Part 3 of the How to Advance as a Martial Artist:
Be open minded
Try new (more…)
Part 3 of the How to Advance as a Martial Artist:
Try new (more…)
Part 2 of the How to Advance as a Martial Artist:
A friend of mine recently asked “How can I become a better martial artist?” That’s a pretty general question, so I said Read the rest of this entry
I had hoped to receive a few major scholarships but I have actually lost one that I have had for the last 3 years. Thankfully I have my 2 part-time jobs and I’m getting decent hours.
I have decided against a home-stay since I will only be in Japan for one semester and the time spent commuting back and forth to campus would be draining and I think I would miss out on a lot of opportunities. I look forward to meeting and getting to know the people from around the world in the Seminar houses of KGU. I still have so many unknown factors that will play into this but I am a cup half full kind of guy and I like to think that everything will work out in the end, especially if you have put everything you could into making it work.
As a Martial Artist I have been considering joining a martial arts club or circle at Kansai Gaidai. A club is very different at KGU than it is at UMass. I have heard that clubs in Japan are more like the USA university varsity teams as they have 3 hour practices, 6 days a week. While “circles” in Japan are more like our clubs, meeting up several times a week but not as often or as intensely as the clubs do.
I am also concerned with my Japanese levels as I think that my listening and comprehension skills are the most lacking, I will likely need that the most. Who know’s, one step at a time.
When I was 4 years old I started training in TaeKwonDo in Florida. I continued for several years, entering in dozens of competitions along the way, traveling, meeting new people, and having amazing experiences. Then I moved to NH and went a few years before I felt a longing to get back into the martial arts world. I then moved to Kajukenpo and Pai lum kung fu, training in those styles for a few years and then injured myself, bringing my training to a sudden halt for about 2 years. Then switching back to Taekwondo after I had healed enough to train and getting my car so I could drive myself longer distances without relying on my parents. Once I entered college I continued practicing TaeKwonDo more and more and eventually entered my first collegiate competition.
Let’s just say it wasn’t my best set of results. But at the same time I loved it, it didn’t matter if I had won or lost, it was about pushing myself and seeing what I was capable of, as well as what others were capable of. From there I could see just how much work I needed to do to compete at their levels. I was having an amazing time while balancing coursework, a part time job, friends, and TKD. At the second competition I was leaner, faster, stronger, and smarter in the ways of competition fighting. I still had a long way to go before I would be able to compete with the highest ranking competitors from universities and colleges like Harvard, MIT, NYU, UCLA and more, but I was starting to hold my own. Saddly that was my last competition at the collegiate level since, I just finished my Junior year in college and I have recently come into contact with the people I had trained under as well as the people I trained with in Florida as a small kid.
Since talking with everyone I have realized that I could do so much more, push myself so much farther, but only if I was the one who truly wanted to, if I was going to push, if I was going to dedicate my whole self into this. There is no changing the past, and no use in wishing you had done something differently, there is only now, and the future that can be changed, but I will not let go of my past.
I have decided to dedicate myself to training every day in order to compete on the national level for TaeKwonDo. I will not, cannot, slack off. I will eat healthier, go distance running, body-weight train, possibly weight-train, bike to and from work (6 or so miles each way), and most importantly I will practice TaeKwonDo every day.
My goals to reach are as follows;
-win a local TKD Tournament
-run a 5K
-be in great health/ shape
-compete in nationals
-maybe more to come later
This will not be easy and I will not pretend that it will be. Yet that does not change the fact that I will give this everything I have.
Hajime! It starts with the officials shout, as the two competitors flip off the edge of their floating start points. The two fighters become one with the water, swirling, pushing, and pulling at the crystal clear fluid. Strength is not the most important part of this battle, staying calm; using specific movements to manipulate oneself through the pressure of 50 feet of water is a particular skill. When the pair finally meets, an elegant series of movements ensues. A flick of the foot can save you from a kick and a swing of the arm can leave you open to penetrating strikes. One mistake and you may be left out of breath, 50 feet underwater with nowhere to go.
If I knew anyone with access to a nice underwater camera and a pool, or even some form of a clear water source, I would be all for underwater action photo shoots. Add in some random spontaneity, passion, and fun and my happiness would be absolute. Until I tried to top it the next day of course.
I would be excited and worried for the opportunity to compete in an underwater martial arts competition. I’m not sure if this would be feasible in consideration of only forms or if sparring would be included. Either way, it makes me energized just thinking about it.
Today marked Day 3 of my Insanity Challenge, and all I have to say is …OUCH!
my legs more than anything else are truly sore. This is pretty ironic seeing as I study a few forms of martial arts and one of them focuses specifically on the legs. I can really feel an intense streeeeetch if I do a squat. So far I don’t feel much in my abs, but it i
s there just a little bit saying hello.
Today’s workout was pretty intense and left me weak and exhausted by the time it had finished. That’s exactly what I want! I know I dread heading over to the workout zone of a lounge or basement in one of the dorms, moving furniture out of the way, then starting the insanity workout but I can already FEEL that a progress is being made (and I’ve only just begun).
I’m hoping that by day 15 I will be able to make it through every workout without needing to stop to catch my breath or such.
I can tell that I will need a lot of support from my 3 other friends that are doing this challenge with me. especially since I love to take naps so my usual allotted time for a nap is being handed over to Insanity craze camp.
I’m considering putting up photos of before and after… but I think I will only do that at the VERY end which is day 60 or so. Any thoughts?
I think that there is a major difference between people that study martial arts, and people that do not, when it comes to how they think, the things they like to do, and the general vibe they give off. This also extends into the different styles of martial arts, and of course the individual plays a major part.
I often find myself looking for people that share this love of martial arts like I do, yet it is a surprisingly hard to find interest. I wold like to have a group of people that feel as I do to train with, hang out with, share experiences with and push ourselves for our personal reasons as well as a whole.
Now I am not saying that there are not tons fantastic people out there that do not love martial arts. People often see it as just a hobby, others may be trying it as a new way to workout/ stay fit, they think it looks cool, or they think that they can get magical abilities because of over-the-top movies and stories about martial artists and such. And that’s fine as long as it’s what they are looking for.
To me, martial arts is part of who I am, there have been times of struggle, joy, loss, sweat, blood, tears, and everything in between. There was a period of a few years when I stopped practicing martial arts all together. I think that it was during this time that I realized what martial arts meant to me, and I had to start again. I would like to think that others have this same love.
I have a question for other martial artists out there. Have you ever had this feeling of needing to search for others like this? Or have you had any similar experiences? Maybe you actually found your group or something of that sort?
I look forward to hearing your thoughts.