150 – George Fourie: From Life Lessons To Founding Martial Arts Media™

The tables turn as the interviewer becomes the interviewee: George Fourie shares his life experiences and journey through marketing and martial arts on the Kyl Reber Podcast.


  • George's journey from studying computer programming to selling computers, working on a cruise ship, and eventually starting Martial Arts Media™
  • The story behind George's most impactful $37 sale
  • George's near-death experience as a pivotal wake-up call that transformed his outlook on life and career
  • How George discovered a passion for martial arts and saw potential in combining this with his marketing expertise
  • How Martial Arts Media™ was founded, focusing on supporting school owners to grow their businesses through digital marketing
  • And more

*Need help growing your martial arts school? Start Here.



Hey, it's George Fourie. Welcome to the Martial Arts Media™ Business Podcast. Today, I am going to feature an episode, an interview that I had on the Kyl Reber Podcast. Kyl, a good friend of mine, interviewed me. You can look him up on kylreber.com.au. Also, martialartsmedia.com/145.

I had the pleasure of having Kyl on our podcast. By the way, I was looking at it. In episode 145, we were talking about him having 370 students. I know that number's almost up to 500 now. They are booming, to put it mildly. Anyway, go have a listen to that if you haven't yet. 

For this episode, I really wanted to feature it because I got to tell you. I've been trying to record a podcast where I tell a bit of my story and just background where I came from, how this all got together, and I've given the pieces and inside of this over the years. I just had a look. We had episode 150, and I actually started this podcast in 2016, July of 2016.

I'm probably in the race for the longest-going podcast with the least amount of episodes, but 150 awesome episodes it has been, and I'm going to continue to do this for a while. Anyway, I've really wanted to have an in-depth– about my story, and I tried to record it a couple of times solo by myself, and I've got to say, it felt weird.

I did it about three times, and I deleted it every time. Then, I got on Kyl’s podcast, and Kyl gave me 10 questions just to prepare for the podcast. I did that, and I thought it was going to be enough, but Kyl's questioning technique was really solid and in-depth. Every time I answered, he dug a little deeper and dug a little deeper.

I’ve got to be honest. I probably spoke about things that I maybe just haven't shared over the years. Nothing too serious, but just things that I've buried in my past and let go. But Kyl did a really good job of unpacking all the details about me and asking a lot of questions. So, this podcast is going to be a bit longer. 

I highly recommend you check out Kyl Reber’s podcast. I will have all the links for that at martialartsmedia.com/150. That's it for me. I hope you enjoy this. I would love to know your feedback afterward. Let's dig in.

GEORGE: One thing I told myself at an early age was if I feel uncomfortable, then I'm at the right place.

KYL: All right. 

GEORGE: Something is happening here. 

KYL: Spot on. 

GEORGE: I’ve got to get comfortable. 

KYL: Good morning or good afternoon, whatever time of day you're listening to this podcast. This is the Kyl Reber Podcast. This podcast is one of those ones that doesn't really have a formula. It doesn't have a demographic because everybody has a story, and as I'm starting to use the tag, I have a lot of famous friends that you may never know, but this podcast is aimed at getting inside people's heads and looking at the big picture, and what they may be on the surface may be very different to what's underneath, and there may be a lot of parts to these people that you may have known this person and now you can find out for the first time. 

My next guest, I have not known for a great amount of time, but I'm getting to know him better as time goes on. I'm finding he's an exceptionally interesting human, but I am probably going to learn more about him. I've been on his podcast. Now, I'm returning the favor, and he's coming on mine. 

George Fourie, how are you, my friend? 

GEORGE: I'm doing great. Thanks, Kyl. Thanks for saving me on that intro. There are a lot of things that you didn't tell me that I'm not prepared for. 

KYL: As I said, we'll duck off on tangents as we go, and we'll do it as we are as we see it coming. For those who are new to this, there are 10 questions that George got a few days ago. 

Some of them he has to put a bit of thought into. Some of them, he doesn't. Some of them, I might prompt him. Some of them we'll duck off in tangents and that's all part of the game. The 10 questions start with number one, which sometimes turns into the longest question. Birth to now in seven minutes. Three, two, one, go. 

GEORGE: All right. Seven minutes. All right. 

KYL: It's never seven minutes, mate. Don't worry. It's like 30. 

GEORGE: All right. 40 South Africa, great childhood, pretty much. 

KYL: What part of South Africa? 

GEORGE: Strand, Somerset West, which will be about 20, 30 minutes from Cape Town if you look at it on a map. I'm of the Great White is what it's called. False Bay. Well, If you look at the bay, that's what it's called. Played rugby—that's compulsory in South Africa.

KYL: As you should.

GEORGE: If I look at your significant things that I've really traveled back to and looked at where things happened in my life that steered me into different directions. My dad lost his job when we were 12. I remember us driving in a car and my mom telling us that our dad just lost his job. We were fine, which was because he started doing maintenance work and so forth. And then he held through a ceiling and broke his back. That just took us on a whole–our family on an interesting downward spiral for quite some time. 

It's probably reinforced the thing that no one's out to get you, no one's out to help you, and you better make things on your own. In our country, I was always the kid with cash at school, but I also didn't sleep much because I worked three jobs. 

KYL: How old were you when you got your first job?  

GEORGE: 12. 

KYL: Okay. 

GEORGE: At the Super Tube, like a slide. Then, I started delivering newspapers during the day, but then I figured that daytime was taking away the surfing time, so I started doing it in the morning. I'd get up at four in the morning and do my paper rounds. 

KYL: Surfing took over rugby, or surfing and rugby at the same time? 

GEORGE: Surfing took over rugby. It was a bit of a war at school because when I reached high school, I was like, “Why aren't you playing rugby?” I said, “I want to surf.” It didn't go down well. And then, I played rugby, and then I broke my collarbone when I tackled someone, and that really pissed me off because I couldn't surf. 

And so that was rugby out the window. So, yeah, surfing drums—that was my two best. 

KYL: Okay. School in South Africa. We have an interpretation. So, we're talking the 1980s?

GEORGE: 1980s– I finished school in 1995. 

KYL: What was high school like in South Africa? Was there still that, you know, like, again, we see what our interpretation is, but what was it like? Was there still that separation, or were you in an area that acknowledged that there wasn't any? What was that like for you? 

GEORGE: To be honest, I grew up in that era that I had– I was pretty much unaware of what it was. It was just we were divided. That is how–

KYL: That was the way it is.

GEORGE: Yeah. Like, I mean, you would walk on the beaches and it will say, “Whites Only.” That's a thing. And then I heard of this Mandela guy that's coming out of prison, and I was like, “Who's he?” And then, the whole thing got explained, “Well, this is wrong.” And I didn't really know it because that's how it was, right? 

It's strange because then you're like, “Oh, okay. Hang on.” But then there's still this confusion. And then, that was the first time that was probably like–I was probably like–we finished school at about 18, about around 16, 17. That was the first time people of a different color that weren't white actually came to our school. 

It was in the middle of that real transition of when things started to change. 

KYL: Was it a big deal at the time? Was it a big deal for you, or was it just, okay, that's what it is now? 

GEORGE: It was a big–with all things, politics, there's panic. There was weird things happening. People would knock on your door and say, “Hey, we just want to check your house out because we want to claim that this is ours.” When Nelson Mandela came in, there was a complete–like all politics. We can't go to politics, right? 

KYL: No, no, no. 

GEORGE: No? So, yeah, there was a lot of that. We've all got opinions. I feel it got better and it got worse, and then, you know, if we look at where things are at now, yeah. But the country's come a long way. There's a lot more unity, and it changed a lot. It's definitely changed a lot. 

KYL: It couldn't–I mean, like, again, not to get into politics, but it couldn't change when all that was happening, wasn't it? I mean, for it not to change would have meant a lot of really bad repercussions. So, high school finished. What happened then? 

GEORGE: I hated school. I hated the rules. 

KYL: You know the amount of people that are doing these amazing things now that all tell me how much they hated school? 

GEORGE: Well, I just didn't fit in. I didn't fit in with a thinking- 

KYL: This wasn't you. 

GEORGE: I didn't fit in with the thinking–coming from South Africa, there was a bit of a ‘Do as I say, not as I do’ philosophy. Corporal punishment was the thing. I preferred it because it meant I didn't have to sit in the attention. 

KYL: Got it over and done with? 

GEORGE: Yeah. But I mean the rules, right? If my hair was touching my ears, fringe touching my forehead, that's an inspection failed. I just didn't agree with it, and so I rebelled against this. 

KYL: I was going to say, “Did you not do it just because you can?” 

GEORGE: Kind of. Probably that, right? And so it came to a point where they would have the head inspections, and the woodwork teacher would say, “All right. Boys, look that way. George, get out.” All in one seat, and I was like, “What?” And I'm standing there trying to hide, and it's not happening. So, anyway, I finished school, and I just needed to do nothing.

Nothing meant surf, play drums, and work in restaurants, and that was okay. Then my dad said, “Look, you better go and get your life into gear.” I said, “Well, I want to do marketing.” And they were like, “Well, everybody does marketing.” I'll go do the marketing. 

KYL: Why did that click with you? What was there something that made you feel that I really liked doing this? Did you like talking to people or just that interaction, or what was it? 

GEORGE: It's probably just for, like, I mean, all the failed entrepreneurial ventures that I took on during school– 

KYL: Yeah, right. 

GEORGE: –but it looked like a path without a ceiling where everything else did. And yeah, there was just a part of me that, I don't know. It just resonated with me. I didn't even know that much about it. 

KYL: Because I never heard a lot of talking to people, so would you say you're extroverted or an introverted-extrovert, or if you need to do it, you'll do it?

GEORGE: I'm probably more introverted. I'm extroverted when I have to be. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: But it does tire me out, and I'm good with it, right? I'm okay to talk at events, host them, and be that guy. It fires me up when I do it, but I do like space to just focus and do the thing I want to do. 

KYL: Okay. So, when you did the marketing, where– 

GEORGE: I didn’t. 

KYL: You didn't? 


KYL: Okay, cool. 

GEORGE: I studied computer programming. 

KYL: All right.

Martial Arts Media

GEORGE: Everybody says, “Well, that's not the way to go.” So, I go study computer programming, and it was funny, right? Because I get into the class, and these kids have clearly been programming since two days after they were born.  And I'm like, “Where do I put this thing on?” Like literally. 

KYL: This is late, late 90s? 

GEORGE: This is 97. 

KYL: Okay. So, that'd be still in the–that was when I was at university. That's the era of floppy disks and massive computer labs, and these things that you needed two people to carry. 

GEORGE: Yep. Yeah, it took a while to get into that, but finally, I did. And I enjoyed the technicality and the problem-solving—the problem-solving, probably a lot. But six months in, I started selling computers to my classmates. 

KYL: Was that a don't-ask-me-where-I-got-this-from situation or?

GEORGE: No, no, no, no. We signed up for a supplier. I and a school buddy of mine, we found a supplier. Look, there was probably a bit of wangling of portraying we are way bigger than we are to get the account, but we got the account and we started. Obviously, I had a captive audience, and it was just, “Well, this is great.” 

And then, when I finished studying, I was like, “Well, I want to crack at this business. I was going to open a business.” I was just over 20, opened a computer retail and support store.

KYL: Okay. 

GEORGE: My buddy and I went door-knocking in the industrial area, and we just knocked door-to-door, handout flyers that we printed out of our little inkjet, test jet, whatever, printer. We've got a client, and we're like, “Yeah.”

We set up. I've got photos of this, but we emptied out the garage, and we put our desks. We had this garage where we had this official computer business, and then we got another client. And then all of a sudden, we got clients, and we became the talk of the town, literally, because the guys that were deemed to be nothing—and yeah, I had the headmaster tell me that we will equate to nothing in life. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: So, it's like a– 

KYL: And I guess that reinforces now even – we won't jump too far ahead – but reinforce now if you want something, you can't wait for it to come to you. You've got to make it happen. If you'd have sat in that garage and just waited for a client to come to you, it wouldn't happen, would it? 

GEORGE: Exactly, yeah. And so, because, I mean–actually, we set up the office before because that's what you do, right? Procrastination things. 

KYL: Oh, yeah. You need a tidy desk. I'm just going to tidy up for the– 

GEORGE: How many business owners start a business and spend six months on their logo? 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: Because nobody cares about that, right? Anyway, we got going, and we got good traction. Young to have all these business lessons, right? But we went all the way through to just before the year 2000, when Y2K, the online computer crash. 

And I'd love to say it was that, but it was like me and my business partner having clashes and not understanding a lot of marketing and what we were doing. Sometimes, he appeared a bit deceptive, and people didn't like it. And so, we had this clash of personalities starting to appear, and then we lost it all. We lost it. I was crushed, ashamed, embarrassed. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: And I just looked at this mountain of debt that I had on my shoulders. I was like, “All right. We’ll take a few months off. We'll try this, and we'll try this.” But I had this permanent knot in my stomach, “Oh, I've got all this debt. I don't know how I'm going to pay things.” And now, I'm like, “Well, I've got to look for a job.” I'm a little too dusty on computer programming skills. Where do I find a job? So I'll go, I start looking for jobs and I can't get a job. I finally got a job, commission only—selling timeshare. 

KYL: Oh, God. 

GEORGE: Right. This is a part of the story I don't often tell because when I say that, people are like, “Oh, you're one of those guys, or you were–” Well, I'm not. But anyway, I'll get a job setting. To explain that entirely, the vacation ownership, timeshare, holiday, program. Not the guy that phones you up and says, “Hey, you won this free thing.” 

But then, we sit at the desk, people come in, and we've got to present this product to them. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: And they buy or they don't. Anyway, I had this job for three months, commission only, and I was that bad that I got fired. Yeah, all right. This is going well. But there's something here. And so, I see this other company advertising… it’s a timeshare -based company. I walked into this office, and there was a guy; he was about a year older than me, and I'm just early twenties, right? 

A year older than me, a flash suit like Armani suit. Probably the – you could say the real salesman look, but he was professional, right? 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: I walked in there. Look, I try to draw from false confidence and really portray myself as what I am. But this guy, Zane Rinquest – we were still friends on Facebook – he rips into me, right? He called his BS meter was so dialed in, and he destroyed me, right? 

It challenged me, like, “How can you do this? How?” I'm like, I can be more upset, but I remember walking out there, shaking. I walked to my car, and I was like, I don't know what just happened to me, but whatever happens is, I want to know what this guy knows about human psychology, understanding people, and being able to communicate. 

The next day, he called me and he was like, “Yeah, you're hired.” Two weeks later, I made my first sale, and then I was hooked on what just happened—being able to present a product to people and then actually joining it. I got hooked on this industry for many years. 

We traveled around in vans, like in a combi style thing, visit resorts in South Africa. That was my life. I did, when I lost the computer business, vouch to never touch a computer again. That was out of my system. Anyway, life goes on. Seven years, eight years, I moved up to Johannesburg. I break my neck in a car accident. 

KYL: Okay. Good one. 

GEORGE: Yeah. The hemorrhage, that's the scar on the side of my head. 

KYL: Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah. 

Martial Arts Media George Fourie

GEORGE: And dents in my head. Yes, I break my neck and hemorrhage, and yeah, there I am in the hospital. I didn't have insurance. But in South Africa, and you're in a public hospital called Joburg General, it's pretty grim.

KYL: I was going to say, you'd–one thing that was popping into my head then the difference between Joburg to where you were growing up would have probably been a very different kettle of fish, wouldn't it?

GEORGE: Well, look, if I landed up in a different hospital but with no insurance – that's where I landed up – and I just watched these people. I've been here for two months, and it looked like – no offense to anyone – it just felt like I was in a homeless ward, and I've been there for months, just not being taken care of. Well, I had a head injury, so I went from ecstatic laughing comedian, probably when I was, you know, when I was medicated, to neurotic. Losing my temper, blowing up, and getting rage-filled with rage. 

I was trying to plan my way up because I was like, well, nobody else is going to get because I was interfering with the whole process. But anyway, two weeks in, this doctor walks in, and he's doing his checkup and goes through this paper. Well, you know, go through the sheet, and he laughs, and he laughs. 

And I said, “Why are you laughing?” He says, “Well, guys like you that come in here, we normally don't operate.” I said, “Why?” He says, “Because you're dead in two weeks.” And he walks out. 

