Why do martial arts forms? After all, isn't it just memorization? Why should I kick and punch the air?
We all learn different. Learning how to learn is an important skill, like the discipline of perfect practicing. Some learn best by asking questions. Others learn by helping others and design a really cool IN WHA 2 FORM MAP (Thank you, Jessica!).
Let's face it. Learning and demonstrating this under pressure isn't easy:
An Important Question: Ask Why?
I encourage everyone to ask one of the most difficult questions: WHY?
When I first got started in martial arts, it was fun, I got to wear a new uniform, my parents bought expensive sparring gear, I got to break boards, do weapons... earning high fives in class for following directions.
Once I felt I had mastered the basics, I didn't see the point in practicing. Repetition got boring. There were more fun things to do. Like playing outside.
Then I listened to an important question inside me: Why?
Curious learning results from asking questions focused on the WHY. Effective teachers never say:
"Because I said so."
We've all heard it before. The curt response can hinder curious learning. Like a soldier marching in platoon, questioning authority isn't always bad... in fact it reflects critical thinking!
When things become a chore, we tend to think critical and smart... often asking important 'why' questions.
Why are we doing this?
I practice and teach martial arts forms for three main reasons:
- It's a strong exercise for the MIND. The mind is the only machine that the more we work it, the stronger it gets.
- It's a strong exercise for the BODY. If we don't use it, we'll loose it.
- It's challenging DISCIPLINE we can practice anywhere, anytime: our backyard, a hotel room, even in the shower! This doesn't require any gear. .. and builds balance, coordination, focus, memory, speed, power, rhythm, automatic reflex... elements we can use for the rest of our life.
If practice makes perfect... and no one can be perfect, then why do you practice what you do?
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