Real Martial Art Begins Outside the Dojo

That’s right.

And by “outside the dojo” I don’t mean fighting in the street to test your skills.

I find numerous debates and Youtube comments on “Which style is more effective?” futile and counter-productive. For the purpose of martial arts is not just prepare you for fighting, but prepare you for life.

Make you focused, determined, and driven. Build up your character. Unleash your human potential. Give the courage to fight for your dreams.

Let’s say you train taekwon-do and recite the tenets of taekwon-do before each class. And forget about them once the class ends. One of the tenets is integrity, for instance, which means to “walk your talk”. So the class ends, and you return to your “normal” life breaking commitments.

Or you practice aikido, “the art of peace”, and learn to never cause violence to anyone. And then you commit emotional or mental violence to the people around.

I can take a radical stance by claiming that martial arts turn an “animal-human being” into a “human-human being”. Contrary to the common misperception, all martial arts build peace both within and outside, rather than incite violence.

And if that’s the case, what’s the point of training if you become an “animal” again after leaving the training hall?

Jigoro Kano put it very nicely by saying there are three levels of judo.

The quintessential story comes down to this apex: the real test of you as a martial artist is outside the dojo. 

KUNG FU PANDA

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