KYL: Thanks? 

GEORGE: And my laughter, together with his, I just went numb. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: All right. And if anyone's listening, that's ever had a near-death experience, that was like probably the wake-up call I needed.

KYL: How old were you when this happened? 

GEORGE: 28, 28. 

KYL: Okay. That's not getting old, but that's getting, you know, where maybe things should be happening that you see, where society thinks things should be happening, and then they're not happening. 

GEORGE: Exactly. Yeah. But I'm doing all right. You know what I mean? But I'm also partying a lot. There's that aspect of life. And so, I realized I knew I've always wanted to leave South Africa and life is short. I just experienced that. I've got to get out of here. How do I get out of the country? Where do I go? How do I go? 

The one thing when you're in the timeshare industry, you can get a job anywhere in the world, pretty much, but it's risky, right? 

KYL: Yeah, of course. 

GEORGE: But you know you've got the skill to carry yourself through. And so, I looked at Tenerife and Spain and everywhere. And then, one of my old managers from Cape Town started working on carnival cruise lines in the States. It wasn't time-shared, but they were selling VIP cruise memberships, like a free package.  

And I was like, “Well, this sounds interesting.” And yeah, I went down that track, applied, got the call from Arizona one night, and then they accepted me. I flew, and got my ticket out at the end of 2004. 

KYL: To jump back a section there, do you have siblings? Brothers and sisters? 

GEORGE: Yeah. 

KYL: Parents, how were they about you wanting to leave the country? 

GEORGE: I think they were okay with it. In South Africa—I can't speak for everyone, right? But I know from where I'm at was, you knew from day one that you’re either in a family with money, right? That was not us. You are either going to become a doctor or a lawyer, something or an accountant, something super educated.

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: There's this vast difference in pay brackets in South Africa. 

KYL: Okay. 

GEORGE: There is lower, and there's middle, you know. It's more of a middle-class, upper-class. I'm just saying, class. I'm just talking about– 

KYL: I know what you mean, yeah. 

GEORGE: In South Africa, there's this big gap. 

KYL: There's a massive gap. 

GEORGE: Yeah, and those guys are normally exceptionally wealthy. You're either that, you run your own business, or you're in sales. Not generalizing, but that's, there's obviously, you can have sports careers. But the way to the top, it’s a hard road. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: If you're none of that, then your normal ticket out is to go to the UK and bring back pounds Hopefully, you set yourself up, give yourself a start, or you leave, and you're an expat, which is probably why you find so many South Africans everywhere. 

KYL: It is. You do see a lot of South Africans. While in Brisbane, you see a lot of South Africans. So, you go back to it, you leave, jump on the cruise? 

GEORGE: Yeah. I'm based in New Orleans- 

KYL: Oh my God. 

GEORGE: -which is just a crazy city. 

KYL: Never sleeps? 

GEORGE: Yeah. I'm working 60 to 70 hours a week on the cruise ships. But when you pull in, you're in the Caribbean for three days a week. So, the ship stops, and I'm on holiday. Wednesday mornings, we’re in Jamaica. On Thursdays, we're in the Cayman Islands, and on Fridays, we're in Cozumel, Mexico. 

There's exceptionally work hard and then there's party as hard. 

KYL: Work hard, party harder. 

GEORGE: Yeah. 

KYL: Do you feel in that situation like, again, you're working hard but you're also partying hard? To switch from party hard back to work hard was just one of the things you did, or was it like-? 

GEORGE: It was merged.  

KYL: Roger. 

GEORGE: Because it's just a lifestyle, right? I mean, you look at it. 

KYL: That's what I mean.

GEORGE: It's like a bit of a bubble. It's a fairytale, really. You're on a cruise ship; there are three and a half thousand new people every week. The job that we had, we were a concession on board, meaning it wasn't owned by the cruise line, which means I had a guest cabin from day one and guest privileges. 

It was very comfortable in the way we lived, and you don't pay US dollars, and it was great. You don't pay for meals. You don't pay rent. 

KYL: I was going to say you wouldn't have to really open your wallet, would you? 

GEORGE: Well, in the crew bar, you do every night or like a dollar a beer type of thing. 

KYL: And all sorts. 

GEORGE: Yeah. It's buy around for $5 and just put around. So, I did that for six months. Well, after six months, I went back to South Africa, flew back to Los Angeles, did Los Angeles for two weeks, then went down to San Diego, then got based in Vancouver, did the Alaska run for three months, did Hawaii, which was pretty epic because I wasn't allowed to work because we guys that live in the States will be familiar with this. 

Maybe not so much in Australia, but every state has a different law. Where the cruise ship leaves from, you're in that jurisdiction, then you begin into the new jurisdiction. If you want to do business, it's a different law. And so, our company had jurisdiction in 50 states. And so, when we entered Hawaiian waters, I was given the option to leave or stay on board, cruise for free, live for free. 

KYL: How is that even an option? Oh, I don't know. 

GEORGE: Clearly. Yeah. Clearly, I stayed in Hawaii, and then we rerouted to Mexico. In between this, this is where the story probably draws. We're way beyond seven minutes. 

KYL: Mate, I told you… 

GEORGE: I met a lady on board from Perth, Australia, and I was actually planning to come to Perth on holiday. That was the plan. Then I had a son show up, so I realized, well, I guess I'm moving to Australia. I didn't know how. 

KYL: Got to grow off a little bit. 

GEORGE: Yeah. I just realized I've got my cruise ship days at an end, and I'm moving to Perth. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: I had a holiday visa booked, right? It wasn't like I had to arrange anything. It was interesting, though, because I flew from Acapulco in the middle of the heat to Washington DC– 

KYL: Oh, geez. 

GEORGE: –a little snow, to get my passport stamped the next day, flew to Los Angeles, flew to Sydney, flew to Perth. And so, yeah, I got to Perth, and I'm on a holiday visa, right? I'm exploring, “Well, okay, I've got to stay in Australia.” 

KYL: What year are we in now?

GEORGE: 2006. 

KYL: Okay. 

GEORGE: 2006, I'm like, well, how do I stay? I'd go to the Immigration office and never forget this guy because he had that one eye. I explained my story now; just a bit of a difference, right? 

Oh, Africa, in South Africa, there's gray law, right? Gray law means that there's a law here and there's a law here, but you can bullshit your way into that law, right? Everything is so solvable with a good story. Australia, really, as well.  

KYL: You're right, or you're wrong, that or it's that, it’s black, or it's white. 

Anyway, I tell my story, which is an honest, sincere, valid story. But this guy pretty much says to me, “Look, anybody can get a girl pregnant to try and stay in Australia, and that's just not going to gel here.” That really rubbed me up the wrong way because I'm really happy to go. I'm trying to do the right thing here. How do we do this? 

And so it came to, I realized, well, hang on. Actually, I've got to leave. I had a No Further Stay clause on my visa, so I had to move, you know. I flew to Bali for eight days, came back, and just got destroyed at the gate. 

KYL: Yeah, right. 

GEORGE: It was 4 am, I walked, and the girl said to me, “So, you did a visa run?” And I gulped because it was a visa run. They actually know that this is a thing. Then she goes on the computer and she says, “Well, I see that you tried to have your No Further Stay clause removed, and we denied it.” And so, I'm the only guy there at 4 am, and everybody starts gathering, and these guys jump into bed, and I say, “Look, this is my story.”

It is, and they interrogated me for about 30 minutes, and then the guy picked up my bag. He says, “Okay, you're free to go.” He picks up a bag, and he hears something inside it and shakes it. He says, “What's that?” And drops my bag. He takes, leans in, and he opens, and he gets a bunch of, I think it was spirulina, and he looks at me and he says, “What's in this?” 

I'm like, “Spirulina.” He looked at me, and while he's looking at me, because he's trying to see if I've got a reaction, opens the lid and he throws it all out on the counter. Messy spirulina, obviously, and said, “Okay, you're free to go.” That's rattled me. Holy crap. 

Then, my son was born, and I had to do it again. But this time, cash was running out. I've been living off savings from the ship. I did three days, I got back, and I was so prepared. I was so nervous. I said to the guy, “Look, this is it.” He said, “Look, I believe everything you're saying, but we protect the visa.” And that's it. I said, “Look, well, I'm going back to South Africa to sort this out.” 

I had about a year to prepare for my visa. And then, at the end of that year, I went back to South Africa. I was there for six weeks. I set the appointment. I got the appointment for the day before I came back to Australia. That's all I had. I started that appointment, and I presented. I had this big file with everything indexed, and it was perfection, right? Everything that was, and she went through and said, “Okay, we'll contact you.” I said, “No, you don't get it.” 

KYL: Like, “I'm leaving tomorrow.” 

GEORGE: And if I get there, it's not happening. Then there was an Aussie guy, and he'd look through the file and say, Hey, look, everything looks good. Come back tomorrow. We'll give you your visa.” And that was my Australian visa. 

KYL: Jesus. 

GEORGE: So, we're in Perth; we're allowed to stay and not continue to do visa runs. 

KYL: What's transpired probably from, let's say, 2007 to now? 

GEORGE: Well, a big thing that happened at that time was I bought a computer.  

KYL: Oh, you gave in. 

GEORGE: I bought a laptop, and I started to learn online marketing because I couldn't work. Don't worry. Is anybody, tax man, listening? I've been to work in Australia, but I was online, and I was learning how to–I still had my US bank accounts and everything. I started learning Google AdWords and how to do marketing online. 

That's where my passion for online marketing really started. Hang on, I understand the sales and sales concept. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: Here's this whole new medium where this happens online through pages, through websites. This was before Facebook, and anything was the thing. That was Myspace. But I started, I picked up a book with Perry Marshall, The Definitive Guide to Google AdWords. 

I started reading this, yeah. In 2007, when I got back, I got a job at a timeshare company, of course. 

KYL: Would you believe it? 

GEORGE: It was– 

KYL: That’s what you know. 

GEORGE: Yeah. So, I got a job with Accord. They flew me to the Gold Coast. We did two weeks of training. And so, that set me up, and I was back in motion, but between this, I started doing online marketing, and I would be sitting at the resort at the vines, and I would see all these PayPal notifications coming through because I'm making sales.

One of them works. And so, this thing of leverage, and I've just started to, well, hang on, this is working. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: I mean, I've got to give this a go. Then, I started the online marketing.

KYL: Fast forward to now, you run a company, Martial Arts Media™. Now, a 60-second blurb on that. What is that company? 

GEORGE: Help martial arts school owners with growth through digital marketing. 

KYL: And you're covering people from all across the world doing that? So you've got what, Australia, New Zealand? 

GEORGE: Canada, well, not Canada at the moment. US, Ireland. 

KYL: Okay. Martial arts for you, what's your experience in martial arts? The reason I ask this is one thing that's always got me with you, and I think it's a real good–it's a good thing. You're not–you're helping lifelong martial artists run their businesses better, and I think this is the misconception. You don't have to be a lifelong martial artist in order to be a good businessman. 

They're two different worlds. And that is, I think, maybe one of your strengths. But you have done some martial arts before? 

Martial arts marketing

GEORGE: Yeah, I think it's worth just going, gleaning two, three minutes to the little gap there. So, my son turns five, I've never done martial arts. I walked through a shopping mall. There's a bunch of guys promoting a program, and I like, “This could be great for a kid.” Awesome. And so, I enroll my son, go on a trial, and I'm watching this class happen, and I'm like, “This is awesome.” This is from my experience. I'm just looking at it through the lens. This is perfect. Personal development, all these things that I did about mindset and doing my sales career, all the things– 

KYL: Are your business brains kicking in? 

GEORGE: Yeah. I'm thinking, this is happening in physical form, right? I'm not my business brain, just my parenting brain. 

KYL: Yeah, yeah. 

GEORGE: It's getting learned. Skills and lessons that he's got no idea what it is, but he's learning focus, determination, and resilience. And I'm just watching this, and I'm like, “This is freaking amazing.” 

He's five, and he's training once a week, twice a week, three times a week. And now it's just the thing, right? Like he's training three times a week. Here's where it starts to come together: I watched the guys doing marketing, and I'm like, “But if they did it this way?” 

Look, at this time, we're talking 2000, and what's that? 2011, 10 years. Well, more than 10 years, but unofficially. But there wasn't, as all this online marketing stuff wasn't as prominent in local businesses as it is today. 

KYL: No. 

GEORGE: But I had these ideas like, “Well, you can do this with these easy email campaigns. You can do this.” I don't know how Google ads work. Out of the love of what they were doing, I said, “I've got some ideas for you. I'd love to share them.” I sat with him in the office one day and said, “Hey, there's all these things that you can be doing that you can just enhance your business.” And they said, “Well, can you do it?” 

I said, “Well, yeah, I don't want to, but this is how it works.” I said, “Well, we'll work something out.” So, we did that. I started doing one thing for them, and then they got results. And then they said, “Well, can you do this?” I said, “Yeah, can.” Then, we added this, and then we added that. And so all of a sudden, I'm spending all my time at this school, my son's training was training, chatting to the owners, I’m helping them. 

And so, we're talking over two, or three years, right? The thing is, I don't know any martial arts school outside this one place. That's my only perspective of the martial arts industry. But I'm just in love with all this that's happening. 

Somewhere along the line and, this was Graham McDonnell, “Hey, why aren't you training?” And I'm like, that's a weird question. At that point, I haven't even considered it, right? I was like–you guys were like, “I'll be all the excuses you hear, right? Of a 36–” I was 36 at the time. Turned 47 two days ago. I was like, “Because I'm too old. I'm too broken.” 

I had all these things that were okay. And then, I tried a class, and then I was like,

“Oh, here I am.” I'm, you know, without being cliche, but I'm hooked, right? Because I've experienced all this from the sideline, and now, for the first time– 

KYL: You’re in it. 

GEORGE: –I'm in it. Yeah. That's just become the thing. Now, this is consuming my life, right? I'm training, my son's training, I'm helping the school, and somewhere along the line there, I realized, “Well, like this has either got to be the thing or nothing.” I was working doing other stuff. 

That's a whole other tangent we weren't going to supplement my income, but I felt that I've always looked for the thing that I'm passionate about, that I love. If I can put my marketing and sales skills behind it and promote an ethical product that answers people's lives in a big way, that's a dream world for me. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: And so, that was Martial Arts Media™. It was born, and I just thought, “Well, that’s going to be my life.” 

KYL: When you realized that that was a thing that could be done, and then you probably went out to other schools, and you know, however, that gestated and grew, was it– I'm dissing my own kind here, was it alarming how – what's the word – archaic some of our clubs? Well, some clubs were in their promotion, if they were promoted at all, to see what they weren't doing more than what they were. 

GEORGE: Yeah, all hats off to Phil Britten and Graham McDonnell. What I didn't realize is they were just at another level at that time. They had built a business foundation that was exceptional but way above the average school. 

KYL: 100%.

GEORGE: That was my perception of this is how the industry is, which I did learn later that there's a lot of guys that are way more up and coming and working towards that. My coach spoke about it the other day. It's how the typical–he was talking about a yoga instructor, how a typical yoga school is born, but it's the same as the martial arts, right? If you start training, you fall in love, then you maybe teach a few classes, and then you think, “I'm going to open my own school.” 

It starts as a hobby that turns into a business. You had the business mind, or some did it, or some evolved that over time, but it's something that you are all into. So, yeah. With that, there's obviously a lot, sometimes missing in the business side, that comes afterward. 

KYL: And this is a thing like I said. It's always a hurdle, even in just the management of clubs and that sort of thing, and businesses, just because you're the highest rank or you've been there the longest doesn't necessarily mean you (a) know what everything you're doing and (b) you might be the best fit for the job. Was that a bit interesting sometimes these people, I'm not being resistant, but you going in going, “Hey, look, I've been doing martial arts for a blip on the radar, but I reckon you could run your business better if you did this, this, and this?” 

GEORGE: It's funny. It's always been–it's normally someone else that does coaching that would say, “You're not a martial arts school owner. How can you help martial arts school owners?” I'm like, “Nobody's asked me how to run a better class yet.” 

KYL: So, that's the thing. That's your niche. You're not doing necessarily; this is how you teach: I kick better, or I choke better, or whatever you're doing. This is how you get more students. This might be how you work with your staff better. This might be how you promote better and run your ads better. That's your thing, isn't it? 

