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Tae Kwon Do School



Complaint Rating:  78 % with 9 votes
78% 9
Contact information:
Success Martial Arts
91 Maher Lane
Harriman, New York
United States
Phone: 8457817822
My son was a student at this school for 5+ years. The school was initially named UMAC-United Martial Arts Centers. At first the school was run in an excellent manner. When the owner Joseph Preira married his now wife Stephanie it all went down hill from there. He became cocky and decided after receiving all his teachings from his own Master and despite knowing that in order to grow within Tae Kwon Do you have to continuously learn, he decided to branch out on his own feeling he no longer needed to be affliliated with UMAC and thus created SMA. Shortly thereafter, things started to go down hill. What put the icing on this cake was that in February 2009, my son and two other students were joking around with an employee instructor named Weinman. He proceeded to show pictures of his girlfriend to the kids. The kids began teasing him about his girlfriend and instructor Weinman became angry and threatened my son (who is only 11 years old) that he the tease was repreated, he would hit my son. My son repeated the tease and the instructor punched my son in the stomach. My son retreated away from the instructor. When my son came home from this school that evening, he proceeded to tell me what happened. I awaited a call from the owne to apprise me of the situation that had transpired. No call came in. I called the school and was advised that the owner was busy and he would call me back. He never did/ The next day, I awaited a call and never received one. I emailed the owner and warned that if I did not get a call, I would have no choice but to get the Police involved. I figured he would call me. Joseph Preira never called. Instead, my husband called him and he became verbally abusive towards my husband claiming it wasn't a big deal and when my husband reminded him that our son was 11 and the instructor was an adult, Preira interrupted and reiterated that it was not a big deal. My husband and I went to speak with him in person only to find him there with his wife and other person. They became argumentative and could not understand the seriousness of this situation. We tried to reason with Preira but all he did was chuckle and laugh and turned a passive situation into a verbal combat. Preira stated that he would be keeping the instructor on staff despite being aware of his history angry outbursts and physical attack against our son. He instead decided to withdraw my son without reason or merit. The Police arrested the instructor and had to convince Preira as to the severity of what had transpired at his school. He still couldn't see it. Currently, that same instructor is employed at the school with other little children being exposed to this individual and the parents have no clue as to what happened. I am warning all parents to keep their kids away from there. Luckily, my son was not seriously hurt. However, my son now wants nothing to do with Tae Kwon Do (after having attained his first degree black). belt as a direct result of this traumatizing experience. If you have to convince the owner of the school as to the reasons why he should not have a hostile, angry instructor around little kids and why his actions were wrong, then this owner should not be in business and should be shut down. UMAC of Warwick is a much better choice because they are family owned and run and they have accreditation and continuous teachings. SMA does not. A child will only learn to the capacity that Preira is because he has lost all business contacts with the federation because of this tactics and he has been cut off by his Master. I can be contacted at wanda.a.rivera@gmail if you need further info regarding this situation. FYI: The instructor was charged and fined by the Judge in Woodbury Court. This is of public record in the Orange County, New York Court.
Complaint comments Comments (52) Complaint country United States Complaint category Schools


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N  24th of May, 2009 by    0 Votes
That karate intructor, and I use the term lightly since karate instructors are supposed to teach discipline is very lucky that it was your son that was attacked by him. A lot of parents would have went berserk and attacked him. Whatever the case may be he as an authority figure has no right to hit a student. Teachers, Scouters, Karate Instructors ect have no right to hit a child in their care. Also with his temper I hope he never has children. Kids are kids they will tease. True your son should have stopped when he was told, but as an adult he has NO RIGHT to lay his hands on a child.
N  29th of May, 2009 by    -3 Votes
Too bad that you feel this way. Obviously, YOUR parents did not teach you anything at all. Funny how people try to take advantage of children and that a 19 year old adult has to resort to punching a kid in the stomach. My son did not deserve this however, the hefty fine the instructor got, the handcuffs and the entire arrest that's on his record now and the scare he got from the Police, not to mention the poor reputation the school received because many in the area know what happened is more than a satisfying reward for us...Like I said: Luckily my son wasn't hurt...and perhaps it is YOU who needs disciplining if you have to hide behind a screen name to post these types of ignorant posts.
N  29th of May, 2009 by    +3 Votes
You called the police because your son got punched in karate class?

Your son was warned to cut out the taunting. He continued, and he got what was coming to him. I find it hard to believe he was "traumatized" from being punched if he's a black belt.
N  29th of May, 2009 by    +1 Votes
U parents suck at raising children ( bully in the making) arrogant little jerk, however the Teacher has no right what so ever to touch a child... Just wait the kid will pick a fight with the wrong group of people because of his attitude then he won't think much about his 5yrs of tae kwon do lessons...
N  29th of May, 2009 by    -2 Votes
He got punch by an instructor who was an adult and he a child...adults have no right to put hands on children---period! We are great parents and will not have to prove that you ...he's a black belt yes and did not use hs skills to hurt anyone which is contrary to what the INSTRUCTOR DID! Use your common sense in judging the situation...the POLICE agreed and arrested him. This is a crime and constitutes harrassment. I dont know what neck of the woods you're from but in mine, you hit a kid and its wrong-plain and simple and my son was NOT BULLYING OR TAUNTING...he was part of a group of 3 kids teasing the instructor who is 19 years old showing pics of his girlfriend to 10-12 year olds. Look at the entire picture and tell me what YOU would have done in this situation...Most parents would have kicked the instructor's ###...he's lucky he did not hurt my son.
N  29th of May, 2009 by    -2 Votes

Your the only arrogant fool who corrolates joking with bullying and picking a fight!! Do you not know how to read? Were you ever 11? Obviousy too old to remember what is was to be 11 years old or probably 3 and still wet behind the ears...obviously you know nothing about martial because if you did, you'd know it is not to be used for violence and as far as being good parents we taught our son well to walk away from such a situation because another person would have wooped the instructor's a**

No need for name calling on a forum meant to help other consumers avoid similar experiences and the only reason I resorted to it is because YOU DID.
N  29th of May, 2009 by    0 Votes
Just ignore complain265, La Chula in her Pizza Palace letter she has admitted to abusing her own ten year old son.

