Kintama has provided a pretty comprehensive link for Beginner's Martial arts questions. Please read this through before posting questions that have already been covered here.
This answers the top 50 basic questions or so we get on the forum about Martial Arts...save the link!http://www.faqs.org/faqs/martial-arts/newbie-guide/
also, a guide and index to more in-depth questions commonly asked: another keeper!http://www.faqs.org/faqs/martial-arts/
"In case you ever wondered what it's like to be knocked out, it's like waking up from a nightmare only to discover it wasn't a dream." -Forrest Griffin