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4 Reasons to Wear a Rashguard Under Your Gi

Customer Service - Thursday, April 28, 2016

Rashguards are a staple for no-gi grappling. They offer compression and protection without interfering with control. The benefits of wearing them are rarely debated, that is until it comes to wearing them under your gi. Those opposed to wearing the extra layer argue that they feel more restricted, that it isn't worth the extra laundry, and that competitions like IBJJF forbid them. So why is it that more and more schools are requiring their students to wear them? Here are some of the reasons why some martial artists choose to wear a rashguard under their gi.

1. Reduces Spread of Bacteria
When you wear a rashguard under your gi you are significantly decreasing skin-to-skin and skin-to-mat contact. This means you're significantly reducing your risk of infection. Most gyms are on top of cleaning and disinfecting, but no matter how clean they are, there is always a risk of spreading bacteria when sweating and grappling. You're in close contact with opponents and it's better to be safe than sorry.

2. Reduces Burn and Irritation

The thick material of a gi provides many benefits (durability, a satisfying "snap"), but they can also cause intense discomfort and irritation for some people. Martial artists with sensitive skin often choose to wear a rashguard to protect themselves from gi burn or mat burn. Rashguards provide protection from persistent rubbing and scraping.


93 Brand "Tales from the Grips - Electric Chair" Rashguard


3. Increases Modesty

Not everyone has a chiseled six pack and there certainly is no shame in that, but many people feel more comfortable with the extra coverage a rashguard provides. You may discover
that you're more likely to find a willing grappling opponent when wearing a rashguard, because it decreases the exposure of body hair, sweat, and skin imperfections. Not only will this make you feel more comfortable grappling, but it also decreases the risk of unintentional body hair ripping.


93 Brand Rollers Rashguard
 
4. Moisture Control
Most rashguards are made from a polyester and spandex blended fabric. The properties of this stretchy fabric make it perfect for moisture control. The rashguard wicks sweat away from the skin causing it to evaporate or be absorbed into the gi. This keeps moisture at bay, so you are able to maintain dry hands for better grips.


Whether you decide to wear a rashguard under your gi or not is up to you and your instructor. There are benefits to both sides of the argument. One thing is for certain: rashguards come in all sorts of styles and designs and look really cool while providing protection and compression. See Macho's wide selection of rashguards here. 

6 Marketing Strategies to get Students to Advertise Your Martial Arts School

Customer Service - Thursday, April 21, 2016

Are you looking to attract new students to your martial arts school? If you're not utilizing these 6 marketing strategies then you're going to have a harder time. Chances are your current students are eager to share their excitement about the classes they're taking. Don't let this momentum go to waste. Here's how you can use their excitement to attract new students and grow your martial arts school.



1. Use Push Advertising

Push advertising is a traditional marketing strategy that involves distributing promotional material to a large group of people. Email campaigns and flyers are great ways to utilize push advertising for your school and will be extremely effective if you get your students involved in the distribution. Send flyers home with students. These can be simple, but professional print outs that include your school’s logo, website, upcoming events and news, and/or coupons. Younger students will hand them over to their parents, who will hand them off to their friends. It’s an inexpensive way to get your name out there.


2. Don't Ignore Social Media

10 years ago only 7% of the US population used social media. That figure has increased almost tenfold, to 65%. Many businesses, including martial arts schools, use social media as a marketing tool. You do not want to miss out on the many potential students and positive exposure social media can bring to your school. Start with the basics and create an effective business page on Facebook. Use it as a platform to share exciting news, events, and martial arts articles. Urge your students to “like” your page. Create a fun online community for students to interact and share information about your school with their friends and family.


3. Create a Referral Program

A referral program is a good way to get students to advertise your classes to their friends. Print off discounted class coupons for students to give to their friends or offer a ‘Refer a Friend’ form on your website and Facebook page. When a student fills out the form an automatic email will be sent to the friends they think would be interested in your school. Reward each referral with a free month of classes or a prize, like a Macho Rank Belt Key Chain or a Custom Printed Headband.


