Any new people wishing to join Wilkes Martial Arts & Fitness Academy, just come in and have a look and meet the team. I am a parent of a member of the Academy and this testimonial is written unprompted. I would like to compliment Mr. David Wilkes and his team in the way they conduct themselves, from the emails when making enquiries, to follow-up phone calls from David and Riley, to meeting both staff and members alike and watching to see what Wilkes Academy was all about. BRILLIANT. The first teacher encountered being Mr. Paul Brook with his calm, motivating and encouraging manner, it was bound to be a winner. We watched one of the classes with Mr. Jackson Mitchell being the instructor, where he introduced himself to both parent and student. As well as running this large class with strong leadership, he took the time to come over and check in on 3 separate occasions during the lesson. There are other teachers that have come up and introduced themselves as well as fellow students. David and his team nurture a “family friendly” academy and this comes across with all the staff, students and visitors encountered. What is amazing, after being there only once, I had teachers coming up and greeting me by name and I was an onlooker. Well Done Wilkes Martial Arts & Fitness Academy.

Jodie Stilling-Moores

I like Wilkes because they have very nice people. I love the fitness it is so fun and warming. You get to know self-defences, take downs and new moves. I hope to get to black belt. I get to learn new things and it pushes you. At Wilkes we do fun drills at the end of every lesson. Fun drills are really fun, especially dodge ball and the obstacle courses that we do.

Louis (10) & Jai (8)

Wilkes Martial Arts Perth is the only school I choose to train at simply because I feel so comfortable in the friendly and helpful atmosphere. Everyone there is so humble and are more than willing to spend the time answering questions and providing feedback to ensure that I am getting what I want out the classes. I’d recommend Wilkes Martial Arts and Fitness to all levels of experience, from children to champions alike, I think everyone who trains leaves with a positive attitude and a smile from ear to ear.

Errol Hassett

I first contacted Sensei Wilkes to find a Martial Arts Academy that would take my very eager 2 ½ year old son, Christian. Despite his young age, Sensei Wilkes encouraged us to come in and let him give it a try. Christian stepped off the mat that same day proudly displaying his new white belt and from that moment he was hooked. After more than 2 years of training with the amazing Instructors at Wilkes Academy, the confidence, skills and pure joy Christian gains from every class make each hour-long trip to training worth it. Christian’s martial arts training has given him so much more than just physical activity and the ability to defend himself. I have watched him walk into school for his first day of Kindy with the confidence of a 6th grader, walk away from a playground bully with his head high, I’ve seen the dedication and love for what he does in every extra practice session, and witnessed the pride and sense of accomplishment at every new belt presentation. Now a proud orange belt, Christian still enjoys every moment of his martial arts classes, evident by the question “Do I have training today?” that greets me every morning before school. And of course it’s not just about the kids. The reward for a parent’s dedication to helping their child attend classes is the weeks of angelic behaviour with the pre-grading checklist of chores, healthy eating and displays of respect for parents and teachers. Every parent’s dream! There may be other Martial Arts academies, closer locations, and even other sports … But just one of the many reasons we return each year to Wilkes Martial Arts Academy is the sense of family. Being a part of the Wilkes Academy Family means always being welcome, not just as a valued customer but also as a friend. It means fun and belonging, as well as guidance and support, not just for the students but also for the whole family.

Rachelle Fernie

I joined Wilkes Academy in 2013 after realising that 25 years of trying every fad diet available had left me a middle aged very overweight man susceptible to diabetes and a shortened life expectancy. My wife and daughter had already joined and I had been along to watch a few times, never even daring to think I could do what they were doing. I was asked a few times by Mr Mitchell if I’d like to join in, but I managed to find an excuse every time. Eventually I plucked up the courage to have a crack at it, fully expecting to feel humiliated. What I discovered was a family of instructors and students who are absolutely dedicated to helping people set a goal and realise it, to get fit and have a laugh at the same time, and to learn a skill that both gives you focus away from life’s worries and in the unfortunate event that you need to rely on it, would give you a good chance of defending and protecting yourself in a controlled way. Eighteen months later, I am 16kg lighter, fitter, happier, healthier and the proud wearer of a blue belt. I had no confidence that I would last a month when I signed up, but now I can’t imagine not having this aim, and these friends, in my life. My ten year old daughter has her education and attitude assessed prior to every grading and this has proved to be very effective in making her want to ‘do the right thing’ as well as giving her the ability to defend herself also. We pay a very reasonable weekly membership fee and can attend as many classes as we wish. This is not only martial arts classes, but also general fitness classes.  Wilkes Academy has changed lots of things about me, but most importantly it has given me a life that I previously thought was out of my reach. Needless to say, I would recommend them to not only the serious athletes, of which there are many in the Academy, but also to the people like me that need the guidance to change their lifestyle and lose weight and get fit.

