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Teaching Karate 3 -- How Many Steps Ahead?

Sometimes you might hear that a Karate teacher is just one step ahead of his students. With a new teacher, this might be expected.

However, in all the dojo in which I have ever trained, students begin to teach almost as soon as they are more advanced than new students. The senior students always help the juniors. By the time a student becomes an instructor, he might have already have been teaching, and even conducting classes, for many years.

In addition, a teacher might be teaching students who are only a few months or years junior to him. He might even be teaching his own seniors. In that case, the teacher is not one step ahead, he might be a step or two behind.

But that's OK. I have often had to teach students who are older or senior to me. We just teach the very best that we can.

As time goes on, a teacher might find himself many steps ahead of his student -- even miles ahead. To tell the truth, it is easier to teach when you are closer to the students.

Personally, I have found that more advanced I become, the more difficult it is for me to teach. This is because I tend to concentrate on fine points, rather than running a well rounded, vigorous class.

A new teacher should always remember the importance of knowing his craft. He should always strive to learn Karate. Teaching is part of learning.


Charles C. Goodin