4. Offer “Bring a Friend to Class” Days

“Bring a Friend to Class” days give students a chance to share their passion for martial arts with their friends and they give you a chance to introduce martial arts to prospective students. Offer these classes on the weekend, when students are already looking for fun ways to hang out with their friends. Make sure to plan activities and lessons that are easier and fun to do. You do not want to scare away beginners with difficult routines. Hand out a discount card for membership at the end of class to students and guests.


5. Organize Social Events

Social events and parties are a fun way to spread the martial arts cheer. They show your community that martial arts classes not only benefit students physically, but also socially. Parents and students will talk about the great atmosphere and social environment you provide. They will want to bring their friends to the karate themed Christmas party or the tae kwon do Mother’s Day event. Show attendees the many benefits your school provides and make it easy for guests to sign up for more classes.


6. Take Advantage of Custom Print Services

Students become walking billboards when you use custom print services. Students will want to show off their cool apparel to friends. They’ll wear their custom printed backpack to school or their martial arts t-shirt to soccer practice. Put your logo on a bumper sticker with a catchy slogan like “Karate Mom” or “Jiu Jitsu Dad”. Custom products are a great way to showcase or advertise your brand, creativity or concept. For 35 years, Macho has been offering custom printed apparel, uniforms, gear and other custom print media to martial arts schools. Use these services to get your logo out there and in the minds of prospective students.





Screen Printing or Direct to Garment?

Customer Service - Tuesday, April 12, 2016

With the numerous types of printing options available, we understand how confusing it can be to pick the best option for you and your project. It's not a matter of which process is better, but rather, which process is better suited for your needs. We've put together this side by side guide to help you decide which route to take: Screen Printing or Direct to Garment.


For more information visit our Custom Services Page or call Customer Service at 800-327-6812

2016 Ocean Grand Nationals less than a month away!

Customer Service - Thursday, March 17, 2016



Visit the Ocean State Grand Nationals Website to register

Don Rodrigues Karate Presents the Ocean State Grand Nationals on April 8, 9, and 10, 2016.

It gives us great pleasure to invite you, your family, and students to the 36th Annual Ocean State Grand Nationals. This year's event will be held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel with the Spectacular Nighttime Extravaganza being held in the Grand Ballroom at the Crowne Plaza in Warwick, Rhode Island.


We have spent the past months working very hard to ensure that this year’s event will top all of the past OSGN’s.
We are also working extra hard to ensure that the daytime eliminations will finish before 4:00 pm, as you saw last year.

The Ocean State Grand Nationals has been noted for its organization, professionalism, and quality. You will have plenty of time to enjoy the beautiful Ocean State before the Finals begin at 7:00 pm sharp.

This year will prove to be some awesome International competition. In addition to USA’s best, we are expecting competitors from South Africa, Guatemala, Venezuela, Italy, Germany, Canada, Croatia, Russia, Egypt, Austria, Peru, England, Bella Russia, Poland, Mexico and Hungary just to mention a few.

We are excited to announce being part of the North American Sport Karate Association (NASKA) World Tour, once again. With this year’s World Tour event being KRANE Rated “AAAAA+” and NASKA AAAAA, this year’s event is sure to be the best ever.

We are looking forward to seeing you in beautiful Warwick, Rhode Island.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Christine or Don at (401) 737-2809.

5 Martial Arts Injury Prevention Tips for Parents

Customer Service - Tuesday, March 08, 2016

There are more than 6 million kids participating in martial art classes across the United States and that number is constantly growing. So what does this mean for parents and instructors? It is becoming increasingly important to ensure your kids are staying safe and receiving the best possible martial arts education they can. Use these 5 tips to prevent injury and keep your kids safe during their training, because a safe class means a fun class!

1. Find an Experienced Instructor You Trust


An experienced instructor will know how to maintain the safest possible environment for your child. They will know when to advance students to more difficult techniques and when to take it slow. They will not allow roughhousing or horse play and will teach students the importance of technique and self-control. Do your research and observe an instructor in action to see if they will provide your child with a safe and enjoyable learning experience.