GEORGE: 100%. I mean, I'm very open about what I don't give advice on, but as you know, we have a community where I know that that advice is there. 

KYL: That's doing itself. 

GEORGE: Yeah. That comes from the school owners like yourself. Those guys will be there for 20 to 40 years. They've got the experience, and they've done it all before. That's where the whole mastermind concept really becomes a value. But for anybody that's really passionate about marketing and really cares, and I'm not talking about the guys that buy a course and then, “Oh, I'll pick a niche.” 

KYL: Yeah. 

George Fourie Martial Arts Marketing

GEORGE: That drives me a bit when people chase the thing because there might be money there, right? I didn't gel with that. I started it for different reasons. Although I know my journey in martial arts is different, I value it as much. 

I feel that if you spend enough time, I have understanding problems that people are going through and having enough conversations, you detach from your being in the motion of running it, and you come up with different perspectives and different solutions. I guess it's the program mind programming that I learned in programming is you have to solve solutions with systems.

I find I'm just way more passionate about it because I love the product, and I love what martial arts does, what it did for my son, and what it did for me; that's where it all comes from. And if I think about the time I spend, I mean, I'm talking with school owners like yourself, at least, we have three to four Zoom sessions a week, anything from six to 10 hours per week. 

From that, I gather understanding and then go to the drawing board and say, “Okay, well, how would we do things this way?” Or “How do we go about it this way?” And it is ever evolving because if we look at what we're doing now, prior to COVID, I don't want to say that word in case you get flagged on YouTube or anything. 

But you know, if you think of how the market sophistication and everything develops over time, it's forever changing and evolving. It's good to have the good guys win, right? With the right tools. 

KYL: And I think that's the thing. If they–and the interesting thing there is you saying how you're learning sometimes from us as much as we're learning from you because there are systems that we've done for 20-plus years, and I think it's good. Sometimes, you will even add a conversation before this offline. You challenged that, and you go, “Why? Why do you do that?”

And it's like, “Well, that's just what you fucking do.” And it's like, “Why does it have to be what you do?” And then I think that's good because, at the end of the day, we are passionate about martial arts. We are lifelong martial artists, but it's none of us–I think you can pick apart somebody who is really just in this for the money, and they don't last long.  

But then, the people who are passionate about it, it does also still need to pay the rent. So, there is another area that we need to make sure we do focus on because, yeah, you have to let your passion pay the bills, but you've also–the bills don't stop coming in.

GEORGE: 100%. 100%. Well, I told you it'd be more than seven minutes. 

KYL: It wasn't that long. That's all that was. It's nearly lunchtime. All right. Let's get into question two. All right. Three reasons you get out of bed every morning. 

GEORGE: I live in paradise. I've moved from Perth to the Sunshine Coast. 

KYL: Was that a hard move or an easy move? 

GEORGE: Easiest best thing I've done ever. Waking up at the crack of dawn, ocean sticking my feet into the sand, having a swim. That's reason number one. 

KYL: You're an early riser? 

GEORGE: I don't think I'm natural. I can easily carried away and we burn the midnight oil,  but because I value the morning, yeah, it's getting easier as I get older. 

KYL: Yeah, yeah, yeah, exactly right. 

GEORGE: And I've got a 17-year-old son who's–he's up at four, and he goes to go surf. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: When I hear him leave, the guilt kicks in, or I sleep light, and then I hear him leave, and I'm like, “I guess I better get up then.”

KYL: You're not surfing as much as you did when you were a kid? 

GEORGE: I am. I've got an annular disc tear at the moment, which has thrown a bit of complications in all activity. So yeah, a little bit depressing. There's no Jiu-Jitsu at the moment, and there's no surfing at the moment, and these walks and swims in the ocean. 

KYL: It's what you can do. 

GEORGE: Exactly, yeah. It's made me appreciate that even more, just the fact that, yeah, I've got to get out. I've got to get in the ocean. 

KYL: As you said before, you were talking before when you had that chat to Phil and Graham, that you're 36 and you're too old. Now you're 47, and there's still all these things that you're doing, as we've had many discussions. I always look at my parents, and then you probably might look at your parents, and what their movement patterns were when they were 47. It's not what we're doing. 

GEORGE: Yeah, a hundred percent. 

KYL: Oh, it’s your attitude towards it. Have you got a number two and three? 

GEORGE: Family and kids? Spend time with on them, making sure we connect first thing in the morning, sometime in the morning, before the blocks scatter away. And then number three is, I'd say, the business. Business is a passion. It is this blended thing and problem-solving, creating solutions for martial arts school owners. That's a thing that I, yeah, get up and like. 

KYL: When you say it's a passion, I mean, clearly, you're deriving income from it, but what's made it a passion? What defines it as a passion for you over? This is just a means to an end.  

GEORGE: It’s probably the outcome that it delivers. If I had to go, take my skill, and do real estate at the sheer numbers of what the return on investment would be, it's the same skills applied to a different problem with a slightly different funnel and a different application to it. 

KYL: Yeah.

GEORGE: But it's the same. Principles really applied. If it was a money thing, that'd be easy, right? Because you could take the thing elsewhere. There are a few things that I guess make it a passion. It's the freedom of the way I live. I get to live once on the Sunshine Coast. 

KYL: Because you're what, 95% online? 

GEORGE: Yeah, probably. Yep. There's that. But then when I'm not, there's–oh, you mean as the business itself? As in working?

KYL: Yes. So, if you work from home and leave and go somewhere, you will do that. But one thing that I thought about before, probably with a lot of the work that you've had, you've never really had an office as such. You may have had one initially in that garage, but other than that, you've pretty much just worked your own hours and own space.  

GEORGE: Yeah. I did have a co-working office in Perth, and I had one that I just moved to the Sunshine Coast because I needed a place to head now. But the first time I did that, it was really because my daughter was born, and I realized I was not going to get anything done here. A lot of good has come from that. 

But I played with the idea. I saw a friend of mine get a nice office space in Mooloolaba and it overlooks the ocean. It's just tempting. But then I've got to go there, and I've got to–now I'm adding an extra 40-minute commute. 

KYL: There's still a process involved, isn't there? 

GEORGE: Yeah. Where I can just come back, good coffee at home. The freedom of being here, but also, if let's go travel, I can make the space and time, and I can run the business. I don't need to shut the business down. And sometimes people say, “Oh, you need to take a break.” I'm like, “Hang on. I built this thing that I don't need to escape from it.” 

I can get on a plane. I'll probably do it over the weekend so that I don't disrupt my calls, but I can change countries within a week and continue the business, and everything will be good.

KYL: And the people that say that they don't really understand that, maybe they've just never been exposed to it, asked it. In order to get to where we are, where we want to be, there's that element of seven odd days a week. We may be–I had this last year overseas. I was overseas doing Zoom calls. I did think I did one with you, and then I did a couple of other stuff's going on. 

People going, “Why are you doing that?” And I said, “I do an hour Zoom call, and the other 23 hours, I'm in Thailand enjoying myself.” I think that's a fair trade-off. 

GEORGE: 100%. Being able to do it more frequently than anyone else. Look, there's obviously some nice aspects in having a job that when it comes five o'clock, you can completely switch off, but I don't think I'm ever been wired. 

KYL: No. I don't think some of us are built for that. 

GEORGE: Yeah. I think that's just all of us that are entrepreneurs, right? You know that you can't really turn it off. 

KYL: No, I don't think it's ever off. You're in the shower thinking about something, you're walking down the street, you're driving the car. There's always something in your mind. All right, my friend. Number three is two guilty pleasures that you have. 

GEORGE: Coffee. 

KYL: How many a day? 

GEORGE: Three. I could turn it down. 

KYL: Go to mix? 

GEORGE: Go to mix. Oh, wow, you're asking. I don't–I have a flat white. 

KYL: Yeah, so just a flat white? 

GEORGE: I buy beans where–I got a nice coffee machine below. If I find–If I drink a good coffee somewhere, I'll buy the beans. 

KYL: Okay.


KYL: So you're a grind the beans, like full-blown in the house? You're not just a stick a pot in and push a button. You're that guy? 

GEORGE: Grind the beans, yep. 

KYL: Okay. 

GEORGE: I do the things. Really bad latte art, but– 

KYL: Do you find coffee as a source of inspiration? Do you find you work better after you've had a coffee? 

GEORGE: Yeah. I hate to have the dependency, and then I think about that often. I used to–I got this from one of our old clients, Amanda. She was like, “Avoid coffee the first two hours of the day.” I always used to do that. 

And then I've been hosting really early. Coaching calls like 6 am for me, which kind of works. It's the time I can pick works across the world in the best way. I do find it throws me a bit off. If I start having coffee too early, it probably messes with the adrenals a bit. 

Yeah, I enjoy it, but I am conscious of the stimulation. 

KYL: It's whatever works. You got a second one? 

Martial arts marketing

GEORGE: We can't call it guilty, but surfing and Jiu-Jitsu are probably tied. It's just both are non-existent as we speak, which, yeah. 

KYL: Again, a guy who's had exposure to many different martial arts, many different martial arts schools, different styles, what has Jiu-Jitsu got for you? Not to say it's better than any other, but what has it got that's clicked with you? 

GEORGE: So what's interesting is when I did Karate, I started doing Muay Thai, and I loved it. I loved Zen Do Kai and Muay Thai. It was always lingering to me the fact that I've had this hemorrhage. I went to see a neurosurgeon. I guess you'd never gotta see doctors, right? You should avoid them because they always tell you. But he had one of the take his glasses moment off and said, “Look, dude. You can't get punched in the head. The chances of you injuring yourself in an arena are, it's not on.” 

I didn't like that, obviously. I kept training, and I spoke to the guys, and like, “Okay, when we spar, just don't hit me in the head.” But then guys will say, “Well, hit me in the head because this is weird.” And so now, it has become really weird. I'd punch the guys in the head, and no one's punching me. 

I felt like I was half-arsing it. And so, I thought I would try Jiu-Jitsu. God, I hated it. I was like, “Man, I don't know what's going on here.” 

KYL: It's incredibly–and this is the thing. Our demographic is older here in our mornings, for example. For an older male who hasn't had that exposure, and you played rugby and that sort of thing, but to have another guy on top of you and you can't get them off or there's just that feeling of—I call it the two H's; helpless and humiliated. It's incredibly confronting. 

GEORGE: Yeah. Oh, yeah. Probably even harder if you come from that rugby, and I'll probably – look, I'm not a big guy, but I'm not a small guy either – and if guys are like that, 20 kilos less, there's still this aspect of, can I out muscle? And when all that fails in Jiu-Jitsu, that's double confronting. 

KYL: I've got nothing. 

GEORGE: Yeah, yeah. All right. Look, it was probably part of that as well, but I guess just did not understand what was going on. It took me three months of really training, forcing myself to do it because I love martial arts. I know I can't do that. I'm going to have to do this. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: And then slowly, I got hooked. For me again, I've referred to problem-solving a lot, programming. 

KYL: That is what Jiu-Jitsu is. 

GEORGE: Yeah. I don't know if maybe it appeals to that analytical brain of having to solve problems and that challenge. And also, I guess it's this unreachable goal that it's just never done. You never feel good at it. Do you feel good? I know you're good. 

KYL: No, it doesn't. I think there is a constant from someone who's been doing Jiu-Jitsu in particular for 22, 23 years, I think. There is never–the whole hammer and the nail thing, which can be quite cliché, I think, but yeah, there are days where you just go, “I'm fucking, I'm killing it.” And then, literally within 24 hours, you come, and you go, “I suck.” 

I think that's the thing, the beauty of Jiu-Jitsu and martial arts in general. There is just never a point where, like, you know, that phrase where it ends up. I don't think that's actually a phrase like, “It never ends up.” 

It's always going, and then you can be a higher rank and an older guy, and you have this 19-year-old purple belt come in, and he destroys you. But then the problem is you go, “Okay. I've got to cross from the physical brain into my spiritual brain, and what can I do to combat that?” 

We could do a separate podcast on that, but to answer your question, no, it never gets easier. Whatever that word is. One thing I always say is, “It never gets easier. You handle hard better. “ I think that's one thing I took away from a presentation I saw a little while ago. 

I think, like you said, you have this issue where you can't do it at the moment. There will come a point where you can do it again, and I think that's the thing that I think we don't bear in mind. Martial arts don't have seasons, and I remember a mentor of mine said this years ago. He said it during the Big C. 

At the time, he said, “I've been doing martial arts for nearly 60 years. If I miss out on training for six or seven months, that is just a blip on the radar. It doesn't even register.” 

GEORGE: Interesting, yeah. 

KYL: I said, “That's the way he looks at it.” That's good, man. I mean, look, it'll come back sooner or later. The surfing side of things that just a little – because surfing is a one-man sport, I guess you'd say – is that just your little time alone in the wilderness too? Do you verse the ocean? 

GEORGE: Probably, but I mean, I started surfing when I was 12, and if you had to zoom out, there were these big gaps where I did nothing. I lived in Johannesburg for three years. I lived in Perth, struggled to get good surf, and got a bit frustrated.  

There's been these gaps where it's like completely been removed in my life. It's the same, I guess, in Jiu-Jitsu, just on a smaller scale. But it's always there, and I always go back to it. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: Yeah, it's probably very similar in that. It's never done. You're always improving. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: There's always a challenge. There's always something out there that can keep you humble. The ocean is very humbling. 

KYL: Yes. 

GEORGE: Yeah, very humbling. 

KYL: Much. 

GEORGE: Yeah, if I think of just life and death situations, I'll put myself in. Sometimes, it’s probably just young and stupid, but yeah. I don't do that as much more, but I really find enjoyment in it. There's being in nature–if someone's got choking you, you can't think of anything else, kind of in the ocean as well, and you’re just one in nature. 

KYL: You and the sea? 

GEORGE: Yeah. 

KYL: Yeah, very good. Very good. All right. Question four. One thing you bought that has literally made you happy every day after? 

GEORGE: Coffee machine? 

KYL: I was going to say, “It's a coffee machine, isn't it?” 

GEORGE: To add a different flavor to it, recently, a Weber. 

KYL: Yeah, okay. All right. That's good. That's good. I don't know if you saw, but I was gifted a Tomahawk steak yesterday, and I cooked out on the Weber last night, and that was just amazing.

GEORGE: Yeah nice. I'm a rump guy, but– 

KYL: Beautiful. What's your go-to–are you learning the versatility of a Weber, the roasts, and you can do all this other stuff with it? 

GEORGE: Yeah, I've got a book for cooking. Christmas, but I don't want to go on this tangent. But I made a significant diet change last year because of kidney stones and stuff, and I've been on a carnivore diet for about six months. I pretty much eat steak every day. 

KYL: The Weber would be servicing those needs quite well. 

GEORGE: It does it to perfection. 

KYL: Very good. Very good. All right. Now, question five. One thing – you've probably got a few of these – one thing everyone thought you were crazy doing but did it anyway, and it paid off?  

GEORGE: Well, I wrote martialartsmedia.com. 

KYL: Okay. 

GEORGE: Yeah, that probably leaves it at that. I mean, we could take probably every business, right? Every business you do. But yeah, probably martialartsmedia.com if I think of the thing that paid off as well. 

KYL: Is there someone, not to name names, but was there somebody or a group of people when you said, “I think I'm going to make this a thing.” When no one, how do you even believe you'll make any income out of that? 

GEORGE: Yeah. A lot from within the industry, which was surprising. But a lot of slack within the industry, which was confronting in itself at times because of the path that I,  you know, not being a martial arts school owner from the get-go, I started the podcast, Martial Arts Media™ Business Podcast, that was my ticket to really learn about martial arts school owners, because I knew nothing. So, my positioning was probably a bit off because I was like, I don't know a thing, and I need to get all the knowledge. But yeah, I guess sometimes I ran into things that I didn't expect. 

KYL: Would you get a bit of that – and we've touched on this earlier – but did you get a bit of what would you know on a thing like that sort of resistance? 

GEORGE: It's funny when I get it because I got it recently, and it's a guy that's just started coaching. It's always funny that when people start in the business of coaching, that's their differentiation point is: Can I pull everybody else down? And so, that makes me a prime target. I get it. 

So yeah, I do get a bit of that, and I should probably play it in this podcast if that's the case. Maybe I haven't been that upfront with my story because sometimes I do have to tell people that I'm not a school owner, and they're surprised. 

