Karate Thoughts Blog

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Enjoying Karate

I enjoy practicing Karate with people who enjoy practicing Karate. As an instructor, I do not feel that it is my place to try to make students "enjoy" Karate by yelling at them, imposing discipline, or shaming them. If they enjoy Karate, good. If they do not, there are so many other things they could do.

Also, if I am very stern and strict, this will taint the student's Karate mind and body. Their attitudes will be tainted, as will their feelings. So will their physical movements and kata. Their very movements will show that they have a stern and strict instructor.

And I am sure that as soon I was was not there, the students' true feelings would be revealed. In my presence they would "love" Karate, but when I am gone they might "hate" it. This is not right.

If anything, I hope that my own enjoyment of Karate is infectious. I hope that my attitudes and movements reveal my true feelings about Karate, and that students will be influenced by this.

Another way to say this is that I try to teach by my example, rather than by my words alone (hopefully my example and my words are consistent with each other).

Just as I enjoy practicing Karate with people who enjoy practicing Karate, I also do not enjoy practicing Karate with people who hate or are being forced to practice Karate. If someone enjoys Karate, they will find a million reasons to do it. If someone hates Karate, they will find a million reason to miss training. In fact, a person who hates Karate will often feign or exaggerate injuries just to avoid training or to justify quitting. (Of course, there are many students with real injuries, illnesses, or diseases that can disrupt their training.)

Life is short. If you can, find what you enjoy (assuming it is worthwhile) and do it.

Respectfully (and enjoying Karate),

Charles C. Goodin