Martial Arts Teaching for the Future
One reality I see over and over at martial arts business conventions is crowds of young proficient martial artists in on the latest martial fad and hoping to earn a living providing good training for their communities, but lacking in a crucial double-edged necessity.
They lack a seasoned mature presence, and they lack an inspiring realistic system for teaching how to deal with dangerous people.
Are you mature enough in your presence (we’re not necessarily talking years-of-age here) to inspire successful people to want to engage you to help them advance?
Are you aware enough to come across as someone that matters, someone that is making a difference in the community (…as opposed to being some twitchy young dude who mimics all the fads and cliches in appearance, language, and bearing, someone who radiates, “I’m trying real hard here and hoping you will chip in and help pay for all my fun.”) ?
I can teach other teachers good real-world martial arts. I must admit that really is not a likely business target though. I have few takers when it comes to getting a better martial art for an existing school; teachers stay pretty locked in emotionally to what they earned their black belt in, even when there are better things out there. On the other hand, there are school owners who have no grounding at all, and easily fall victim to chasing down a newer sweeter “flavor of the month”. Many school owners want to “roll” since Brazilians made that popular in the 1990s. Where were they when folks were snickering at me for teaching ground technique in the ’80s? And what then is the next hot thing to blossom? Fads come and go.
Success in the martial arts business is not about superior defense technology, it seems. It is about recognizing and delivering what makes people feel strong, decisive, and capable. Therefore, my next-few-years work is in the inner realms of warrior protector spirit. I believe martial arts school prospects in most towns are looking for authentic confident presence. They just happen to enjoy martial arts as a great way to get there. Yes, every teacher says s/he will deliver that, but truth is I see a lot of teachers who do not even have such maturity and stability themselves.
You can join us if you are brave enough and sincere enough, and ready to let go of the fad addictions that seem to motivate so many of your lost martial arts school owner peers.
I will start a next chapter in my teaching in 2012 after one more trip to see friends in the Himalayas next spring. I want to deliver training experiences to promote the inner strength and outer sophistication that seems to be so forgotten in our martial arts image of today. “Martial mastery, all-organic, no artificial additives, free-range, no cages”. The real deal for a world that seems to be growing more and more challenged and confused every day.
Maybe I will find some brave men and women ready for a fast track experience to what us 1960s martial artists admired in the rough and tumble grand old Asian men who headed the training halls back then when martial arts first came to general America, and what forward thinking people admire in spiritual teachers today in the 21st century.
Let’s see who shows up.