Martial Arts Instructor Certification

This is a 25 module online course that covers all areas of teaching from how to communicate with ADHD children to preventing sexual harassment scenarios.

A Black Belt is Not Enough

On average, it takes about 3-4 years to earn a black belt. Very little of that time is spent on the concepts of teaching and learning.

The MATA Instructor Certification Program provides teachers an effective process to create and maintain a productive classroom environment.

Not All Certifications Are Created Equally

Most certifications are style and skill based or a course created by a single person.

The MATA Certification was authored by 18 different veteran black belts who are also experts in their respective fields such as law, psychology, pedagogy, movement science, motivation, and communication.

Learn at Your Own Pace Online

Course Preview

Module 1

The Principles of an Authoritative Instructor

Unit 1 Introduction: The Principles of an Authoritative Instructor

Unit 1: Four Keys to Giving Clear Directions to Students

Unit 2: Setting And Maintaining a Standard for Conduct

Unit 3: No Competition for Attention

Unit 4: No Rescues from Weak Answers

Unit 5: The Damage of False Praise

Unit 6: Is it, Name Question or Question Name?

Unit 7: Using Concise Language Patterns

Unit 8: Know and Use All of Your Tools

Unit 9: How to Calibrate Your Levels of Intervention

Unit 10: Module Exam. 75% required to pass.

"I had all my instructors certified.

"MATA is a professional and quality organization. I wanted my Instructors and myself to be certified by the best."

Sidney Burns, Blue Ridge Martial Arts


What's the benefit of getting MATA Certified?

Earning a certification accredited by the Martial Arts Teachers’ Association (MATA) shows you are committed to professional development as an instructor.

  1. You elevate yourself above the average “Black Belt Excellence” school.
  2. You establish your credentials
  3. You deepen your understanding of instruction and leadership
  4. You stay fresh and inspired
  5. You show your students that you “walk the talk” of excellence.
I'm already a black belt. Isn't that enough?

Earning a black belt typically means you’ve passed a test that demonstrates that you can remember and execute the techniques of your martial arts style.

A black belt does not mean that you have been trained in how to teach that style or any other.

Teaching is both an art and science that most martial arts instructors are never taught.

How convenient is the course?

You take the course at your pace 100% online for maximum convenience.

What score do I need to pass?

A score of 75% or above is a passing grade.

What if I don't pass?

If you do not pass you can take as many exam retakes as you need for free.

Who wrote the course modules?

We are proud of the fact that all material and exams have been created by a team of contributors holding the highest academic and martial arts accreditations.

What do I get upon successful completion of the course?

All successful graduates receive a beautiful, professionally designed 11 x 17 certificate that you can proudly display along with window decals and a badge you can display on your website.

How long does certification stay valid?

Your certification will remain active for two calendar years from the date you pass the exam.

Is there a final exam? If so, does it cost more?

Our Instructor Certification Exam is delivered during the course.

As you complete each Module, you will have to successfully pass that Modules’ exam.

Once you’ve finished all modules and exams, you have completed the MATA Instructor Certification program and you qualify to receive your certification.

How long before I receive my results?

We are pleased to provide our clients with free instant test grading, test results and certification.

How long does it take to get the certificate?

Upon successful completion, we’ll send you your 11 x 17 certificate along with some other items that will help you display your certification in your school and online.

The Contributors

Dr. B. Ann Boyce, Ph D.

Associate Professor of Pedagogy at the University of Virginia.

A TKD black belt, Dr. Boyce has been studying martial arts for nearly 40 years.

Contributed Modules

Module 1: How To Teach Martial Arts Skills

Sarah Chung, M.A.

Master of Arts in Human Kinetics with a specialization in Sport Psychology - Performance Enhancement at the University of Ottawa.

Ms. Chung has been a world class TKD competitor since 1987.

Contributed Modules

Module 4:

How to Conduct a Proper Warm Up

Module 7:

How to Conduct a Proper Cool Down

Sharon Spalding, M.Ed.

Sharon Spalding is certified by the American College of Sports Medicine as an Exercise Specialist.

In 1995, she designed the fitness program for the Virginia Women's Institute for Leadership.

Contributed Modules

Module 5:
Proper Execution Of Calisthenics

Brian Tracy

The author of many bestselling books on personal and professional success, Brian Tracy is one of the world's premier speakers on the topics of leadership and success.

He began training in the martial arts in 1964 in Montreal and has trained under six world champions in his career.

Contributed Modules

Module 13: 
The Power Of Motivation And Charisma in the Martial Arts Instructor

Tim Niiler, M.S.

Tim Niiler's masters thesis involved the study of the landing mechanics in wushu jump kicks.

Contributed Modules

Module 9: How To Teach Kicking Safely

Derenda Timmons-Schubert, Ph.D.

Dr. Schubert is a licensed psychologist with a special in child and family issues.

An active martial artist, she also served on the board for Martial Arts Fitness Center, Inc

Contributed Modules

Module 11:
Age Specific Teaching

Module 12:
Preschoolers to Adults: Teaching to Meet their Needs

Module 16:
Teaching Children with Attention Deficit/Hyperactive Disorder

John Donohue, Ph.D.

Dr. Donohue holds a doctorat in anthropology with a research concentration in the cultural aspects of Japanese martial arts.

Contributed Modules

Module 12:
What Is A Healthy Martial Arts Hierarchy?

Module 17: Working with the Parents Of Students

Gianine D. Rosenblum, Ph.D.

Dr. Gianine Rosenblum received her masters and doctorate in psychology from Rutgers University and has been practicing martial arts since 1990.

Contributed Modules

Module 14:
Discipline, Praise and Punishment in the Martial Arts School

Module 28: Psychological Issues In Teaching Self-defense To Women

John Graden

Founder of NAPMA, MATA, and the ACMA. 8th dan protege' of Joe Lewis

Contributed Modules


2. How to Structure Curriculum

3. How To Reduce Student Drop Out

11: How To Teach Sparring

Don Korzekwa, Ph.D

Don Korzekwa is a Licensed Psychologist and black belt living in Texas.

Contributed Modules

Module 19:
Working With the Parents of Students

Willy Pieter, Ph.D.

Dr. Willy Pieter set up the certification program for TKD instructors in the Netherlands in 1980, which received government recognition. His background is in the ITF and the WTF.

Contributed Modules

General Adaptation Syndrome (GAS) and the Martial Arts

Tom Thompson, M.S.

Tom Thompson holds a Bachelor of Science Degree and a Master of Science Degree in Kinesiology from the University of North Texas.

Mr. Thompson also operated the Alpha Fitness Center in Dallas and has been training in martial arts since 1970.

Contributed Modules

Module 6:
Proper Execution Of Flexibility Exercises

Scot A. Conway, Esq.

Scot Conway is an attorney at law in California and the founder of Guardian Kempo Christian Martial Arts.

Contributed Modules

Module 15:
Teaching Character Skills

Module 18:
A Crash Course in Law

Module 19:
Avoiding Negligence

Module 20:
The Use and Maintenance of Safety Equipment

Module 21:
The Proper Use of Student Instructors

Module 22:
How to Avoid Sexual Harassment Liability

Module 23:
School Layout to Minimize Risk

Module 24:
The Importance of Water for Student Safety

Module 25:
The Proper Use of Release Forms



$100 Insurance Credit

SFIC is offering a $100 insurance policy credit for schools with MATA certified instructors.

Ready to get started?