2. Purchase High Quality Safety Equipment

 
Martial arts sparring gear is a necessity for safe and effective training. It's essential that the gear you select for your child is reliable and offers adequate protection for when they are learning new techniques. Poor foam density and overall construction can greatly reduce the level of impact protection, increasing the risk of injury. Make sure your child's gear has been tested and proven effective.


3. Be Aware of Your Child's Environment


The quality of the environment your child is training in is just as important as the quality of your child's protective gear. If the mats on the floor are worn or damaged then your child has a greater chance of tripping and spraining an ankle. Make sure floors are dry and free of any slipping hazards. Without a safe environment your child could slip during practice causing misguided kicks or punches.


4. Keep Your Child Hydrated


Make sure your child is drinking water before, during, and after practice. They are bound to sweat during class and without the proper hydration your child may become exhausted and dehydrated. An experienced instructor will watch for students who may be overheating or near physical exhaustion. They will regularly stop class for students to take a "water break" to prevent this from happening, but it's up to you to make sure your child is drinking before and after class as well.


5. Know the Common Injuries 


Just like any contact sport, there is a risk of injury when practicing martial arts. The above tips will help prevent these injuries from happening, but it is also important to be aware and know what to do if your child is injured to prevent further damage. Some of the most common injuries are scrapes and bruises. Wash scrapes and cuts with water and bandage before returning back to class. Apply ice to bruises. For more serious injuries like sprains and head injuries seek a medical professional before returning to class.

A Guide to Martial Arts Weaponry

Customer Service - Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Martial Arts Weaponry encompasses a wide spectrum of tools that can be found in many forms of traditional martial arts. The weapons we see in martial arts forms and demonstration today have been used for thousands of years, dating back to ancient Asia. Martial arts weaponry has developed into an amazing art from. It takes extreme discipline and focus to master a weapon. Many practices believe the weapon is an extension of the body. It can increase force and balance. This guide only grazes the basics of some of the weaponry out there.

You are advised to seek professional instruction before using martial art weaponry.




 

​Congratulations to Team Macho for a fantastic 2015

Customer Service - Thursday, January 14, 2016

In the beginning of 2015, Christine Bannon-Rodrigues suggested that we bring back Team Macho. It has been years since Macho had a team out on the circuit. With an exceptional amount of help from Bannon, Team Macho was formed. We kept it small and quiet and only enlisted three athletes for our first year. However, three very remarkable and talented individuals were a huge success in the USA and beyond. Thank you to the team members, Dante Rodrigues, Kathryn Tian, and Ryker Weaver, and coach, Christine Bannon Rodrigues, for making 2015 such a success!


Dante Rodrigues had a great year competing with NASKA and the Krane circuit, winning 7 Grand Championships. He moved into the adult division in September, when he turned 18 and captured his first Adult Forms Grand Championship in November, proving himself a gifted competitor against experienced adults! He spent 2.5 weeks in the Grand Caymans teaching forms and then finished the year with a Krane National Title in Men’s Open Forms.


Kathryn Tian is a student at one of the top private high schools in the country, Harvard Westlake in California. She runs a Karate club at her high school and helps teach at her local ATA school. In addition to her commitment to studying and teaching, she also competed in NASKA and ATA tournaments this year, winning 3 ATA World Titles and 3 Grand Championships at NASKA events.


Ryker Weaver is a junior at Mountain Vista High School in Colorado. He teaches at his father’s Karate school and helps run a Hyper Demo Team of 15 members. He had a great year competing in many divisions mostly at NASKA National tournaments. He finished the year off strong as the Colorado State Champion in Forms and Weapons.


“The three of them are very proud to be part of Team Macho,” said Christine Bannon Rodrigues, coach of Team Macho, “and they represent well, with good attitudes and sportsmanship.”

We are proud of Team Macho’s many accomplishments this year and look forward to what 2016 will bring.



