I come to you with only Karate, Empty Hands. I have no weapons, but should I be forced to defend myself, my principles or my honor, should it be a matter of life or death, of right or wrong, then here are my weapons, Karate, my Empty Hands.
A balanced education consists of knowledge in the mind, honesty in the heart, and strength in the body … a true human being is an educator not by words alone but by being an example.
I am not going to show you my art. I am going to share it with you. If I show it to you it becomes an exhibition, and in time it will be pushed so far into the back of your mind that it will be lost. But by sharing it with you, you will not only retain it forever, but I too will improve.
Way of the warrior is to be found in death – Japanese Quote
I think it’s good to surround yourself with people you care about and that care about you, and you all trust each other, and then you don’t have to worry about problems and shitty stuff happening.
“You may abandon your own body but you must preserve your honor.”
― Miyamoto Musashi, The Book of Five Rings
I just need to enjoy the moment… I just fight I know I’m going to go out there and perform my best.
Martial arts has been a way of life for me since I was a young kid. It created a discipline and respect for everything. Martial arts has just made me a better person. It’s a way of life.
There’s round-winners, and there’s fighters.
Don’t focus on the outcome, when you focus on the outcome it creates anxiety and it builds. I just need to enjoy the moment and let it be. If I just fight I know I’m going to go out there and perform and do it my best. Don’t focus on winning or losing.
Not too hard for me to stay motivated when I’m in sport where everyone’s trying to knock me out.
Martial arts has just made me a better person. It’s a way of life.
No matter how bad things get, eventually the sun is going to shine. If you just keep at it, pursuing your goals, eventually good things happen to decent people. For a person who is set on his goals, good things will happen. Everyone deals with adversity, it’s how you bounce back from it.
Presumably, as a Martial artist, I do not fight for gain or loss, am not concerned with strength or weakness, and neither advance a step nor retreat a step. The enemy does not see me. I do not see the enemy. Penetrating to a place where heaven and earth have not yet divided, where yin and yang have not yet arrived, I quickly and necessarily gain effect.
How to Choose the Right Martial Arts School
(Regardless of the Martial Arts Style)
To reap the best benefits from martial arts, they should be taken as long-term activities rather than short term. Not all martial arts are alike and not all schools or studios are alike either.
The discussion of which martial art style to take is extensive and so much up to the individuals goals, interest and strengths. Research the different styles (Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Karate, Kung Fu, Judo, MMA, etc.) and visit the classes of different schools that teach different martial arts. But more important is each individual school’s approach to teaching their martial arts. Many martial arts schools teach only techniques and forms that are specific to a traditional style. These schools follow the ways that the original founders of each martial art style developed, and they have continued with minimal variance over the years. Other studios like to borrow techniques from a variety of martial art disciplines and integrate a mix into their programs. Some schools are non-traditional and adopt a more open free style system which incorporates traditional martial art techniques with gymnastics and open choreography of forms. There are many clubs that do both traditional and open styles. Each school will claim that their martial art style and method of teaching is superior to others. Prospective students must not take these claims too seriously and choose an approach that would be best suited for them on an individual basis.
Many advertisements for martial arts schools push the backgrounds of their higher- ranking instructors as a way to attract students. It is important to realize that the more degrees a particular black belt has don’t always mean that the individual is a better instructor. This is the same with instructors who have very successful competition records. There is no correlation to the number of world championship titles won with how good is the instructor. The term “master” should also be taken with caution. A master doesn’t always make an excellent instructor. The teaching style of different instructors can vary. Some use the old Asian masters’ approach where discipline is strictly enforced much like in the military. While general discipline is actually a good attribute to learn from martial arts training, some of the old ways of teaching, particularly reprimanding students vocally or physically for incorrect techniques may be considered a bit harsh for today’s society. This is why it is important to watch classes of prospective martial arts schools you are interested in. You want to see the teaching style of an instructor to determine if it’s a style that would be compatible with you, your physical abilities and your life. Ask questions after instructors have finished teaching. If you have the gut feeling that certain instructors will not be right for you, move on to find another school. Legitimate schools will allow prospective students to witness or even try out a class for free before joining.
Related to teaching styles, some instructors emphasize safety more than others. The use of protective equipment and certain rules while sparring are factors. In addition to asking instructors, also ask other students about injury rates and their general feedback about the classes. Check online reviews of both the school and do research on the instructors at the school. Another point on the students is that some schools attract a certain type of student profile. Observe the other students and decide whether these are people you would like to train with.
Some schools are very much into competition with active encouragement of students to participate in tournaments. In fact, some schools even make this a requirement in order to advance through the different levels. Other schools have been known to restrict competition only within a particular circuit. For example, many tae know do schools only participate in tournaments that are strictly Olympic style Tae kwon do and never go to events that are open to all martial arts styles. There are schools in the complete opposite end where they do not believe in competition at all and pretty well keep to themselves without any interaction with other martial arts clubs. Many Chinese Kung Fu clubs do not compete and some styles of martial arts such as Aikido do not offer any competitive outlet. Many martial arts schools choose to have a relaxed position towards competition where they leave it up to individual students to choose whether they want to participate in tournaments or not. Some schools have special competition teams where additional training is available for those students who wish to compete. So as a prospective student, you should consider what involvement you would like in competition if any. If you know that you never want to compete, you should not get locked into a school that requires tournament competition. If you have a desire for competition, don’t join a studio that shuns competition.
Some martial arts schools teach in community centers, school gyms and even church basements. Some have bare bones studios with outdated equipment. Some schools have the latest martial arts and fitness equipment with sparkling clean change rooms and facilities. All of these will factor into the membership fee of each school. You have to determine what you are willing to pay for and what type of environment you will feel comfortable training in.
Many schools require annual contracts while some are on a month to month basis. There could be initiation fees. There could also be testing or grading fees for advancement. All of these extra costs will add up. Ask what happens if you have to freeze your membership due to extended illness or injury. Most school will have a policy that lets you freeze your contract if needed.
If one doesn’t really know whether martial arts is an activity for them in the long run, the option of taking short term courses such as those offered by community centers may be a viable alternative to making a full commitment to a dedicated martial arts club with its own studio space. But do be aware that although martial arts can be very enjoyable from the first day you put on a karate uniform, it is a long-term activity and one must have patience in order to benefit the most from martial arts. Fortunately, there are many options in the form of different martial art styles and schools to choose from in the market today. Just make sure that you do the research before committing to any school or style.
As soon as you start to get tired, as soon as you start to get behind, as soon as your coach starts yelling at you, a lot of doors open up to quit; you got to find that one reason to stay in that battle, one reason to stay in the fire and fight.
It is more important to out think your enemy, than to out fight him
Top 10 Sun Tzu Quotes
- All warfare is based on deception.
- Know thy self, know thy enemy. A thousand battles, a thousand victories.
- If you know the enemy and know yourself you need not fear the results of a hundred battles.
- Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win.
- The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.
- Know your enemy and know yourself and you can fight a hundred battles without disaster.
- Opportunities multiply as they are seized.
- Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.
- Hence to fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence; supreme excellence consists in breaking the enemy’s resistance without fighting.
- For to win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the acme of skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the acme of skill.
“I want to embrace being the bad guy.”
– Eryk Anders
The uncomfort zone is very important for us… To feel uncomfortable is important to strengthen your spirit. Like the samurai says, if you feel comfortable you must search for the discomfort, don’t look only for the easy way.