Blackbelt Leadership Program Testimonials
“Seven years ago I brought my then 3 year old son and 6 year old daughter into the KMMA dojo to start a self defense program. What we received was so much more. I thought that self-discipline and focus might be an indirect benefit of training but how refreshing to a parent to discover that leadership skills are a primary benefit packaged within a fun, physical self-defense program. Grand Master delivers powerful leadership lessons that are relatable to kids and equally meaningful to adults. Seven years ago I decided that rather than check my phone or get some extra work done on Saturday morning that instead I would jump on the mat during the family class for fun and just to give it a try. I never regretted that impulsive decision to get a little exercise that day. My daughter and I have enjoyed the journey through two blackbelt tests together both of us 1st degree. My son and I look forward to taking the rescheduled Blackbelt test in September (the pandemic won’t keep my son from taking his Junior Blackbelt test and me taking my 2nd degree test).
I feel blessed to have chosen an activity for my kids that I can actively participate and experience along with my children. It is something I have wonderful memories of us learning together, having fun at Krav Camps together, growing together and supporting each other through each belt milestone.
I look forward to training with you and your kids soon!”
Take care, Sensei Michelle
Proud Life-time member of KMMA and graduate of the KMMA Certified Instructor Training Program
Michelle A. Cummings, CPA
Asst. Vice President and Controller
University of South Florida Foundation
“The first time I stepped foot in the KMMA school, I was just a grateful parent that was able to find a last-minute location for my son’s birthday party in June 2020. Between Covid-19 and the rain pouring on the area from a tropical storm this was a valued commodity! Sensei Kyle and Sensei Sarah made the party fun and the kids were exhausted from all of the activity! Later that week, Grand Master Steve contacted me about a free 2-week trial. I thought this was going to be a great opportunity for my kids to get activity and have fun outside of the house. Then Grand Master asked if I wanted to try it, too. I will admit that I was shocked by the question. One look at me would let anyone know that I avoid physical activity. However, I agreed…somewhat out of shock, but there was a part of me that was curious.
When I arrived for my first class, the kids were excited…I was not so much. I was nervous about failing, I was afraid of looking like a fool, and I was scared that I wouldn’t be able to do it. I received quite a workout! I was able to keep up with the class to the best of my ability, I was thoroughly exhausted afterwards, I was covered in sweat, but most importantly I was happy. My husband commented that this was the most he had seen me smile all year (we all know 2020 has been quite a tough year). We signed up for our next class. The thrill of being able to do something physical while still enjoying myself was exhilarating! After meeting with Grand Master Steve, we (myself, my son, and my daughter) signed up to start working towards our blackbelt.
This has been one of the best decisions I have ever made. My family faithfully attends classes each week. We work on skills at home, too. We discuss our dreams and goals of becoming blackbelts. We also discuss the practical skills we are learning on our journey to becoming blackbelts. For me, one of the most important concepts I am learning is the act of perseverance. Many times during class I feel like I can’t do it anymore…but then I hear the 3 most powerful words echo in my head that we review at every class: YES I CAN!
I also want to give credit to the sensei’s that teach the classes. All of them are living examples of what we want to become. They are all great role models for not just myself, but me kids as well. My daughter actually wants to be just like Sensei Sarah when she becomes a blackbelt! The Sensei are great at teaching the skills on multiple levels. As a result, it is easy to follow and learn. All of the sensei’s use positive reinforcement! This helps someone like me continue to give my all even when I don’t know if I can (YES I CAN)!
I have gained a better attitude towards life and physical activity. I have gained control over my fear of failure. I have gained humility in accepting help. I have gained encouragement from seeing my fellow students succeed and earn their belts. I have gained friends. I have gained a vision for a better me.”
Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC)
Parents want the best for their kids! Not all schools are the same. KMMA is EXTRAORDINARY! It is many steps beyond the rest. We were blessed with two kids that are FULL OF ENERGY. KMMA is the perfect fit for them. They are kept moving all the time, and they never sit out waiting for their turn. They get their aerobic activity while learning real life defense skills. My kids are learning real techniques to protect themselves. Most importantly, they are learning how to be good human beings during the class. Academic schools do not have the time to really create a good human being with wholesome values. They can say they do it, but they really do not have time for this with all the state requirements and bureaucracy that must be met. A good human being takes time to nurture and develop. KMMA is truly committed to this task. The way a business will succeed and flourish is by its leaders. It is a pyramid effect. The philosophy at the top ripples to the bottom. Great leadership is definitely seen from the Grand Master, to the instructors, all the way down to the students. Kids absorb everything they are surrounded by. The instructors at KMMA are exceptional role models for my kids to learn from. They are kind, understanding, and great leaders. Before my kids are promoted to the next level, they must document their self discipline, healthy lifestyle, and the leadership roles they are performing in addition to their regular skills training. The classes are always fun. My kids love KMMA! Before you go anywhere else, try KMMA! You will not regret it, and your kids will be truly happy! Don’t miss out on your blessing!
In a short period of time, I’ve seen so much growth in them, their confidence in particular. They absolutely love all the sensei at KMMA who make every class fun and engaging, and friendships they’ve made from working with their training partners. I have also seen a lot of growth in myself, my stamina and flexibility have improved considerably, but most of all the tremendous sense of pride I have watching my children grow every day and getting to share this journey with them. There is no doubt they will be incredible leaders and blackbelts due to the lessons instilled in them by all the amazing sensei, and the lessons of Grand Master. I’m so glad we decided to join the KMMA family.
Erik St. Martin
Principal Software Engineering Manager, Microsoft
Truly a great place to train. A family friendly environment, clean, well run and not your average “dojo”. The staff is knowledgeable, courteous, empathetic and always there to help. Our family has benefited immensely from our training both in martial arts and everyday life. KMMA has changed our life for the better in every way. We will forever be grateful to GM Stephen Del Castillo for all he has done for our family. If you have kids and are looking into martial arts, look no further. KMMA specializes in creating leaders and empowering lives through martial arts. They take the time to actually develop leadership techniques that will last a lifetime. HIGHLY RECOMMEND KMMA and the Blackbelt Leadership Program!
I have wanted to take martial arts for many years. I was specifically interested in Krav Maga. From the first class, I was hooked. The Sensei are amazing, and I look forward to training with my fellow classmates!
Enrolling in the Black Belt Leadership and Certified Instructor Training has been invaluable for my personal development, mental growth and physical fitness.
“Great environment for families and individual training! I’ve been very impressed with the culture and quality of instructors at Tampa Krav Maga. My individual instruction has been outstanding, and the class atmosphere is one I’m happy to bring my children to and learn in.”
LTC Jay Ellison, US Army (Ret)
“If you are around me for more than 5 minutes, you will hear me talk about Tampa Krav Maga. I recommend it to everyone. KMMA has been life-changing for myself and my children; my original intent was to give my homeschool boys an opportunity to learn and perfect a skill – but it is so much more. The instructors are incredible, the skills practiced are empowering, the personal growth is phenomenal! We have made new friends and feel connected like extended family to the staff and fellow trainees.”
“My youngest son wanted to do karate and so I looked up martial arts dojos in the area. I’m so glad, I found this place! That was a year ago and we have both our sons in the program. A few months later, both my husband and I joined and I couldn’t be happier. We are learning invaluable self-defense and are helping provide a great foundation of life skills for our children. They are learning goal setting, respect, self discipline among other things. As adults, we are getting the reinforcement of these life skills in addition to the martial arts techniques. We have nothing but the upmost respect and admiration for Grand Master Stephen Del Castillo and his team of instructors and sensei’s. He has made myself, my husband and our boys feel like we are family. It doesn’t matter how bad you think you are doing, the instructors and sensei’s are always so encouraging and they take the time to help you become better at the different techniques and defenses. I would recommend KMMA to anyone!”