One hour per week

How many hours do you work in a week, is it 20, 30, 40 or more? What do we do with our time when we are not at work; some people come to learn martial arts.

I see it as my duty to give 100% to each class I teach whether it is a private class or group.

Firstly, I have a system set up in my brain that makes me remember the class I have previously done; It is my shoe shop. In my mind, I run a shoe shop where all my students have a shoe box full of the techniques, and things they have done and are currently doing. As the student comes in for their 1-hour private class my little shop owner pops into the back of the shop to retrieve the box for that student, and we carry on from the last class. I have no idea how my brain does this as I don’t even worry about it not being there when I need it (but I can’t remember what I go upstairs for).

This one hour out of everyone’s busy life full of family work dramas and chaos becomes very important and It is my job to make it special. I treat everyone as an individual because everyone is, I am not teaching robots and you must see a person as a person, not as a profit margin. Sometimes my classes look more like a counselling session, where we might do a stretching workout and talk about life; so, you must be an empath to people the empathy helps them relax and open to release pressure in their daily lives. Speaking of releasing or relieving of pressure there is nothing like a hard pad work session to work out anger or issues in your life (I sometimes wonder I have I just sharpened their fighting skills to be used at a later date if compromise does not work).

I try to take down the angry (psycho whisper), and try to build the confidence in the weak, it never fails to surprise me when people say they can’t do something well but I point out to them why should they be able to do it as they have just started to learn it. My job is to lift their spirits and make them feel good about themselves, empower them to make amazing changes in their lives, and if they leave each class feeling better about themselves how can that be a bad thing.

Everyone has their own signature in martial arts and in life I humbly try to help them find what they want out of the martial arts, just like the scarecrow, lion, and tinman in the Wizard of Oz, in the end they had it all inside them they just need help finding it (that’s where I come in).

You must truly love helping people, the arts can bring out the best of people (sometimes the worst) I try to stay away from the dark side of the arts full of ego and political issues, I try to guide people to the light (Carole Ann out of poltergeist).

In my group classes I try to get around and speak to everyone at least a few times and try and watch their techniques and even if I spot an adjustment to aid in the technique I still get an amazing buzz from seeing the technique improve before my eyes but, also see the face of the student amazing themselves by doing a flowing technique or effortless drill.

You should always see the person not the profit, even when a private class is a no-show I still have to charge them, but I would rather have taught them than take their money.

I have one of the best jobs in the world but even when I carry a heavy heart (having a bad day) my job is to put my worries in my own shoe box (in my shoe shop), and help others find a peace and moving Zen of the arts or just make them feel better having spent time with me. Someone once said it when we die it is not how much money we had, the fancy car we drove or any of the material things of this world it is how we made people feel is the true wealth. Do this!

Until next time

Big love from the AFC xx

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