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  • Writer's pictureSensei

EARNED! Congratulations on your Shodan - 1st Degree Black Belt in Karate.

“Sacrifice and commitment were the very first things I remember learning from Sensei, that nothing comes without sacrifice, commitment and of course hard work. If I were to assess myself on sacrifice and commitment, I would say that I was good at committing but I honestly feel that I’ve only recently learnt the importance of sacrifice. The importance of prioritising, for years I felt overwhelmed trying to do it all. Now I know I can do it all maybe even all at once but with an organised life”…

...“Learning things and actually adopting and applying those things to your life are two very different concepts. I have yet to perfect sacrifice, commitment, hard-work, determination and patience because I have yet to experience a situation where they are needed but I know that when the time comes I’ll be able to do what’s needed because of my karate training”. Senpai Neha Reddy - Shodan 1st Degree Black Belt Attained May 11, 2019

“Throughout my journey to where I am presently, I feel I have grown as both an individual in society and as a student in the dojo. Karate has had such a big effect on my life and continues to do so. I not only learned self discipline but also other values such as respect and courtesy. The values and behaviour I have learned from karate while being there for 11 years have greatly helped me to be who I am today”…

...“As a young six year old child, I was very sheltered by my sisters when I had first begun… More recently, while teaching the younger students, I had realized it is my turn to help mold them to be their future selves and I now have to take on those same responsibilities my senpais had taken to teach these moral lessons and more. Right now, training for myself has helped me through so many different obstacles emotionally. Because although training for yourself is important, it is also important to remember that there is such a strong support system at the dojo”. Senpai Charlotte Francis – Shodan 1st Degree Black Belt Attained May 11, 2019

“Several years ago, senpai Neha once commented to me that all the adult students are the same when it comes to learning new techniques. When she teaches a new technique to the kids, she shows it to them, and they will try to imitate the moves. On the other hand, adults tend to ask detailed questions about proper positioning of the hands and feet, etc. I was probably one of the worst in this respect. I wanted to know the exact positioning, not just the rough position. In the early years, Sensei often (almost every class) had to remind me that I was thinking too much, and that I should just do it. To this day, I still do more thinking than other students, but I believe I do it much less than before”….

...”Change in my attitude toward training occurred while I was a purple belt. This resulted from listening to talks by senpai Linda and senpai Tim. You should not be competing with fellow students. It does not matter whether they are faster or stronger than yourself. You come to the dojo to train for yourself, and not for your fellow students or for your senpais. So don’t waste your precious training time. Thanks to these talks, my attitude toward training changed completely” Georg Wolf – Shodan – 1st Degree Black Belt Attained May 11. 2019

“My martial arts journey has really been about personal growth, self-improvement, and empowerment. However, as I reflect on my journey I find that it inextricably linked to my life story and personhood as whole. I recognize that my journey has not only been physical, but I believe there are mental, emotional, and spiritual aspects as well”…

...”In many ways my martial arts journey has been about reclaiming strength in weakness. As I reflect on where I’ve been, where I am at, and where I’m going I realize how integral martial arts has been to my personal journey. I am still learning my place in this world and how to integrate my experiences, skills, and things I am passionate about; and that definitely includes martial arts. I believe learning is a lifelong journey that I will continue until I meet my Maker. In the meanwhile I aspire to be a blessing to those around me and hopefully empower and inspire others to be at their best”. Senpai Cynthia McCrum – Shodan 1st Degree Black Belt Attained May 11, 2019

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