I find nothing wrong with a simple spanking or smack to correct a child's behavior (should only be used as discipline by parents or immediate family mambers)but for a karate instructor to hit a child, not out of discipline but in anger is uncalled for. And yes if somoene hits your child you have every right to call the police. He should not be working as a karate instructor if he cannot handle his anger. I work as a Scout leader and trust me if I ever laid a hand on a child I would get fired. Besides in karate they teach you only to use karate to defend yourself. They don't teach you to strike in anger. If he found the child rude he should have had him sit out and or talked to the parents. Everyone has a different style of parenting. La Cuula may not believe in spanking, but as long as she is not beating the crap out of her child you should not complain about her parenting.

You obviously don't know any preteens. Preteens like to tease. Sounds to me the child was not being rude. I still say that when your son was told to stop the teasing he should have, but the karate instructor took it way too far.
N  30th of May, 2009 by    -2 Votes
Trevor I appreciate your support...my son is by no means an angel but this attack was uncalled for and he wasn't taunting or bullying anyone...it was a person he looked up to as a mentor in a teaching environment...I am sure the "instructor" if he even deserves to be called that learned his lesson.

Zachary: I'm so sorry that happened to you...take care.
N  30th of May, 2009 by    -2 Votes
The only people who have a right to discipline any child is the parent! WTF you or anyone thinks they are to be putting hands on other people's kids?! Jason is probably one of those grown men out there with not enough b*lls to step to man their own size so they resort to picking on little kids...without scrupples!!
N  30th of May, 2009 by    -2 Votes
well you shouldn't be saying that anybody deserves to be hit...at 17 you should know better...but if a 17 year put his hands on my son, my son would defend himself with no problem. Jason...when you become an adult and a parent, perhaps you will understand. You still wet behind the ears.
N  30th of May, 2009 by    0 Votes
wow and that means you have HUGE B*LLS...such a fool...Karate is not Tae Kwon Do..isn't it past your bedtime?
N  30th of May, 2009 by    -1 Votes
"I take karate too. I can take an eleven year old on."

Yeah so can I but I don't, and being able to beat up someone when you can see the top of their head is not much to brag about. Only a coward would attack a defenceless child.
D  30th of May, 2009 by    0 Votes
A martial arts environment is a little bit different to 'real life' I did martial arts for years and if I insulted any of the senior guys or instructors I was giving a smack to put me back in line. The instructor is hardly going to hit a kid full force, just hard enough for the kid to learn his lesson. Martial arts is built on respect so if a junior disrespects a senior they are going to be put back in line. If they can't handle it than maybe they should either keep their mouth shut or choose another sport.
N  30th of May, 2009 by    -1 Votes
"Isn't it past your son's bedtime. Anways I can take Zachary on, and your son. Also Trevor is calling it the same thing."

They are both a form of martial arts. Anyways Karate, Tae Kwon Do. They both teach discipline, not to provoke fights, not to fight unless to defend yourself. I should have said Martial arts instead of karate. That teacher definately is not promoting the proper martial arts beliefs.
D  30th of May, 2009 by    +1 Votes
Sometimes to teach discipline you have to use force.
N  30th of May, 2009 by    -1 Votes
Again this was not in the course of training or teaching. This was in the course of recreational time. He has NO RIGHT to punch a child in the stomach...PERIOD! The punch was full force and the POLICE agreed. Martial Arts training shows control, discipline and character all traits this instructor lacked and as a mentor to the younger students, he should not reacted to a tease from 3 kids regarding his girlfriend which quite frankly, he has no business sharing pics of her with the kids. They aren't there for that.
N  30th of May, 2009 by    0 Votes
Yeah, but this was not discipline. The instrctor was charged.
D  30th of May, 2009 by    0 Votes
Ok I agree that he shouldn't have been showing kids photos of his girlfriend, but he did tell them to stop. They showed a complete lack of respect by continuing. Over the years I have seen this again and again, and the easiest way to solve it is by hitting someone. If he did hit full force that was slightly overboard, but if it really was that bad I'm sure the head instructor would have got involved and not just have laughed about it. I think involving the police was a bit of an overkill. If it was everyday life ok, I might agree but again, its a martial arts environment and it has a whole different set of rules.

An instructor can't teach if the students don't respect him. To be honest I've done the same when in my club when people showed me disrespect and believe me, it never happened a second time.
N  30th of May, 2009 by    -1 Votes
Respect is something that's earned and not granted without earning it. I don't care what realm its in. Hitting is not a way to get anyone to respect you especially if you Punch them in the stomach and their a minor and you're an adult. That would be considered bullying someone smaller than you and Tae Kwon Do does not teach this.
N  30th of May, 2009 by    0 Votes
Well Tae kwon do is actually what I did, and being a black belt and an instructor in the club should automatically grant respect from any junior. Its like the military, you can't insult a superior and expect not to be reprimanded. Plus I wouldn't exactly consider it bullying unless it was an ongoing occurrence. I know you obviously will be upset because its your son that was hit but I bet the other kinds stopped the teasing straight away and thought twice before saying something again. So it might be a fine line between fear and respect in that case but either way if the end result is them not insulting him and him not hitting them its a win win situation. Unfortunately its the only way some people learn their lesson.

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