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Advice To Husbands

This post is specifically written to Karate instructors who are husbands. Because of my research, I have met with the families of many Karate instructors who taught in Hawaii from 1900 to the present. I have met with many widows and children of instuctors.

My advice is this: be good to your wife! It is very difficult to train and teach if you do not have your wife's support. Karate is a thing (a great thing but still a thing). Karate will not take care of you when you are sick or old. Karate might not divorce you, but your wife could -- and take half (or more) of everything you own (including your dojo) and your children too.

Don't put Karate first and your wife second. Your wife and family should always come first. Otherwise, you might find that you have become second to them.

I remember calling a sensei. I could not speak to him and instead spoke to his wife. I would write to the sensei and he would write back, but I could not speak to him. Years went by and I heard that he passed away. Later, I communicated with his wife and she invited me to her home to see some photographs and other Karate related items.

As it turned out, the sensei had become deaf in his old age. He was bedridden, and did not want to be seen in such a condition. His wife helped him to communicate with me.

Who will take care of you one day? We all hope to remain healthy. Training helps us to remain strong as we age. But who will be there for us if we are not there for them?

Remember, the odds are that your wife will outlive you.

Put your wife and family first. Take care of your work and other obligations next. Practice Karate only when you have fulfilled your other responsibilities. My Sensei, Rodney Shimabukuro, often told me this. His Sensei, Tommy Morita, told him the same thing, and his Sensei, Masaichi Oshiro did too.

Sometimes I say that Karate is like a walking stick. It is not the path. The path is life itself. Karate is not the path. It helps you to walk. The best and most important part of the path is your wife, family, and friends.

I have been married for 28 years to my high school sweetheart. She is my best friend and strongest supporter. I am very lucky. I may be crazy (bakka) about Karate but I am more crazy about my wife!


Charles C. Goodin