Here’s one for you to think about. In class last night Sensei Lee made a statement:
“If you think Karate will save your ass in a fight, you’re wrong!”
As usual he had the attention of everyone standing in Yoi in front of him, and my mind quickly starting mauling over wheat he had said. What could he possibly mean? We trained hard in our classes and there are people I train with who could mesmerize you with speed and power.
Sensei left that for a moment and went on to have us do Empi Kata… again, but this time he wanted it done on our own time, and not simply with techniques but with spirit.
We bowed at the end of Empi and stood there recollecting out breath, and wiping our brow in preparation in for the next instructions. Sensei continued his thoughts:
“You don’t win fights with karate, or with techniques. You win with your mind, your attitude…with spirit. Be prepared in your mind…the techniques will come out of you. The plan is simple: get the job done.”
Oftentimes in the Dojo we are focused on developing muscle memory, strength and speed, and we aren’t remembering a simple fact of combat: karate is a mental activity, which sometimes means putting yourself in a state of not thinking at all. You can refine your skill with your hands and feet all you like but they will be rendered useless in a fight if you lose composure, overthink your next move, or if you don’t have a clear head.
So, the plan is? There is no plan…just get it done.