Categorized | Coaching, General

The importance of TESTING! – A “McDojo Tool or Championship Team MUST”

As must of the readers of the know I run Third Law Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in Naples, FL. Third Law is growing very quickly and know it even offers kick-boxing/muay-thai.  Anyways when I started the school I had the goal of quickly putting it on the planet , producing some of the best practitioners taht the sport ahd to offer. Not as easy as I thought! Two and a half years down the road I have figured out a lot of things that are needed to build a Champiosnhip Team. In the last tournaments we have produced great results and we produce champions very often.

Nevertheless when I started the school there where many things that I do now that I would had never considered. One of them was MONTHLY TEST for students! Why not? Well back then all I heard was how testing was a McDojo tool (a McDojo is a martial arts school that usually ahs been franchised and produces very low uality practitioners…they often carry a negative reputation for lying to people) and how it was done to make more money. I tought it was a joke.

I was introduced to the idea by my friend and successful school owner Marcos Avellan of the Freestyle Fighting Academ in Miami, and Broward. I WAS HOOKED! So I decided to implement TESTING at my school.

At first I had two dilemma’s. Number one I didnt want to make any one feel bad with a bad score. Number two I didnt want to lower my standards just to make anyone feel good about themselves. I just knew that testing must take place.

Students that compete usually improve faster than those that don’t. They gain more experience, and at the same time, they TEST themselves more often. I knew implementing test will help bring the entire level of the school to newer heights.

I have always been a fan of numbers, measuring and tracking results. Testing did all of this.

So I implemented the test. I had two scales …a Percentage scale and a 1-5 scale.


Percentage Scale:

A+ 100 – 97

A 96.9 – 93

A- 92.9 – 90

B+ 89.9 – 87

B 86.9 – 83

B- 82.9 – 80

C+ 79.9 – 77

C 76.9 – 73

C- 72.9 – 70

D+ 69.9 – 67

D 66.9 – 63

D- 62.9 – 60

F Below 60


5. Excellent ( person not only did the technique flawlessly but also drilled it with intensity)–VERY DIFFICULT
4. Great ( Had a couple of important details off)- Like gripping, or placement of body weight.
3. Acceptable ( Techniqe was good enough to hit againts whitebelts peers of his same level)
2. Needs Improvement ( The technique is faulty and wont perform well if done agaisnta peer)
1. Needs to be re-learned ( The person has a clue but so many mistakes , that might as well learn it again)
0. Person was completely lost!


Now realize that a 3 out of 5 . Its actually an F in this system. The reason that is is because what is acceptable for a whitebelt its not what we are shooting for we are shooting fro performing the technique like high level upper belts( purple borwn black). The best grade in teh class was a B- and B+. I was very impress to see hwo welle everyone did. Just 30 days ago they didnt know anything about what to do on top of the halfguard.

At the end of the day I loved this system because the percentage scale ended up being like a measuring stick of how much detail they remeber from what it was taught. The 1-5 scale. Its how their coaches felt they did for their current level

What I really like about the percentage scale is that allows a lot of room for improvement.

I will keep modifying the testing systema nd improving it, but iw as really satisfied with the performance of the students.

Ok it needs to be stated that this test was designed for whitebelts and blue belts. Blue belts where scoring B-‘s ( low 80’s) which is what was expected. It is also super important to add that the testing is not only an indication of how well or bad is the student doing in your class, but ALSO A GREAT REFLECTION OF HOW GOOD OF A JOB THE TEACHERS ARE DOING.

In conclusion the TEST served as great feedback, great measuring tool, and a good way to establish clear vision and constructive criticism in the team. Can’t wai to the next one.

Ohhh and before I forget…even though McDojos do and abuse testing… EVERY TOP UNIVERSITY IN THE WORLD TESTS THEIR STUDENTS ( for those who by now are not convince yest that having a monthly test at your school is super beneficial.

One Response to “The importance of TESTING! – A “McDojo Tool or Championship Team MUST””

  1. Sorry about the typos but hadto write this one super fast!