Saturday, February 14, 2009

The martial arts are supposed to be...martial

I'm going to quote another Steve Irwin's blog post at some length about Nice Karate since I thought it was great:

Most people get a buzz out of their training. The Dojo is a "nice" place to be. It is populated by "nice" people and karate's an easy way to spend an hour or two away from work, TV, exam revision, the kids(!), or anything else. That's how it should be, a positive environment without undue anxiety or hostility. But it can go too far the other way....

Do you do "nice" karate? The sort where you can dress up and do your stuff, sitting in the comfort zone of a few basics, lots of kata and a good laugh.

But karate should be a martial art, and that means we need to get uncomfortable. Discomfort grows us. Comfort makes us stale, and lazy. As Funakoshi wrote, "Karate is like a pan of boiling water. Take it off the heat and it soon cools".

Problem is, some people don't like the heat.

So we set about challenging ourselves through physical training and mental training too. The effort required to last that extra minute, or even get out of the house on a cold night decides whether we grow or not.

Anyone signing up for martial arts must be prepared to push themselves. Martial arts aren't a substitute for a social club. They're not a new age love-in, they are about hard work and effort......

It continues. Great post Steve. Sounds like a great dojo.



Anonymous said...

I love that post! I wonder if I still have Funakoshi's book - now I want to read it again.

Are you learning Mass Attack? I missed a few sections of it and checked your blog tonight hoping for an outline. I love your simple and clearly way of describing the katas -- they were a tremendous help to me in completing Cycle and getting my BB last July. I emailed you a while back and said so, but would like to say "thanks again!"

-Karen Newcombe,

BBat50 said...

Karen, thanks for the kind words. I found writing the blog and working the videos to really help me pay attention to details.