Do you know what you don’t know?

Robert FrankovichLooking at some of the websites for martial arts schools, I came across a commonly used marketing comment…”We individualize the training to meet your needs and goals.”

This made me begin to wonder if I needed to be able to “defeat any man in 10 seconds” or “destroy any opponent” as part of my self defense training. My next question was “how often will I be in a situation where I will need those skills?” Lastly, I wondered how these schools would be able to would know if I was training for the proper purpose.

I agree that the skills need to be developed and practiced but if that’s the only thing I train for then I think something is wrong…but this is only a surface issue. Many people who start training don’t recognize the reasons behind why they start. That, in itself, is not a bad thing.

The real problem comes from not recognizing what they’re gaining from the training. Learning new curriculum is always fun and challenging but it that the goal? How about perfecting the curriculum that you know? Can you perform all of the parts of colored belt curriculum yet? How about your First Dan curriculum?

Basically, I’m asking “Do you know what you don’t know?” Have your realized that there is more within your training that you don’t recognize yet? Have you analyzed inside and outside of what you can do to see if there is more? If you train, are you working to make everything better every time that you perform it? Does knowing 32 forms mean that you “know” more than someone who knows 13? or someone who knows 8?

I think I need to go back to wearing a white belt since there is so much more to learn.

Author: Master Robert Frankovich

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2 replies on “Do you know what you don’t know?”

  1. Christine says:

    I believe it is hard to see your own failings and be properly critical and truthful to yourself. To find your own failings I think you need to reach a mental awareness that will allow you to see it yourself and others. People are on different scales and levels, so people will see different things at different points. People do not always understand their own motivations or desires. When they say they want to become stronger what does that really mean? It has an abstract meaning, these are the words they have chosen to represent what they think they need. Is it mental strength, physical strength, do they think that if they learn to swing a sword it will make them look stronger? or is it something else that has nothing to do with strength but the person thinks it does.

  2. Christine says:

    Urban Samurai posted this and it is so fitting with what Master F posted. http://www.urbansamurai.com/2011/10/the-answer/

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