By Benny Sullivan Student
Martial Arts by definition is the use of physical skill as a means of self-defence or combat, however I believe a greater meaning exists. My interpretation of martial arts involves three broad realms; the physical, the mental, and the social. These realms evoke self-improvement that resonates beyond the dojo.
Martial arts has improved my physical capabilities. To achieve black belt is a difficult task that seems physically overwhelming at first glance, however the gradual physical amelioration that occurs with each progressive belt grading breaks this task down into small, achievable steps. Cobra Martial Arts has shown me that I can always push passed my perceived physical boundaries; no physical challenge is insurmountable with adequate preparation.
Martial Arts includes a psychological realm in its definition. Cobra Martial Arts improved my self-perception. My confidence in my abilities has improved, and my sense of self-efficacy and empowerment seem to rise perpetually. These great benefits helped throughout my journey to black belt, and have also improved my approach to life outside the dojo; my self-perception and outlook on life has dramatically improved.
The final broad component is the social realm. Martial Arts has been a fantastic medium for learning new skills with a great group of people. Throughout my journey to black belt I have been surrounded by training partners and instructors who are all extremely dedicated and committed to the Arts. Their focus and determination radiates, serving as motivation for myself, and I thank them for this. My journey to black belt has created a close friendship with many people, and I intend to continue my friendship, physical development and personal improvement with these people.
If I were to summarise Martial Arts in one sentence, I would adapt from the nine tenants; "sound body, sound mind, sound spirit, self-mastery". It is thanks to Sensei and his willingness to teach the art of Cobra Martial Arts that I and an infinite number of people may enjoy better health and a better quality of life.