Shorin-Ryu Karate U.S.A. - Thought For The Week

"Karate & Sense of
Control Over One's Life."

By Matt Kaplan, Downtown Karate Dojo

Beyond the dojo, karate has important implications for helping people to take control over their lives. The following quotes helps to convey this point:

"The first thing I learned was that I was not afraid of the dark. If I was alone in the dark, I was fine. I was afraid of people in the dark.... In real life, for someone to get close enough to rape you, he must first be far away. Then either he sneaks over the last twenty yards, or he runs them, giving you lots of warning." (written by Gail Groves after studying judo for one year. Title of Article: "And He Turned Around and Ran Away").

"There's been a big change in the way I posture my body. I call it 'posturing for power,' I don't have the same victim stance." (quote is from a practitioner of Seido Karate; p. 114 of Guthrie's 1995 book entitled: Liberating the Amazon: Feminism and the Martial Arts).

These quotes evoke a sense of power (versus a sense of helplessness), a sense of competence (versus incompetence), and a sense of living (versus a sense of "giving up" or being somebody's "victim"). They also serve to remind us to "stretch out" our spirit when we train.

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