Sending the Right Message

ktadmin Post in Politics, Self-Defense,Tags: , , , , ,
0

Self-Defense demands a strong posture that sends a message that you are not an easy target and that if you mess with me you aren’t going to have an easy time of it.  Perhaps the best example of this is the Texas Tan line…

texastanline

They say a picture is worth a thousand words…

Unity, Truth, and Goodness

ktadmin Post in A Zen Thing, Quotes, State of Mind,Tags: , , , , ,
0

What do Unity, Truth, and Goodness have to do with the Martial Arts?  That is perhaps hard for many to see, especially those new to the Martial Arts.  Here is a quote to start the conversation with:

Franciscan John Duns Scotus says that when the one, and the true, and the good are operating in unity, whatever is happening will always also be beautiful! This is his de facto definition of beauty: the harmony between unity, truth, and goodness. When you can see all three, or even one, you will always be delighted.  Beauty is experienced precisely in our ability to hold together the oneness, the truthfulness, and the goodness of things—despite all the seeming contrary evidence (which is always there!).  –Richard Rohr, Catholic Franciscan and Founder of the Center for Contemplation and Action

Now that may not seem to apply to the Martial Arts but I hope you will find that it actually does.  When we begin to train in the Martial Arts there is nothing beautiful about it!  We are awkward because we lack understanding and knowledge, we lack experience necessary to perform the basic movements of the Martial Arts.  Our mind and body do not have Unity, they both resist in relinquishing control to you, the student.  The more you practice the more Unity you gain, things begin to become natural and flow.

If you stop your training there, you have accomplished much and it will serve you well in every aspect of your life.  But you will be lacking.  As we continue to train the Unity of our practice becomes comfortable and smooth, but is missing something.  With continued training you will begin to experience moments of epiphany when you see the Truth of your perfect execution and the True uses of that particular technique.  You will even see the Truth of using a particular technique in ways you were never taught.  You will feel confidence and power swell in a type of calm pride.

If you stop your training at this point you will be a formidable opponent who can handle most situations that would call for Martial Arts skills.  But you would still be lacking.  Because at this point you have only seen the partial truth of your training.  You have the Truth of each technique but you have yet to assemble them to their true ending.  Goodness.  This training part of your training is difficult to be taught, because you feel your training is complete.  Your physical training is, but we are more than physical beings and the Martial Arts at every point recognizes that.  I will try to explain this next step in your training, most ignore it, few understand what they seek, and fewer discover it (I am not professing that I have).  Goodness comes from the picture and feeling of the Unity and Truth you have gained.  The Goodness comes from understanding that all your training, all your sweat was not leading where you thought.  You thought you were training to be a Master Warrior near indestructible!  Instead you start to see the Goodness, the Truth the Unity that in training and honing your body and mind to fight, you no longer desire to.  You seek Justice through peace not strength or will or power of what you could do.  Rather your skill and power is only meant to be used in a reflective manner, defensive only.

If you stop your training here, you have much to teach the world of students who await you.

This is the secret of the Martial Arts that most have forgotten or chosen to ignore for a multitude of reasons.  Live in Peace (Goodness).  Live in Awareness (Truth).  Live at Peace with yourself (Unity).  You will be the calm, unmovable Stone at the center of a raging river of life.

Staying in Shape

ktadmin Post in Fitness, Training notes,Tags: , ,
0

OK, I have a life and I am not an obsessed person, which means …I have a life!  I do not live to eat nor do I live to be in perfect shape.  Pathetic some may say but they probably don’t have a life. Or they are independently wealthy!   Yes we all attend Karate class at least once or twice a week but that isn’t enough.

Balancing job, family, chores, and the a sundry other tasks and commitments in your life and there is precious little time left for sleep let alone a 10 mile run (ok 5 mile run)!  But that doesn’t mean we can’t stay in shape we just have to make it part of your day where you can spare a few minutes here and there.  Here is what I do through out the day to help stay in shape.

25-40 pushups
3 sets of 30 second planks (or 30-50 situps)
30-50 lunges (each leg!)
15-30 squats (add a jump when coming up for some additional burn)

On days when I haven’t had any time I do these all before bed as it helps me sleep (I know that doesn’t apply to everyone).  I also find doing these before bed seems to help me burn calories when I sleep or at least the scale seems to reflect that in the morning.

Obviously this should not be all the exercise you get but it is a good start to staying/getting toned.  If you have access to stairs I like to do 10-15 flights for a quick cardio workout.

Start with this, add in as much of your Karate workout as room/time allows for and you will find that you look forward to your little exercise breaks more with eash day.  If you commit to doing this 6 days a week for 3 months it will become part of your daily routine for ever…!