So, there is that. Yeah, I mean, as I explained, I'm going to get backlash. I'm probably going to get backlash. We're always going to get backlash, right? 

KYL: Oh, haters. Haters are going to hate, and that's the thing. But the group that you have created from everything I see, they seem to be a group of people that, I mean, you're always going to get people that are resistant to change, and as you said, the longer someone's been in the industry, probably the more resistant to change. 

But from my experience, I'm very clear that there are things that I don't know. I'm not going to ask you to jump on the mats and teach a Muay Thai class of 30 people, but I will ask you because I don't know it. How do I run this better? How do I do this better? 

It's the same old thing. Like if you don't know your way around cars, you take your car to a mechanic to fix it. You don't open the bonnet and go, “I reckon I can fucking do this.” That's probably–and sometimes for people, that's very hard for them to make that admission and let that go.  

GEORGE: Yeah, you know, I think it could be a lot of it is caused by me and marketing too. It's really easy for somebody to go into my podcast and, let's say, see five videos where I talk about marketing and business. That is a teaching, that is where I am actually teaching something where that could be perceived that that's always how the conversation evolves. Like I'm the guru who knows everything that's always saying, but in actual fact, when I deal with school owners, I think it's a lot less of me and more of them.

It's more of understanding, and it's not a top-down command-and-conquer way of coaching. It's more of understanding and being able to help people go from one step to the next, from getting out of their way.  

GEORGE: It's funny that a lot of people see me as the guy that does the marketing. I help school owners with marketing, but if I think of the thing that makes the biggest impact is the thing of self-worth and pricing. 

KYL: Yeah. It seems to be like, and again, we just spoke about this offline, it's almost like a taboo topic, you know? We can't talk about that because, for a lot of martial artists, it may go against our core values, but as I'm learning myself, at the end of the day, the rent has to be paid, everything goes up, and the worth, you talk about someone that's been in another field for 30 plus years. 

Yeah, they would be on this level here, yet for whatever reason, we so often undersell ourselves. 

GEORGE: Yeah, Kevin Blundell says it’s okay to be in the part-time role, teach, and do it for charity and do all that. At the minute you charge a dollar, you've got an obligation to fulfill a service. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: And you can't fulfill much for a dollar. So, you have to be realistic about charging what you're worth to be able to fill the service. You can see it. If you look at a lot of schools that do charge a premium, they are the best schools. 

I don't think you can–and just perception of that as well, right? I know this is such a touchy subject, and I guess I've got to be careful what I say because it's so easy to take it out of context, but you can't be the cheapest and then tell me you’re the best. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: Why isn't a Mercedes 10 grand? Why can’t I buy the AMG for 10 grand? Why is it not more expensive than the Kia? They both get you from A to B, but who's the best? And that's if you want to be the best ever. If you don't, none of this is it's got to be this way.

But there is value in pricing itself. If someone is struggling to make rent and trying to do this full time and it's just not working well, then you've got to be open to looking at different ways of how you can make it profitable so you can be rewarded for what you do. It's not evil. 

KYL: You would say, well, I don't know what percentage, but it'd be a lot of people who come across to you or you converse with. There would be people grossly undercharging and underselling themselves, wouldn't there? 

GEORGE: 100%. 

KYL: Do you think that's a bit of a, I said it before, just a bit of a tradition in martial arts? We're meant to be the nice guys. And this is, again, I'm going to have to be careful that I don't take stuff out of context, but it's something that I'm learning because the first thing is when we charge more, we're accused of being money grabbers or whatever, or now it's all about the money. 

KYL: What’s that? 

GEORGE: How do you get accused? 

KYL: The people who aren't coming, the people who aren't paying, and then it's always interesting. There's this group of people that, if you are charging a group of people, will complain about the price, and there are obviously reasons for that. But then there is that other group of people that don't bat an eyelid because they see worth in what you're doing. And I think that's the big thing.

We talk so much about self-worth and being worthful, and yet here we are as the leaders. We're not putting that worth on ourselves. It's something that I know I still come to terms with. I think when we started working together, I think it was literally the first real conversation that we had together was, and again, it's not what are you charging; it's what are you worth. 

GEORGE: And what are you getting in return? There's lots for me to say about this. If I think of the holding back, like what holds you back, again, if we look at the pathway, it started as a passion, became a business. Now, you've got to put your business hat on. Now, you've got to charge. Some people have beliefs from back in the day that's carried over about money. 

Money is bad. Money doesn't grow on trees—money grabber. And then, you get the Tall Poppy Syndrome. I've got less than you, so I've got to drag you down. And it's so prominent in Australia. 

KYL: Yeah, it is. 

GEORGE: So, you've got that. And then, let's say your leader, your instructor is, you know, did it for love or passion and never bought a business, and now you're exceeding him in student numbers and wealth. You've got to watch that you don't step out of line. There's a lot of odds against you to be successful. And then, martial arts school owners that should be supportive. This could probably also be the worst and pull you down, or are you better than us, or we the cheapest, or whatever angle to try and differentiate instead of being complimentary towards that.  

KYL: Crazy, isn't it? Just because of the amount of experience, you would say, like Kevin Blundell you were talking about before, the number of years and time that has gone into that, and again, you'll pay, I don't know, for a tennis lesson or a horse riding lesson or whatever or surfing lesson, and quite often they can be more expensive, and that's not to say that they're not worth as much as what we do, but you go. They charge that, and people don't blink an eyelid, yet I'm deliberating over putting my price up five bucks, you know, yet you'll go across the road here and buy a coffee for six. 

GEORGE: So, for anyone that struggles with that, you just got to get clear on your reason why. The reason why you're charging that or why it needs to go up, you're doing X, Y, Z, and this is why we're going up with us. That's a good place to start. What is your reason why? And you've got to get comfortable with that. 

I always feel, and maybe this is because of that history in the time machine industry, where these things like this was built into your head, and it's never about the money. It's always said it's about the money, but it always comes down to the value. It really comes down to the value. 

We used to see that with what we used to do, people will find money if they saw that they've got a struggling marriage and they know that this is going to force them to take vacation time and spend together as a family, people find–they'll find it– 

KYL: If you want it to work, it'll work. 

GEORGE: Exactly. And now, when we look at something like martial arts, the thing that you've always got to look at is, what phone do they have? If they've got one of these, these iPhones, what are they paying per month for that? Do they need it?  Probably not. 

What else are they spending on that they don't need? That's irrational spending. So, if the need was bigger and it was that important to them to do this martial arts training, would they find the money? Is it really that expensive that it's out of reach? I'm not saying everyone, obviously, everybody doesn't have the same situation, right? But if you can present it in that way and people know the value in it, then would they sacrifice something? 

Is there something that they can sacrifice to make it happen? I'm not saying of the charge. I'm just saying charge your worth. There’s a big difference. 

KYL: I think there's a massive difference and I think it's a thing we get. Well, look, I know, I get it mixed up because I'm the guy that regardless of how much I've done, I'm still like [making sounds] and I'm like [making sounds]. I remember recently, I had a conversation with someone about this and, I said, “Are you justifying it to them or are you justifying it to yourself?” 

And I said, “Oh, it's definitely the second one. It's definitely the second one.” All right. Four things you cannot live without, animate or inanimate. Coffee machine? 

GEORGE: Coffee machine, the ocean, the Audible app does me good on my phones. 

KYL: What are you listening to at the moment? 

GEORGE: Scientific advertising. 

KYL: Oh, Jesus. That's a lot of big words. 

GEORGE: Yeah. I've gone back into a big mission of digging up all my old marketing books, so I'm in a big–just getting into the fundamentals of copywriting again. 

KYL: Okay. You're a guy who gets the most he can out of a day. Do you listen to Audible at that one-and-a-half speed, two-times speed? 

GEORGE: No. Sometimes at 1.25. 

KYL: I tried it, and I just went, “Oh my God.” This is too hard.  

GEORGE: Because I find I need that pause to reflect on what I just heard sometimes. 

KYL: So do I. 

GEORGE: It's not like I just want to try and get it in my mind. I actually enjoy listening to it. Yeah, no. 

KYL: Have you got a fourth one? 

GEORGE: I don't. Steak knife, a good steak knife. 

KYL: A good steak knife. Well, if you eat a lot of steak, you need a good steak knife.  There's nothing worse than having a nice steak and a shit knife, and you can't cut it up properly. That's big. It's accessories, man. It's accessories. 

Number seven, if you were not doing what you were doing in life right now, what would have been option number two? 

GEORGE: Full-time drummer.

KYL: Full-time what? 

GEORGE: Drummer. 

KYL: Drummer. 

GEORGE: Yeah. 

KYL: Okay. Favorite band/demonstration of drumming prowess. 

GEORGE: Tool. 

KYL: Tool? Okay. Okay. I’ve got to say that's not what I expected from you. 

GEORGE: What did you expect? 

KYL: I don't know. I don't know. I would have–I don't know, maybe a little bit of, I don't know, Black Sabbath or Led Zeppelin, but you're jumping– 

GEORGE: Led Zeppelin? But Tool's just, it's on a level of its own. 

KYL: Have you ever seen him live? 

GEORGE: Yeah, it was a week before the Big C shut everything down. 

KYL: Okay. Oh, yeah. Yeah. 

GEORGE: That’s the last thing I could see in Perth. 

KYL: I saw Maynard James Keenan got his black belt in Jiu-Jitsu, too. 

GEORGE: He did? 

KYL: Yeah. Okay. When you say full-time drummer, was the concept of joining a band ever there, or did you play them loud in your bedroom and drive your parents nuts? 

GEORGE: Both. I played in a few bands with my school buddies. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: We were pretty good. 

KYL: Okay. 

GEORGE: We got number 10 on the local charts. 

KYL: Okay. 

GEORGE: National South African charts. 

KYL: That’s a win. 

GEORGE: A band called Ordeal 

KYL: Ordeal. Oh, that sounds deep. That sounds really deep. 

GEORGE: It was. I had a guitarist-vocalist, Jean, who sounded like Scott Weiland from Stone Temple Pilots. Our guitarist could play every Metallica’s Solo Backwards. Like Kirk Hammett, crazy and yeah, it was fun days. I really tried to venture into that career. I played drums every day, every night, bands, and it was just after I'd lost my business, there was just too much on my back to even think, you know, I'm going to take this on as financially viable. 

KYL: Do you have a kit now? Do you have a kit now that you muck around on? 

GEORGE: I've got an electronic Roland TD-8 that I use. 

KYL: If you stick the headphones on and just look like an idiot? 

GEORGE: Yeah, yeah, yeah, pretty much it. Rock star with the music playing. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: Depending on how bad I'm playing in the day, depends on how bad the music. 

KYL: Is there a song that you will play on drums that lights your fire?

GEORGE: Oh, there's lots. There's a lot of Pearl Jam, Queens of the Stone Age. 

KYL: You're really showing your 90s grunge. 

GEORGE: Yeah, it's all of those all louder stuff. Yeah, Chili Peppers, Funk Rock. Jane's Addiction. 

KYL: Wow. 

GEORGE: Yeah. 

KYL: See, this is a side of George. I just didn't say it's interesting. We share a lot of music tastes. Very good. Very good. Question number eight – I think we've answered this, but let's give it a crack – one time you backed yourself when everything was saying to give up? 

GEORGE: Yeah, it was Martial Arts Media™. I guess if I had to give it more context, there was a stage where I had parted ways with the school where I've trained. I was in this middle where there were no clients at the podcast running. And that was probably the one time I felt like, “Man, is this happening? Am I being a fraud  to myself?” 

Because I don't even have a client base where I'm actually doing this, we're talking about a month where that happened. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: And then I flew to Sydney, and I met up with a bunch of other school owners, and it really recalibrated and got my momentum again. But that was an interesting time because I was really looking myself in the mirror and like, “Am I nothing?” Am I providing absolutely no value? 

KYL: So, you work with, not to get back to that pricing discussion and real worth, but do you find that's one thing you see in a lot of school owners when you start working with them? There’s this – I could say I'm in this bracket – that level of vulnerability? 

We have this persona, but inside, we're like, “I just don't know if I can do this. I just don’t know if I've got what it takes to actually do this.” 

GEORGE: Yeah. One of my coaches once said, “I guess what's easy to do right is you hang on to the old George.” Or the old Kyl. There's growth, and then with all growth, there's always its imposter syndrome, right? 

KYL: Yep. 

GEORGE: You're always in a comfort zone. Everything happens in breaking out of the comfort zone. You're in the comfort zone and every time there's growth, it means that you're in a new comfort zone, and now that means there's discomfort. And you know, humans will fight like hell to stay in their comfort zone and have that little voice telling you, “You've got to get back. You're out of line, and you don't belong here.” 

And so, you've always got to–one thing I told myself at an early age was if I feel uncomfortable, then I'm at the right place. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: All right. Something is happening here. 

KYL: Spot on. 

GEORGE: I’ve got to get comfortable. 

KYL: You've got to do it. 

GEORGE: Yeah. 

KYL: And I think that's something that—oh, God, we can have a full conversation about that. It's back to handling hard better, but we need to make ourselves uncomfortable, and comfortable, and just push ourselves through. Again, you'd see a lot of change in people that come on board with you from what they were when they started to what they're doing now, and that would be very rewarding, too.

Martial arts school marketing

GEORGE: Yeah, a hundred percent. It's very rewarding. If I look at some clients where they started and where they were at, some starting out, some like lifelong martial artists and that different perspective, a different take on marketing. It always starts with marketing, but it's marketing that creates problems that can be solved. That always leads to conversions and styles, and then obviously got retention, but retention is the biggest thing. But to get that front-end right and really challenge beliefs, and charge the worth, keep doing that. 

There's a lot of depth and work to be done there. I know marketers love to make it all sound easy. It's simple, but it's definitely not easy, right? Because it's just the depth. If you take all the martial arts analogies, you learn to punch from day one, and 10 years later, you're still trying to perfect this punch. It's depth. 

KYL: It's just that constant chip away. I say to people, “You've just got to do it every day. Every single day.” 

GEORGE: There is one shortcut. I do feel there is one shortcut, and the only shortcut you have is to follow people who've done what you've done or someone who's helped someone else get where you are. 

Sometimes it's hard to look at–I think there's a bit of a gap as well where you look at it and say, “Well, XYZ has five schools and 2000 students. I should be doing that.” He wasn't doing that, that got in there. He was doing this. 

KYL: That's one. I was just about like this, and you would see it now because when I started teaching martial arts, to have a full-time center in Brisbane, even just a space or like a shed or an address, that was rare. I reckon, probably in the mid-90s, I can think of probably four or five that had an actual space. Now, you have people; that's their first step. 

They're getting spaces, and they're doing this. Would you say, from your experience, patience is something that we need, too? These guys like, “Yeah, it's been two months. Why don't I have 300 students?” And I say, “Because it's been two months, that's why.” 

GEORGE: Yeah. I mean, yeah, with all things, right? I think if all martial arts school owners had to live the martial arts philosophy in business, I'd probably not have a business, right? 

KYL: That's right. 

GEORGE: Because it's really just that level of resilience, now, if I say there's a shortcut, there are two paths, right? You can go the hard path, and you can take the easy part. The only easy part is you grab the lessons that were learned from someone else, and that's got a plan to take you there. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: Put the right things at the right time—sequence matters. I think sequence matters. If I could tell a quick story. I'll go back to this. When I started helping martial arts school owners, I knew Google AdWords and Google AdWords was, I took the hard part, right? 

I bought a book for 17 bucks. I cringed spending 17 bucks on a book. And then, I started running ads, and it's not like Facebook ads today where you can put something up, get a message, and you've got a lead. It was like you had to build a landing page. You had to get a hundred clicks and then go and look at your data, and then optimize. 

It was this never-ending track of throwing money at stuff. And when you don't know what you're doing, it's hard to throw money at stuff. I did that until I spent, like, I was down to my last 300 bucks that I was ever going to invest in a business. And then, I made a sale for $37, and it was the best $37 I've ever made because– 

KYL: I love the way you even know the amount. It was $37. 

GEORGE: Yeah, because it was $37, and I got a hundred percent commission of it, right? Somebody in the States, I was in Perth when I was legal, I’m paying tax, somebody in the States bought this book that I've never seen or knew. They bought it from an ad from a page that I created. And that was like, whoa. 

