Martial Arts Studio Software Reviews

Learning how to delegate work is a skill which every martial arts teacher should know. We all know that this is important because a single body cannot do everything that needs to be done. If you have a lot of work that needs to be done, you should consider passing the responsibility to another person, or, you can just use a computer program or software to make things easier.

If you are the old school type who prefers to do things manually then you’re missing out on a lot. Sure, it can be cheaper to do it yourself but managing student records, telling students about promotions, taking notes, making referrals, tracking attendance, tracking payments and all of the other things that you are required to do takes a lot of time. And of course you can hire people to do that but what about the costs? To be fair, using a software also has its own pros and cons. But if you are interested in using software to help manage your martial arts studio, then let me shed some light on some of the widely used products on the market today.



This software is widely used because of a simple reason. It combines the different aspects of handling a dojo into a single program. If you look at their website and take a tour to preview their product, everything looks great. Admittedly, the product is excellent. You have all the tools to keep track of your students, post promotions, update schedules, and keep up with billing and a lot of other things. But as I’ve scoured the internet and looked for other reviews, it seems that there is a problem with the company itself so it reflects on the product. Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of dojos that have used ChampionsWay for so many years, the only problem is that it’s not updated to meet the demands of the changing times.

Open Black Belt


Now if you don’t have any idea what a martial arts school’s software does then I highly recommend that you use the Open Black Belt program (OBB). The best thing about trying OBB is that it’s free so you don’t have to worry about shelling money just to have use their product. Second, it’s very user friendly which makes it easy to learn and understand but doesn’t sacrifice the efficiency of the program. They do have the “Pro” version which means that you have to pay $120 per year to enjoy more services like payment collection, invoice tracking, expense tracking, and student self-check in but compared to other programs, $120 is really cheap. The only downside that I can see is that because of the price, some extra services are not included and may be a turn off to other business managers.



MindBody is like any decent martial arts software with a few add-ons (like the automated tasks feature) that somehow makes it special. But the really amazing thing that separates it from the rest is the customer service. Some people aren’t that tech savvy and they may have difficulties using these types of programs. MindBody offers excellent 24/7 customer service for all questions about their software. If you’ve used another service other than MindBody, no problem. They will do all the work and transfer all of your contacts and student information. They will also guide you in setting-up and learning all the things you need to learn to manage your business smoothly. Although their product is great, some people who have used the product complain of the slow transactions from credit cards so you still need to be wary.

In conclusion, every manager has his or her own needs and style of running their business. It is up to you to see and possibly try the best martial arts software that is most suited to your dojo. Good luck!


  1. Do not use Championsway! This company has had such a negative impact on my company it is unreal. They sell prepackaged websites that are so poorly constructed, I dropped 30 places for almost all keywords that I was in the top 10 for. Their customer service is spectacular until they actually sign you up Then good luck getting a call when you have a problem or realized you got suckered into inefficient software that takes forever to input data.

    • I used Championsway as well. First just the online payment system, then I also tried the full SMO package. The SMO wasn’t really worth it, and near the end of my 1 year contract I did not renew, I also finished my 2 year contract with the online payment system. I have cancelled 4-5 times now, submitted forms and they still try to charge me. Be cautious with them like Angus says.

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  3. ChampionsWay has just added new applications, new User Interface making it very easy to grow and manage a school!

    I would have to admit, the customer service was pretty lousy in the past, but with recently added 24 hour support and expansion of customer service teams, ChampionsWay is hands down the go to software for Martial Arts schools and Organizations (also handles multilocation which is good for my business, I can see all schools from one place with separated data)

    As for marketing, they just released a new service called Mr. Marketer. I’ve heard of schools that just recently set it up and they’re seeing a huge increase in leads and referrals!

  4. Open Black Belt program (OBB) seems too new. They are just now offering Pro services. and the big pro services are not even live yet. From their website: “Coming later in 2014 we will add more features to PRO such as an setting up Events, collecting payments(credit cards), invoicing, and tracking Manual Expenses(cash/check) and being able to allow your students to Sign Forms digitally (waivers, support contracts etc…) all coming soon ”
    But if all you need is class & student management its a great entry price of free.

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