But, don't take our word for it . . . . . here is what our students and parents say about us!
Great Dojo! Sensei and all of the staff at Ohana are caring and truly want to see your child succeed. This Dojo truly has a family like atmosphere. If you are looking for a karate dojo look no further, Ohana is the best.
-Danielle C., mother of two, Howell
My very shy non-athletic daughter finally found something she LOVES! Ohana Karate is like a second family. These people truly care about the children and their families. Always a friendly, positive and high energy vibe going on. My daughter goes 2x per week and can't wait for the next session. She is becoming more assertive, more confident and making new friends. Highly recommend Ohana for children off all ages and activity levels.
-Keri M., mother of two, Howell
Our son Caleb has been attending Ohana Karate for over a year and half. We enrolled Caleb in the character building program to help him learn to focus and build confidence. Just in over the last year and half, we have seen wonderful growth and increased focus which has been reflected in his school report grade cards. We even have seen his self-confidence build by him volunteering to get in front of the class to show new moves or offering to go first during stripe testing. We strongly believe Ohana karate is a huge part of who Caleb is today and can't thank the instructors enough for putting their time and energy into the program.
- Brandi C., mother of two, Howell
My son, John , is a student of Ohana Karate. For those parents who are on the fence about getting their kids started in Karate...time to get going. My son is 4 it has helped him immensely. He's more controled, more disciplined and more confident. The Larioza's have a great system here and I'm proud to have my son participate."
-Chris W., father of one, Fowlerville
This note is to any parent who knows that their child has more in them than the child is showing. My 6 year old son and I have talked about him starting karate for about two years now. After much deliberation, Sensei Sam gave a short presentation at his class, and he promptly brought it home, and convinced me very quickly that it was time for him to start karate.
After only being in the program for about 2 weeks, the only regret I have is that we didn't start sooner. I have already noticed an improvement in his self confidence, and his ability to accomplish tasks. The staff at Ohana Karate has been beyond incredible. They care deeply for every person in every class, and take time not only to get to know each child, but to zero in on that child's needs. I am astounded at the level of attention that is paid to every single child.
I am a single dad, and to have the new found help in raising my 6 year old into a man, is truly amazing. My son wakes up every day and asks if he has karate today, and is disappointed if its one of those days where it is not. My appreciation for Sensei is beyond measure, and could never be repaid. My son recently received his first stripe, and can't wait to get his next. This school is not just about karate, but about turning a child into a responsible, loving, respectful adult. Don't wait, It’s worth the effort to get your child to this school.
Brad B., single father of one, Howell
We were at the Fowlerville Park yesterday with both boys and a little boy about Karson’s age was hanging on Karson and just being a nuisance. Karson first told him please stop grabbing me. The boy kept bothering both of the boys, little brother included. I first notice that this boy’s parents are no where around, amazing, right? Crazy in fact. Karson being very protective over Kollin and tells the boys to stop pushing his brother. Of course this goes on and on and Eric and I are just watching. After several times I think the light went off in Karson’s head and he looked at the boy and with a firm voice said…with his arm extended…Stop grabbing me or I will report it. The boy was still grabbing at Karson. Karson said again in a firm voice I told you to stop and now I’m going to report it. He turned to me and said mom this boy won’t leave me alone. I told the boy to keep his hands to himself please and also asked where his parents were and he said not here. Wow. Anyway…the point of the story is that we were very proud that Karson was one protective of his little brother and also remembered how to handle a bully. Just in time for school to start, our little guy, knows how to defend himself and how to report it. Yeah!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I will have you know about after 30 minutes a van pulled up and a mom yelled for this bully to come on and get in the car…and away he went. Really? Eric and I were stunned to know that this 4 year old was left at the park for upwards of 30 minutes or more with no supervision. Yikes!
Thanks for teaching our boys (Kollin included) how to defend themselves. They use the stop or I will report it technique with each other when it comes to just being brothers but I was so proud to see them use it with other children for the first time. :)
Kollin is a little sponge and picks up everything that is being taught too. Even thought he isn’t officially enrolled in karate, he hears and is already aware of how to handle a bully or a big brother. :)
You are amazing, thank you!
Lyndsey L., mother of two, Fowlerville
My daughter, Sarah, has always been a good kid. She is polite, helpful, and full of energy. However, I was getting worried about her ability to find her own inner strength, her ability to understand she can overcome challenges and her self confidence to meet challenges head on. Nearly a year ago I enrolled her in class at Ohana. What a gift Ohana has been to my daughter and what a surprise it was for me to learn what Ohana really was. In our time at Ohana I have seen Sarah’s confidence in herself soar. She is not afraid of challenges and she has developed this great inner strength to achieve success. This is demonstrated through her ability to understand short term and long term goals – her long term goal is to be a black belt, but she understands that in the short term she has to work her way up through the belts to accomplish this. She has this inner strength and drive now to accomplish her goals. This focus has carried over outside of Ohana also, I see this positive attitude and goal setting in her daily interaction with her family, with her friends, and her school work. Ohana’s culture, instructors, and classes all represent this achievement expectation that can and does have such a positive affect on Sarah. Even though Sarah is the only one taking classes, Ohana has become something that we do as a family and I can not wait for my younger daughter to start classes also.
