Why do you want to train? Do you want to get fit? Become the next Bruce Lee…Jackie Chan…Jet Li? Is it for more personal growth or “spiritual” goals? Or maybe just for some self defense?

First off, ALL reasons are valid and correct. There is probably no single reason why you want to train. I do have a major opinion about how you train, though. It has nothing to do with which martial art that you train in but everything to do with how you are taught it.

I’ve been training in Taekwondo forthe past 28 years and during that time I have had the chance to watch some very outstanding athletes compete. I used the term “athletes” intentionally. The forms competition side have beautiful technique and a strong presence. The sparring side has fast, strong technique and excellent strategies. Yeah, there’s more but you get my point and this leads me to my opinion…can these athletes protect themselves ono the street?

The sport side of the martial arts can become so focused that the student can only play the “game” and not apply their techniques otherwise. In fact, I suggest that you ask around and find out how many “martial artists” that you know can explain what is happening during their form. Can they tell you what the “bad guy” is doing and why they are doing a particular technique or combination?

The sparring side has already seen this evolution…its called MMA. These are very very good fighters but its still a game and NOT self defense. Its been lost to the other extreme now.

The best martial artists know how to use technique, when to use it and when NOT to used it. It isn’t about the fight. Its about being safe in a conflict.

Author: Master Robert Frankovich

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