Fight for a Better You: Why Martial Arts Classes Make a Great New Year's Resolution

Customer Service - Tuesday, December 29, 2015


Tired of writing an extensive list of resolutions that you’ll never be able to stick to? Instead improve your wellbeing this New Year in one easy step: take a martial arts class. Signing up for a martial arts class may seem like an unconventional resolution, but by doing so you will be able to improve your wellbeing on multiple levels. Martial arts improve self-confidence, self-defense, focus and physical fitness.

Self-Confidence
If you are attending your first martial arts class or pushing yourself to train harder this year, then you are already on your journey to building a better, stronger, more confident you. It takes courage to enter a dojo and interact with instructors and students who are on a similar path as you. It takes courage to spar, train and compete with fellow martial artists. Through your training you will condition yourself to take on challenges and face your fears inside the dojo and in your everyday life.

Self-Defense
Having confidence in your safety and wellbeing is an invaluable trait to carry with you. Learn tactics to defend yourself if you’re ever in a position that calls for it. Chances are most attackers do not hold any formal training and will therefore not be prepared for the strikes and kicks you’ll be able to throw at them. Surprise yourself with the power that is within you, the power that a martial arts class will reveal.

Focus
Accuracy training is a big part of martial arts classes. You must learn distance, balance, and form while making sure to strike places that will count in a sparring match. Through this intensive focus and precision training you will begin to feel a deeper connection to the movements of your body. Focus training will also benefit your wellbeing outside of the class. You’ll find yourself feeling more centered and in touch with your body and mind. Your concentration will improve as well as your posture and balance.

Physical Fitness
Improved posture and balance are just some of the physical benefits you’ll start noticing. Many have lost weight through their training all while having fun. Martial arts classes are a lot more exciting than mundane visits to the gym. You’ll be interacting with others, throwing punches, learning forms, and doing all sorts of different movements and tricks. You’ll want to stick to your training, because of how much fun you’ll have!

Make Sure You're Purchasing the Right Gi

Customer Service - Tuesday, December 22, 2015


What size should I buy? What weight? What color? What style? The questions can go on and on. Purchasing a gi seems like a daunting task. Uniforms are a vital part of martial arts training. We understand that getting the right one is important. This guide will help take away the confusion involved in purchasing a gi, so you can be confident you're getting the gi you need.

Before you get started, it's always a good idea to talk to your instructor. Many instructors have strict guidelines on the types of gi's they will allow in their school.

What Style Do I Pick?

The first thing you may be wondering is whether or not there is a difference between the uniform types. The answer is yes; there is a difference. The one you should go with depends on the type of martial arts you are practicing.

Karate and Tae Kwon Do uniforms are a lot lighter than Jiu Jitsu uniforms and usually weigh around 8 oz. They get their lightness from the limited stitching around the sleeves and collar and from the thin, straight, and tightly woven cotton or cotton/polyester blend fabric they are constructed from. The biggest difference is that Karate uniforms have tie straps on the inside of the jacket. This ensures the jacket will not fly off during intense striking and kicking. The karate uniform has been maximized for a more limited range of movement. It was designed to stay in place during standing strikes, while maximizing speed through its lightness.

A Jiu Jitsu, BJJ, and Judo uniform is heavier and has been optimized for the intense movement involved in gripping, pulling, and turning. The tough weave reduces tangling with limbs and is easier to grapple with. Unlike a Karate gi, a Jiu Jitsu, BJJ, and Judo gi do not have tie straps on the inside. Ties would be easily torn off from the intense pulling and twisting movements involved in practicing these martial arts.

What Color Should I Go With?

Most traditional styles are white, but with a wide selection of colors available out there, you may be tempted to explore your color options. The safest thing to do is talk to your instructor first. A lot of schools have specific colors they want you to wear. Your instructor will let you know your school’s color guidelines.



What Weight is Best for Me?


When we talk about weight, we mean how heavy a uniform is; weight is not the same as size. Personal preference comes in to play when choosing the weight of your gi. There are many factors that influence a martial artist’s weight preference.