Then, I spent another 30 bucks and made another sale. All of a sudden, I was in business, but it was a hard path, right? If I had money to invest in a coach or somebody could show me, “Hey, actually, all this money that you're spending right now, we can shortcut that.” 

It's never completely–the shortcut isn't without obstacles of itself. 

KYL: No. 

GEORGE: But at least if there's some data to work with that, “Hey, this happens to work in this way that's better.” And I think this is one thing that I'm always trying to find: How can I get the result quicker? When I started, I was the website guy, like I developed websites for guys. I believe that taking traffic from Google to the website was the best way. The problem was the delay in getting that done. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: The website, traffic. And so, when I discovered how to do Facebook ads in a way that I could put the ad up, you don't even need a website. You can have a conversation with someone.  The minimal amount of effort could be done. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: Not having a conversation. Can we sell conversations? That's where I really try to turn the whole system around. I'm looping back to that full circle with all that, but that was a big realization.

Can we get someone the result quicker? That's the first thing that we try and do. Can we get a good offer? Can we put it in front of the right people? Can we do the simplest way of following up? We'll get everything else. 

KYL: Yeah, remove all the bullshit. 

GEORGE: Yeah, we'll get what every other, and sometimes marketers say, “Oh, you need a website. You need this and this.” Well, yeah, you do later, but get your message right. Sorry, I hate the fact that you've got these agencies that promise the world and give this perception that you don't need to understand your message, and they will call the leads for you, and they'll do this. 

It creates this level of codependency where you're always at the mercy of the next hire, the next agency that's going to magically build your business. Sometimes, the path we take is probably not the path that everybody wants, but it's definitely the path that everyone needs. 

KYL: Exactly. And I think it's that learning—always learning, too. I just love the way you keep referring back to this coach, my coach, that you're providing all this experience to people, but you're still gaining experience yourself.  

GEORGE: A hundred percent. 

KYL: Three pieces of advice to people who are finding reasons to not back themselves, to instead back themselves. 

GEORGE: Number one, read The Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl. Have you read it?  

KYL: Yeah. Yeah. I have. I have. 

GEORGE: Yeah, right. If I ever think of a guy that – go read the book for anyone listening – but this guy was put in Nazi death camps and had to find joy in a bowl of mud water with a fish head for lunch. 

He just had one belief that he's got to get through this so he can document the story and help people. If you ever feel life sucks, pick up the audiobook or read that book. 

KYL: Very good. Very good recommendation there. I'm proud of you. Number two? 

GEORGE: If you've lost hope, take focus away from yourself and go and help someone else. 

KYL: Okay. 

GEORGE: We'll get it back to you and find someone else that you can help. And number three, there's a lesson in everything. So, in hindsight, if you're dealing with something right now, there's a lesson that's going to come up in the near future. Six months down the line or a year, you're going to say, “Ah, okay. That's why that happened.” 

If you had to step outside of your situation and be honest with yourself… What is that lesson you've got to learn now? 

KYL: Yeah. And I guess going back to those things like you said about helping somebody, I read somewhere that the amount of endorphin or dopamine release you receive from just being kind to someone is a real natural high. It puts things back into perspective, doesn't it? 

GEORGE: 100%. 

KYL: Okay. Very good. Well, number 10 is a quote to live by. 

GEORGE: Right. I don't have many quotes, but I've got one, and I'll have to give you some context. The quote is, “Do the work once.”

KYL: Okay. 

GEORGE: Context is, it's easy to have a system, whatever thing and you keep doing the work, doing the same thing. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: Whereas, if you had to step back, zoom out, build the framework, build a system, have no work without a framework, have the framework, have the process, then do the work within the work. Instead of doing things on repeat and building things, can you zoom out, create a system, or simplify it? 

Do the thinking once; do the work once. Within the work is doing the thinking because if you really think about it and everything's being thought out now, it's like you to train on the train tracks, getting to the station. 

KYL: Do you find now, because again, you are so into IT and all that, do you find that might be hard for people to do now? Because as soon as they try, like to try and physically get into something they got to put all that other stuff and distractions out. Do you find that that might be harder to do than maybe ever before? 

GEORGE: With distractions? 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: Yeah, a hundred percent. A hundred percent. 

KYL: You'll be right into something trying to really, and again like we were talking about something earlier that I got to put together, and then you get a Facebook message, or you get the email chimes and all. So, you got to like to try and shut all that down, and have you said that the way that – I'm not trying to say – if we lock down and do something as I said, it's done. We've only got to do it once, you know. 

GEORGE: I guess. And what goes with that is, can you build an asset? Process and standard operating procedure—that's an asset. If you can document something, get it out of your head the way you want it. It's never going to be perfect. 

That's why I love Google Docs because it just evolves. But the quicker you can get it out of your mind and then add the nuances to it, it makes it simple for you and for you to take a step back out of your business because people are doing it. It also takes the blame away from people because it's always the procedure's fault and not the human. 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: I mean, it could be the human's fault too, right, if they don't apply it. But the first thing that when things go wrong with things that we do, where's that in the SOP? 

KYL: Yeah. 

GEORGE: It's not? Okay. Can you add it in? Right. It is. Okay. Well, why was it skipped? It just adds that level of responsibility, too. The process got to live outside a human because if that human goes, and that's the human that knows, has the knowledge and the expertise to do it, especially because I guess it's maybe it's a little different because I've always been online. I've never had anybody in my office, I've always hired people in different countries, and I’m online. 

So, just tightening up those systems and making sure everything has a safe place to live. Everything's got a process and a way that it's run. 

KYL: It's definitely something that I know I got to work on because there's so much up here that is not here. But we'll get better at that as we go. Well, that was a good chat.  

GEORGE: Great. That’s awesome. 

KYL: Yeah, I think as I said, as we said at the start, there will be people listening to this that know you in one plane, but now there are all these other things, and I think that's the interesting thing. There are so many different sides to us. It's that thing. Just because we do a job doesn't mean that we are doing that job. There are so many other moving parts. 

George, thank you very much for your time. 

GEORGE: Thank you. 

KYL: I know you're very busy. I know you have probably a few more hours of online stuff to do today, but I really appreciate your time, mate, and thank you for everything you're doing for the martial arts community. 

GEORGE: Oh, thank you, Kyl. It's been a pleasure. 

KYL: Man, that is another episode done. If you like what we do and you'd like to listen to more, you can listen to us on Spotify. We have our YouTube channel. We'll have all George's contacts up on this podcast if you'd like to get in touch with George personally and chat to him more about stuff, but give us a like, a share, a follow, and that'll be it. George, thank you, my friend. 

GEORGE: Thank you. 

KYL: It's lunchtime where we are, and we will see you guys later. Bye. Bye. 

GEORGE: There we go. I hope you enjoyed the podcast. Maybe you learned a thing or two about me, good or bad. I don't know. We'd love to know your thoughts. However, if you want to share some feedback, I'd much appreciate it. 

You can in a few ways. Take a screenshot of this podcast where you listen to it in whichever format and tag me on socials. You can also find me on Facebook, facebook.com/george.fourie, or go look me up, send me a friend request, and yeah, I would love to chat and hear your feedback. Awesome. 

And if you do need some help growing your martial arts school in the sense of strategy, digital marketing, business growth, a bit of automation, or getting your time back, I would love to chat. We made a few changes to how we onboard and work with martial arts school owners. Currently, we are not accepting new clients, but you can go to the waitlist. 

Jump on there, and we'll let you know when we have a spot. We can tell you all the details of how it works and see if it's the right fit for you. You could go to martialartsmedia.com/waitlist and jump in there, leave your details, and we'll reach out to you when we have a spot available.

Anyway, that's it for me. I hope you enjoyed the podcast, and I'll see you in the next one. Cheers.

*Need help growing your martial arts school? Start Here.

Enjoyed the show? Get more martial arts business tips when you subscribe on iTunes, listen on Spotify, or watch and subscribe on Youtube.

146 – The Partners Intensive: A Deep Dive into Australia’s Premier Martial Arts Business Event

George Fourie explores the highlights and game-changing strategies shared from the Partners Intensive – a live martial arts business event held on the Sunshine Coast, Australia.


  • What Was Covered At The Partners Intensive: A Premium Martial Arts Business Event
  • The 1 Thing That All Martial Arts Business Owners Desire
  • What’s Special About Hosting Martial Arts Business Events On The Sunshine Coast?
  • The Magic Delivered By Bushi-Ban International’s Grandmaster Zulfi Ahmed
  • The 90-Day Growth Plan That Eliminates Overwhelm, Clarify Goals, And Delivers Martial Arts Business Success

*Need help growing your martial arts school? Apply Here.



Hey, it's George Fourie. Welcome to the Martial Arts Media™ Business Podcast. Today, I'm going to be doing a bit of a review of an epic martial arts business event that we ran here on the Sunshine Coast in Australia. We are going to be talking about the highlights, epic, real cool things that we did. And most importantly, also talk about the next event that's coming up and how you can potentially be part of it.

All show notes can be found at martialartsmedia.com/146. Head over there and download everything, and you'll get all the resources on how you can potentially join us for the next event. All right, let's jump in.

A couple of months back, we hosted our Partners Intensive. Now, some context: you've heard me talk about Partners if you've been on the podcast. If you haven't, Partners is our martial arts business group that we work with, school owners from around the world. We get together online a lot, well, two to four times per week.

But it's also important to get together in person. And so, we put together the Partners Intensive, which was a three-day event that we hosted on the Sunshine Coast here in Australia. I've got to be honest; it way exceeded my expectations of how amazing it was. We had speakers from multiple parts of Australia and also Grand Master Zulfi Ahmed from Bushi Ban International, who flew over from the United States to come and join us for the event.

Martial Arts Media Partners Intensive

I'll tell you what. You've probably been to a business event, but if you haven't, it's the one thing that brings it all together, right? It's great that we've got all these online tools, and we can switch on Zoom and teleport virtually altogether from all different locations and connect fast.

And there’s nothing that beats that quick way of accessing information. But when it comes to human-to-human connection, we martial artists like to be around people, and the same goes with the events. Plus, you can get all the content that you want online, but it's that one conversation you have with a person who sits next to you, that insight that you get, that conversation that you're a part of where the magic happens.

And I want to say, whether it's my event or someone else's, but if you're going to go, look at the business, look at it as a nice little tax write-off to get away and do it because whatever you spend, you get back tenfold plus form awesome relationships with like-minded people, other martial arts, business owners, et cetera.

That was a universal plug for all events, including ours. Coming up. I want to give a bit of a rundown. I'll tell you what, a bit of insight from me. We moved across the country from Perth, which is in Western Australia, all the way to the East, which is the Sunshine Coast. For those of you, maybe if you're in the United States, that's the equivalent of moving from San Diego all the way through to New York, give or take.

So, opposite sides of the country, right? Of the, in our case, the continent. And I knew we had to put this event together. I was thinking, “Look, where do we go? Where do we go?” It's always good. I was putting this event together, and I was thinking, “Where do I host it around the country?”

Most events typically happen in a nice city, and people fly in from all over, so it's going to be easy to be accessible. At the time I was standing in this thought process, I was standing on a beach close by, Mooloolaba, that's how you say it. I got it wrong a few times anyway. My daughter's playing in the playground, which is down by the beach and the sand.

I'm standing there thinking, “We could do it on the Gold Coast. We could do it in Sydney.” As my daughter's playing, I look up and see, here's the Mantra Hotel. I look the other way, and I see the ocean, and I look back up at the hotel, and I'm like, “Well, it's got to be there, right?”

It's in my backyard. We moved here because I believe it’s one of the most beautiful places in the country, if not the world. And I thought, “Wow, wouldn't it be magnificent to bring martial arts school owners from all over the world to meet up on the Sunshine Coast?” And so that was it.

It was so successful that I've already booked the hotel for next year, June 2024. So, how did the event go down? All right. I played mostly part as a host, which is what I wanted to do. I think everybody in our group hears me talk a lot. I like the aspect of bringing so many people around and bringing people, having people from our community step up and share a lot of great insights.

Martial Arts Media Ross Cameron George Fourie

I think I'm just going to break it down from top to bottom. I kicked off the event, and straight after me, we had Ross Cameron, who spoke about the $20,000-a-month pro shop formula. This was a really exciting session. And, you know, when I was promoting the event, I promised that within day one, you would walk away with six figures.

Strategies that would get you six figures in the bank if implemented within the next 12 months. And we did that on day one. A big part of this was Ross Cameron's $20,000-a-month pro shop formula.

That's generating $20,000 a month from your pro shop. Ross, being an engineer by trade, went down into all the aspects to look at and how to design your pro shop, from the layout, where it should be exactly, how to display the items, what to display, and where to source them from, changing stock.

There was so much to cover. It was a really, really impactful 90 minutes. Next up, we had Cheyne McMahon, who spoke about the open day—a six-figure open-day formula. That's something we've covered a lot. Shane's done really well with running open days. We call it the six-figure open day because that's what's generated on the day in student value.

Partners Intensive - Cheyne McMahon & George Fourie

For him, his record, I think, was 89 students signups on the day. When I moved up to the Sunshine Coast, Shane lives in Brisbane, and I knew he was running an open day. I thought, hang on, I want to get this on film. We've talked about the strategies and bounced it around, but I've never really been hands on a part of it.

I drove down to Brisbane, filmed the entire open day, and just watched him. Watch the whole process. It was great because we got to talk about it after, but we got to run through the open day live and break down exactly each strategy, what to do from the marketing, how to fill the room, what to do during the day, the demos, who to get involved, organic marketing through the community.

And so we did a rundown through the video and basically covered all the strategies from that. Awesome. Next up, this is all day one.

We had Lindsay Guy. Lindsay Guy was talking about retention boosting strategies, things that they've done within their school. When we started working with Lindsay Guy, it was reported that he's grown his business by 233% since being in the community.

Partners Intensive Lindsay Guy George Fourie

He attributes a lot of that to things he gets from our community. That's not “me and me. Give myself a pat on the shoulder”, but the weekly calls that we have where we have a bunch of martial arts school owners that get together. That's where the magic happens because that's where the ideas are shared.

The martial arts school owners that attend those calls are the ones that succeed the most because that's where you get the live feedback, right? There's nothing like bringing a problem to a call, and you've got someone that's been in the business 30, 40 years and has gone through those different phases and be able to share those insights with you.

How to create retention boosted customer experiences from first contact to walk-in to introduction to sign up. Awesome. We finished the day off a bit early, but we did something epic. We did a mastermind on a river cruise. We hired, what do you call them? A big boat cruiser. To do a river cruise through all the canals.

We also got a sponsor on board club works and martial arts software, and they got on board and contributed with gifts and just really enhancing the experience, which was really, really amazing. So anyway, it's sunset now; if you haven't seen the sunset around the Sunshine Coast, it's pretty spectacular.

I've got a video and some footage that I'll include below this post, martialartsmedia.com/146. Go check it out. It's pretty amazing. We had the river cruise. We got on board. It was networking, a bunch of drinks, a bunch of fun, and picked up a bunch of world-class seafood and had meals on board.

That wrapped up day one for us. Pretty amazing for day one. On day two, we had Grand Master Zulfi Ahmed. Now, there are a million things that I can say about working with Grand Master Zulfi Ahmed on the day and through the weekend. But I can say he completely blew everyone away with the value, the knowledge, his energy just unmatched.

Grand Master Zulfi is a unique individual. You've probably heard of him; if not, go look him up. Based in Pasadena, Texas. Bushi Ban International is his organization. And Master Zulfi, we spent the entire Saturday with him going through a bunch of topics, which I was actually sworn to secrecy and not allowed to share.

Partners Intensive Zulfi Ahmed

I can tell you that everybody in our group still talks about the experience that day, and he went over and above and delivered. After the event, we visited different schools around the Sunshine Coast in Brisbane, having lunch, having dinners, having talks. For me, it was just a super, really, really valuable experience.

The amount of knowledge that I gained spending a couple of days with Grand Master Zulfi Ahmed. That was Saturday, a jam-packed day. The next morning, Sunday, we started wrapping things up.

Grand Master Zulfi shared his insight, which was what he promised. His promise was that he would show you how to increase, give you a million-dollar idea, how to increase your trial-to-member conversions by more than 70%.

