My office assistant and her family decided a while back to build a greenhouse to have their own sustenance minus harmful things like pesticides and to better control the quality of food. My assistant, Sidney, declared once that she hopes the operation will grow large enough to provide green foods for those who can’t afford the expense. With this kind of sustainability, our community can grow healthier and have more opportunities for healthy options. Sidney’s mindset focuses on the sustainable – a rare commodity in today’s time.

We all live in a world of the unsustainable. Energy is no longer as renewable as we would like. Tensions are constantly high. Renewable sources dwindle over time. It seems that the least we can do is revive ourselves within the sanctity of our homes… As fast as we run these days, we never have time to recharge our batteries – our renewable resource can no longer be renewed. We become our own unsustainability. The truth becomes evident in these confines. The truth is that we destroy our bodies with the food we insist on consuming. The truth is that we let ourselves waste away with no physical exertion. The truth is that we can prevent this loss and this deterioration.

Polly, my wife, who has severe rheumatoid arthritis, makes changes constantly to keep her body going. Sidney, who has spinal problems and pains in her joints at all times, made herself give up sugar and grain for the sake of being able to keep moving forward. Of course, I don’t expect anyone to do anything so drastic, but even just some physical activity can help a body slow the deterioration.

My concern is similar to Sidney’s. I want to help the community. That, my friends, is one of the many reasons I decided to open a martial arts studio.


The Open Relationship

We’ve all heard the signs. We all know the symptoms. The open relationship with fitness.

“Yeah, I do ____, but I tried something else because ____.”

“No, really! I work out! I just haven’t in ____ weeks because ____.”

“This piece of fried chicken in my hand is not a result of no self-control. I deserve this.”

The excuses are endless.

It’s the same with HapKiDo. As a type of fitness, people often find excuses to stop coming with the same frequency as they one had or even altogether. While it takes time to get into the habit, the payoff proves worth every class taken. Work gets in the way. School creates too much stress. It’s been a long day, and you just don’t want to fool with an old man telling you how to kick or punch. Maybe you would like nothing more than to punch me. We just don’t know.

I’ve noticed a great portion of people go home after work, school, or whatever it is they do and sit in front of a blinking box for hours before going to bed. Instead of sitting in front of the box, go do something physical. Go run around the neighborhood. Go do ten pushups. Come to class like you paid for.

End the pandemic.

Get moving and get in shape.

Let’s Play Concentration

As the years pass at the studio, I’ve seen many fidgety, fidgety people. Whether they’re four or forty, people often fiddle with this article of clothing – tug at that strand of hair. Those in the formative years in life are surrounded by  a barrage of external stimuli. It’s no wonder that distracted behavior pervades our lives! For children, adolescents, teens, semi-sentient silicone life forms, young adults, adults and… well, pretty much every breathing, conscious being, distraction comes as naturally as air to the lungs. While distraction draws our attention away from the important things (oh, look! there’s a shiny object!), the most valued things in our lives become diminished. Grades drop. Work performance dulls. Zeal for life grows drab.

Here, at the studio, we see these idiosyncrasies and recognize them immediately. We work with them through the many times where distraction wavers focus. Potential discipline may pose as a great enough motivator to correct the lack of focus. However, push ups or a special thing we like to call “thinking position” is needed, at times. How quickly the fidgets get out of their system when they have to do push ups! This may seem harsh to some, but the only way to get through to people sometimes is to enforce the rule.

This rule carries over into everyday life. Sometimes harsh reality hits us in the face as our distractions provide undesirable outcomes. As our students progress, with occasional reminders, focus improves. And so do the other portions of life where distractions drag us down.