When I started teaching martial arts at age 14 in my first teachers Taekwondo Kung Fu school I made up my mind that I was not ever in competition with other martial arts schools. Here I am 6 degrees of Black Belt and nearly 26 years later, having studied all over the world and taught thousands, still holding firm to that belief.
I love martial arts… all of them. I love martial artists.
We are all part of the same big family. It is in our diversity, each having our own gifts and abilities, that we have strength. We need every instructor and school to serve our communities in combating the issues men, women and children face these days.
I believe martial arts has the answers to so many of today’s problems that children and over-taxed adults encounter.
So what are we competing with?
Ignorance, glamorized violence, cruelty, bad manners, low self esteem, fear and self-doubt, poor health such as obesity, heart disease, undisciplined eating habits. If anything, we are competing with the ever-growing allure of stimulating video games and media that can influence an imbalance in life, disrupt healthy relationships and social skill development.
We’re competing with indifference in patriotism, a sense of community and fading American family values like serving a cause greater than one’s self. We’re competing with the disintegration of the family unit (because we provide a healthy activity the whole family can do together and reinforce respect at home).
Martial Arts can resolve these problems. There is no question it saves lives in self-defense situations as history clearly proves that. It is unparalleled in handling bullies and non-violent conflict resolution. But more importantly, Martial Arts can equip people, especially the next generation, with the leadership skills, character, and a strong spirit to face challenges head-on in an ever changing world.
Where else can parents choose their child’s peer group and surround them with polite, goal oriented, values centered friends who are all engaged in a healthy lifestyle? It’s one stop shopping rather than being a Mom taxi toting the kids from one activity to another in hopes of gaining these essential skills.
We have thousands of letters on file from ecstatic parents touting the amazing transformational power of our martial arts program on their children. It goes so far beyond the kicks, punches, blocks and throws. That’s because our role-model instructors teach martial arts as a philosophy and load it with life skills through experiential learning. Simply put, they walk the talk.
Why are more and more parents choosing martial arts? Because it works in a rapidly changing world and they want their kids to have the edge in school and life.
Consider martial arts for your family today. Even if it isn’t our school, find one that suits your goals and personality. Try a few out, watch a class and speak to the instructors. You may be surprised at the value you find.
Beware… it just might change your lives forever.