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Bowley Kenpo Karate » Entries tagged with "Stories"

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) 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 … Read entire article »

Filed under: Philosophy

What’s a Black Belt Test Like?

What’s a Black Belt Test Like?

A frequent question from coworkers and friends, what is a karate test like? What’s a black belt test like? Most other hobbies, extracurricular activities, or even passions don’t have a similar evaluation system built in as martial arts does. There is a certain “mystique” to what people believe about karate exams. What follows are stories of my experiences. Keep in mind, other martial arts styles, other schools, even other instructors could do their testing differently. … Read entire article »

Filed under: Belt Promotion, Personal Stories, Sparring

Kenpo Senior Conference Reflections

Kenpo Senior Conference Reflections

A couple of weekends ago, a group of us drove to Austin, Texas to participate in the first Kenpo Senior Conference. The event had about 80 Kenpoists from all over the world, and it was the best karate weekend we’ve ever been a part of. It was amazing to be among so much energy and desire to perpetuate the Art. There were a variety of classes on Friday night taught by some of the chief lieutenants … Read entire article »

Filed under: Personal Stories

Everyone But Daddy

Everyone But Daddy

“It takes a village to raise a child” is a common proverb almost everyone has heard. While talking about how it’s a group effort to teach a child the necessary characteristics to be a responsible, well-round adult, it can apply to martial arts training as well. Anyone who teaches karate to, and specifically spars, with their children will probably be able to relate. As of this writing, my daughters are ages 11 and 13. They’ve been … Read entire article »

Filed under: Personal Stories, Philosophy, Sparring

Pickpockets in Rome

Pickpockets in Rome

Ever have one of those situations which could have been a whole lot worse? Yeah, me too. Here’s one of mine. Before we traveled to Romerecently, we did a very tourist-y thing and bought a travel guide for highlights of the sites to see. One of the things of note, the book’s suggestion to be very careful in Rome because there are a number of pickpockets. We were also warned of this by our friends who … Read entire article »

Filed under: Personal Stories

Blood, Loyalty, and Family

Blood, Loyalty, and Family

Recently, my family and I had the opportunity to tour a little bit of Italy for a long vacation. We spent five days in Rome and ended with five days in Monreale, Sicily. The opportunity came about because my youngest, Venezuelan sister was marrying the Italian man of her dreams. (An epic wedding reception to be sure.) Understand, I was born an only child but have six siblings: two brothers and four sisters. This is because, … Read entire article »

Filed under: Personal Stories, Philosophy

Kenpo Bucket List

Kenpo Bucket List

After a recent sparring class, Mr. Wilson, a few fellow Kenpoists, and I were discussing upcoming seminars we would like to attend. Mr. Wilson and I shared the wisdom Mr. Duffy had imparted us many times: Go attend as many seminars as you can. Learn from as many people as you can. You never know when a different instructor, presenting material you may have heard before, is going to present that material in a new way, … Read entire article »

Filed under: Personal Stories, Philosophy

Who are you competitive with?

Who are you competitive with?

While at my alter-ego day job the other day and also in the break room playing ping pong with a coworker, he remarked he thought most black belts were super competitive. Now my coworker certainly has an authoritative opinion on this as he’s a black belt in Jiu Jitsu along with a few other styles. He’s also competitive at ping pong. I disagreed saying, while I’m not yet a black belt, I don’t believe most are … Read entire article »

Filed under: Philosophy

Ping Pong and Karate. No, Really.

Ping Pong and Karate. No, Really.

At my alter ego, day-job, the company has recently put a ping pong table in the break room. Now there’s a daily gathering, sometimes more frequently, to determine the “championship belt.” Over the last few months, as players got better, I’ve seen a chance for better sparring as a result of playing ping pong. No, our games don’t become so violent we resort to throwing the paddles . . . . usually. In dojo or tournament sparring, … Read entire article »

Filed under: Personal Stories, Philosophy, Sparring

Kids as Role Models

Kids as Role Models

We’ve just about grown our school to the point where we need a kids class separate from the adult class. (Right now they’re mixed by rank instead.) So after talking the would-be schedule over with some of the parents, we were decided on a course of action. We are going to create a kids class for ages 5 to 9-ish. After a recent class, I was speaking with two of the kids who will be … Read entire article »

Filed under: Personal Stories, Philosophy

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