Find a session
Once you have found a suitable club the next thing to do is work out which session(s) to go to.
Some clubs have sessions specifically for new starters - often termed beginners or novices. These may be held weekly monthly or quarterly. University clubs often limit beginners to starting in the first few weeks of an academic term.
York Jitsu Club accepts beginners at every session (with very occasional exceptions should a special session be running in place of a regular session), and the University of York Jitsu Club accepts students in a similar style though the last week of term is probably not the best time to sign up.
Get there early
Before heading along to a class check the club's web site (again if you're from York well done ... you're doing that right now) or contact a club's organiser. Check the times and make sure you arrive at least ten minutes early. There's always paperwork to fill out before trying out martial arts and you don't want to miss the start of the class for the sake of filling out a few (important) pieces of paper.
Remember to check fees before you go
Many clubs offer beginner bargains such as a block of sessions at a discounted price or even a free first session:
- The University of York Jitsu Club usually offers a special deal for students who sign up at the Athletic Union Mart at the start of the academic year.
- York Town Jitsu Club offers the first session absolutely free.
For both of these club's you can either e-mail ahead to ask any questions or let people know you'll be turning up, or you can simply turn up and ask someone where you sign up.
Watch a class
Most clubs should allow you to watch a class if you ask (beware the ones who won't), but in all honesty the best way to find out what a class is like is to give it a go.
Watching your child's class
If you are taking a child to a class some clubs may not allow parents in the class whilst it is taking place as some children can find it distracting. If the class includes adults then consider having a go yourself.
York Jitsu Club has an open door policy and parents are encouraged to stay and watch at least the first class their child attends (though it is not compulsory). This simply allows the child and parent the option to have the parent leave if they do find it distracting. There are several parents that do in fact train alongside their children at the club.
The next thing to do before you start your journey into Jiu Jitsu is to make sure that you're wearing the right clothes....