Entry level students often prefer a lightweight uniform, weighing around 7oz. This weight helps students get comfortable with practice. They can get used to movements without being distracted by a super thick and heavy uniform. Plus, lighter weight uniforms are less expensive. With young students growing or just starting out, the less expensive and lighter option is ideal.

High level and competing martial artists often prefer a solid middleweight uniform, such as the 8.5oz. It has enough weight and substance to make the correct snapping noise when doing forms and is light enough not to restrict movement or hinder balance. A well-constructed middleweight will last a long time.

Heavyweight uniforms are often reserved for advanced students and master instructors who prefer the traditional fit and feel. Since they are well-trained martial artists and wear uniforms several times a week, the solid heavyweight gi offers optimal durability and is great for training and demonstrating forms. The traditional thick fabric construction with more stitching around the sleeves and lapel gives the uniform a great “POP” during movement. That satisfying snap is important to well-trained martial artists when they are demonstrating a form. It can add energy and a feeling of power to strikes.

What Size am I?

The most important factor in purchasing your gi is fit. So how do you know what size will fit you best? There are three major measurements to take into account: height, weight, and circumference.



Take these three numbers and compare them to the sizing charts available throughout the Macho website.

Are you tall and thin? Or short and stout? There is a trick to helping you find a size that will best fit your unique shape. The most important thing to consider is height. Most gis provide room to fit your circumference and weight despite the size, but if it’s too long or too short, then it won’t work for you. You don’t want to be swimming in sleeves that are too long, so always accommodate height first!

We hope this guide helped answer your questions, but if there is something you’re still not certain about feel free to contact our customer service at 800-327-6812. We are here to help you succeed on your martial arts journey.

Know How Your Headgear Stacks Up - 4 Rules For Finding The Right Gear

Customer Service - Thursday, December 10, 2015



Teachers won’t teach a sparring class without it. Parents demand it. Adolescents need it. Insurance companies require it. It minimizes injuries while elevating safety and performance. With new studies being released on the long-term effects of concussions, martial arts headgear is more important than ever for safety of all ages. While martial arts sparring gear may look the same, poor foam density and overall construction can greatly reduce the level of impact protection. Follow these 4 rules to ensure your most important martial arts tool, your brain, gets the protection it needs during training.


Rule #1: Foam Thickness and Density

Good gear should have a foam thickness of ¾ inch or thicker. Layered foam positioned at key strike zones can add another level of protection. Beware of textured foam that looks like an “egg-crate” and “waffle” design. Texturing has been shown to reduce the effective thickness of the foam and reduce protective qualities. Ask your school owner or manufacturer if their gear has been tested and what are the results.

Here's a closer look at two of Macho's most popular headgear designs:




Rule #2: Adequate Back-of-Head Coverage

Falling creates the most serious injuries. Whether you are a world champion or a beginner, you can lose your balance. Having adequate coverage to the back of your head is vital. The falling test is a great way head gear companies can ensure their products offer this protection. This test assesses the typical impact you would feel when falling on the back of your head. In 1997, Macho was the first manufacturer to use the drop anvil (or falling test) to test its gear against the competition. Make sure the head gear you use has been put through a similar testing process or you could be as risk.


Rule #3: Vision

Maximum peripheral vision is a safety and performance issue. When you choose your headgear, make sure nothing obstructs your view. You should have at least 105 degrees of unobstructed view.. Maximizing your peripheral vision will assist you in your sparring and help you move out of the way of an oncoming strike. It will create a more effective fighting experience


Rule #4: Ear Pressure Release

The Ear Pressure Release Test checks to make sure the headgear design enables air to flow around the ear to protect the eardrums from rupture. Macho Martial Arts introduced the patented ear-release canal design in 1984. This Macho innovation has now become an industry standard.




Your safety is our number one concern. Without the appropriate impact tests, high-level impact protection, and high-quality impact dispersing materials your martial arts training could be hindered. Take the time to do your research and in return increase the time you’ll be able to spend in a dojo.