Martial Arts is Good for the Soul

brucelee.jpg

It is really a privilege
to work with people who want to learn something that you are good at and have
spent a lifetime studying.  I am
really a professional student of sorts, training in the martial arts and then
teaching it over and over to adults that realize it may be their calling.  Although MMA's popularity, Ninja Turtles
cartoons, Jackie Chan movies and even videos games like Mortal Kombat have
motivated people to come by my school, their interest is really grounded in the
same things I loved as a kid; Bruce Lee, Sugar Ray Leonard, Kung Fu theatre and
Chuck Norris.  For whatever reason
their parents could not get them into martial arts as a kid, so many of my
students have held onto that 'wow-ness' when seeing awesome punches and
dazzling kicks.

Training in any of the
martial arts or combat sports is beyond just a physical experience. Its training effects the deeper part
of the soul. Certainly this is
addressed more in those who study the traditional martial arts (i.e. kung fu,
tai chi, karate, jeet kun do), verse the more progressive ones (MMA, krav maga,
kickboxing, muay thai). Nonetheless, the mere practice of punching and kicking in any form has a
soulfulness that is unique and not found in the conventional sports.  Bruce Lee had a simple message in his
teachings - The martial arts provides you with a better understanding of the
world around us and how to feel rewarded by life. It isn't a philosophy that necessarily belongs to Bruce, but
he was brilliant in communicating ancient proverbs in his logical teachings.

The soulfulness of
practicing martial arts is in the Confucianist
undertones, the sayings and the simple lessons hidden beneath the physical
training. For example, when
learning how to re-direct a straight punch in boxing (pierre the punch) to set up
a counter, or in akido to flip an opponent, it becomes clear that the 'soft overcomes
the hard; the gentle overcomes the rigid.' The challenge is to keep the soulfulness in your life even
if your training has had to stop. Martial arts gives back on so many levels.

Leave a comment