Youth Karate Program

What kind of karate is taught at MAGIC BJJ?

Children in the karate program will be taught traditional Pukang Tang Soo Do (Northern Diamond Chinese Fist Way) – a Korean style of karate that emphasizes both punching and kicking techniques. Pukang Tang Soo Do is a small subset of Tang Soo Do, and was first taught in the United States at Michigan State University in 1962.


What will my child learn in karate classes at MAGIC BJJ?

Pukang Tang Soo Do students start by learning basic punches, kicks, and blocks. They then progress to learning forms (prearranged sequences of techniques done without a partner) and two-step sparring (self-defense applications practiced with a partner). As students advance in skill and age, they will participate in supervised, controlled, non-contact sparring to practice their techniques in a more free-form environment. Students will also utilize other training tools such as focus mitts and punching bags to perfect their technique.

Outside of karate technique, however, students will learn discipline and respect for each other. Classes are taught in a formal manner that stresses safety and respect for one’s training partners. Classes are high-energy and are meant to be fun, but students are taught from day one that karate training is a serious endeavor, during which the safety of the class is the primary concern.

Students will also learn self-confidence, not only through the ability to apply self-defense techniques, but through the process of mastering their bodies. The staff at MAGIC BJJ is supportive and encouraging, and works to tailor their instruction to individual needs. This gives the student the opportunity to learn at their own pace, and experience the thrill of mastering a difficult art.


Who teaches karate at MAGIC BJJ?

Kid’s karate classes are taught by Mike Mahaffey. Mr. Mahaffey has over 23 years of experience in the martial arts – with 20 of those years in Pukang Tang Soo Do. He holds a first-degree black belt in Taekwondo Chung Do Kwan, a fifth-degree black belt in Pukang Tang Soo Do, and a one-stripe blue belt in Machado Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Mr. Mahaffey is a student of Bruce Henderson, the highest ranking member of the Pukang Tang Soo Do Association. Mr. Mahaffey taught Pukang Tang Soo Do at the MSU Karate Club from 1990 – 2008.

In addition, Mr. Mahaffey is a Limited License Master of Social Work with experience in Michigan’s child welfare system. Mr. Mahaffey is committed to providing a safe, positive environment for his young students to grow and begin their exploration of the martial arts.


Can my child earn rank in Pukang Tang Soo Do?

Students will have the opportunity to test for rank within the Pukang Tang Soo Do Association under Mr. Mahaffey. Mr. Mahaffey is able to test adult students up to third-degree black belt, and youth students up to junior black belt. It normally takes several years to earn a black belt in Pukang Tang Soo Do, and students under the age of 16 may be recommended for a junior black belt to recognize exceptional physical ability. Upon reaching the age of 16, a junior black belt will be required to test for a certified adult black belt. Testing fees will apply.


What equipment does my child need to participate in the karate program at MAGIC BJJ?

Beginning students need to wear loose clothing that they can move and exercise in. Students train barefoot, in order to both keep the training area clean as well as to facilitate proper foot positioning for karate techniques and balance. A student need not purchase a gi (karate uniform) until after they have tested for their first rank. MAGIC BJJ will be able to facilitate the ordering of gis at this time. As students progress into working with a partner, protective gear (headgear, cups, mouthpieces, shin and instep pads, gloves and boots) will be required. Again, MAGIC BJJ will be able to assist parents with ordering this equipment when it becomes necessary.

Otherwise, students need to come to class with a good attitude, a willingness to learn, and be ready to sweat and have fun!