Recently I bumped into an old student. I didn’t immediately recognize him but after a few glances I realized he had been a student when he was about five years old. His face looked the same but he sure did grow up. I said ‘hello’ and he immediately said ‘Sensei’ and bowed to me. He is now 19 years old and told me he thinks of our school often. I asked him to come back to train again. He said he wished he never quit. We spoke a bit more and I asked why he had given it away. He said he was a kid at the time and his parents let him quit. Students often tell me they will be back someday but this very rarely happens.
When people take up the martial arts, in the first place, they are seeking more than just a fitness, or sporting activity. There is a little more to the martial arts than meets the eye. It is about the challenges and accomplishments of an individual. I believe we all need some direction and purpose outside our working (employment/school/domestic) environment. Life is a balancing act (this is where the Yin and the Yang come into it).
Sometimes, the young ones may become bored (as we all do) and be swayed by other activities. Parents should know that if a child gets bored with a toy, then getting them another toy will only be pleasurable for that short time just like the last one. This is where parents have to be on the alert! Parents can deal with these situations by approaching the Instructor (you will not be left on your own). Don’t let your children quit! Martial Arts training is invaluable! There are literally thousands of success stories which demonstrate how the Martial Arts will enhance your child’s life.
I, personally, enjoy teaching and positively influencing people’s lives which I do through the martial arts. Remember, a Black Belt is a White Belt that never gave up.