 

A Different Mindset

ktadmin Post in A Zen Thing, Quotes, State of Mind, Training notes,Tags: , , ,
0
“It usually takes me more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu speech.” —Mark Twain

In life we are told and taught to be prepared.  Mark Twain’s quote states the obvious, no one knowingly gets up in front of a crowd to speak without preparing!  We prepare for everything from presentation to disasters.  But what about Karate?  Do you prepare to defend yourself?  Honestly, the best you can do is practice and practice some more.  Because unlike a test or a speech, a fight is dynamic, you must rely on instinct and the skills you have practice and hope they are enough.  I guess that is the reality we don’t like to admit, you can never be to prepared and you will never know if you are prepared enough!  Some would take that as license to never prepare, which of course is pure folly.  Some will try to prepare for every possible situation, again pure folly, since I am pretty sure the chances are pretty small I will be fighting a bus load of midget ninja’s any time soon!

The moral of the story is prepare, train, but relax.  If you are training well, when the time comes you will handle any situation with a grace and skill, that will surely surprise you; since I guarantee, you will not have trained or prepared for the situation you encounter!

Train hard, train often!

Happy Independence Day!

ktadmin Post in Events & Holidays,Tags: , , , ,
0

Today we celebrate our freedom.  May we have the wisdom and fortitude to preserve freedom for ourselves and future generations.

independenceday

Life and other distractions!

ktadmin Post in Site_News,Tags: , ,
0

Yes, it has been a while since I posted regularly.  With 977 posts, life has caught up with me, I’m spread to thin and starting to focus in different areas.  One of the reasons I haven’t posted recently; I am in the process of writing a book.  I am very excited about it and it is coming along nicely.  I’m hoping to be done before Thanksgiving, perhaps I can make the Christmas rush!

Another is I have started teaching at a new facility and getting it ramped up and breaking even requires my dedication and support.  After all that is what this is all about, actual physical martial arts training!

You will see more posts from me in the future, especially on training, stay tuned, and thanks for reading.

Mas Oyama – Rest in Peace

ktadmin Post in Events & Holidays, Training notes,Tags: , ,
0

One hundred and twenty-five years ago today, Miyagi Chojun (Mas Oyama) – sensei was born.  It is a good time to remember the shoulders we are standing on, and reflect on your karate.

Mas-Oyama-trib

His style lives on stronger (though more fractured) then I think he could have imagined.  His burial site and memorial in Japan is visited often by practitioners.

Mas-Oyama_Grave_Sosai_Oyama_14mas-oyama-sosai_grave

 

 

 

 

 

While I am a Kyokushin practitioner, unlike some I do not revere the man, he was after all just a man.  His contribution and accomplishments however I will always hold in high regard.

Proud of my fellow Connecticut-ian

ktadmin Post in Politics, Self-Defense, Video,Tags: , , , , , , , , ,
0

Meet Robert Steed, a resident of Vernon, Connecticut who took three days straight off work to attend several gun control hearings in Connecticut. There isn’t a lot I can add to his testimony.

Robert Steed did a great job!

I am not sure which Representative dais this, he is clearly visible in the video (if you know who he is please post it in the comment section), but his word choice was interesting:

“As long as we live in an open and free democratic society your not going to be able to get a handle on all of the violence in our society.  …You’ll  get a better handle on it in a Dictatorship where they take all your guns and watch your every move….” …”we don’t want to go down that road”…

I believe in reading between the lines, especially with politicians.  First I thought to even bring a dictatorship up in the debate was interesting, but notice his wording at the end.  …”We don’t want to go down that road”  Wouldn’t it have been more appropriate (if you felt the need to even go there) to end with, but that will never happen in here, in this country.

On March 19th he was back at it again…

In follow-up testimony Robert Steed again knocks the ball out of the park!  Here it is:

 

Controlling your Body

ktadmin Post in Awareness, Control, Technique, Training notes,Tags: , , ,
0

The main focus of the Martial Arts is control.  Control of yourself, your body and your situation.  Perfecting a technique or Kata is all about being aware of your bodies position and controlling your bodies movements.  This awareness and control translates into the sparring ring allowing you to become aware of your opponents movements, patterns and ultimately vulnerabilities.  It all starts with control of your own body and movements.  The following video is an excellent example of a man who is in total control of his body and aware of it’s position and movements.  It is not a martial art demonstration but dubstep dancing, watch and be amazed…

The point to sharing this video is control starts with practice if you want to perfect any discipline or technique.  Whether it is Karate, Ballet, Mathematics, a musical instrument or Knitting it all starts with practice.  Practice takes perseverance to find success, so commit to practising everyday so you can find your control and perfection.  You won’t regret it!

Timing is everything

ktadmin Post in Fun Stuff, Self-Defense, Video,Tags: , , ,
0

OK, wait for the punch line…timing is everything

Even better when a wise @55 gets his! 🙂