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Be a white belt again

Posted: December 2nd, 2015 | Expert Advice | No Comments

by Bret Smith CPT, B. A., B.S. | Move Strong Studio

I was exposed to martial arts at a young age with classes at the local Boys and Girls Clubs. Fondly, I remember the days of walking into the training area and feeling so excited to learn new techniques, scenarios and applications. That feeling of being so open and excited to learn is rare and sometimes fleeting. I would like to recount a story I heard from a master martial arts instructor as he described his experience in seeking out new learning experiences to augment and layer his own understanding and teachings.

Bret Smith CPT, B. A., B.S. | Move Strong Studio

Bret Smith CPT, B. A., B.S. | Move Strong Studio

The sensei (karate teacher) had been training and teaching karate for his students for many years. His teaching methods had been sharpened and grounded in the very spirit of traditional martial art training. He was able to shape and present his teaching based on experience, practice and the ever visited school of hard knocks, which is not uncommon in martial arts. He went on to describe one instance where he sought the opportunity to meet with and train with an instructor that had a specialty in pressure point technique. Upon visiting this new dojo (school for training) the sensei, accompanied by one of his senior students, was invited and greeted by the instructor as they entered the dojo. The senior instructor welcomed them and asked the names of the two visitors. The two replied with their names and then the senior instructor asked if either had any experience with pressure point technique and before the sensei could finish his reply of “no” the senior instructor knocked out the senior student with a lightning fast two point technique along the meridians of the nervous system. As the senior instructor turned toward the center of the class he turned back to the sensei and said “Good, now we show you how to revive him!” With that statement and experiencing what had just occurred with his senior student the sensei uttered to himself “It feels really good to be a white belt again.”

Obviously the sensei was not technically a white belt again but he was in a spiritual sense open to receiving new teachings without the prejudices of past experiences. He now had the freedom to simply learn again with a blank canvas and experience what it feels like to be a new student again. That sense of potential is never as powerful as it is when you first undertake something that covets your attention and respect.

I invite you to explore “becoming a white belt again” in your life. What have you done so well that you feel there is nothing left to learn? What skill sets do you possess that you would consider master level? Or what are you really good at but want to learn more about? Write these down and review them with two questions in mind: “Do I feel there is more for me?” and “Do I really get excited to do this?”

Here at Move Strong Studio I am undertaking a bit of a Renaissance in how we challenge and involve the clients that train here. The exploration and idea of being a white belt again has allowed me to refine and experiment with a unique direction in how I serve and train clients. If you have an interest in relating to your health and fitness in a new way I invite you to contact me here at Move Strong Studio.

Stay healthy and have a wonderful holiday season!

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