anything else). We've got a good assistant instructor though, so that obviously helps.
     
  19. distorted

    distorted White Belt

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    mind if i ask you where your school is in Canada?
     
  20. damit2hell

    damit2hell Guest

    guess im pretty lucky, our school is rather new and small, but it is in a heavy brazilian area, so we get rather high ratio of high level guys to white belts, the other day, we had 1 bb, 3 brown belts, 2 purples, and a hand ful of high lvl blues to like 5 white belts and we do not split up classes by level
     

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