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Bowley Kenpo Karate » Philosophy » Quitting Karate

Quitting Karate

Withdrawing from class. Stepping away for a while. Taking time off. Quitting. Chose any phrase which sounds the best, but they all mean the same thing. You’re not on the mat training any longer. (For right now)


In martial arts, the exit door isn’t always one-way. (Photo by mtellin)

And at certain points in someone’s life, that’s ok.

Kenpo is a demanding, time-consuming mistress. The more time you give her, the more time she wants and demands. Along everyone’s journey there comes a point where you have to balance the time commitment to go forward against the rewards of actually going forward.

Depending how the scales come up, you may end up stepping away from Kenpo. School, girlfriend/boyfriend, family, injury, career: it’s all apart of life. Priorities in life change. And that, too, is ok. Step away with a clear conscience.

Kenpo may be a demanding mistress, but she is also a forgiving one. When the timing is right, she takes people back in.

More often than not, the people that Kenpo has really touched find their way back onto the mat. There usually seems to have been a catalyst involved. Something happened in their life to make martial arts training a priority again.

For me, it was the fluidity of motion and camaraderie of Kenpo which created the need to come back. Originally having left karate in 1993, I came back in early 2009 to help my instructor prepare for a test. But I was more just going through the motions in order to help him out. It wasn’t my Kenpo. When he reopened his school in late 2009 with a demo, I was able to witness firsthand how well he and his fellow black belts moved and also how great their kinship was. Right there I knew I had to have both of those things. In that moment my Kenpo shot up the priority list, and I was back in.

In the short time we’ve had our school, a number of students have had life happen. Great students on the mat who left. Those who don’t make it back, you have to hope we, as instructors, did our job in preparing them. Others will find their way back, and their journey will continue. Maybe not to our school, but back to Kenpo.

Sam Bowley
Bowley Kenpo Karate in McKinney, TX

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Quitting Karate
Quitting Karate
Quitting karate now doesn't always mean you're done training in the martial arts.

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