Martial arts - training - goals : Motivation is everything!

martial arts - karate

Who among you doesn't know it?! You train obsessively towards a training goal, or starve yourself to your desired weight. Basically, it doesn't matter what kind of goal you're talking about here, because from diet to training success, or the next step on the career ladder at work.

The course is often identical! In the first days and weeks after you have defined your goal, everything goes according to plan, and you are motivated to achieve this goal. This motivation curve varies considerably over time. Of course, this is also due to the respective daily form and external circumstances, but one basic problem remains: time!

Table of contents:

Training: The time as motivation killer

In Karate, just like in other martial arts, especially beginners and newcomers achieve great training success very quickly. The more it goes from the rough form to the finest form (e.g. subtleties of the individual techniques and movement sequences), the success curve flattens out more and more, which then also leads to the demotivation of many. After all, it takes several years from the white belt to the black belt. Some make it to the Dan (black belt) in 5 years, others need 8 years, it doesn't matter! In the end, it is a path that accompanies you your whole life, because even after the 1st Dan there is no end.

Some people say that the journey only begins at this point! Many karateka stop with orange, green or blue belt because from this point on it often goes slowly. Surprisingly, even after years of training, many a brown belt throws down, and even when reaching the 1st Dan, many a person suddenly stops. The reasons are as different as the people, but I think that the time factor weighs heavily...

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In short, the trainers are not progressing any more or not fast enough! The same phenomenon can be found in almost all areas of life, no matter if you are a master of a martial art or a boss in a company with countless employees, you won't become all that overnight. The only way to success is the way you have fought for, literally or symbolically with a lot of hard work, blood and sweat.

Keep motivation levels high! But how?

The question of how to keep your own motivation level as high as possible is not easy to answer. Simply because not everyone "ticks" the same, there is no patent recipe for this problem. I don't want to try to answer this question now, but rather show possibilities that have helped me personally from my own experience, sometimes more, sometimes less.

1. define goals

Before you can even reach a goal, or at least get on the way to it, you have to define it. Write down your goals! That way you have them in front of you and the goal becomes clearer than if you just think about it. You can see it already! 😉 Write small Post-Its/notes and distribute them in your apartment or office. That way you never forget what and where you want to go!

2. Distraction during stagnation instead of frustration

kraken.jpgInstead of getting frustrated by slow progress, it helps to distract oneself. Look to the left and right of your path to see what possibilities still open up. In terms of karate training, one approach would be to do something different in between!

Especially in karate where you spend a lot of time executing one and the same technique hundreds and thousands of times until you master it. Go jogging, biking, swimming, walking the dog...Try something new for body and mind, Qi-Gong, Yoga, Meditation...Even a look beyond the end of your nose can't be wrong. As a Karateka you can also see what the people training in Taekwondo, Wushu Kung-Fu or Kickboxing do.

3. have fun!

Fun and pleasure are probably the most important aspects on the way to his goal! If training is not fun, or even boring or dull, then who likes to train? Of course this does not mean that you should neglect respect, discipline and etiquette in the dojo. The basic attitude and seriousness must be given at any time, but you should always stay relaxed and smile from time to time!

Don't take criticism personally, be grateful for suggestions for improvement, and don't see everything too doggedly if something doesn't work out the way you want it to. This applies equally to the trainers and the coach 😉

4. Seeking inspiration - motivational slogans and wisdoms

Some people find it trite, some people don't know what to do with it, but for me personally it brightens my mood when I read the one or other quotations, motivational sayings and Buddhist or Asian wisdom that are posted on the Internet every day. Want an example?!

The most important fight that takes place in the dojo is the fight against the own self. - Tanaka Masahiko - 8.Dan JKA Shotokan.

You have to love what you do to be truly successful. An apple tree yields more the more you care for it, not the more you shake it. The fruit will ripen at the right time... - Günter Mohr (8. Dan Shotokan).

5. Eliminate importance of the time factor

kraken.jpgAs already mentioned, the time factor is a real motivation killer. It has always helped me a lot to break a long term goal down into smaller sub-goals and to move forward with the many smaller steps.

Sooner or later, you will reach your big goal, but you will have much more success, so that the motivation curve will not drop so drastically or even rise. Everyone wants to be first in the next competition, but it can also be a personal success not to be last! In this sense, I wish you much success on your ways. 😉

Author: Sascha from

Author: Sascha

Some words about myself. My name is Sascha - i'm a software developer, trader and martial artist from germany. Besides programming, trading and martial arts some of my interests and hobbies are cooking, fitness and hearing loud heavy metal music. :D

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