Monday, March 5, 2012

Kenpo Karate: Can I Fight Back?

For all beginners of kenpo karate, you may wonder if learning a martial art is helpful or a waste of time. Growing up, I wasn't sure about it myself. In fact I would say that I really didn't become a black belt until I got my 2nd degree.

I'm not very supportive of belt systems. I understand their function; they represent skill level. However, even if you have the knowledge doesn't mean you know how to use it. This may seem like a weird way to begin a pro martial arts shpeal, but just give me time. : )

There are some white belts out there that act like black belts and there are some black belts that act like white belts. Unfortunately I have been the latter. My sensei had a word for it: paper tiger. It may look like a tiger, but it is made of paper and is no more fearful than a mouse.

I was unfortunately a paper tiger for a long time. I was big; i had strength, but as far as being a black belt, I was not. It took a real kick in the pants for me to take training seriously... but that is a story for another time.

What I will say now is what we in the writing business call a thesis statement... So yeah, kenpo karate or any martial art teaches a student how to defend him/herself. Yes, you can fight back. That is not the proper question. The proper question is will you fight back.

Like anything else, the amount of time and effort you put into kenpo karate makes all the difference. You can just barely pass your tests and gain that black belt, but if you don't put in the real sweat to go above and beyond, you are not a real black belt. Becoming a real black belt takes guts and drive. You need to be a leader and you need to have confidence in yourself. And humility goes a long way too.

Those are the main components to make a black belt. Let me rephrase that: those are the components you need to be able to defend yourself. There are plenty of street fighters that can defend themselves and the only black belt they have, they got from wal-mart. What do they have? confidence, leadership, guts...

They don't have drive, because if they did they wouldn't be thugs. And they don't have humility because they are not eager to learn. That is the difference between being a black belt and being a street fighter.

I'm going to end this for now, because I have some good ideas for future posts from this one. Check back for updates, but let me repeat myself: by learning kenpo karate you can fight back, you can defend yourself and you can win.

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