“South Austin’s home for family martial arts–adults, teens and children!”
Learn About Our Programs
One Membership–Three Programs!
We offer adults and teens traditional training (Pyon Moo Do), MMA striking and conditioning, and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Your membership gives you unlimited access to all three programs. Take the classes that best fit your goals and schedule–or take them all!
Pyon Moo Do Kids is the martial arts program at Traditional Martial Arts Academy that is specially designed children ages 6-12. Based on Pyon Moo Do, or The Warrior Path of Transformation, our comprehensive adult program, our children’s curriculum is rooted in powerful, effective martial arts and designed for the needs of children and the concerns of parents.
Get your child registered for these fun, unique camps!
Sulsa Camp is a combat self-defense training camp that gives participants an unforgettable experience full of adventure. This three-day camp is run by an extraordinary team of master instructors who will teach you powerful self-defense and combat tactics. With their extensive teaching backgrounds, they are able to keep the camp fast-paced and challenging. The format …
Meet Our Staff
At the heart of our family-centric school are the founders, James and Julie Espy, along with their newest addition, Imogen.
Ms. V runs our main children’s program (Pyon Moo Do Kids) and self-defense seminars
Niki teaches in our Pyon Moo Do Kids program and self-defense seminars.
Coach John Martinich runs our Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu program.
The Black Belt Parent
TheBlackBeltParent.com is an ongoing project of Head Instructor James Espy to share the latest research and insight he’s gained from more than two decades of teaching children. You will find articles that explain essential principles and strategies for effective parenting, as well as techniques you can start applying right away!
Here are some of the latest articles on the site:
In Asian philosophy, there is the concept of “the path” (道). If one follows the path one can achieve enlightenment. What enlightenment means varies depending on the philosophy (Taoism versus Buddhism, for instance). Boiled down, the path is simply applying some form of deep engagement to an activity. Many arts—such as flower arrangement, archery, painting …
Public discourse sure has changed in recent years. Once, leaders offered stirring eloquence and soaring oratory to persuade hearts and minds. Now, we have tweets and grade school insults. To really grasp the significance of this shift, consider FDR’s first inaugural address. Elected three years into the Great Depression, he was tasked with leading a …
As parents, we can get disappointed with our kids. They may perform below their potential or behave in a way that undermines our expectations of them. Kids are imperfect beings who are still learning the basic rules of life, so they will fall short.
Failure to meet our expectations in some way is almost inevitable for children. How we respond to, and then express, our disappointment to them can have profound and lasting consequences.
Which is more important—to speak with confidence to your child or to speak accurately? Sometimes it is so much easier to tell your child what they want to hear or even just tell them whatever it takes to get some peace and quiet. And speaking as if you know what your talking about can often seem to increase your child’s confidence in what you are saying.
But does it? Do these inaccuracies have an impact on your relationship with your child? In this article, I explore the tension between speaking with authority and with accuracy, as well as the consequences to you parenting effectively.
In this article, I will explore the latest research in the use of rewards as a motivator for children. This has long been an area of interest for me as a teacher, because I want to motivate my students towards being as passionate about martial arts as I am. I am also interested as a parent because I want to motivate my daughter towards more positive behavior and rewarding experiences.
This article looks at how we can manage our children’s screen habits. Restricting your child’s screen use and monitoring the type of media they are consuming is an increasingly essential part of parenting. Though a few tips and tricks can be helpful, you really need a comprehensive strategy to be successful in this area.
Random acts of kindness benefit other individuals and/or society as a whole, and clearly represent something that parents would want to help their children cultivate. Cultivating this behavior in your child is important not just because it will make him/her a nice person. Research shows it is important to their social and emotional well-being.
So what is the best way to encourage your child to commit random acts of kindness?
The way you speak to your child has a big impact on how they view themselves and the world around them. When you praise a child, it can give them motivation to repeat what they are doing and shape their sense of who they are. In this article, I look at how your choice of words can have a big impact on the effectiveness of your praise—even whether you are using nouns versus adjectives or verbs!
Truth appears to be in decline. Even the meaning of the word “fact” seems to be open to debate. In a society where those in positions of authority and prestige are increasingly comfortable with not only deception, but blatant—even comical—lies, we find ourselves drowning in a sea of untruth. It can be very disorienting. And it is a difficult environment in which to raise an honest child. How do you teach your child to tell the truth in a world full of examples of people successfully using lies to get ahead?
In this article, I explore ways to help your child be honest, even when it would be easier to lie.
This is a tough time to be compassionate. In addition to teaching our children the skill of compassion, we have to help them avoid things that make cultivating empathetic kindness difficult. Cruelty is the obvious opposite of compassion. But there is another emotional reaction to others’ suffering that looks like compassion at first, but will actually undermine one’s capacity for responding with empathy. In this article, we explore this “near enemy” of compassion.
In recent years, our culture has begun to change how it treats girls and women in order to offer a more even playing field. We still have a long way to go and there is interesting research that offers insight into how to best move forward on these issues. In this article, I look at the impact fathers doing chores can have on their daughters’ self-image and even what careers they aspire to.
Cultivating grit in your child requires they learn to embrace difficult and challenging situations. It is not enough to have this mindset yourself or even to teach it to your child. You will have to give him/her a new perspective on failure.