What kind of culture do you want for your family? There are many ways, we as parents, influence and create a culture in our family. My wife and I have taken this sense of culture in our family very seriously; we focus all family activity into activities and events that will reinforce our family culture. We actively look for ways to engage our family in our family culture – community service, trust in God, and building of our family bond, honesty, integrity, and dedication. And to be honest, we have found very little areas where we feel this culture is represented back to us and is supported in the growth and education of your children. We have actually only found two areas outside of our home that we feel match our family culture and that we have complete faith will grow and nurture our children in this type of culture. One is our church and the second is Ohana Karate. Ohana has had an incredible impact of my daughter and I am very proud to have my family associated with Ohana. The instructors, at Ohana, go to great lengths to create a culture in the school that matches what I want for my children – dedication, hard work, honesty, integrity. It goes beyond learning karate, Ohana is a partner to parents that reinforces what every child needs to grow up to be an incredible person -a strong positive culture that brings the best out of our youth and because of this culture my daughters will be a part of Ohana for years to come.
Steve K., father of two, Fowlerville
Here is my Emma story. I am happy to share.
I had been trying to talk my 4 year old daughter, Emma into joining dance for almost a year. But she was very hesitant. Emma was very reluctant to try new things and didn't adapt to change very well. Sensei and Sempi Tom came to her school and did a session with her preschool class. She loved it! All she talked about for a week was Karate. When I asked her if she wanted to take a karate class, she gave me an enthusiastic "YES!". When we signed Emma up for "karate class" at Ohana Karate, we had no idea the wonderful program we were enrolling her into. As expected, Emma was very shy and hesitant to join in with her class. Truth be told, the first several weeks her daddy and I did more karate with her class than she did. But Sensei and Sempi Tom were great. They kept encouraging her and telling here what a good job she was doing. Sensei helped us work out a plan for Emma to introduce her to challenging situations in a safe environment to build her courage and confidence. I am pleased to say that in 6 months, she has gone from crying during class, wanting to sit on our laps, wanting us to go out on the mat with her to, enthusiastically participating in tournaments and even volunteering to demonstrate in class. I was so proud at her last tournament of her confidence. She didn't hesitate once.
The bonus I didn't realize that came with karate at Ohana Karate was the change I have seen in Emma's behavior. Through the Character Development Program, we have seen changes in ways we couldn't have imagined. The other day at dinner, she was already sitting down and I got up and got a napkin for her and I. Without any prompting she said, "Thank you Mommy for getting me a napkin." It may seem like a small thing but to go from constantly reminding her, "What do you say?" to having her show full and complete gratitude . . . it is amazing. I can't begin to account for the times she has said, "Mommy, that is the best dinner I have ever had." Or "Thank you Mommy for taking me sledding." or "Thank you Mommy for washing my clothes." I never would have dreamed that all that gratitude was inside my 4 year old. She has taken to heart the things that are being discussed during the "Mat Chat" as well as those things we talk about at home from the Character Development Program.
We love the opportunity Ohana Karate has give Emma to move beyond her anxiety and nervousness. I am so pleased with how the program is readying her for Kindergarten and life.
Tina N., mother of one, Howell
We are very amazed with your program. It has only been a short time that Walker has been with you, but we are seeing alot of changes in him for the better. He seems to be more focused and wanting to do his best, at listening, helping with chores, being respectful, and he even called me ma’am yesturday, wow!!!!!!!!. Thanks for all of you hard work and support, with help from you and your program and our family Walker should turn out to be very well rounded.
Trisha B., mother of one, Howell
"Lauren has been very fortunate to have the privilege to train under Sensei Sam Larioza at Ohana Karate. Over three years ago, we enrolled a 10-year old child into Karate not knowing how long it would last. This past October, my wife and I were as proud and humbled as two parents could possibly be, as Sensei Sam allowed us to present Lauren with her Junior Black Belt as a 13-year old young woman. What made it extra special for Lauren was the fact that she was among the first six Junior students to receive their Black Belts in the Ohana Dojo. Lauren is very proud of this accomplishment, given the fact that she has balanced homework, family and her own personal events, and "stayed the course" in some difficult periods over these past three years to earn this prestigious honor.
When Lauren first joined Karate, she was a timid and somewhat shy little girl who we felt needed an activity that would help her gain self-confidence and feel good about herself. As time passed, the changes that we saw take place were stunning, and as she continued training and advancing with each new belt grade, it was evident that her confidence and sense of accomplishment was increasing. What she has learned as a whole and the determination that she has displayed these past three years is a true testament to the program and training at Ohana. We would advise anybody who is "on the fence" or unsure if their child would benefit from Karate, Lauren is living proof that her training at the Ohana Dojo has made a tremendous difference in her character, confidence, and overall respect for herself as well as for others. The best part about her success is that it has not "changed" who Lauren is, it has enhanced her quality of life, both physically and mentally.
Todd F., father of two, Fowlerville
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