He demonstrated that with a bunch of school owners. They sat down, and he showed us the structure of how they do that, which was mind-blowing, pretty spectacular. Within that, we hosted what we call the Instructors’ Roundtable, but we had a bunch of top school owners who joined us and basically sat on the hot seat.

That was a great experience. We had Grand Master Ridvan Manav shares from the Australian Martial Arts Academy in Sydney—one of the largest martial arts schools within the world. Listening to the wealth of knowledge he brought to the table, being interactive with everyone in the group, being open and generous, and helping everybody within the group.

Also, Zak Jovanov from Premier Martial Arts in Perth sharing how they run thousands plus students between their two schools and just a wealth of knowledge, and it is great to have him on board. That almost brought us to the end of the day.

Then we had Kyl Reber. Kyl from Chikara Martial Arts in Brisbane. When I put all the event details together, I shared everything, and he sent me a message and said, “Hey George, I really love the lineup. It's all great on money-making strategies and everything. But if I could take 10, 30 minutes and share a couple of things that we do differently and how we've grown our school to 370 students plus by really focusing on community activities.”

And then another great community member, Kyl Reber, shared cultivating culture and community for retention. Kyl sent me a message after I put the lineup together for the Partners Intensive and said, “Hey, George really loved the lineup. Everything seems focused on money-generating activities, which is awesome, but we do things different.”

Martial Arts Media Partners Kyl Reber George Fourie

And organically, they've grown their martial arts school to 370 plus students without running ads but really focusing on their culture and community activities. Kyl said, “Look, if I've got 10, 30 minutes, I'd love to share.” And I said, “Well, you've got 90 minutes. Take it away.” It was a really amazing session and just brought a bit of a different flavor to the event.

Last but not least, I finished up with the 90-day growth plan. Every 90 days, we get together and work on a plan—a plan for what are the things that you need to do. And I guess for, I don't know about you, but sometimes you go to an event, and you get all this information and insight, and then you go home. You're so pumped with everything to do, but now I've got this long to-do list of things you've got to get done, and you don't have a plan on the most essential thing to do next.

It's great that you've got all these ideas, but if you're at a certain level and someone is at a completely another level to you, the insight that you might have gotten is great advice, but just not in the moment. The 90-day growth plan is all about taking all the things from the event and make sure that you get a plan structured and you know what to do as soon as you get home.

Anyway, that gives you a bit of an idea of what happened at the event. We've got a few events coming up, and I'd love to invite you to a few, depending on when you're listening to this. I'll be hosting the Martial Arts Media Intensive. I'm coming over to the United States. I'll be hosting the Martial Arts Media Intensive as part of the Bushi Ban Power Week, hosted by Grand Master Zulfi in Pasadena, Texas, which will be running between the 18th and the 22nd of October, 2023.

We'll be there Friday, the 20th. We're going to be hosting the event, and we've got five speakers covering over three different continents, right? Two speakers from the United States, two here from Australia, as well as from the United Kingdom. It's an epic week that Grand Master Zulfi hosts the Bushi Ban Power Week, which is their martial arts organization.

There's between gradings, martial arts seminars, and the martial arts workshop, business workshop. There's a lot happening. If you're in Texas or keen to travel, I'd love to meet you in the USA. First time back in five years, almost since the last time I spoke at an event. Three years, four years, something like that.

Anyway, we'd love to see you. On top of that, we have two martial arts business events happening. One online and one again in Australia in June 2024. I know online isn't as cool as in person, but the cool thing about online is that we've got access to speakers from around the globe, and we get double the work done in half the time.

And you don't have to travel, right? I know, yep, being in person is great, but in between, we run our online events too, which are awesome. And no matter where you are in the world, you could potentially join us.

Look, if you'd like to know anything about these events, shoot me an email at george@martialartsmedia.com or wherever you see this, comment below, whether it's on Facebook or Instagram, or wherever you see this, comment below and ask. I will reach out to you and share with you all the details of how you can attend the next event. Awesome. Look, thanks so much for watching or listening.

If you've got some great insights from this, please share this with someone, one of your martial arts school and friends, somebody who might get good value from this. I look forward to speaking to you on the next podcast. Go to martialartsmedia.com/146, and you'll find all the photos of the events, some videos, and a couple of cool resources.

Anyway, thanks so much. I'll speak to you soon. Cheers.


*Need help growing your martial arts school? Start Here.

Enjoyed the show? Get more martial arts business tips when you subscribe on iTuneslisten on Spotifyor watch and subscribe on Youtube.

145 – How Kyl Reber’s Martial Arts School Serves 370+ Members – All Through Referrals

Kyl Reber shares his secrets to 27 years of successful growth in his martial arts school, driven by the power of organic marketing through word-of-mouth referrals.


  • How Kyl grew his martial arts business through organic marketing, primarily via word-of-mouth referrals
  • The link between Imposter Syndrome and martial arts studio’s pricing strategies
  • Why martial arts school owners often undersell themselves and encounter growth challenges
  • Key areas to prioritize in your martial arts school beyond the curriculum
  • The history behind their martial arts school's empowering slogan, ‘Back Yourself’
  • And more

*Need help growing your martial arts school? Learn More Here. 


Hey, it's George Fourie. Welcome to another Martial Arts Media™ Business Podcast. Today I am interviewing one of our great clients, one of our members of our Partners community, Kyl Reber. Kyl is from Brisbane. Chikara Martial Arts. You can look them up. 

And this interview is a bit of an extension from the Partners Intensive, which is an event that we hosted here on the Sunshine at the beginning of June. And Kyl was one of the featured speakers talking about the things that they are doing in the community. 

And what is mind-blowing for many other school owners is Kyl and his team, they're just pushing past the 370-member mark. And at this point, they've only focused on organic marketing strategies. 

It's all about community. It's all about giving back. It's all about the things that they do in their school and the impact that they make within their community. 

And so I wanted to get Kyl on and dig a bit deeper, talk a bit more about the strategies, what they do. 

And the great thing is I've been working with Kyl for a little more than six months, and I haven't really tapped into that backstory about how he got started on this journey when they opened their school, what got him into martial arts and so this was a great opportunity for that. 

So jump into the episode. All the show notes and resources are on our website, martialrtsmedia.com/145. 

That's the numbers one, four, five. Head over there and download the transcript and resources. That's it. Let's get started. Jump in. 

GEORGE: Mr. Kyl Reber, welcome to the Martial Arts Media™ Business podcast.

Martial arts school marketing Kyl Reber

KYL: Thanks, George. Thank you for having me. It's a pleasure and an honor to be here.

GEORGE: Awesome. Long time coming.

KYL: Long time coming. Third time lucky.

GEORGE: Third time lucky. Hey, so thanks for jumping on. I'm really excited about this conversation and what I'm excited about is I've known you for a little while, we've been working together for a little while and I haven't really tapped into the back story of you and how everything came about.

So I'm really excited to chat about that and just witness a lot of the things that you're doing in your school and how you approach things differently. But first up, I always like to kick off this being … We always talk about marketing and attract, increase, and retain strategies.

If you have to share, what is the one thing, your go-to strategy that's helped you grow the school the most, generated the most students, strategy that you always lean on, that you always go back to and repeat over time?

KYL: I guess our biggest strategy or our biggest way of generating business is it always has been referral. But I guess if you were to put that into a strategy, a strategy is our image and our standing in the community.

Because if we have a good image standing in the community and members come to join, they're very quick to refer to other people that they know about what we do. You and I have had conversations in the past about Facebook marketing and all that sort of stuff.

Without sounding arrogant, that's still quite foreign to us. And I guess we've been very lucky that we're able to build the club to where it has gotten purely by just referral, word of mouth. We'll have whole families train. We have people very willingly wanting to involve themselves more in what we do externally.

So I think, referral has been always something that's been very good for us to lean on, and it's something that's very important to us. Our culture and community are the real backbone of what we do.

It's something that we've really strived to, I guess you'd say protect. As every club has, we've had people come in the past over the years that haven't been fit for that culture and community and we've had to have conversations about maybe this isn't the place for you because it's such a strong thing that works so well for us and it's continuing to work.

Essentially from an advertising point of view, it's only in the last 12 months that we are really starting to look at Facebook ads and formal advertising. Prior to that, it was just community.

GEORGE: I love that. I think it would help just for listeners, the context of where you're at in the business because for most guys to get to the level of growth that where you're at, it's taken some substantial advertising, investing in Facebook marketing, etc. So where are you currently at with student numbers?

KYL: Student numbers we're hovering around probably … I think we're probably, as of this week, we're sitting around that 360, 370 mark. We've had some really great growth this year.

But I think the thing for that is we've also had years where we've grown quite slowly. But our numbers are very good. We're really focusing this year on our community and our culture and it works for us.

But yeah. Look, the club itself has been open for … This is our 28th … No, this is our 27th year. So it very certainly has not happened overnight, but I think we're finally getting a rhythm.

GEORGE: The 27-year overnight success.

KYL: Something like that. And look, for 11 of those years I was working full-time in another field that was incredibly demanding and it was full-time/seven days a week. Our lowest point ever of members was six. We had six members. So I think it's that when you're trying to grow …

I say to my instructors when they're complaining it's a quiet night or whatever, or we've only got 20 something in this class, and I say to them, “Guys, that used to be our whole club.” So it's trying to just chip away. I said at a weekend at a seminar, just hurry up and be patient.

GEORGE: I want to loop back into this, but I think it's good to then just go back to your beginnings. Because 27 years … Now, you're doing well. And I want to come back to what is this momentum.

What is driving this? But how did it all start for you? And you mentioned you were working a full-time job. There were six students.

KYL: Yeah. I started martial arts when I was 15. I turn 48 next week so add that up. I grew up in a country town in country Queensland. The martial art I started was purely based on what was closest to our house. I could walk there.

I was never a team sports person. I raced BMX semi-professionally when I was young as well. So I liked relying on me, me, and me. So I got into martial arts there. I moved to Brisbane when I was about 18, 19. Picked up Zen Do Kai. Ironically, my instructor grew up in my hometown and raced speedway with my dad.

Both our moms knew each other so it was kind of this aligning. And he moved back to Brisbane … Back to Maryborough, sorry, to work in 1996. At the time that club … So it was Zen Do Kai that we were doing predominantly then. There was a little bit of the BJC Muay Thai that we'd started doing as well.

There wasn't push as such. It was just an obligation. I have to move back. There were probably about 15 people at the club, just two nights a week in a scout hall in Western Brisbane. And it was just are you all right to take it over. And I can't even remember the conversation. I was just, yep, okay. And it just went from there.

I was working full in security, which started as a weekend gig, but I ended up being the operations manager of that company and I was with them for nearly 20 years. So our niche and our stuff was a lot of concerts and festivals.

So it was good because I was getting to practice everything on the weekend and then come back to the club during the week and go, so this works, this doesn't work, this works, this doesn't work. Don't do that because that happens. I would always call it, I was fast-tracking my students. And that job was great. I saw a lot. I did a lot.

But it meant that from a time point of view … And again, this is in the late '90s, early 2000s. I think you could have counted on one hand how many full-time schools were in Brisbane. I always think we can be sometimes 10-plus years behind the likes of Melbourne and Sydney.

So I was doing that job. My wife and I had not long had our second child. I was working more than I was sleeping. And it just got to a point where I was like, well, maybe if I create a new job. So I had this weird concept about going full-time. It was the dream and my wife and I talked about it extensively.

We just randomly found a shed for rent when we were coming home from Bunnings one Sunday morning and went in. It was a month-to-month lease and we ended up being there for eight and a half years in that place. And for the first 12 months I was working my full-time job still and trying to get CMA or Chikara Martial Arts as it was called back then, I was trying to get that off the ground.

So I was essentially working two jobs. And the idea was if we got to 50 and then if we maybe got to 100 or if we could manage … When we started the shed, we thought, okay, we've got a little bit in the bank, we can do six months rent and if doesn't work in six months, that's it. We're out.

And we were covering rent plus more in six weeks. So it just exploded. Our first Open Day … And we've spoken about Open Days before. It was probably the most archaic/embarrassing Open Day advertising you would've ever seen. And we signed up nearly 40 members in one day.

And for me back then I'm like, oh my God, what have I created? So I had stars in my eyes at the start and then I made the big decision. Because I started with that company that I was working with as a teenager and now I'm in my mid-30s. I had the same boss the whole time so we were a bit like a family.

So leaving that was hard. So for the first 12 months of leaving, I was working in the shed and then I was just working in a bottle shop, just making up the gap. So the growth has been very progressive.

After that 12 months, I managed to go full-time, or as a lot of people were calling it at the time I was retiring. But I think it's just been the hardest … I'm working the hardest I think I ever have. But I think now we moved into a second center …

Well, we moved in there in 2019 and we were in there for I think four months before Covid hit and we had to shut down. But that progressive move I think has been what has kept us around for 27 years. It's not without its dramas, but there are just so many good movements.

I guess as far as advice, I see so many martial arts instructors wanting to go full-time and they just want to go completely in right from the start. The full-time place right away, the best mats, the best gear, everything, and they start essentially … And then this is just the way I see it. They start on the back foot straight away.

So they're already having to get business loans, they're already however many thousands of dollars on the back foot from the start. It certainly wasn't intentional, but we've been lucky enough to never really have a …

We've never had a business loan. We've just progressively chipped away, built and built and built. Because I think I see a trend now in the industry. From where we are, within a 5K radius of us I think there are eight full-time martial arts schools.

So they're just everywhere now. I think you have to be very methodical and make sure you are just chipping away and doing something every day to grow.

GEORGE: Very cool. So what beliefs did you have to overcome? If I look at martial arts school owners that I talk to, there's so much in the mind that you've got to conquer first. Belief about your martial arts, belief about your value, belief about yourself. And then I think the big question is, how badly do you really want this?

It's okay to not want it, but I think you've got to be honest with yourself. It's nice to think, hey, I can have this full-time school and I can have this, but there's a big gap there between, well, I'm here and maybe …

We've got a lot of people in our group that have got high paying jobs, high careers, and the martial arts is just a side gig and it would be really hard to make that full-time switch.

And then there are others that that's the big aspiration. So if you were to go back to where you were, what are the things that you had to conquer just internally to get you to take those steps?

BJJ marketing Kyl Reber

KYL: One major thing I had to conquer was that as much as you're … And I'm still trying to conquer it to be totally honest. As much as you're plugging this community side of things … And it's important to you. Plugging it makes it sound like it's not important. It's probably the most important thing.

There are these guys at the club who have … My oldest daughter's 16, and my youngest one's nearly 13. They held them as babies and now they're teaching them as teenagers. Probably the biggest thing for me was switching from that. I always call ourselves a club, but at the end of the day, it is a business and your time is precious and your time is worth something.

I think for a lot of us, martial arts instructors, Imposter Syndrome is real. And I think if you're not dealing with that a little bit at some point, that could be something to do with maybe checking yourself in and having a look at your humility.

We are very good at what we do and if you put … I always say to some other smaller club owners that I mentor, if you were to write a resume of how much time and years that you've put into where you are, and then you equate that into another job, think about what you'd be getting paid.

So I had a conversation once a little while ago with an instructor in a suburban club, but very good. And I was sitting with one of my students who is a police officer. We were talking about time and money and how much your time is worth. And this guy had worked out that he'd been basically training and perfecting his craft for about 17 years.

So I said to the student of mine who was sitting there who was a police officer, I said, “So if we transferred that over to the police, what would that equate to financially and rank-wise?”

And she said, “Well, you'd be at least a senior constable and you'd probably be on the better part of 100 grand a year.” Yet this guy was having real trepidation with going from teaching 10 bucks a class to $15 a class.

So the big thing, I think, is underselling ourselves. And putting up our prices is just something that's still, for me … I know how much we're worth, but it's something that I still struggle with. I'm struggling with it less. But I think that, and you would see too, the amount of martial arts clubs and instructors that are just underselling themselves is ridiculous. That's probably a big one.

GEORGE: Why do you think that is?

KYL: I think because we doubt ourselves. And again, don't get me wrong, there are people out there that have this … And I envy them. I guess they're in touch with themselves more than they go, nope, I am worth this. This is good.

But I think we still have this … I don't know whether you'd call it a suburban mentality as opposed to, no, this is a business. I don't know. I think the community sometimes forgets that we are a business too.

In Australia especially. There have been full-time clubs in the States since the '50s and '60s, but in Australia, I think there is still that martial arts that you're just in that scout hall or community hall a couple of times a week. You just pay as you go. We've got bills to pay as well. I think we're breaking out of that.

