It’s an unfortunate fact of life that over 320,000 people in the US are assaulted and the majority of them are women. Over the past few weeks, four women were assaulted in Uptown Dallas. It’s a vibrant neighborhood with a popular night life scene. As a guy who has spent over 15 years training martial arts and as a professional mixed martial arts fighter, I can say my training has helped me in some situations where I was threatened and I’m not talking about being in the ring.
I believe that my training has given me a quiet confidence knowing I can handle myself should a physical altercation happen. This is a type of confidence that I carry internally knowing what I am capable of doing to another human should the dire need arise to use it. There is a scene in the original Karate Kid movie where Mr. Miyagi tells Daniel “you train so you don’t have to fight” meaning you know what your capabilities are and they needn’t be used for self defense only. I don’t want this to come across as bragging or boastful. This confidence is quite common with fighters and avid practitioners of the martial arts.
As your training progresses, you begin to realize that martial arts is as much about honing your mind and spirit as it is your physical skills. You re met with many physical obstacles in martial arts and this teaches your mind how to deal with adversity and ways to over come challenges. I have learned more about myself through my endeavor of martial arts than any other platform. It has taught me to realize or identify some of my own self doubts and how to mentally frame some of these challenges in a more positive light. This obviously didn’t happen overnight it took years actually and that is my point. It is a journey to self enlightenment through the physical honing of using your body as a weapon. The blood, sweat and tears over the years forges you to be better at your art and for yourself if you don’t give up on it. This is not an easy journey as less than 10% of all people who train martial arts will actually go on to attain their black belts. The journey doesn’t stop there either it’s just a mile marker noting that you have the basics mastered. There is no level of attainment of perfection with martial arts it’s like when they say to practice law you can always strive to get better. The same holds true for you as a person there is no attainment of perfection you can always strive to be a better person.
I get asked every now and then what I think of the sport of mma since it can be quite brutal and my response is every person ,especially women, should know martial arts or be proficient at defending themselves. If you are thinking about trying self defense or martial arts I strongly encourage everyone from all walks of life to do so. Trust me… if you stick with it you will begin to see the benefits from training such as more focus and better ability to deal with the daily difficulties life will throw at you. It will change your life for the better. Not to mention it’s also a great way to get in shape and meet some like-minded people. I’ve seen some relationships sprout off the mat as well. Get out there and train!