Practice Your Basics

There’s an old rule of thumb in the martial arts that less than one percent of those who start out will last long enough to earn a first degree black belt. Less than one percent of those people will stick with training long enough to earn a second degree black belt. I’m sure that this […]

Budo, Bugei, or Bujutsu?

Japanese is an interesting language in that many terms have no direct translation into English. Single sounds can carry worlds of conotation and, when combined with other sounds, produce rich meanings beyond direct translation. In Japanese, there are 3 almost interchangeable terms which are used to mean “martial arts” – Budo, Bugei, and Bujutsu. Understanding […]

A Fatal Incident

Last week we were informed that my wife’s uncle, who was also one of my godfathers had passed away. It seems that, while waiting outside a restaurant with some coworkers, a young man made some racist comments toward him (he’s Asian). Words were exchanged and the man pushed my wife’s uncle who hit his head […]

Escape Awareness Drill

I am a big fan of unconventional training and, since awareness is the greater part of self-defense, here’s an unconventional drill you can do during the day: I once read that the first thing a professional burglar does after breaking into a building is to look for escape routes. This would be pretty important should […]

The Role of the Sensei and Courtesy in Practice

Courtesy Martial Arts practice begins and ends with courtesy. At the beginning of our practice we “bow in” with a short ceremony, at the end we “bow out”. The ceremony is spiritual but not religious, and is a very important part of the training. The importance of the ceremony is that we are shifting from […]

The Three Speeds in Training

We believe that any training for self defense, whether that’s martial arts, or gun training, or anything else, must emphasize safety. It makes no sense to get hurt while training for self defense. Most of us have jobs and family commitments that would be impacted by an injury, but injury recovery also detracts from the […]

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