In Queensland, we seem to be anyway. But I think the way I think makes it easier for us … And this is something that I'm always working on, and I'll admit I don't always get it right.

The more professional you are, the more when it comes to people paying for your services, they have less of an issue handing that over because I guess they're seeing what they get in return.

Like the suburban nights where the kids would show up for class and the instructor's not shown up or they're late from work or they're this and that.

So professionalism is a thing that's huge for me. I'm constantly trying to work on it because you have one slip up and you're like … But yeah. I think that's a big one for me. As I said, there are other instructors that I mentor, and that's the first thing that I'll say to them.

And it's flowing downhill from the conversations I've had with you about you could easily add X amount to this and no one would bat an eyelid. Because if people are training with you just for the price, then without sounding horrible, how much time are you spending on them for that amount price?

GEORGE: Yeah. 100%. I think for me because that's one of the first conversations I always have to have when we take on people into our Partners group, is charging. I always started with it's just the easy thing. Look, you've just got to up your prices.

But it's unpacking the beliefs that come with that. Sometimes it's just so ingrained in the culture. You've been told money doesn't grow on trees and then people flick around Mcdojo words that nobody even knows what it actually means. It's just a word that people can flick around.

Sometimes it's the Tall Poppy Syndrome, the crab in the bucket, other people are just dragging them down and it's like, you can charge more, just not more than me. I sometimes feel it's a comparison of what it is versus what it does.

If your pricing strategy is looking at what everybody else is pricing and what they do, then you're just one of everyone else. And so now you're comparing, well, I'm in a school hall and they're in a full-time center so I've got to charge less. But hang on, what if your value exceeds the club in the full-time location?

KYL: 100%.

GEORGE: What if the outcome that your martial arts deliver is more? This means if you can articulate that, you can charge more.

KYL: This is why I very rarely … I won't say I don't because sometimes I do. But I very rarely look at what other clubs are charging, look at what other clubs … Like their classes or that sort of thing. It's not to be arrogant. I'm not selling their product, I'm selling my own. So if I'm confident in what I'm doing and I'm confident in my instructors …

And I put a bit of pressure on them. I think if you focus on yourself and your growth and you focus on your professionalism, I know for a fact without getting into money too much, I know for a fact we are probably one of the higher-end fee schools in our area, and I don't lose any sleep over that. I think our product is strong. I think our community is strong. Our center is so clean I think it sometimes looks like a museum more than anything else.

It's air-conditioned. It's in a nice place. We have all these other things. Sure, there are things we always work on, but the number of people that walk into our place and go, “I didn't expect this place to be so clean, neat, tidy.” It's air-conditioned. We have a polite team at the desk. We have all this sort of stuff. That sells everything.

The parents that come in particular … Again, not to downplay them, but they're not there to check your -and check what you're teaching. You're doing this form at this rank. Why aren't you doing it at this rank? Are the instructors nice? Is the place clean and tidy? Do they come here and does their child feel safe? Tick, tick, tick. Okay, sign me up.

And I think that's one area that we miss. You see a lot of fight gyms or suburban clubs, for example … And God bless them. We were there once too. They focus so much on the training. The training is hard. Train this, train hard, hard, hard, hard.

But that's one reason maybe why your club's got only 10 students and you're training in someone's garage. It's not the fact that you're having to soften what you're doing in order to grow. You've just got to think more of the masses.

We do a lot of work … Well, I kind of fell into it. Do a lot of work with kids with autism, kids who have been bullied a lot at school, and mental health issues. And half the time, a lot of our stuff is we just chat with them. I do PTs with kids where I take them for a walk and they leave for the walk all angry, and then they come back and they're all rejuvenated and the parents go, “I'd pay three times what you charge for that.”

That's the sort of thing where you go, okay, we're doing something right across the board. You can have great martial arts and be awesome at what you do, but the backend stuff. And this is what I'm working on the most now in the business more than ever before.

The front end, I'm confident in. It's the backend stuff. That's a massive transition for people I think when they start going full-time that they have to actually get off the mat and sit in front of a computer more than they're willing to do.

GEORGE: 100%. So I want to loop back to the beginning of our conversation because you were talking about organic growth and where you got to without the advertising.

And I think a good transition for this, was when we hosted our Partners Intensive event, which we had for our mastermind group, and we had a few guests come along, we hosted it, Sunshine Coast. Grand Master Zulfi flew in from Houston, Texas.

It was amazing. And I had the whole lineup planned and ready to go. I recall you sending me a message and saying, “George, I love everything that you're doing. And I look at all the speakers and everything is driven for revenue and money and growth, which is fantastic.

But I think I can just add a different flavor to this because we've done all this growth without focusing on that stuff and just focusing on the things that we do.” And that led to you also having a great talk at the Partners Intensive and inspiring everybody with the things that you've done. So let's look back to that conversation.

Jiu jitsu marketing Kyl Reber

KYL: Firstly, thank you again for that opportunity because I deliberated over sending that message for well over a day. I didn't want to be that guy like this timetable's great, but where's my slot? I didn't want to think of it like that. I said to you, “Maybe if I just had 10 minutes just to explain this is what we do.”

And then you come back and go, “Oh no. What we'll do is we'll give you the 90-minute slot, you got to go this.” And I've just gone to my wife, “This escalated quickly.” I guess the thing that I noticed was … And as much as we've just spoken about, you've got to treat it like a business, you've got to make sure the money is right and everything there.

Because I know if you were to get in touch with my accountant, I think I'm in his top three. Top three people that he just literally sees my name pop up and doesn't want to deal with me. He goes, “God, you're lucky you can fight because this is not your forte.” And he's right. Because I focus on the other side of things.

But I think to answer your question, the thing I saw was how to do this and make a lot of money. How to do this and make a lot of money. How to do this and make a lot of money. The thing I thought was if you … Not that you're not wanting … It's hard to explain.

But not if you're not wanting to make a lot of money, but if you're focusing completely on something else that will make you a truckload of money. If that's the way you want to look at it. And I use this saying all the time. Let your passion pay the bills.

Because the last thing you want to be … If we think back to why we started martial arts, I think 1% of us started martial arts because we want to run a full-time school and be a millionaire. And if that's what you're doing, great, but I'm nowhere near that.

But the one thing I don't want to lose is I don't want to lose my passion for martial arts. And the more you get into the business, the more it goes up and down. Because yeah, I love doing martial arts and I want to train, but I got to have this meeting with the accountant. I got to do this. I got to do this. I got to do this.

So if you let your passion pay the bills, if you look at everything you're doing on the backend, people are literally … And it won't happen every single time, but for us, it happens a lot. People walk in, they see the way we treat each other. They see the way we treat them. They see the way we treat our staff. They see the way we treat everybody else. And they literally walk back after their trial lesson or whatever and go, “Sign me up. I want to be a part of this.”

We will rarely say to people join with us and we'll make you a world champion or this and that. Join us and we'll just make you a better person. So I think getting back to that community thing again, it was never a business strategy.

And to be honest, if you really want to go to the roots of it, the previous style I did, which was fine and great, you'd turn up on a Tuesday night and you'd train and I'd be, okay, see you Thursday. You turn up on a Thursday night, and you train. Okay, see you next Tuesday. And that was it.

As soon as I started Zen Do Kai, you weren't just training with these people. You were part of their lives. You'd become family, you'd become their friends. And it was this community that I really went to, I really like this. I want to be a part of this. And it was the major, major thing.

And going back to when I raced BMX. I raced BMX. I rode skateboards. I think the last time I played a team sport was under 11 soccer and that was it. I'm done. Because I hated the fact that if I let somebody down that the team suffered.

But I say to people now all the time, martial arts is a team sport and we have this community. It's so interesting to watch a kid come and do a trial and the parent walks in and then they realize there's another parent there that they know and they come over and they start chatting like, “I didn't know you came here.” “Yeah, I do. We love it. This is great.”

They just walk over. Or a random parent will come over and just start saying to this parent, “Oh yeah, this place is really good. We love it here.” They're selling it for us.

Those community pages where people go looking for recommendations for martial arts, they're advertising for us. Yeah, it always blows me away. And it's very humbling. As I said, like everything, there are times we stray away a bit and we drink the Kool-Aid, so to speak.

And the bigger we get, the bigger referral base we get. So yeah. We have whole school groups. Like a school, we go there, oh, these kids all train there. It's just interesting. And in a way, it's quite humbling. It wasn't ever the expectation.

GEORGE: I love that. And no amount of advertising can fix or inspire that.

KYL: And I think that's the thing for us. We put a digital flyer for example up on our socials. We might get … I don't know. Half a dozen likes or whatever. We put up a picture, this is such and such, they came to us, they were so timid, they wouldn't speak blah, blah, blah. Now they're one of our assistant instructors.

That gains so much more traction. And I think getting back to one of the reasons why you think sometimes school owners have issues growing. I think one reason is we have to find a line between being proud of what we do. I would say probably a little bit arrogant. You're not the best. There is no definition of the best.

But also you have all these momentous achievements. I just saw the other day, a kid I trained as a six-year-old, friends with him on Facebook. He just turned 30. And you just go, oh my God. But I ran into that same kid about two or three months ago just at a shopping center.

And he brought up, “I remember when I was a kid, you did this and this and this and you made me do these pushups. And I always look back on that.” And you laugh. Oh, yeah. I have no idea what you're talking about.

But just that one interaction you had with him, they remember that for the rest of their lives. And I think that's the thing that we need to celebrate and we also need to be proud of.

But again … And I talked about it before, that Imposter Syndrome. Oh, if I put that up, am I going to seem like I'm really up myself? Am I going to seem like I really rate myself? You're not. And that's the thing. We get it very confused with being proud of what we've done and basically broadcasting.

If you've got a student who when they came to you were that nervous and had that much anxiety that they didn't want to stand on the mat and now they're standing out in front of the class taking a warmup of adults, celebrate that. Because a parent will read that.

GEORGE: That's huge.

KYL: Yeah. A parent will read that. They will talk to their partner and they will go, “That's where we send our kid.” And do you know what? Not every kid that comes in … There are kids that have come in and for whatever reason it just doesn't click. There's a lot to do. So I think that's something you need to make sure you're celebrating as well.

GEORGE: So with this, right … And you're very articulated with your words, and I'll bring something up here in a minute. But I notice your slogan is Back yourself. How did that originate and how does this blend in with this community aspect?

KYL: Now I feel like I need to lay out on a leather couch. I'm feeling in that sort of position. All right. Look, to be totally honest and vulnerable, probably about six and a half years ago, probably about six years ago, the club and myself personally went through quite a rough time.

And there was a lot of doubt in me and what I had achieved and what I had done. And again, as I said, I keep coming back to that imposter syndrome because I think any humble instructor has it. And a long story short, we had a lot of instances where I was just going, I don't think this is working. I don't know if we can actually keep doing this. Where is the end?

A mentor of mine who I value deeply, just basically said to me in a conversation, she said, “I think the problem is you just need to back yourself. You just need to go, I can do this. This is me. This is what we do and you need to back yourself.”

I didn't click into marketing mode straight away. I told a couple of people about the conversation. And then we were redesigning our T-shirts because prior to that we'd had a couple of other slogans, which was great. And they were awesome.

And I just said to someone, “I think I'm going to use this saying, back yourself.” And they just went, “That's brilliant.” And I said, “I think it covers everything.” And this is, again, it's not about … 

Another piece of advice for martial arts school owners. It sounds so contradictory, but if you really want to market yourself and your club, make sure that you market, that you're not just teaching martial arts, you're teaching kids how to be better at life and adults. But also market that you're not infallible, that you every day will stuff something up.

And I see that so much in higher-ranked martial artists and I think that's one thing we need to make sure we're doing. We need to back ourselves. I'm going to give this a go. It may not work, but we'll see what happens.

So yeah, the back yourself slogan. We did a new run. We rebranded a little bit about, I think nearly two years ago now. And I tossed up getting rid of the back yourself. And I even had all the proofs and everything done up for the new T-shirts and whatever. And then I just at the last minute went, “Nah, I'm going to keep it.”

So yeah, we've kept it. It's humbling now because we've probably got about half a dozen people that have got the CMA tattoos or the kanji and they've got that kanji logo and I don't. One of them has #BackYourself tattooed on him. And I just go, I guess it's a reminder. So yeah. It was just a conversation that just really struck home. I can't see us changing it anytime soon.

GEORGE: It's such two powerful words. And I never knew the depth of it. It's the kind of two words that are so simple, but then you've got to repeat it to yourself and ponder over it. Okay, back yourself. Well, there are so many layers to that.

Martial arts marketing Kyl Reber

KYL: There is. And I think that's the problem as coaches. If you really want to be a good coach, you need to show whoever it is you are coaching that you are not perfect either and you make mistakes. My students say from a jujitsu point of view, there are kids that are doing jujitsu with me, say 19-year-old, 20-year-old blue and purple belts.

So when they were born, I'd already been doing Jujitsu for two or three years. I've got a black belt in their early 40s, the same sort of thing. They're handfuls. So I could just stand in the background and just not roll with them. Or with my body …

And we've all got our share of issues when we get to this age. I still move around with them. They'll tap me out. My body will just go on a spot. But I'm showing them that I'm still willing to jump in and do what I can and still move.

Because one day those guys will be at an age where they're having to look at that and the vulnerability to be that sort of person that is training and moving no matter what.

Again, you've just got to back yourself. And you find your students will respect you more the more honest you are, not just with them, but the more honest you are with yourself. If your students can see that there are days where you don't want to go to training, there are days where the alarm goes off and you go, I don't want to do this.

I think that makes them respect you more because I think maybe sometimes we feel a need as coaches to put ourselves one or two rungs higher than our students. I feel the more that they can see that you're going through your own stuff and you're more upfront with it, I think that gives you a lot more respect.

GEORGE: Love that. 100%. So Kyl, last couple of things. Your social media.

KYL: Yes.

GEORGE: Anyone listening, if Kyl accepts your friend, of course, I highly recommend looking Kyl up. Kyl Reber on Facebook. Kyl's got this thing that he writes and he's really prolific about it. I'll give you a glimpse of it.

So every week Kyl does this thing, it's called things I've been reminded of this week. And so I'll give you a quick glimpse. This was two days ago here on the Sunshine Coast. And thanks again for inviting me over to your gathering.

KYL: My pleasure.

GEORGE: It was great to visit and be able to add a little bit of value on a Saturday night.

KYL: Yeah. It was great. Thank you.

GEORGE: Back to this. So this was two days ago. Things I've been reminded of this week. It was a massive week.

Number one, keep your faith larger than your fears. Two, the greats never get bored with the basics. Three, facta non verba, deeds, not words. Four, review your definition of discipline. It's not what you may think it is. Five, if you're everywhere you are nowhere. Very cool.

Six, a character is fate. Seven, there's always room for more dessert. Eight, just train. Nine, there's magic in a sunrise. 10, friendship over everything else. 11, a coffee and a comfy seat can always solve all the problems in the world. 12, how you do one thing is how you do everything. 13, always be in search of the truth. And then there's a really cool photo. That's at Alex Beach, right?

KYL: Yeah. There's that grass area just next to the surf club there. Yeah, that was at sunrise.

GEORGE: That's such a magical little area because every night everybody just sits on that lawn and it just … There's something pretty special about that.

KYL: It is.

GEORGE: But I don't want to talk about that. I want to talk about these posts. Personally, I feel it needs to be a book.

KYL: That's on the list.

GEORGE: Because I know you've got the time. But where do these come from? During the week are you just keeping notes of things? Are you just jotting things down? Because you're prolific about it. Every week you do this and it's always so well-articulated and impactful.

KYL: It's funny. I was the guy in high school that if there was a book report due, I'd try and watch the movie of the same book or I'd literally pay off a couple of schoolmates to plagiarize their stuff. Sorry, Mrs. Claridge, my year 12 English teacher.

But I do love writing and these days I read. I read every day as much as I can. Sometimes it's 10 minutes, sometimes it's an hour. About that time of the back yourself thing … Incident. I don't know what you call it. Philosophy was something that I just fell into.

In particular stoicism. I love reading about these ancient people 2000 years ago, like Marcus Aurelius. How stuff that they went through and 2000 years ago they were going through the same stuff we were going through. They were going through all the same problems. And the words that they're writing 2000 years ago are still important now.

