a) Usually schools whose sole goal is to part you from your money without ever imparting any real Marital Arts knowledge.b) Having a sign up fee ranging anywhere from $25-$100 for just filling out some paper work.c) Lengthy contracts that lock you into paying for lessons for 6-12 months at a time. (non-refundable)d) Rank or belt tests every month or two with fees ranging from $30-$50 a test.e) Rank certificates are already made out before you even test passing you, then why even take a test?f) Will promise you a Black Belt in less than 3 years.g) Doesn't want you to look into the instructor’s background or speak with their former instructors.This is very important that you look into the instructors back ground. For example, a local instructor has recently stated in the newspaper that he has over 35 years of martial arts experience, yet his training can be only traced back to 13-15 years at the most. Has changed the type of karate he teaches to Shito Ryu, wonder which internet factory he got that from? We know all about his instructors background so this is a lie. You should always check out someone's back ground WITH their previous instructors and if they are evasive concerning who and what certificates they have: (Run, may have something to hide.)h) Promotes themselves or has their own students promote them.For example: a martial art school in the local area had his students vote to make him a 4th Degree Black Belt in 2004 and now has promoted himself to 6th Degree. Unheard of in any LEGITIMATE martial arts school. Students DO NOT promote their instructors, nor do instructors promote themselves! Has recently advertised having 30+ years of karate but, we know he started his karate around 15 years ago, got his 1st & 2nd degree here from Tony Finn and third degree from Sensei Sink and personally stated his students promoted him to 4th. All well documented as far as dates and time. Don't just take someone at their word, call their previous instructors!!!!!i) Makes up their name and lineage or changes it to have the appearance and sound of a traditional martial art.For example: Kami-Bushi-Do is not a traditional martial art merely Japanese words just put together to make it sound like it's Japanese. Kami is associated with the Shinto religion and is a form of ancestor worship and is never associated with martial arts.j) You end up exercising for most of the class instead of being taught what you paid for.k) The instructor never performs in front of the class and has lower ranking students teach.l) Lower ranking (white - green belt) students are teaching others during the class, children are teaching adults.m) Has 7 year old brown or black belts.n) Claims to have trained students or has "state, national or international titles" from martial art competitions with no documentation.p) The Instructor/Owner will not discuss class fees/rates, class length, or type of art being taught over the phone.o) Is very evasive when discussing their school and background, because now days you can actually look them up on the internet.q) Has Certificates or Certifications from organizations you can find on the internet by sending in a fee, anyone can receive any ranking they wish or states to have training in some type of martial arts but learned it from a video course.For example: one of our local martial arts school claims they teach "American Tiger Jujitsu" but this system can only be found through a "correspondence" course, with certification based upon your honor or video review of skills learned off a CD. Just type in a Google search for this system they claim to teach and you'll be able to locate the online courses. (http://www.skkaacademy.com/courses-for-sale.html)I personally visited this school several years ago and noticed several certificates on the wall, one from the American Federation of Jujitsu (http://www.amfedjujitsu.com/) stating this instructor had a Shodan in jujitsu. Looking up this association I found that it was simply a website that you sent your $40 in and they awarded you a certificate stating whatever black belt degree you cited. So no real training at all! In 2013 he bought his newest title into a “Hall of Fame” and for $184 you can also. What many people don't understand is that you can buy your awards from organizations and they'll award you anything you want to be, as he did in 2013. (http://www.usamartialartshalloffame.com/nomination-form) We contacted the organization and purchased the exact same award for 2013 to show others that his claim of being voted in by a board was nothing more than joke. Yet he proudly wears it on his gi! This organization has 263 categories you can pick your award(s) from, pay your fee and they award it to you as well as any ranking you want. It’s a money maker for the owner, internet award/certificate factory as long as you pay your fee and send in the info needed they will award you any category or rank you designate! In fact, if you look at what he stated in the newpaper article he mirrors the same amount of time, training and multiple disciplines that I do, yet can’t produce a single amount of evidence, i.e. insturctors, certificates, locations, tournaments as I can. You wonder why he doesn’t promote these awards and certificates on his Facebook page or his website. The reason is you can also look it up just as I did and find out that he’s buying his awards and possible ranking. Buyer beware, you get what you pay for!Why doesn’t he post on his Facebook page or their website photos of his past experience, tournaments, instructors, certificates, etc…certainly if you have 30+ years you have certificates and pictures of yourself from those periods of time when you were younger?Just this year 2017 he now purchased a “Lifetime Achievement Award”. We were contacted by the same organization advising us we were nominated for “Lifetime Achievement Award” as well. Unlike this school we sent in our resume of lifetime achievements first and asked them to review it and if they felt we deserved the award then we would accept it. They at first wanted us to pay or it, we refused and told them we don’t pay for awards to be given to us. After refusing to pay about a month later they sent us the “Lifetime Achievement Award” for our over 40 years karate training and multiple achievements in tournaments, teaching and other honors that we can prove we received, unlike the other school.Do you really want to take training from someone that has their certification or training based upon an "honor system or video review" learned off a "video correspondence course"? Do You? They also change their name and style of martial arts they teach, several times to sound like a Japanese system when they are really an Americanized made up system.They buy awards to be given to them to make it appear they were chosen for the honor, yet never earned them.r) Will not give out any information about fees, contracts, instructor background or certifications. Why, the reason is in this day and age of the internet you can check out someone’s certifications. In fact, this individual claims to have national and international titles, yet we are unable to find a single instance of him even competing at any tournament let alone winning anything!