I firmly believe that being clean is natural in all of us. If by any chance you are some sort of a slob, youâ€™d still prefer a cleaner surrounding versus a a room full of clutter and discord, right? Donâ€™t you feel stressed when you see things just lying around, collecting dust, and not in their proper shelves or containers? And Iâ€™m sure you felt some relief when youâ€™ve forced yourself to clean your room or clear your sink after youâ€™ve procrastinated about it for days.
In Japan, students always clean their room after their last class. They clean classrooms, bathrooms, equipment, gymnasiums, everything. What does it say about the Japanese? Clearly, they are responsible and disciplined enough to take care of the things and the places that they use. If you as a master could implement this to your disciples, you would be teaching them valuable lessons.
Business wise, having a clean martial arts studio is a no-brainer. I remember one time when I checked out this cheap restaurant that offered hotdog sandwiches and burgers. I didnâ€™t mind that it was cheap because as a student, I was strapped for cash. As soon as I entered through the doors I could clearly see that the owner didnâ€™t care, or didnâ€™t care enough. The floor was dirty, ketchup bottles were filthy, and it seemed that the utensils werenâ€™t fit for human use. I had to walk out and look for a cleaner place to eat.
Imagine that your potential students and their parents walk in to your studio and see that itâ€™s not clean enough to their standards. Most people would walk away and look for a different dojo. Now people have different standards and you would say, itâ€™s hard to please everybody. But I can tell you that in the case of being neat, you have to be perfect. If you think youâ€™re already clean, get another pair of eyes to see if you really do have a neat studio. Create a checklist of the things you need to clean every day, every week, or every month. Fix things that need to be fixed, categorize if you can, put things on their proper places. If you donâ€™t know where to start then I have some suggestions on what to check:
This is the most abused part of your martial arts studio. Make sure that it is clean, vacuum it everyday if itâ€™s carpet, pay for professional cleaning every month. If itâ€™s wood, wipe it everyday and polish it. If you used stressed canvas, keep it tucked around the edges and repair any holes or tears. Make sure you clean blood and sweat off the floors as soon as you can.
Locker Rooms, Toilets, Changing Rooms
These rooms get filthy really fast so I highly suggest that you clean and check them everyday.
Visiting Areas, Entrance Area, Lobby
These are the rooms that potential customers see so if you want to make a good first impression, make sure they are spotless. If you have a viewing window for your entrance then it should be free of smudges and finger prints. Arrange chairs and benches, organize promotional pamphlets, and hang business permits.
The importance of being clean should be upheld by everyone and not just by masters and teachers. Neatness is a product of hard work brought upon by discipline and self-control. Practice it always and impart it to your students.