These alleged myths came from proponents of fighting systems/organizations that are supposedly "different" and "better suited for self-defense" than traditional martial arts. These debunkers probably have been "different" their entire lives, and their schools seem attract others who are "different." Since most potential students are not "different," these school are usually local, small, and not commercially viable. When you are a full-time school owner whose only income is from students, you will find you cannot survive if you only accept "different" students or you use tactics that scare students away.
Alleged Myth 1
You must use honoring titles such as sifu, sensei, sabum, etc. to maintain a proper sense of respect in school.
Your students should be quiet and respectful when you are teaching because they are there to learn and genuinely respect you, not because they have to refer to you by a title from a different language.
Debunkers seem to think it the military that fosters this social tradition of respecting different classes of people. If this type of thinking has validity, you would think other areas of society would think the same way. Which came first, the chicken or the egg? Which came first the class structure in society or the military? Humans, as well as other animals, have a class structure. Examples in the animal world are the pecking order in chickens and the pack structure of wolves. Class structure helps people understand the world around them and how they relate to it. Just look around you and you see other instances in society where titles are used and where it is considered disrespectful to use first names. For examples: your doctor, your pastor, your parents, grandparents, etc., your teacher, professor, etc., a police officer, and a government official
When respect is not shown when addressing people, they lose respect for you. If you permit your child to address you by your first name, the child will no longer view you as the person in authority who sets standards and enforces them. Instead, you will be viewed as a friend who is expected to support everything the child does without criticism.
Alleged Myth 2
You must teach classes by having students line up and grunt acknowledgments in unison.
This myth is associated with the traditional martial arts and stems from teaching methods derived from military. It is not the way that ancient Samurai or Hwarang warriors trained and it is not the way we should train today.
Again, the military! I would dare say that people, who accuse the military way as bad, probably have problems accepting authority from any part of society. Controlling a class of five or six students if not too difficult, since when you tell a student to do or not to do something, eye contact will usually suffice to ensure the order was understood. In a large class of martial arts students where safety is an even greater concern and instructor must ensure every student hears, understands, and complies with all instructions, each student must acknowledge all orders. Go to an aerobics class or a pep rally. How does the leader increase interest and energy levels? They get the people to be vocal. Also, how do we know how the Samurai taught classes?
Alleged Myth 3
You must not give your students too much information, too fast, because "if you sell all the merchandise on your shelves no one will come back to the store."
This is perhaps the stupidest myth associated with martial arts. It may apply to a teacher of forms and techniques, but should never be a concern to a fighter. If it is, then you lack the most valuable commodity a fighter can have—imagination. How can you run out of an art that has no limitations?
You may give any type of student to much information, too fast. In a mental educational environment, teachers must always be mindful of presenting too much information too quickly, so that students will remember the information and, most of all, comprehend the information. In a physical educational environment, such as a martial arts class, students must understand and comprehend how to perform technique but they must also physically perform the technique in an effective manner. Knowing many techniques will not make you a better fighter. Bill Wallace was a world champion full-contact fighter, basically using only one leg. To train for a self-defense situation, you only need to practice using a few techniques under many different circumstances, such as the Koga Method of police tactics. When you learn too many techniques superficially, when self-defense is required, you have to decide which one to use in a given situation.
Alleged Myth 4
You must teach a lot of information at once or your students will get bored.
This myth is only true if you are teaching a crop of students who measure their progress by the accumulation of techniques.
In case you have not noticed, due to the influence of television, we are constantly bombarded with information. To cope with this, children, and perceptive adults, have learned to assimilate information quickly. If you have ever driven at a hundred mile an hour speed for an extended period of time and then had to slow to 70 miles per hour, you know how boring the slower, but still high, speed seems. Today’s students are used to information coming at them hot and heavy. If it does not, they get bored. If you do not keep students stimulated, they will leave. This is another reason debunkers usually do not have commercially successful schools.
Alleged Myth 5
You must not associate with your students in an informal way or they will lose their respect for you.
The kind of students who would lose interest in training because they realize that their instructor is a mortal human, is not the kind of students we want at our school.
Most professors are encouraged not to become socially involved with individual students. In the military, leaders may sometimes be punished for becoming socially involved with individual subordinates. Group events, such as a student picnic are not a problem and are encouraged. This myth relates to the previously discussed respect myth. As a teacher, you are friendly and sociable to all students, but you are a professional teacher, not the friend. As an instructor, you must make decisions and take actions that are in the best interests of the school and other students, including reprimanding and expelling students. If the student is a "friend" then the decision may be difficult and even delayed until it becomes a bigger problem. Students are customers, not friends. How many friendships have been ruined over business decisions?
Alleged Myth 6
You should refer to people differently depending on whether they are "senior" or "junior" in your art.
This myth is wrong, that it demonstrates the difference between a beggar and a warrior. The beggar bows for any man he deems to be greater than he is, while also demanding that any man he deems to be lesser to bow before him. The warrior bows down before no man, and allows no man to bow down before him. We should emulate the warrior.
Ever have to deal with a worker's union. They may negotiate over pay and benefits but they will fight to the death over seniority. The apprentice welder is not the same as the master welder; the apprentice carries the tools for the master welder. Samurai warriors had levels of seniority, as do military warriors. The same people who have had difficulty in accepting any type of authority in their lives also have no concept of respecting the achievements of senior people.