Disclosure, I have basically stolen the title of this blog from another martial arts group called the “dog brothers”… I don’t think it is the exact wording, but it is the same idea. The “dog brothers” are very cool people and you should check them out at dogbrothers.com/.
Traditional martial arts often talk about developing values; confidence, discipline, determination, destroying the ego, etc etc…. However, I’ve found that where this really happens is in SPARRING. Good old sweat and huff and puff, and get smacked around CONTACT SPARRING….
You want to destroy your ego? Nothing gives you a sense of your limitations as getting punched in the face, kicked in the leg, tossed to the ground or submitted on the mat. NOTHING.
Want to talk about discipline and determination? We’re not all 20-something anymore. I have a lot of people who actually started later in life (imagine that!). Well, imagine wanting to puke and give up, only to put in three (3) more rounds? The first impulse to give in is ALWAYS the wrong one, so the “trick” is to go a little beyond that… Eventually we ALL HAVE TO STOP. We ALL have limitations.
I’ve said it before, I’ve also found that the nicest people, with the least ego, that I have met in the martial arts are those who have done VERY HARD TRAINING and lots of hard CONTACT SPARRING. The wind bag with the puffed up chest and the ego the size of the great outdoors is always the musical kata champion or the point sparring “world champion” or the guy who swing a neon toothpick around and thinks it’s a staff… Sorry, but it is TRUE.
Finally, something I have said a lot this week, already twice in this blog, get rid of PRIDE and FEAR. FEAR often comes from our PRIDE. We are afraid to “lose”. We are afraid to be shown less than perfect. What happens if I get kicked? The answer, you get kicked and go on with your life!!!! What happens if I get submitted? EVERYONE GETS SUBMITTED, EVERYONE HAS TAPPED. Once you get beyond your pride, you have no fear. Life without fear is a wonderful thing.
Want to get the most out of martial arts? Do contact. Do it to the level you reasonably can, but DO IT!