I was talking to a parent recently and they told me that their son was not going to compete in wrestling because they were afraid they would get frustrated when he lost. The parent felt the child was far too sensitive to handle the frustration of failure and may get ‘burnt out’. My response was, “What will they do when they get frustrated in life?” What happens when that kid has got to suck it up and go forward when it REALLY counts? Being a new parent, my daughter is 2 and I have another on the way, I only want the best for my child. What parent doesn’t? It’s obvious this parent I mentioned loves their child, but that’s not the issue. The issue is what’s best for everyone involved. What this child is being taught is to quit when things get tough. In an effort to protect the child, the parent winds up doing a disservice to the child. The result is undermining the ultimate goal- the training of the child.
Life is training
How does this pertain to you and why the hell am I brining it up? The segue’s here: when you train, you want to look good. You want to hit hard and perfect every time. You want to throw for ippon every time. You want to score a knock out or submission every time. Every technique you throw hits its mark. Just like that parent- you want everything to go smoothly with out any hiccups or mistakes. As in life: “what you want and what you got, aren’t exactly the same thing. ” If you are training and you never make a mistake, you are probably not pushing your self or being pushed enough. If that’s not the case- give me your number, I want to train with you. If you have ever been in a situation where you had to survive, hardly anything goes smoothly- save the one punch knock out. It’s frustrating, it doesn’t look aesthetically pleasing; it’s moments of frustration highlighted by some good or bad luck. Please note: according to my Dad “luck” is where preparation meets opportunity. No doubt a sentiment echoed from his days in the Marines.
Like that parent I mentioned before- you treat your training like that child. You are worried about the minutia. Micro-managing your work out so you feel better every second without looking at the big picture. How will you deal with the frustration of a real knock down, drag out fight? Unless you’re dealing with a push-over, you will you’re your hands full. Where a lot of tradition type martial artists fail is that they expect that perfect reverse punch to hit its target EVERY TIME. This is a goal of training. An idea, like finding the perfect cherry blossom or the perfect cheese steak; the one shot, one kill can be translated any number of ways. Again, the Japanese language is comprised of a lot of synonyms. It could mean, when you get the opportunity- make it count!
In your training you need to replicate the frustration when you train. If you are hitting your training dummy perfect every time- go harder and faster. If you are being too successful- push the people around you. Get them a little agitated (I’ll leave that to your imagination). If you don’t, you will be setting yourself up for a big let down. When it really counts- YOUR instincts will not be ready to fight through it. Just like that child, you will look to back away and quit because that’s what you were taught. What do you do when you get frustrated?- you train harder and fight through it.
Remember: Life is Training
Training enables you to handle what life hands you better. Experience is what you get after you deal with what life gives you. Your experience gets put back into your training.
You are constantly training and teaching- whether you like it or not. No matter what you do you are shaping your behavior and the behavior of people around you. People affect you the way you allow them to. But that’s a whole other discussion.
Copyright 2003 www.thetruthaboutselfdefense.com ©
Damian Ross is the owner of Zenshin and instructor of Tekkenryu jujutsu and Kodokan Judo. He started competing in the combative sport of wrestling in 1975 at the age of 7 and began his study of Asian martial arts with Moo Duk Kwan Tae Kwon Do at the age of 16 in 1984. In 1989, Shinan Cestari gave a seminar at Sensei Ross's dojo. Sensei Ross has trained under Shinan Cestari's direction ever since. In addition to Tekkenryu Jujutsu, Judo and Tae Kwon Do, Sensei Ross has also studied Bando. Sensei Ross continues his study of Judo under the direction of 8th degree black belt Yoshisada Yonezuka and Tekkenryu Jujutsu under it's founder, Carl Cestari. Below are is a list of some of his title ranks Yodan (fourth degree black belt) Tekkenryu Jujutsu under Carl Cestari Shodan (First degree black belt) Kodokan Judo under Yoshisada Yonezuka Varsity Wrestling Lehigh University under Thad Turner 2nd Degree Black Belt Tae Kwon Do