Long Term Practice

Transcript - Long Term Practice

In the beginning, the gains from coming to class regularly are incremental. You're going to be more physically fit, your concentration is going to be a little bit better, typically you'll be a little calmer, and of course, you're going to learn some martial arts skills, maybe a little self-defense.

Over the long term though, it can really be transformative. As you put a lot of those elements together, you discover that, hey, I'm not just more coordinated — I'm doing a lot of things better, I don't have to worry about going out the winter and shoveling snow, I don't have to worry about carrying a backpack on a trip. I got this stuff. I'm not worrying about my fitness, that's transformative, but here's where the magic really happens, and that is in the transcendence.

You can really change the way you interact with the world by training over the long term, getting more physically fit, and putting all these things together. And you'll discover that the people around you connect with that, now they're responding to you differently, which means your whole relationship with society and your family is different.You may discover, like I did, that the world looks very different, that you may step into the martial arts as a student or a follower, and you may step out after ten years in the martial arts as a leader.

Here's my story of long-term commitment to the martial arts: I started in 1968, but what was really transformative for me was spending four years in Japan studying with some of the most famous, most accomplished, post-World War II martial artists. I went into that period as somebody who had accomplished a fair amount in life, but who was still primarily a follower. But by being around people that were exceptional and really soaking up everything they had to offer, and then training like a demon, I found that I left Japan as a completely different human being. I was more confident, I had better judgment, I was calmer. Now, I'm far from perfect, still working on it, but I've got to tell you, I like where life is now -- having gone through that crucible of four years of training -- much better than I did beforehand. That's the kind of potential that you have as well if you just commit yourself to the path of martial arts. You'll find that how the world looks in a year, how it looks in two years, how it loooks in three years is nothing like how the world looks to you today.

In the next video I'm going to share a few thoughts about the exceptional martial artist. Things that you should be looking for as you see some incredible people around you, and how you can pick up some of what they have to accelerate your gains in training