Student Spotlight No. 35

karate student with face hidden by question mark

Training for almost 2/3 of his life, and he’s only 17!

The Bushido School of Karate is so appreciative of the students and families that are a part of our Bushido Karate family. We’ve had the pleasure of teaching for over 2 decades and in that time have been privileged to teach thousands of students. Everyone started at the beginning with no shortcuts, and we are so proud of their accomplishments.  Our weekly Student Spotlight features randomly chosen students on their own journey at The Bushido School of Karate.

This week’s spotlight is on Bryan!

Bryan is 17 years old, is in 12th grade and is a 2nd degree black belt. He began his Bushido Karate training in March 2007. He is the youngest of three – all black belts. Bryan is a very talented martial artist and a mentor to younger students. He has truly earned the rank of Sempai (“older brother or sister”) through his commitment to helping fellow students and his kind and mature nature.

Check out Bryan as a white belt in 2007 on Instagram @thebushidoschoolofkarate !

Bushido Karate not only pushes me physically to places I never thought I could reach, but it is also a foundation for my character, my mental fortitude, and my will to put 110% into everything I do.

– Bryan

I chose The Bushido School of Karate because I felt they were making my son more self-confident and more devoted to accomplish his goals.

-Bryan’s mom
teen martial artist in front of Bushido Karate logo
Student spotlight on Bryan
May 7th, 2019

Student Spotlight No. 34

karate boy hidden by question mark

On the journey to black belt

The Bushido School of Karate is so appreciative of the students and families that are a part of our Bushido Karate family. We’ve had the pleasure of teaching for over 2 decades and in that time have been privileged to teach thousands of students. Everyone started at the beginning with no shortcuts, and we are so proud of their accomplishments.  Our weekly Student Spotlight features randomly chosen students on their own journey at The Bushido School of Karate.

This week’s spotlight is on Franco!

Franco is 6 years old, is in 1st grade and is a blue belt. He began his Bushido Karate training in September 2018.

Bushido Karate makes me feel: good.

My favorite part of class is: I learn something new each day.

I like to learn: the forms.

– Franco

As a 6-year old boy Franco loves to kick and yell. Bushido Karate gives him an opportunity to get an hour of kicking & yelling while learning discipline & self-defense. He also gets a great work out and learns to set his mind to achieve and improve to a higher level. He also has lots of fun!

– Franco’s mom
Student spotlight on Franco!
May 1st, 2019

Is it hard to get a black belt?

If you have learned that it is hard to get a black belt, you were misinformed. That’s right! It is easier than ever to get a black belt. Just type “martial arts black belt” in any search engine and you will find many results. Click on the site you like the most, and place your order. You will get a black belt delivered to your door in a matter of days. Imagine that! You can get a black belt in any style of martial art, or many styles, all within days! And you thought it would take years!

It’s not easy to earn a black belt

Ah! There is a big difference in those two words: “get” and “earn”. Getting a black belt is a matter of having a credit card. Earning a black belt is an entirely different concept. There are many different systems in place for the many styles of martial arts to achieve “their” black belt. Sadly, some are not as tough as others. (Yes, I said tough. It should be tough!) This post is not about those huge discrepancies – maybe in the future I’ll comment on that. This is about earning, and becoming, a black belt.

At The Bushido School of Karate earning a black belt is a minimum of 3 years of training. A student’s training towards that goal begins on their very first class. Kicks, punches, self-defense, kata – those are all important techniques and requirements and become more challenging at each level of training. Many times a senior ranking student can adequately teach these techniques. On the other hand, learning to work with others, good sportsmanship, fairness, conflict resolution, compassion, empathy, leadership skills and mentoring are the responsibility of a black belt.

To become a black belt you have to train as one!

Earning a black belt is far different than getting a black belt; becoming a black belt is the next part of the journey after earning one. We always remind our students that if all their requirements are demonstrated, he or she will earn the next belt. A green belt with strong knowledge of their curriculum will be promoted to red belt. Once promoted to red belt, it is then that the student has become a green belt. Once a red belt is earned, the next part of the journey is becoming a red belt.

Moving into the role of becoming a black belt is a responsibility we do not take lightly. Black belts are expected to help and assist in classes for their fellow students. This reenforces a black belt’s already strong and impressive techniques, but the purpose is even more important. It affords a black belt student the opportunity to become a black belt: a black belt student humbling him or her self to learn from a white belt is where the journey of becoming begins.

-Osu

The reasons for the kiai in martial arts

karate kicks on a pad

In order to understand the reasons for the kiai in martial arts, we need to break down the word kiai. Ki = inner energy, Ai = join. When a student kiais’ it is the joining of all your energy. It is a very personal thing, believe it or not, but there are physiological aspects that should be the same for everyone.

Physiological aspects of the kiai

The properly executed kiai is not a scream. If you think about it, screaming is what you do when you are afraid! Certainly a martial artists looking to engage all of his or her inner energy would not want to scream.

Screams generally come from your throat. Kiai’s do not. If martial artists screamed out kiais, we would all lose our voices very quickly. And your voice is a weapon, so you wouldn’t want to wear out your weapon. A properly executed kiai is a much deeper sound than a scream because it is generated in your torso. Put your hands on your waist with your feet about shoulder width apart. Now lean from side to side. In order to maintain balance, you need to engage your core muscles. These same muscles help to “push-out” a proper kiai. ( Even more reasons to strengthen those ab’s!)

The 3 reasons why we teach our students to kiai

At The Bushido School of Karate there are 3 specific reasons for every kiai:

To scare the attacker, or bully

Imagine the shock you feel when someone surprisingly yells “BOO!” right in your face. It is disarming, and just might give you enough time to get out of a bad situation.

To call for help

A strong kiai will have a resounding affect and will alert others. A very important reason to continuously practice kiai’s is so that doing it becomes second nature. It is the same reason we practice the same kick over and over: to get better at it. When an individual is under a stressful situation, he or she may temporarily lose the ability to speak. This is a result of adrenal stress conditioning – (a topic for another day!) . But if the kiai is practiced as often as the kick, there is a better chance of a loud outcome.

To feel stronger ( the joining of your energy )

It is hard enough for adults to comprehend this concept, at least at the beginner level. So there had to be a more relatable way to get this very fundamental idea across to our younger students.

We give our students a narrative of the sounds made by a person attempting to lift a heavy box. Usually this is not done silently. For some mystical reason those grunts and groans give us more power. So kiais work in the same way; they give us more power.

Student Spotlight No. 33

karate girl hidden by question mark

Bushido Karate for dad and daughter

The Bushido School of Karate is so appreciative of the students and families that are a part of our Bushido Karate family. We’ve had the pleasure of teaching for over 2 decades and in that time have been privileged to teach thousands of students. Everyone started at the beginning with no shortcuts, and we are so proud of their accomplishments.  Our weekly Student Spotlight features randomly chosen students on their own journey at The Bushido School of Karate.

This week’s spotlight is on Joanna!

Joanna is 9 years old, is in 4th grade and is a white belt. She began her Bushido Karate training in November 2018. Joanna is the 2nd generation in her family to learn from Shihan Mehrkar! Joanna’s father was a student in the 1990’s!

I like coming to Bushido because I learn confidence, and new skills like board breaking, self-defense and how to block and strike.

– Joanna

We chose Bushido because I’m a former student and only wanted Shihan (Mehrkar) to train my daughter.

Joanna’s dad
Spotlight on Joanna!
April 3rd, 2019
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