The Martial Arts world has changed so much since I was a little kid.
Because of the internet and cage fighting the old ways are slowly dying
for better or worse and it’s an exciting time. I’m sure in another 30 years
I’ll be saying the same thing.
The one thing that should not be forgotten or left behind is the bow.
Over the years I have bowed on and off the mats thousands of times,
to the point where I have walked into Coles with a hundred things racing
through my mind and bowed before I got a shopping trolley. The fact that
the bow has become second nature to me is not a good thing.
When students walk to the edge of the mat, they are bowing towards their
potential selves and pledging their sincerity and loyalty to themselves,
instructors and training partners. They are bowing to eliminate their ego,
which is not easy and the result is not the point, it is the effort to improve
themselves that is of value.
So when you walk to the edge of the mat take a deep breath, bow and take
a moment to contemplate why you are bowing. Leave the difficulties you
faced during the day behind and focus on what is in front of you and only
bow at Coles if the checkout lady gives you a discount.