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Martial Arts Myths & Misconceptions

Traditional Systems Don’t Work

By Jonathan Maberry

That pretty much depends on the practitioner rather than the art. Studying an art isn’t like putting on a magic cloak --it doesn’t imbue a person with great powers. We martial artists make ourselves into living representations of the arts we study. If we practice karate or kung-fu or jujutsu or hapkido -- the system works through us but we are the ones who must give the art life and breath and reality.

Okay, that’s the esoteric perspective, now here’s the cold hard truth. If a person does not make the martial art work, then it won’t work. If a person is lackluster in training, lazy out of class, and has such a short attention span that they leave while still in their intermediate years --which defines a good number of the people who say they’ve “taken some martial arts”-- then that person will be unlikely to use that art in real defense. What is result? The art is blamed for being ineffective.

If it was the art that had to be perfect, that had to be a guarantee of victory, then everyone who studied that art would be a world champion. Given that there are tens of millions of martial arts students practicing thousands of arts, that would mean that about one out of every 40 people on the planet would be a world champion.

The art does not guarantee success. The martial arts practitioner must, through hard work and a true dedication to the learning of that art, make himself a successful practitioner.

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About the Author:

Jonathan Maberry is the award-winning author of over 700 articles as well as several books, including Ultimate Jujutsu Principles and Practices and The Martial Arts Student Logbook. He holds an 8th degree black belt in jujutsu and a 5th dan in Hapkido, is a member of the Martial Arts Hall of Fame, and is co-founder of the COP-Safe program. Visit his website here.

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