Gary Watkin

I cannot recommend Wilkes Martial Arts & Fitness Academy enough. Not only has it given me an aim, challenges, new friends and weight loss, it has also encouraged my daughter and husband (who has hated sport and been overweight for as long as I can remember). Wilkes has transformed my husband’s life. He is well on his way to losing weight and it has opened up a new world of sport to him. He is not only coping better physically, but also mentally in his job, and his stress levels are much lower now. He said for the first time ever upon entering the dojo he said everyone there believed in him. The staff and other students encouraged him and within weeks he started seeing results. My daughter has also improved at school with focus, concentration and attitude and this semester her grades improved significantly. When I asked her why she thought this was she said it was because at Wilkes the instructors have taught her confidence and to believe in herself but at the same time learn how to respect teachers, adults and friendships. So as a family, not only are we getting fitter, healthier and learning new things and achieving our higher-ranking belts, we have also developed new friendships and our social calendar is always busy with Wilkes activities!

Karen Watkin

41 year old Mum!

I have been training with Wilkes since 2012, I turn 41 this year and I don’t remember feeling as fit, sharp, confident and balanced in a long time. The atmosphere/vibe created within the gym is a sanctuary from pressures of the outside world, the instructors are dedicated and passionate about their art and the progression of all students be it the 3yr olds through to the “older” people like myself. Egos are left at the door and everyone is in there to assist and bring the best out in everyone else regardless of experience and rank. Anyone thinking of signing their child or children up, I could not recommend Wilkes more highly, the quality and substance in the kids classes are not just self-defence and fitness but crucial life skills including respect, courtesy, integrity and dedication. All in all a fantastic environment to train in, a fantastic group of people, quite possibly one of the best decisions I have made was walking through the door and getting started.

Matt Wescott

Two years ago my son’s physiotherapist suggested we enrol him in either martial arts or dancing, to help develop his core strength and gross motor skills. We gave Taj and his big sister Nicola (knowing she wouldn’t want to miss out) the choice, and they both immediately wanted to go with the first option. After a bit of research (aka google) I phoned Wilkes Academy and booked the kids in for an introductory lesson. On meeting Sensei Wilkes and the kids’ instructor for the lesson, Mr. Mitchell, I was instantly impressed. Here were two people who were approachable, friendly, excellent with kids and clearly very good at what they do. Needless to say, I was sold – and more importantly, so were the kids. In the past two years of training at Wilkes Academy, my children have not only discovered the world of martial arts and self-defence, they have also learnt the importance of discipline, integrity, courtesy and respect. They have built up their core strength, fitness levels and greatly improved their gross motor skills and hand-eye coordination. But most importantly, they’ve enjoyed every bit of it. The instructors – Mr. Mitchell, Mr. Swart and Mr. Cranny – keep the lessons interesting and fun whilst teaching the kids life skills in both martial arts and the wider community. If there is a problem, they will try to help in any way possible. Nicola was suffering from some bullying at school, so when I mentioned it to the instructors they incorporated self-defence techniques and talked about bullies over the next week. Taj’s physiotherapist gave me suggestions on what areas to work on with him – I passed this information on and where possible these exercises were included in the warm-ups for class. There have been times when I have struggled with an issue with my kids or myself, and Sensei Wilkes has offered up many words of welcome, helpful advice. He, and the other staff, have us feeling like we are part of a great big family. That’s something you can’t say about many places!
I have noticed a huge improvement in my children thanks to Wilkes Academy – the respect, courtesy and willingness to help at home and at school, the change in fitness level, gross motor skills and hand-eye coordination, the change in attitude in Nicola – to name just a few. Taj’s physiotherapist now recommends Wilkes to her clients after seeing the change in him. I cannot speak highly enough of Sensei Wilkes, his instructors, and the academy itself. I could go on for days given the opportunity – in fact I think some of my friends are probably sick of hearing about it! Nicola loves it so much, she is hoping when she reaches black belt that she can be part of the leadership program and help other kids during class. She tells me she wants to be just like Mr. Mitchell when she grows up! And I’d be more than happy for her to do just that.