And there'll just be also just little interactions. So the facta non verba, I've heard that before. And I was at a school that we will be starting martial arts classes with, and I was looking up on the wall in reception and I saw their school motto, facta non verba. And I went deeds, not words. So important.

And there'll be just interactions and conversations. I'm a big person these days that as much as sometimes it's easier said than done, you have to sit back and reflect and think. We live in a society now where we move at four million miles an hour. We have something in our hand or in front of us literally every minute we're awake. We don't just sit and think and chill out.

I started that things I've been reminded of this week, I started that probably the better part of two years ago. I just wrote it for just something to do on a Sunday. I didn't intend for it to be an end-of-the-week thing. And it has just stuck.

And it is now, it's a weekly thing to the point where a friend of mine who runs a community radio station in Victoria, reads them every Monday morning on his breakfast slot. I have people messaging me if I haven't put them up by 7:00 at night going, “Where are they? Have you forgotten?”

So yeah. I think sometimes it's not that we overthink or we assess ourselves too much, but getting back to that vulnerability thing, I think if we really want to grow as people, as coaches, as martial artists, as business people, if you're not checking yourself in and learning something more about yourself or what's around you every day, what's the saying?

You can't teach an old dog new tricks. Maybe you can. You have a chat with someone who says … Someone will say, “That person is so set in their ways.” They're referring to older people, not younger people. So I think it's good to sit back and reflect. And I've had a lot of good feedback about it to the point where I wouldn't say I feel obligated, but I go, this is a thing.

And yeah, another mentor of mine is getting very pushy with me saying, “You need to put these into a book.” So I am mucking around with a format of that. But yeah, it's cool. It's just something that I just enjoy doing.

GEORGE: Love it. When is the release date?

KYL: Oh God. 2037 or something. On my 60th birthday. I don't know. Sooner rather than later I hope.

GEORGE: Hey Kyl, it's been awesome. Thanks so much. Always a pleasure talking to you. Always insightful. I know you also have a podcast. Do you mind sharing? If it's launched and up and running, where can people find it and where can people learn more about you if they want to connect with you?

KYL: Yeah, sure. So the podcast will be out probably a couple of weeks soon. And it'll just be the Kyl Reber Podcast. On the business side of things, if you want to follow us on Facebook, it's just CMA, Chikara Martial Arts. Our Instagram tag would you believe is @JustBackYourself. Weird. And mine is @KylReber. K-Y-L, no E, R-E-B-E-R.

GEORGE: Love it. Awesome.

KYL: Awesome.

GEORGE: Thanks so much, Kyl.

KYL: Yeah, George, thank you very much. Thank you very much for the opportunity.

GEORGE: You're welcome.

KYL: See you mate.

GEORGE: Epic. How was that? Did you enjoy the episode? Did you get some good value out of it? Most importantly, is there one thing, one thing from this interview that you can take and implement in your business and go make an impact within your community?

Now, please do me a favor. If you got something great from this interview, please share it. Share it with another instructor, another martial arts school owner, or somebody that you know within the martial arts community who would get great value from this. And be so kind as to tag me wherever you do it on social and I'll be forever thankful for you doing it.

Now, if you do need some help growing your martial arts school or you're just looking for some ideas to fast-track your success, we have a great group of school owners that we work with called Partners.

It's a community of martial arts school owners here in Australia, the United States, Canada, the UK, Ireland, and New Zealand. So from all over the world we get together on a weekly basis, mastermind. We run events. A couple of cool things.

Now, if it sounds remotely intriguing and there are a few things that you need help with, reach out. Go to martialartsmedia.com/scale. There's a little form. Fill it out. Just tell me a little bit about your business, and what's going on. The few things that you need help with.

And I'll reach out and have a chat and see if there's something that we can help you with. Anyway, thanks a lot for listening. Thanks for tuning in and I'll see you in the next episode. Cheers.

*Need help growing your martial arts school? Start Here.

Enjoyed the show? Get more martial arts business tips when you subscribe on iTuneslisten on Spotifyor watch and subscribe on Youtube


The Martial Arts
Fb Ad Formula

Please fill out the form and we will send you the free guide via email

General Website Terms and Conditions of Use

We have taken every effort to design our Web site to be useful, informative, helpful, honest and fun.  Hopefully we’ve accomplished that — and would ask that you let us know if you’d like to see improvements or changes that would make it even easier for you to find the information you need and want.

All we ask is that you agree to abide by the following Terms and Conditions. Take a few minutes to look them over because by using our site you automatically agree to them. Naturally, if you don’t agree, please do not use the site. We reserve the right to make any modifications that we deem necessary at any time. Please continue to check these terms to see what those changes may be! Your continued use of the MartialArtsMedia.com Web site means that you accept those changes.


Restrictions on Use of Our Online Materials

All Online Materials on the MartialArtsMedia.com site are Copyrighted and all rights are reserved. Text, graphics, databases, HTML code, and all other intellectual property are protected by US and/or International Copyright Laws, and may not be copied, reprinted, published, reengineered, translated, hosted, or otherwise distributed by any means without explicit permission. All of the trademarks on this site are trademarks of MartialArtsMedia.com or of other owners used with their permission. You, the visitor, may download Online Materials for non-commercial, personal use only provided you 1) retain all copyright, trademark and propriety notices, 2) you make no modifications to the materials, 3) you do not use the materials in a manner that suggests an association with any of our products, services, events or brands, and 4) you do not download quantities of materials to a database, server, or personal computer for reuse for commercial purposes. You may not, however, copy, reproduce, republish, upload, post, transmit or distribute Online Materials in any way or for any other purpose unless you get our written permission first. Neither may you add, delete, distort or misrepresent any content on the MartialArtsMedia.com site. Any attempts to modify any Online Material, or to defeat or circumvent our security features is prohibited.

Everything you download, any software, plus all files, all images incorporated in or generated by the software, and all data accompanying it, is considered licensed to you by MartialArtsMedia.com or third-party licensors for your personal, non-commercial home use only. We do not transfer title of the software to you. That means that we retain full and complete title to the software and to all of the associated intellectual-property rights. You’re not allowed to redistribute or sell the material or to reverse-engineer, disassemble or otherwise convert it to any other form that people can use.

Submitting Your Online Material to Us

All remarks, suggestions, ideas, graphics, comments, or other information that you send to MartialArtsMedia.com through our site (other than information we promise to protect under our privacy policy becomes and remains our property, even if this agreement is later terminated.

That means that we don’t have to treat any such submission as confidential. You can’t sue us for using ideas you submit. If we use them, or anything like them, we don’t have to pay you or anyone else for them. We will have the exclusive ownership of all present and future rights to submissions of any kind. We can use them for any purpose we deem appropriate to our MartialArtsMedia.com mission, without compensating you or anyone else for them.

You acknowledge that you are responsible for any submission you make. This means that you (and not we) have full responsibility for the message, including its legality, reliability, appropriateness, originality, and copyright.

Limitation of Liability







Links to Other Site

We sometimes provide referrals to and links to other World Wide Web sites from our site. Such a link should not be seen as an endorsement, approval or agreement with any information or resources offered at sites you can access through our site. If in doubt, always check the Uniform Resource Locator (URL) address provided in your WWW browser to see if you are still in a MartialArtsMedia.com-operated site or have moved to another site. MartialArtsMedia.com is not responsible for the content or practices of third party sites that may be linked to our site. When MartialArtsMedia.com provides links or references to other Web sites, no inference or assumption should be made and no representation should be inferred that MartialArtsMedia.com is connected with, operates or controls these Web sites. Any approved link must not represent in any way, either explicitly or by implication, that you have received the endorsement, sponsorship or support of any MartialArtsMedia.com site or endorsement, sponsorship or support of MartialArtsMedia.com, including its respective employees, agents or directors.

Termination of This Agreement

This agreement is effective until terminated by either party. You may terminate this agreement at any time, by destroying all materials obtained from all MartialArtsMedia.com Web site, along with all related documentation and all copies and installations. MartialArtsMedia.com may terminate this agreement at any time and without notice to you, if, in its sole judgment, you breach any term or condition of this agreement. Upon termination, you must destroy all materials. In addition, by providing material on our Web site, we do not in any way promise that the materials will remain available to you. And MartialArtsMedia.com is entitled to terminate all or any part of any of its Web site without notice to you.

Jurisdiction and Other Points to Consider

If you use our site from locations outside of Australia, you are responsible for compliance with any applicable local laws.

These Terms of Use shall be governed by, construed and enforced in accordance with the laws of the the State of Western Australia, Australia as it is applied to agreements entered into and to be performed entirely within such jurisdiction.

To the extent you have in any manner violated or threatened to violate MartialArtsMedia.com and/or its affiliates’ intellectual property rights, MartialArtsMedia.com and/or its affiliates may seek injunctive or other appropriate relief in any state or federal court in the State of Western Australia, Australia, and you consent to exclusive jurisdiction and venue in such courts.

Any other disputes will be resolved as follows:

If a dispute arises under this agreement, we agree to first try to resolve it with the help of a mutually agreed-upon mediator in the following location: Perth. Any costs and fees other than attorney fees associated with the mediation will be shared equally by each of us.

If it proves impossible to arrive at a mutually satisfactory solution through mediation, we agree to submit the dispute to binding arbitration at the following location: Perth . Judgment upon the award rendered by the arbitration may be entered in any court with jurisdiction to do so.

MartialArtsMedia.com may modify these Terms of Use, and the agreement they create, at any time, simply by updating this posting and without notice to you. This is the ENTIRE agreement regarding all the matters that have been discussed.

The application of the United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods, as amended, is expressly excluded.

Privacy Policy

Your privacy is very important to us. Accordingly, we have developed this policy in order for you to understand how we collect, use, communicate and make use of personal information. The following outlines our privacy policy. When accessing the https://martialartsmedia.com website, will learn certain information about you during your visit. Similar to other commercial websites, our website utilizes a standard technology called “cookies” (see explanation below) and server logs to collect information about how our site is used. Information gathered through cookies and server logs may include the date and time of visits, the pages viewed, time spent at our site, and the websites visited just before and just after our own, as well as your IP address.

Use of Cookies

A cookie is a very small text document, which often includes an anonymous unique identifier. When you visit a website, that site”s computer asks your computer for permission to store this file in a part of your hard drive specifically designated for cookies. Each website can send its own cookie to your browser if your browser”s preferences allow it, but (to protect your privacy) your browser only permits a website to access the cookies it has already sent to you, not the cookies sent to you by other sites.

IP Addresses

IP addresses are used by your computer every time you are connected to the Internet. Your IP address is a number that is used by computers on the network to identify your computer. IP addresses are automatically collected by our web server as part of demographic and profile data known as “traffic data” so that data (such as the Web pages you request) can be sent to you.

Email Information

If you choose to correspond with us through email, we may retain the content of your email messages together with your email address and our responses. We provide the same protections for these electronic communications that we employ in the maintenance of information received online, mail and telephone. This also applies when you register for our website, sign up through any of our forms using your email address or make a purchase on this site. For further information see the email policies below.

How Do We Use the Information That You Provide to Us?

Broadly speaking, we use personal information for purposes of administering our business activities, providing customer service and making available other items and services to our customers and prospective customers.

will not obtain personally-identifying information about you when you visit our site, unless you choose to provide such information to us, nor will such information be sold or otherwise transferred to unaffiliated third parties without the approval of the user at the time of collection.

We may disclose information when legally compelled to do so, in other words, when we, in good faith, believe that the law requires it or for the protection of our legal rights.

Email Policies

We are committed to keeping your e-mail address confidential. We do not sell, rent, or lease our subscription lists to third parties, and we will not provide your personal information to any third party individual, government agency, or company at any time unless strictly compelled to do so by law.

We will use your e-mail address solely to provide timely information about .

We will maintain the information you send via e-mail in accordance with applicable federal law.

CAN-SPAM Compliance

Our site provides users the opportunity to opt-out of receiving communications from us and our partners by reading the unsubscribe instructions located at the bottom of any e-mail they receive from us at anytime.

Users who no longer wish to receive our newsletter or promotional materials may opt-out of receiving these communications by clicking on the unsubscribe link in the e-mail.


Our site provides users the opportunity to opt-out of receiving communications from us and our partners by reading the unsubscribe instructions located at the bottom of any e-mail they receive from us at anytime. Users who no longer wish to receive our newsletter or promotional materials may opt-out of receiving these communications by clicking on the unsubscribe link in the e-mail.

Use of External Links

All copyrights, trademarks, patents and other intellectual property rights in and on our website and all content and software located on the site shall remain the sole property of or its licensors. The use of our trademarks, content and intellectual property is forbidden without the express written consent from .

You must not:

Acceptable Use

You agree to use our website only for lawful purposes, and in a way that does not infringe the rights of, restrict or inhibit anyone else”s use and enjoyment of the website. Prohibited behavior includes harassing or causing distress or inconvenience to any other user, transmitting obscene or offensive content or disrupting the normal flow of dialogue within our website.

You must not use our website to send unsolicited commercial communications. You must not use the content on our website for any marketing related purpose without our express written consent.

Restricted Access

We may in the future need to restrict access to parts (or all) of our website and reserve full rights to do so. If, at any point, we provide you with a username and password for you to access restricted areas of our website, you must ensure that both your username and password are kept confidential.

Use of Testimonials

In accordance to with the FTC guidelines concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising, please be aware of the following:

Testimonials that appear on this site are actually received via text, audio or video submission. They are individual experiences, reflecting real life experiences of those who have used our products and/or services in some way. They are individual results and results do vary. We do not claim that they are typical results. The testimonials are not necessarily representative of all of those who will use our products and/or services.

The testimonials displayed in any form on this site (text, audio, video or other) are reproduced verbatim, except for correction of grammatical or typing errors. Some may have been shortened. In other words, not the whole message received by the testimonial writer is displayed when it seems too lengthy or not the whole statement seems relevant for the general public.

is not responsible for any of the opinions or comments posted on https://martialartsmedia.com. is not a forum for testimonials, however provides testimonials as a means for customers to share their experiences with one another. To protect against abuse, all testimonials appear after they have been reviewed by management of . doe not share the opinions, views or commentary of any testimonials on https://martialartsmedia.com – the opinions are strictly the views of the testimonial source.

The testimonials are never intended to make claims that our products and/or services can be used to diagnose, treat, cure, mitigate or prevent any disease. Any such claims, implicit or explicit, in any shape or form, have not been clinically tested or evaluated.

How Do We Protect Your Information and Secure Information Transmissions?

Email is not recognized as a secure medium of communication. For this reason, we request that you do not send private information to us by email. However, doing so is allowed, but at your own risk. Some of the information you may enter on our website may be transmitted securely via a secure medium known as Secure Sockets Layer, or SSL. Credit Card information and other sensitive information is never transmitted via email.

may use software programs to create summary statistics, which are used for such purposes as assessing the number of visitors to the different sections of our site, what information is of most and least interest, determining technical design specifications, and identifying system performance or problem areas.

For site security purposes and to ensure that this service remains available to all users, uses software programs to monitor network traffic to identify unauthorized attempts to upload or change information, or otherwise cause damage.

Disclaimer and Limitation of Liability

makes no representations, warranties, or assurances as to the accuracy, currency or completeness of the content contain on this website or any sites linked to this site.

All the materials on this site are provided “as is” without any express or implied warranty of any kind, including warranties of merchantability, noninfringement of intellectual property or fitness for any particular purpose. In no event shall or its agents or associates be liable for any damages whatsoever (including, without limitation, damages for loss of profits, business interruption, loss of information, injury or death) arising out of the use of or inability to use the materials, even if has been advised of the possibility of such loss or damages.

Policy Changes

We reserve the right to amend this privacy policy at any time with or without notice. However, please be assured that if the privacy policy changes in the future, we will not use the personal information you have submitted to us under this privacy policy in a manner that is materially inconsistent with this privacy policy, without your prior consent.

We are committed to conducting our business in accordance with these principles in order to ensure that the confidentiality of personal information is protected and maintained.


If you have any questions regarding this policy, or your dealings with our website, please contact us here:

Martial Arts Media™
Suite 218
5/115 Grand Boulevard
Joondalup WA

Email: team (at) martialartsmedia dot com

Add Your Heading Text Hereasdf